Monday, April 9, 2012

The False Prince by Jennifer A Nielsen

A review of the book that made Katie's weekend:

The False Prince
by Jennifer A Nielsen 
Oh, how I love a noble thief. For evidence see my previous musings on The Thief  (see Katie's review) or Heist Society (see Katie's review). In fact, Sage reminds me quite a bit of the Thief of Eddis from Megan Whalen Turner’s amazing Attolia series--in the best and worst possible ways. Purchased by a nobleman from an orphanage, 15-year-old Sage quickly finds that he is not being adopted into a warm and loving home. He is instead to be a pawn in a very dangerous game--one that will bring him to the brink of treason.

Carthya is on the precipice of a civil war. There is unrest throughout the country and trouble has befallen the royal family. The nobleman Conner has tracked down four orphans who bear a passing resemblance to the youngest prince who was killed in a pirate attack four years before. Enough questions surround the prince’s disappearance that Conner believes a few weeks of coaching and his own secret weapon will allow him to mold one of these boys into a false prince. What happens to the boys not chosen for this treachery is a question better left unasked. But Sage has no interest in playing the part of the nobleman’s pawn. Fighting him every step of the way with a sharp tongue and knack for trouble, Sage has little chance of becoming Conner’s choice for prince. And as intrigue and rumors of within the castle treason swirl about, he wonders why anyone would want to be.  Lies and deceit are the order of the day if Sage is to survive and save those around him.

The False Prince marks the beginning of what is sure to be a favorite new series of mine. Sage is the sort of imperfect hero that makes you want to save him from himself at times but so clever that only too late do you realize that he’s the one who will probably save you.

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