The False Prince
by Jennifer A. Nielsen
Last week, I read this book in six days, and half of it in one (a day well spent). That’s the fastest I’ve read any complete work in…probably since I was required to for a college class three years ago. It was that good.
We follow teenage orphan Sage and his capture into a deadly political game, pitting him against two other boys to be the best, him against his clever capturer, and, well, he’s basically on his own against everyone including the servants.
Thus the weaving of clever and accidental schemes of how a boy who just wants to be himself must put on the most complicated mask in order to survive to the next day. Every page, watching Sage maneuver, succeed, and fail made me wonder how much longer he would last. How much longer he could hold on to being himself.
Certain scenes from this book follow me to my late night thoughts when my mind is free to race, as I mull over the comparison of events as I knew them when reading and as I know them now having finished the book, adding a level of storyplay with reader that makes this one last beyond the final page.
Nielsen’s first book in the Ascendance trilogy is full of layered characters, unexpected twists, and anticipation that will keep you turning the page for more. The False Prince was published in April 2012 and The Runaway King came out less than a year later in March 2013. The third piece to the story, The Shadow Throne, is set to be released in less than six months, March 2014.
I want some time to fully process The False Prince before I pick up the second book, but I can tell you Jennifer Nielsen has a new fan and I intend to continue with her Ascendance Trilogy.