Here is the summary of the book:
The year is 2023 and ex-detective Lara Evans is working as a freelance paramedic in a bleak new world. She responds to an emergency call and is nearly killed when a shooter flees the home. Inside she finds the federal employment commissioner wounded, but she’s able to save his life. The next day Lara leaves for the Gauntlet—a national competition of intense physical and mental challenges with high stakes for her home state. She spots the assailant lurking at the arena and soon after, she lands in deep trouble. Who is the mysterious killer and what is motivating him? Can Lara stop him, stay alive, and win the Gauntlet?
Set in 2023 USA our story by far revolves around two arcs. One shows of ex-cop and current paramedic Lara Evans who as her duty states much respond to every distress calls and responds to an emergency but is nearly killed when a shooter flees from the scene of crimes and who would she find as the victim but the federal employment commissioner. Co-incidence, think not - on the eve of her leaving for the Gauntlet - a national competition of intense mental and physical prowess and high stakes for her home town, the winner not only gets a huge prize money and a line-up of advertisements to showcase her but also wins jobs for her hometown - which is a rather good way of earning in the future when due to deflation numerous people face unemployment and the working few try to hold onto their post with a long list of replacements in tow. So Lara wants the jobs to return to her state and is determined to win the competition.
She sees that assailant at the gauntlet games and lands herself in trouble with the Gauntlet managing committee. Can she stop this person before something worse happens and also win the games....well read on...read on.
Lara Evans is our typical heroine, 42 years old, ex-cop a homicide detective and now a freelance EMT is rather a reckless person rushing into scenes without thinking and is a rather determined and point to be noted wants to win at the Gauntlet games and breaking the notion that woman don't win there. But as usual trouble follows and after her roommate is found dead she must do all she can to stay alive and simultaneously try to catch this mysterious attacker.
One arc done the next one follows simultaneously of a nerdy-geeky who is the one arranging the mishaps. Rather lonely and an attention seeker would do anything to gain the affections of a girl he likes.
So the future is rather bleak don't you think? Well the government is still the same. Corruption is abound in all fields of society. The federal government in the USA has been radically downsized, unemployment is high, health insurance is rare and a lot of government services, including basic EMT and police services have been cut to the bone. There are elements of dystopian near future sci-fi afloat as well. Corporations and big business are the true powers, as they control all government agencies and control who works where and the position they can occupy. Salary raises and advances are a part of the pages of history books.
A nice setup to the Gauntlet games as well. A part that is rather very well written and very exciting. And vaguely resembles The hunger games(Suzanne Collins) but to a 9 out of 100% mark. Since the money is scare it is a good setup and there is the grant money as well. The winners bring home money for their home state, which can be used to generate jobs. This devotion of hers to bring back the jobs to her state is a cause to cheer for.
There are some elements of surprise as well and it is how the two arks co-relate is the point that makes the story work. Miss Sellers has done a very great job with it.
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