So my new favorite book right now is The False Prince: Book 1 of the Ascendance Trilogy by Jennifer A. Nielsen. For the first time in a long time (well at least since the beginning of summer) I’m happy that this author is writing a trilogy. Not sure about some of you other readers out there, but I’m getting a tiny bit tired of all these trilogies! Can’t any author just write a nice story in ONE book!
Okay, back to The False Prince. Sage is on the run, with a roast (raw meat!), when we are introduced to him. From the very first moment he begins to interact with others, I LOVED him. He is witty, self-deprecating, unpredictable, laugh out loud funny and irreverent, all in one paragraph. I could not get enough of this guy! Sage finds out he is being sold to a nobleman named Conner. Sage is mistrustful right away, and when he finds out Conner means to place an imposter on the throne, using an orphan he picks from one of 2 other boys, Sage knows he must decide to either fight for the throne, or move aside. The only problem is, if he doesn’t win over Conner, he knows he’ll end up dead. There is a twist that many will see coming; but frankly, I enjoyed this book so much, I didn’t care!
Our classes are doing a lot of genre reading, and it is hard to peg this book. It reads like a medieval historical fiction, except it lacks a specific time and place. Also, and this is just for horse people like myself, the author mentions Sage riding away on a Quarter horse. Um, Quarter horses are an American horse breed that was developed in the late 1700s so kind of throws out the whole medieval thing. Best guess for the students at my school for their genre would be fantasy, even though nary a troll appears or spell is cast in this book.
Highly Recommended for grades 6 and up.