Girl Runner: A Novel
Aganetha Smart was Canada’s Golden Girl Runner at the 1928 Olympic Games in Amsterdam, winning the gold medal for her country in Carrie Snyder’s Girl Runner. Present-day Aggie is in a nursing home and has outlived all of her siblings and both parents. But when one day she gets an unexpected pair of visitors who take her out of the home, Aganetha is forced to revisit her life story and think on her moments as an Olympic athlete, as well as on various family secrets.
As much as I enjoyed reading Girl Runner, I expected a larger emphasis on Aganetha’s professional track and field life, and would have liked to see more about that journey. I also found that I didn’t always think Aganetha to be a particularly likable character. Instead, there was more of an emphasis of Aganetha navigating her life as the once Golden Girl Runner of Canada, and what that meant for her when her career stopped. I enjoyed the cast of supporting characters, for example, Aggie’s sister, Olive. That being said, her family history was interesting, and was ultimately wrapped up with the reveal of a family secret I hadn’t predicted, which was refreshing.