The False Prince (Ascendance Trilogy Series #1)

The False Prince (Ascendance Trilogy Series #1)

4.6 276
by Jennifer A. Nielsen
     
 

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In this first book in a remarkable trilogy, an orphan is forced into a twisted game with deadly stakes.

Choose to lie...or choose to die.

In a discontent kingdom, civil war is brewing. To unify the divided people, Conner, a nobleman of the court, devises a cunning plan to find an impersonator of the king's long-lost son and install him as a puppet prince. Four

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Overview


In this first book in a remarkable trilogy, an orphan is forced into a twisted game with deadly stakes.

Choose to lie...or choose to die.

In a discontent kingdom, civil war is brewing. To unify the divided people, Conner, a nobleman of the court, devises a cunning plan to find an impersonator of the king's long-lost son and install him as a puppet prince. Four orphans are recruited to compete for the role, including a defiant boy named Sage. Sage knows that Conner's motives are more than questionable, yet his life balances on a sword's point -- he must be chosen to play the prince or he will certainly be killed. But Sage's rivals have their own agendas as well.

As Sage moves from a rundown orphanage to Conner's sumptuous palace, layer upon layer of treachery and deceit unfold, until finally, a truth is revealed that, in the end, may very well prove more dangerous than all of the lies taken together.

An extraordinary adventure filled with danger and action, lies and deadly truths that will have readers clinging to the edge of their seats.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Praise for The False Prince

"A page turner...." – New York Times Book Review

“Sage proves to be a compelling character whose sharp mind and shrewd self-possession will make readers eager to follow him into a sequel.” – Wall Street Journal

“This kickoff to her new “Ascendance Trilogy” is a swashbuckling origin story. . . . Sage is a quick wit, and Nielsen showcases it with terrific dialogue…chock full of alluring details for adventure-loving boys.” – Los Angeles Times

\\“Sage is deftly characterized through humorous first-person narration, quickly establishing himself as a beguiling antihero. . . . First in the "Ascendancy Trilogy, this is an impressive, promising story with some expertly executed twists.” – Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Nielsen has written a terrific story that carries readers along to the very (surprising) end and will leave them clamoring for the next book in her trilogy.” – BookPage, featured “Top Pick” review

“The False Prince is more Harry Potter(minus the magic) than Hunger Games…with authentic characters, a convincing sense of danger and a genuinely high-stakes plot. . . .” – Hollywood Reporter

“Sure to appeal to middle-grade readers, The False Prince is an imaginative, plot-driven adventure story with a classic feel. . . . Readers will be turning pages feverishly, especially toward the climax of the novel. Deception and betrayal abound!” – RT Book Reviews

“The delight of Nielsen's story is the discovery of the true motivations of all the characters in a fast-paced plot with plenty of action, mystery and violence.” – Columbus Dispatch

“The False Prince is a gracefully written fantasy that flows from beginning to end without a hitch. . . . In addition to dynamic characters, Jennifer Nielsen has created a plot with twists and turns in all the right places.” – Deseret News

“Ruthless ambition, fierce action and plotting, complex characters and lots of sword play and hidden passages keep pages flipping. Readers of this multifaceted, well-crafted tale will eagerly await Sage's further adventures.” – Kirkus Reviews
“Fast-paced and exciting, this book will appeal to readers who enjoy intrigue mixed in with their adventure. . . . Full of machinations and surprises, this book will keep students reading until the last page and eager for the second in the trilogy.” – School Library Journal
“A sure-fire mix of adventure, mystery, and suspense.” – The Horn Book

Publishers Weekly
This highly enjoyable medieval fantasy from Nielsen (the Underworld Chronicles), set in the medieval kingdom of Carthya, centers on 15-year-old Sage, an angry and pugnacious orphan, who is unexpectedly purchased by Conner, one of the king’s regents. The entire royal family—king, queen, and heir—has recently died under mysterious circumstances, and to prevent civil war, Conner is collecting orphans who might believably be substituted for the dead king’s younger son, who was reported lost at sea years earlier. Sage is soon engaged in a deadly, winner-take-all contest with two other boys to earn the right to impersonate Prince Jaron. Sage is deftly characterized through humorous first-person narration, quickly establishing himself as a beguiling antihero: “I’d never attempted roast thievery before, and I was already regretting it,” he says when readers first meet him. “It happens to be very difficult to hold a chunk of raw meat while running.” Secondary characters are equally fleshed-out. First in the Ascendancy Trilogy, this is an impressive, promising story with some expertly executed twists. Ages 8–14. Agent: Ammi-Joan Paquette, Erin Murphy Literary Agency. (Apr.)
VOYA - Erika Sogge Schneider
Sage is a fourteen-year-old boy who lives in an orphanage in the kingdom of Carthya. Can a wealthy aristocrat named Conner rescue him from his pauper's fate? Sage learns that although Conner has purchased him from the orphanage, his fate is not secure. Conner has a bold plot to train three orphan boys to impersonate Carthya's lost prince. Due to the treasonous nature of his plot, only the boy who can best impersonate the lost prince will be allowed to live. Will Sage be able to overcome his obstinate nature and his penchant for finding trouble in time to win the crown? While the basic premise of the plot is sound, the first half of the book leaves much to be desired. The setting of Carthya is not chronicled in enough detail for readers to feel like they have really entered this fictional world. In addition, a number of the characters feel too basic and undeveloped. Many young adult readers may abandon this book because they are not able to understand the characters' motivations within the first one hundred pages. While the end of the book takes a surprising turn and neatly ties things together in an unexpected way, many young adult readers will not expend their energy toiling through the pages to get to the rewarding ending. Although this book may not be the best fit for the average young adult reader, students who like fantasy with kings, queens, castles, and power struggles may find this book worthwhile. Reviewer: Erika Sogge Schneider
Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
Mystery, intrigue, adventure, it is all here in Nielson's page turning story. Four orphan boys are "rescued" from misery by a mysterious man named Connor. What does he want with these orphans? Readers learn and each boy also learns how important it is to be the chosen one. They have two weeks to prove their mettle and a tough two weeks it is. They learn everything from reading, to fighting with swords to horsemanship, dancing and etiquette. It is not a bed of roses and one of the boys suffers more than the others—what makes Sage so rebellious and yet in many ways so clever? The story twists and turns as we wonder what will happen next. Betrayal, murder, treason, success—it is all there. For a good reader this book will probably be consumed in one sitting. For reluctant readers, there is enough action to make them want to keep on reading to work their way to the end. The ending has still a final twist and while it is a satisfactory closing, the story begs for a sequel. It will be interesting to see if Nielsen is going to write one and if it will be as gripping as The False Prince. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
School Library Journal
Gr 5–8—No one knows that the king, queen, and heir to the throne of Carthya are dead. Conner, a king's regent, chooses three orphans to vie for the role of Prince Jaron, the remaining heir, presumed dead, but whose body has never been found. In two weeks, Conner plans to reveal that he has found the missing prince. The boys are thrown into a brutal rivalry, knowing that if they are not chosen, death will soon follow. No one's true intentions are clear, especially those of wily Sage. One of the orphans, he subverts authority at every opportunity, yet never gives up his quest to become the pretender to the throne. On the day of the announcement, a truth is revealed that changes everything for Conner, the orphans, and especially Sage. Fast-paced and exciting, this book will appeal to readers who enjoy intrigue mixed in with their adventure. Although the twist at the end is predictable, the events that precede it are not. The characters' motivations may not always be clear but they remain consistent. Full of machinations and surprises, this book will keep students reading until the last page and eager for the second in the trilogy.—Kefira Phillipe, Nichols Middle School, Evanston, IL
Kirkus Reviews
A brazen 15-year-old orphan living in the imaginary kingdom of Carthya becomes embroiled in a treasonous power-play to install a false prince on the vacant throne. For years, Sage has survived by lying and stealing in Mrs. Turbeldy's Orphanage for Disadvantaged Boys. When scheming Bevin Connor removes him, Sage assumes he will serve Connor, but he quickly discovers he's one of four orphan boys chosen by Connor for a more dangerous game. Connor plans to secretly transform them into gentlemen and select one to impersonate Prince Jaron, who is missing and presumed dead. Carthya's current king, queen and crown prince have been murdered, and war could erupt at any moment. When the regents meet in two weeks, Connor plans to produce long-lost "Prince Jaron," who will rule as his pawn. Competition becomes fierce as the boys realize the one chosen to play Jaron will be the only survivor. Sage's disdain, defiance and reckless arrogance mark him for failure, but his boldness, instinct and innate decency indicate there's more than meets the eye. Could Sage become Prince Jaron? Sage reveals his story in the first person in slowly unfolding layers guaranteed to shock. Ruthless ambition, fierce action and plotting, complex characters and lots of sword play and hidden passages keep pages flipping. Readers of this multifaceted, well-crafted tale will eagerly await Sage's further adventures. (map) (Adventure. 8-14)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780545284141
Publisher:
Scholastic, Inc.
Publication date:
02/01/2013
Series:
Ascendance Trilogy Series, #1
Pages:
352
Sales rank:
37,983
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 7.38(h) x 0.82(d)
Age Range:
10 - 14 Years

Meet the Author


Jennifer A. Nielsen is the acclaimed author of THE FALSE PRINCE, the first book in the Ascendance Trilogy. She has also written The Underworld Chronicles, a humorous middle-grade fantasy series. Jen lives in northern Utah with her husband, their three children, and a perpetually muddy dog.

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False Prince 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 276 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Omg I loved this book but WHEN WILL THE NEXT BOOK COME OUT!!!!!! Gosh I wish somebody would tell me!! Click *Yes* if you agree with me.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have not felt this strongly about a book in a long time. The main character has a great "voice" and I was drawn into the story from the first page. There's a Hunger Games-ish feel to the relationship between the boys as they know only one can be chosen to play the prince - and the others will likely be killed. The story is masterfully put together.
Marcie77 More than 1 year ago
The False Prince by Jennifer A. Nielsen is the first book in the middle grade fantasy, The Ascendance Trilogy. The story focuses on Sage. He's a resourceful orphan who is usually up to no good. He catches the eye of Conner, a nobleman, who has taken three boys off the street to try and make them into a 'false prince'. However only one boy will be chosen and the other two will be executed. Sage is a great character. He's clever, quick on his feet, and has a good heart. Along with the two other boys, Tobias and Roden, he does his best to be chosen as the long lost prince, Jaron. The boys' relationship is a precarious one at best. They are all in the same boat. This fact alone bonds them to each other and a friendship of sorts develops. Nevertheless they all want to be the chosen one. They are fighting to stay alive and using what ever skills they have to win which means they have to be aggressive and put whatever friendships they have aside. However Sage is astute. He realizes that things are not what they seem. This is a great book for middle grade and above. Nielsen writes an intriguing story with lots of twists and turns. I had a hard time distinguishing the good guys from the bad. She doesn't give much away and it left me glued to the pages to find out how it was going to end. I can't say anything bad about this book. This is a fantastic read that I would recommend. I can't wait to read the second book in the trilogy.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I thought that this book was amazing and read it in less than one day! It has great characters, flaws and all, and a wonderful, interesting, and suspenseful plot with a twist that I absolutly loved.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book! The author came to my school and it was so fun!
RFarrell More than 1 year ago
This book was AMAZING
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sage is a poor orphan saved from his fate by a strange man named Connor. Connor has already collected two (threeish, you'll find out later) other boys, but when he learns of Connor's plan he is shocked. Connor plans to take on of them, and bring them to the royal court as the sole heir to the throne, long-lost Prince Jaron. But Connor isn't the only strange one, Sage is hiding a secret. Who is Sage? You'll find out in, "The False Prince".
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am not a big reader, but i enjoyed this book very much. I finished the story in 2 days. This story is extremely well written and i cannot wait for the next book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Being the bookworm I am, I state that this book drew me into its devious story and held me captive. The second book, The Runaway King, has come out and I am anxious to be sucked in again. I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys an intriguing plot. Sage will surpass all exspectations.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
How whats the next book to come out???????? Hit "yes" if you agree with me.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was well written, had great characterization, and unexpected twists. This is one of the few books that i read in less than a day. The False Prince made its way to number 1 on my list with The Hunger Games in 2. Everybody should read this book at some point in time and i will be waiting desperately for the The Runaway King coming out in 2 more days.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is one of my favourites ( The others are Harry Potter and Percy Jackson ). There are a lot of Red Herrings and Background stories. I love the fact that it is a cross between Medival Times and The Middle age! This book will keep you on the edge of the cliff. The next books, The Runaway King and The Shadow Throne will amaze you! WARNING: I am not responsible for any depression caused by finishing this Thrilling Triology.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The next book is called the runaway king and i belleive it comes out in the spring i wish it would come out sooner i love this book it is soo good
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book completely destressed me and made me happy
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was one of the best books ever. It got a little bit boring towrds the middle,but still was good. Who would have gessed that sage was prince/king jaron. You must read it even if you think you are going to fall asleep STAY WITH IT. The end is the end. Or is it...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Please read. Great ending
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Absolutely amazing. Look no further for the next harry potter! This is what the world needs in its literature!! Filled with intrigue, suspense, and mystery this novel will have you turning pages until the end!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great for kids (boys and girls) and adults of all ages above 5. I would recommened to anyone who loves action,mystery,and suspence. Cant wait for the next one!! :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Bae
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One if my favorite series
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is pretty good
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is an amazing adventure of Sage(kind of) and although I saw the plot twist coming it was still great. Most people wouldn'thave seen it coming unless they looked very carefully and just happened to think of it. It was a great book, and series:)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
When I first saw this book, I read the first page and it was interesting from the start. I was expecting something totally different than what it was. But it actually was better than my expectations. It was super interesting from start to finnish.  The book starts with a boy named sage stealing a ham and running from a very angry butcher who clearly was planning to kill him with is butcher knife. Then A guy named connor buys him from the orphanage. Along with four other boys. Latamer, Tobias and Roden. Little did he know what Conners  plans were, That he was going to sell one of them of as the prince. but only one can win, and survive. Who will when in the battle to impress conner, and in only a 2 weeks!  You should buy this book because there is never ending adventure. Not one part is boring. Its full of action and adventure. It’s filled with heroes and villains. With shock and is super creative. The characters are all different and have different personalities which makes it more interesting. It never leaves you bored.This book would be so much fun to read! It is so hard to put down just after the first page. I think this book is more for 10 and up because there are some hard worlds to understand and might be too violent for some younger kids. When I first saw this book, I read the first page and it was interesting from the start. I was expecting something totally different than what it was. But it actually was better than my expectations. It was super interesting from start to finnish.  The book starts with a boy named sage stealing a ham and running from a very angry butcher who clearly was planning to kill him with is butcher knife. Then A guy named connor buys him from the orphanage. Along with four other boys. Latamer, Tobias and Roden. Little did he know what Conners  plans were, That he was going to sell one of them of as the prince. but only one can win, and survive. Who will when in the battle to impress conner, and in only a 2 weeks!  You should buy this book because there is never ending adventure. Not one part is boring. Its full of action and adventure. It’s filled with heroes and villains. With shock and is super creative. The characters are all different and have different personalities which makes it more interesting. It never leaves you bored.This book would be so much fun to read! It is so hard to put down just after the first page. I think this book is more for 10 and up because there are some hard worlds to understand and might be too violent for some younger kids. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Reely good book! Could not put it down
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Are Sage and Jaron the sane person?