Monday, October 1, 2012

The False Prince, Jennifer A. Nielsen

If I had to do it all over again, I would not have chosen this life. Then again, I'm not sure I ever had a choice. These were my thoughts as I raced away from the market, with a stolen roast clutched under my arm. 

The False Prince is the story of a boy named Sage, who is forced to participate in a competition between four boys by the nobleman Conor. You see, the royal family of this fantasy land have all been poisoned, so someone must masquerade as the long-lost prince to save the kingdom from chaos. Or at least, that's what Conor says. Sage is defiant and clever, continually seeking a way out or a way to maneuver his competitors. He also knows that if he's not chosen, he'll most likely be killed. There is a lot of intrigue and politics in this one; it's a very dark fantasy.

I first heard about The False Prince from the New York Times Book Review with it and The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom, and while their review wasn't exactly favorable, I was motivated to give it a try. Thanks to Scholastic for giving me a review copy. And I must say, I disagree with Adam Gopnik. I enjoyed this fantasy a lot. Sage is a really great character; I enjoyed his snarky comments. He may not be educated, but he's a whole lot more clever and street smart than the other boys. I liked the characters of the other competitors too. They were pretty well developed. Well, not the one who dies at the beginning (sorry for the spoiler) but the other two. The thing was, that since it's in the first person, you're almost positive that Sage is going to survive. Though, to be fair, the ending was rather surprising. Also, I don't know if there's enough material here to make a trilogy, which is Jennifer Nielsen's plan. But I'm interested to see where it goes. I enjoyed The False Prince, and would recommend it to fans of fantasy.

Read The False Prince:
  • if you like fantasy
  • if you like books with politics and intrigue
342 pages.
Very Good! I would recommend this book!

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