Saturday, September 2, 2023

Review: RAT (The Fall Gauntlet #2) by J. A. Merkel


The Fall Gauntlet #2

by J. A. Merkel

Published: August 29, 2023

Publisher: Worlds Apart Media

Genre: Young Adult, Apocalyptic, Post Apocalyptic, Dystopian


The Fall Gauntlet has ended, but the Crown still wants their champion, and they won’t stop until they get it.

Against all odds, Benji and Soren have escaped the Fall Gauntlet finals—together. Benji should consider himself lucky, blessed by the gods and goddesses, even. After all, he’s broken free from the Crown’s clutches and given people a reason to stand up and fight again. But Benji and Soren’s actions have consequences.

Without a champion, the Harvest cycle has ended. The brother’s parents are still being held prisoner by the Crown. And whispers that rebel totem groups are forming to bring the Crown down grow ever louder. Benji and Soren may have escaped the stadium, but getting out of the capital is a whole other beast.

Much to his horror, Benji has created a living nightmare in which the Fall Gauntlet does not end. And what shocks him even more is that his list of enemies seems to grow with every step. When a strange man and his “rat” followers offer to help the brothers leave the capital by sewer, the brother’s escape plan takes a dark turn. If they can’t rise above their own past hurts, and the lies that continue to haunt their family, Soren and Benji may indeed die at each other’s hands.

The Fall Gauntlet continues . . .

J. A. Merkel’s RAT is part of The Fall Gauntlet, a collection of short stories about Benji and Soren outsmarting the Crown, saving a family lost to them, and learning how to be brothers again.

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My Review:

RAT is the second book in The Fall Gauntlet series of short stories by J. A. Merkel. RAT like the first book BEAR starts off with a blast and never lets up from beginning to end. RAT may be a short read but it packs a punch. RAT has a lot between its pages that will have you hooked from the first page. The action never lets up it from one page to another.

Two brothers, Benji and Soren have escaped the Fall Gauntlet. Their parents are still being held by the Crown. The brothers are making plans for their escape. But in the meantime, Soren wants to go back for his girlfriend but Benji says no, now is not the time. Soren is upset with Benji and blames him for leaving him behind all those years ago.

While the brothers are trying to make their escape the city holds even more danger for them. As they try to make their way out of the city they have to go through the circus people who are very a dangerous bunch indeed. They have to make their escape through the sewers below with the help of the RAT people.

The RAT’S make their way through the crown and other places without anyone seeing them. They know more about what goes on than any other. They try to tell the brothers about the Crown and what all goes on there but the brothers don’t believe everything they are being told. They don’t believe the RAT people or more like they don’t believe the RAT man. Every time I heard anything about the RAT man I kept thinking about Stephen King’s The Stand with the Rat Man.

I sorely loved reading the RAT and can’t wait to read the next book in The Fall Gauntlet. I can’t wait to see where the story takes us next. I can’t wait to see where Benji and Soren’s story goes on their next journey.

Be sure and check out all the books in The Fall Gauntlet




RAT #2



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