Tuesday, 5 December 2017

Teaser Tuesday: The Gauntlet by Karuna Riazi

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by Ambrosia of The Purple Booker.
To play along just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

The Gauntlet by Karuna Riazi.

The Gauntlet – Salaam Reads

It wasn’t a fair game anyway, when playing against someone much younger, and Farah was almost a teenager. She knew losing to Ahmad would build up his confidence and help her avoid his inevitable whining and wailing if he couldn’t claim victory.
— Prologue

“Um, guys? Do you feel something … weird?”
“We’re bunkering down in a sewer to avoid a sandstorm.” Farah sighed. “You’ll have to be more specific.”
— Chapter 14

Readers tend to also be board game players, at least to some extent. I’m not necessarily the best example but invite me to an evening of Settlers or Ticket to Ride and I’ll probably turn up. I would, however, never want to actually live inside any of the games we play. And if you know Jumanji and / or Zathura, you can probably guess what is about to unfold here: A group of friends and family gets involved in a magic game, has to solve dangerous riddles and quests, grow personally and as a group, and save themselves from becoming trapped inside the game universe by the malicious spirit of the game (rather than the elements of the game becoming real in their homes like in the aforementioned titles).
So far so good, you might think, what else is new, we’ve seen this before. And you probably have. But I dare you to find all these elements in an adventure book of this calibre and in this constellation. I don’t want to comment on the fact that this is from a publishing imprint that specialises on books with a Muslim background apart from the fact that I’ve just mentioned it. The protagonists in the book are children like any other with the same learning curves and challenges. This is just another aspect of their character.
The siblings in this book are quite special to me because their development towards understanding and respecting each other is so very organic and beautifully executed. In a similar fashion, the friendship between the characters develops in interesting ways and I liked how this is shown over the course of the novel. It is to be expected if you’re familiar with this type of narration but even then the plot managed to surprise me and I often found myself racing along the text to see if the task could be completed in time.
Safe to say just as I would be one of the first to exit the stage in the Hunger Games I also wouldn’t be able to escape the Gauntlet. Luckily, readers have books to take us to the places that are too scary and dangerous to visit in real life and make us see and experience things that would probably scare and break any real person.

If you had the choice, would you rather be sucked into a board game world or have elements from such a board game appear in your home? And which game would you choose? Share your thoughts and teasers in the comments!


sherry fundin said...

What the heck, if I'm on an adventure, might as well go all the way and be sucked into it. :-)
sherry @ fundinmental My TT

Kathy Martin said...

This sounds good. I especially like the second quote. This week I have Bury the Past by James L'Etoile from my review stack. Happy reading!

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