Review Blog

Apr 29 2013

The false prince by Jennifer A. Nielsen

cover image

Ascendance trilogy, bk 1. Scholastic, 2012. ISBN 9780545284134. Hardback
(Age: 11+) Recommended. Fantasy. Conner, a nobleman of the kingdom of Carthya, recruits four orphans and trains them to impersonate the king's long lost son. He intends to choose the best one to take on the role of prince and ultimately king. One of the boys, Sage, is defiant and fights against Conner, but realises that his life is on a knife edge, as Conner is ruthless and merciless. Sage must be chosen as the boy to impersonate the prince or he will die. As Conner trains the boys, Sage find that he is in a fight against treachery and must use all his cunning and skills to stay alive.
This was a very exciting read that I found I couldn't put down. The plot was thrilling, the characters were well rounded, there was plenty of action and clever writing brought the book to life. What I most liked about the book was the character of Sage, who is clever and whose witty comments lighten the most serious of situations. He is quick witted and devious and his actions had me laughing at times, and at other times I felt breathless at his audacity and risk taking.
This was a most entertaining read and I look forward to reading the next two in the trilogy. It will appeal to both boys and girls who are sure to enjoy putting together the clues that are subtly placed in the story and who will find the action and characters very engaging.
Pat Pledger

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