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(Arena #2)

4.11  ·  Rating details ·  285 ratings  ·  65 reviews
Plug back into the dangerous world of virtual gaming, in the next thrilling novel from the author of Arena.

Kali Ling isn’t afraid of dying. She’s been killed hundreds of times in hundreds of different ways. And she knows there are things much more terrifying than death…

There’s a new game in town. A brutal, winner-takes-all, international video game tournament between the
Paperback, 436 pages
Published April 4th 2017 by Ace
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Holly Jennings Wow, thanks so much!! This brought a huge smile to my face.

Currently, I'm signed on for just the two books for my publisher. I do have a concept for a…more
Wow, thanks so much!! This brought a huge smile to my face.

Currently, I'm signed on for just the two books for my publisher. I do have a concept for a third and it's been submitted to the publisher. From here, it's up to them if there will be more. (less)
Lioness Holly Jennings recently announced on her blog that she is self-publishing Book 3. Set to be released sometime late next year (Jun-Dec 2021).

Holly Jennings recently announced on her blog that she is self-publishing Book 3. Set to be released sometime late next year (Jun-Dec 2021).


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Mar 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
Gauntlet is the second book of the Arena series by Holly Jennings. In the first book, Arena, we met Kali Ling who had achieved her lifelong dream of becoming a professional gamer in the Virtual Gaming League’s RAGE tournaments. The league has the best players in the world competing weekly in virtual reality tournaments, the weapons are digital but the pain is real for the players. They eat, sleep and breathe their training and workouts. However the players also lived the rock star lifestyle with ...more
Mogsy (MMOGC)
3.5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

Get ready, because it’s time to enter the arena again. Gauntlet is everything a reader dreams of in a sequel—bigger world, higher stakes, and even more dangerous and violent challenges. I had a really good time with the first book, but at the same time I was also curious to see how this follow-up would build on its potential and whether or not it would improve on a few of the weaknesses.

Quite a lot has happened since the
Mar 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Wow. WOOOOOOOOW. Get ready, for this spoiler (kinda?) free review.
Press Start to Begin. . .

HOLY FRIGGEN' FRIG! I read Holly Jennings first book Arena a while back since a friend had recommended it to me. I was looking for something similar to Ready Player One by Ernest Cline and I was pointed in the Arena direction. I must admit, it wasn't the book I was expecting. Probably because I was expecting Ready Player One and that's mainly my brains fault.
Once I heard Gauntlet was on it's way, I wa
Apr 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
*Source* Publisher
*Genre* Science Fiction
*Rating* 4.0

*My Thoughts*

Gauntlet is the second installment in author Holly Jennings Arena series. Several months ago, Kali Ling's dream of becoming the first female captain to lead a team to virtual glory came true. Now, she is on a mission to erase the corruption and drug abuse stigma that infects both players and owners in pro-gaming by becoming the youngest team owner ever. Kali is world renowned as the Warrior in Virtual Gaming Rage Tournaments. She
Apr 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
My review cross-posted from Wit and Sin:

After falling in love with Holly Jennings’s intense, exciting world of virtual gaming in Arena, I had extremely high hopes for its sequel. Gauntlet was everything I’d hoped for and more. It’s imaginative, addictive, and tense. You never know what will be thrown at Kali and her team next, and that’s just the way I like it.

Kali Ling, the youngest team owner in the history of virtual games, is out to change the wor
All Things Urban Fantasy
Apr 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy.

Sexual content: Non-explicit sex scene

GAUNTLET is all about seeking a balance -- in life and in virtual reality. After exposing the corruption within the Virtual Gaming League, Kali Ling has a placed a target on her back. It turns out that owning a team is expensive, demanding, and a lot more responsibility than expected. In GAUNTLET, Kali learns there’s a huge difference in being a player and being an owner. She now has to worry about the image of her
Erica Chilson
I received a copy of this title to read and review for Wicked Reads

5 I-couldn’t-put-the-book-down Stars

Young Adult age-range: 12+, depending on the maturity of the reader. Virtual-reality game violence. Mild cussing. Kissing. Fade-to-black sexual situations. Addiction.

After reading Arena about a year ago, I feared being lost at the start of Gauntlet, but the two books flowed together seamlessly, with no confusion to be had.

Without giving away spoilers… what a thrill ride! I was gripped the en
I've never really been into gaming so what possessed me to want to read Gauntlet I have no clue. Okay, I do know - the blurb. Dangerous world. Winner-takes-all. Female captain and youngest team owner. Things much more terrifying than death… Yeah, that and lots more grabbed my attention. I needed a break from all the romance I've been reading lately and even though I haven't read the first book in the Arena series, this book by Holly Jennings looked to fill the bill.

Wow, just WOW! Gauntlet blew m
Cale Dietrich
Mar 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2017
This was EPIC.

Ahh I’m so satisfied as a fan right now. I’m a huge fan of Jennings' debut, ARENA, which I thought was so exciting and introduced me to one of my favourite heroines, the marvellous and badass Kali Ling. So I had the usual worries I have before starting any sort of follow up to one of my favourite books – would it be as good?

I shouldn’t have worried, because this book is freaking awesome. It’s an intense and thoughtful thrill-ride filled with great writing, fun action scenes, and h
Kate (Looking Glass Reads)
Never have I seen a second novel in a series so completely outdo the first in nearly every way. I'll be honest here. I probably wouldn’t have picked up Gauntlet by Holly Jennings if the publisher hadn’t sent me a digital copy. I found Arena, the first book in the series, disappointing. I could see the potential within the novel and desperately wanted to love it, but found it fell short of the mark. I was hesitant to start reading Gauntlet.

It is immediately obvious that author has grown as a writ
Elizabeth Tammi
Apr 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
“Familiar paths end at the edge of your comfort zone. So, if you don’t know where you’re going, you’re already headed the right way.”

In the 2050s, virtual gaming is the ultimate immersive experience. Gamers are completely a part of a digital world, where they wield the weapons and deliver the blows themselves. The line between the virtual world and the real one is dangerously thin.
Nobody knows that better than Kali Ling, the first female gamer to own her own competing team. But she’s faced that
Amy A
Mar 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviews
Originally posted at Vampire Book Club

It’s been a few months since Kali Ling made history as the first female captain to win the RAGE tournament along with her team, Defiance. Now, Kali has another mantle she can add to her growing collection, she just became the youngest ever team owner when she bought Defiance out from under its previous management.

While Kali has been dealing with the ins and outs of sponsorships and managing finances, gamers from around the world have been intrigued by a myst
Dec 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I’m in love with this series and the characters and the world and ahhh I dunno if there will be a third book or not but I really hope there is because I don’t want this series to be over yet.
Melanie Noell Bernard
Feb 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc-requested, own, arc
I received this free physical ARC from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Full Immersion Gaming
Need I really say more? :p This is the new big thing and is going to become even bigger in our lifetimes, but most importantly, it sets the stage for a whole new world of gaming technology. This series shows us that world. It shows us what life could be like if full immersion technology became real and I love it! I love all of it: both the good and the bad! You’ll have to read to find out w
Apr 21, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: for-blog
A year ago Kali Ling was the first female captain in the Virtual Gaming League’s history. Now she’s the youngest ever team owner. With a new tournament starting up, pitting the best gamers in the world against each other, Defiance is definitely on board. But, between the new pods that constantly adapt to players actions and all her new responsibility as team owner, can Kali stick to her convictions or will she wind up being just as bad as the rest of the VGL when the chips are down?

I have issues
Dec 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Wow, this was certainly a step-up from Arena. A bigger world and bigger challenge, with Team Defiance facing both old enemies and new ones in the virtual gaming world. I really hope there's a third book in this series, as I can't wait to see what Kali & the team do next.

Thanks to Berkley Publishing for the eARC.
If you have a dream, then you just have to do it. You can’t let money, or experience, or anything else become an obstacle. Never bow down to the world. Always make it bow down to you.

Woo. Wow. Another round complete.

So much fun. Not as much fun as Arena, but damn. This was phenomenal.

What I loved about Kali was her endless amount of spice, salt, sauce, spunk and sass. All of that. And then some. God, she was one sassy hardass. And I just loved to eat it all up.

She seemed to lack all of th
Champaign Public Library
Mar 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Recommended by Emilie B.

Many sequels fall short of their predecessors, and this certainly was a worry with a first novel that can easily stand-alone such as Arena. However, Gauntlet was delightfully surprising, while still holding onto many of the things that made Arena such an enjoyable read, making it a more-than-worthwhile continuation of the series. We start with Kali having returned to Defiance, this time at the team’s owner, and with Rooke notably missing from the team roster. The gaming i
Mar 23, 2018 rated it did not like it
loved the first book in this series, but this second one just so so so completely did not work for me.

Set in the future, VR video games are the biggest, most popular things in the world. Gamers are the most fit athletes around, and usually the most beautiful/sexy/cool people as well. (Since games are so popular, the biggest players are used in most ad campaigns, so they have to look good.) The first book featured a woman and her team entering a tournament. This second book centers around a much
Dec 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Team Defiance is invited to an international tournament where the game is more than what it seems. New technology has brought gaming one step further. As players experience the game, it can learn from them and up the difficulty level in a heartbeat. Defiance will have to learn new skills to conquer both the game and their opponents. But as Defiance struggles in game, Kali Ling must learn how to fight back against the pressures of being a team owner.

Having bought Team Defiance, Kali is determined
Lannie Dasal
Jan 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
"Never bow down to the world. Always make it bow down to you."

Arc provided by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Full review to come March 28, 2017.

Gauntlet is the follow-up book to Arena, a world centering around competitive gaming. This isn't normal gaming though, it's virtual reality where all the pain is real and groups of five fight to reign victorious in front of millions of viewers.

That insanely cool world and plot line are only the surface of this series though. Unde
Jun 13, 2017 rated it liked it
Most of the book is predictable. The championship in the end had some good twists.
Likes: The twists in the games. Kali growing up a little by the end. She was really immature in the first third of the book that you had to wonder how she even got that far managing the team. She just seemed like a spoiled brat with a lot of money. I almost DNFed the book because I was getting fed up with her. I liked the little insights into the other of the team also. I wish she had expanded on that more.
Jul 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
If you read my review of Arena, you already know that I happened upon this series by chance. I didn't realize until I finished it that there is no more third book in the works. And honestly after reading a bit about that situation I have to say that I'm shocked that the author wasn't super invested in the series. It wasn't a labor of love...but it was still great. I guess it just proves that sometimes you're really good at something but you still don't enjoy doing it. LOL

I honestly would have gi
Aug 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Corruption, lies, and drugs define the Virtual Gaming League (VGL). In Holly Jennings' "Gauntlet," the sequel to "Arena," Kali Ling has finally become the owner of Team Defiance, just in time for an all-stars competition that will push the team, comprised of Kali, Lily, Hannah, Derek, and Rooke, to their breaking point both in and out of the game. Building on the previous book's themes, "Gauntlet" puts heavy heavy emphasis on friendship and the dangers of drug abuse. Many of the major plot point ...more
Shay Williams
May 08, 2017 rated it really liked it

I enjoy reading the occasional science fiction as long as it concentrates more on the people then the science itself. And GAUNTLET does just that and wonderfully.

Kali really shook up the gaming industry when she brought out fact that industry feels that the gamers themselves are expendable. Because of her revelations, a new type of VR pod has been designed which is supposed to be safer for the gamer. And there is a tournament to welcome the new pod.

GAUNTLET focuses on Kali but we also get the c
Henry Lazarus
May 04, 2017 rated it liked it
Holly Jennings shows us a near future in which virtual reality gaming has become bigger than movies and other sports events. Small teams fight in virtual setting in which full sensations are transferred to their bodies in pods, allowing them to even feel their deaths. Kali Ling did so well her first year as the first female team captain, that she raised to money to buy her own team – something usually reserved to the ultra rich. She also exposed drug abuse problems and the VGL. A Japanese compan ...more
Adam Fisher
Nov 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Jennings continues her Arena series by introducing a new element... an All-Star Tournament.
Kali and her team, Defiance, are coming off the highs of winning the RAGE Tournament and training for the new season when they are invited to a private event at multi-billionaire Tamachi's house. It is there that new technology is unveiled: a virtual gaming rig that not only requires no programmers, but also allows the gamer to remain inside for much longer periods of time. Tamachi plans to use this in an
May 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Rated 3.5 stars
This is an exciting sequel to the first book. Here, Kali is now the owner/manager of her virtual gaming team. Not only is she a player, but now she has to deal with hiring/firing, sponsors and advertising, and the general keeping the team together. Her team has an opportunity to participate in an international competition, with a huge prize payout. This tournament uses advanced (and safer) technology and seems like a great way for Kali and the others to advance in the gaming world
Alexa Nicole
Aug 18, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: series, 2017
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 09, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: did-not-finish
DNF 25%. The ratings for this being so high, I really made an effort. I did. But, among other things, the author failed to rectify the main problem with the previous book: the world of Arena is basically now-plus-this-one-gimmick rather than any plausible 40-year future. It could almost be an alternate history! The fatal facepalm for me was being informed that after 10 years of full-immersion VR gaming, only just now did anyone get around to broadcasting the games in a VR format. Pairs well with ...more
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Holly Jennings is a self-proclaimed nerd and lover of all things geeky and weird. As the firstborn to a sports enthusiast, it was soon discovered that the only games she'd ever learn to master involved consoles and controllers. Her childhood was spent crushing virtual foes, racing on simulated tracks, and rescuing digital princesses. As a young adult, she fell in love with English class, speculati ...more

Other books in the series

Arena (2 books)
  • Arena (Arena, #1)

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