THE GLASS GAUNTLET for Marvelous Middle Grade Monday

Trust no one… That theme continues to ring true in the second installment of the Blood Guard Trilogy.

Due to release this week, THE GLASS GAUNTLET, is a plot twisting story of 13-year-old Ronan. He’s now in training to become a 51sUO9Zx62L._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_member of the The Blood Guard, aka, the good guys. His main duty is to protect his friend, Greta, from The Bend Sinister, an evil society of individuals wanting to bring an end to this world as we know it.

Yes, the second book in a planned series of three is a tough one to write. Up front you know that not every problem can be solved. Something has to be left for the final book. There will also be new readers who somehow skipped the first book and jumped into this one. How do you bring them up to speed but keep the plot moving forward? Finally, how does one end a story that is to be continued?

Thankfully, in the hands of author, Carter Roy, all is well with each of those concerns. He weaves in information from the first story so you won’t be totally lost and a few new interesting characters are introduced along the way. We also get a deeper understanding of Jack Dawson, a teen who is actually 198 or so in age. Not too much more is revealed about Ronan, Greta, and younger Tommy’s character, but you get the feeling the final book will find them them growing even closer.

The mark of a great fantasy adventure is it keeps you guessing as to what happens next. THE GLASS GAUNTLET has all of that and more. Equally good news is a chance for you to win both books. Details are below!


FULL PLOT (From Amazon):

Ronan Truelove barely survived his first encounter with his father and the Bend Sinister. Now, he’s determined to become one of the Blood Guard, a sword-wielding secret society sworn to protect thirty-six pure souls crucial to the world’s survival.

Eager to prove he’s got what it takes, Ronan is sent on his first mission with his friends Greta and Sammy to visit a weird-sounding school and take a series of tests called the Glass Gauntlet. Paper and pencils and nerdy scholarship—where’s the life-or-death challenge in that?

But the Glass Gauntlet is actually something much more dangerous: head-to-head competitions against ruthless opponents. Nothing and no one are what they seem. Who can he trust, and who will kill him? Ronan has to figure it out fast because his enemies are multiplying, and soon he will have to pass the ultimate test: facing his father again and standing up to those who threaten not only him and his friends but also the world.


  1. The Glass Gauntlet, the Verity Glass, and the Damascene ‘Scope are a few of the unusual and cool objects you will learn about. Their “soulful” purpose guide the story.
  2. Jack Dawkins not only comes back to life each time he goes through another untimely death, but he does so with wit and charm. He makes a great older leader for our group of young ones in training.
  3. Just going through the chapter titles will provide you with a few chuckles. My favorites: STICKING OUT LIKE A GLASS THUMB; YOU CAN DUNK A KID IN WATER, BUT YOU CAN’T MAKE HIM SINK; YOU DON’T KNOW JACK;  and A FISTFUL OF SOUL.
  4. The action spills off the pages at the perfect moments. There’s tension, some gruesome but not too gruesome parts, and more than a few scenes had me in awe, scratching my head, and saying “How did he come up with that one?”
  5. The world building is marvelous. From the training headquarters to the site of the competition, it all lends itself to words painting a visual for readers.


“We’ve never officially trained any Blood Guard candidates before. You three are the first.” Dawkins’ face broke out into the enormous smile he uses when he’s trying to be charming. “But trust me: You are going to love this place!”


Carter Roy has painted houses and worked on construction sites; waited tables and driven delivery trucks; been a stage hand for rock bands and a videographer on a cruise ship; worked as a line cook in a kitchen, a projectionist in a movie theater, and a rhetoric teacher at a university. He has been a reference librarian and a book seller, edited hundreds of books for major publications, and written award-winning short stories for adult readers that have appeared in a half-dozen journals and anthologies. The Blood Guard was his first book, and The Glass Gauntlet is his second. He lives in New York City.    Carter Roy’s web site.

CONTEST TIME! How you can win both books in the Blood Guard Series?


Last week I reviewed Book One, THE BLOOD GUARD. If you commented (or still want to) I’ve already entered you into this weeks drawing for a The Blood Guard Series two pack. You can double your chances by also commenting on this review. Just complete your comments to one or both reviews by Sunday, August, 23rd, 5 p.m. EDT. I’ll then draw the lucky name who will win a brand new hardback of THE GLASS GAUNTLET, and a once read hardback of THE BLOOD GUARD. The winner will be notified via email next Sunday and reported here on Monday. Good luck!


Check the links to other Middle Grade novels over at Shannon Messenger’s Marvelous Middle Grade Monday post.


About Greg Pattridge

Climbing another mountain...always striving to reach the next peak in my life and career.
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8 Responses to THE GLASS GAUNTLET for Marvelous Middle Grade Monday

  1. Andrea says:

    This sounds like a video game in a book! I’m sure it will be popular. [Please don’t enter me in your contest, though, since the pile of TBR books on my night table is more than a pile, it’s a mountain.]

  2. This continues to sound like a unique and interesting fantasy. The author certainly has had an interesting life working so many different jobs before publishing. I hope teens love this series! Great review.

  3. Cindy Tran says:

    This book sounds very interesting, but something that caught my attention right away was Jack Dawkins and how he comes back to life every time he dies. I think that is SO interesting and agree that that makes him a great leader.

  4. The more I read about these books, but more I think my grandson would really love these. Thanks for bringing them to my attention.

  5. msyingling says:

    The first book had one of my favorite phrases ever: “Super corn nuts crazy pants”! I enjoyed the second book and am glad it’s just a trilogy. Have you thought at all about perhaps being a Cybils judge this year? You have worked very hard to keep up on middle grade books. Take a look!

  6. cleemckenzie says:

    Writing a series is such a challenge. I’m still diddling around with the 3rd book to follow up on Alligators Overhead. It’s going to take me some time to figure out how to do that one.

    These books that you’ve posted about today are really interesting. I’ve got readers who will gobble them up.

  7. Pingback: Favorite Middle Grade Reading Moments 2015 & a Giveaway – Always in the Middle

  8. Pingback: THE BLAZING BRIDGE for Marvelous Middle Grade Monday | Always in the Middle…

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