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Friday, August 5, 2016

Reading and the Olympics

The Summer Olympics in Rio begin today.  I’m not a sports fan, though I certainly do cheer on our athletes.  I thought about books I have read about the Olympics but the only one that came to mind was Chariots of Fire by W. J. Weatherby based on the screenplay by Colin Welland.  Of course everyone remembers that Oscar-winning film  –  the fact-based story of two athletes in the 1924 Olympics: Eric Liddell, a devout Scottish Christian who runs for the glory of God, and Harold Abrahams, an English Jew who runs to overcome prejudice.

The British newspaper, The Guardian, just released a list of fiction they consider “literary accompaniments to the key Olympic sports” from archery to wrestling.  See the complete list at

CBC Books also has a list of suggested reading during the Olympics:

For a non-fiction perspective, see “Summer Olympics Primer: 10 Books for the Rio de Janeiro Games” at

And then there’s an article at which is really interesting.   Twenty writers from around the world answer four questions:
What event will you be following most closely during this year’s Summer Olympics in Brazil?
What sport has the most interesting literary tradition in your home country?
Which of your country’s athletes would make the most compelling hero/ine of a novel or subject of a biography?
Which Olympic sport is most like your experience of writing?

Finallly, if you’re interested in the future of the Olympic Games, check out what seven science-fiction writers predict: