Release Date: March 28, 2017Published by: Salaam Reads
Read from: March 18-28 , 2017Stand-aloneSource: Netgalley (I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for a just and honest review. This did nothing to influence my review.)For fans of: Marginalized Voices, Fantasy, MG, Steampunk
A trio of friends from New York City find themselves trapped inside a mechanical board game that they must dismantle in order to save themselves and generations of other children in this action-packed debut that’s a steampunk Jumanji with a Middle Eastern flair.
When twelve-year-old Farah and her two best friends get sucked into a mechanical board game called The Gauntlet of Blood and Sand—a puzzle game akin to a large Rubik’s cube—they know it’s up to them to defeat the game’s diabolical architect in order to save themselves and those who are trapped inside, including her baby brother Ahmed. But first they have to figure out how.
Under the tutelage of a lizard guide named Henrietta Peel and an aeronaut Vijay, the Farah and her friends battle camel spiders, red scorpions, grease monkeys, and sand cats as they prepare to face off with the maniacal Lord Amari, the man behind the machine. Can they defeat Amari at his own game…or will they, like the children who came before them, become cogs in the machine?
When I heard there was a book coming out that was being compared to Jumanji, it didn't matter what it was about, I KNEW I had to read it. And I’m so glad the people at Salaam Reads let me read it! I really loved getting to know the characters and I was BITING my nails when things started happening to them!
It's Farah's birthday and all she wants is to have a normal party with her old friends. But when she receives a really weird present from her aunt. The other kids wish to play right away… But what they find is the present is so much more than just a game.
What I absolutely loved about this book was the characters. I loved seeing how they treated their culture and I loved seeing how they interacted with each other. They were all great and all had their own amazing qualities. (I just wanted to hug Alex! He reminded me of me!)
I also really liked the story itself. The tasks were amazing and even though I’m almost 29, there was one that still creeped me out.Any MG book that can creep out me at my age is superb lol I also really liked the ending. I was glad things happened they way it did. Even if I wasn't expecting it to go that way.
This is the first book by Riazi and I can't wait to see what else she has up her sleeve. I know I say this with almost every debut author, but it's always only with the ones I've really enjoyed. Hopefully Riazi will come back and make a companion nove *side-eyes her* lol
Overall, I give this
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