The False Prince is the first book in the Ascendance Trilogy by Jennifer A. Neilsen. It is the fast-paced intriguing tale of a careless orphan named Sage.
When a nobleman named Conner buys Sage from the orphanage, despite Mrs. Turdebly’s warnings, Sage is suspicious that Conner has ulterior motives. Once Sage and three other boys have been gathered, Conner reveals a treacherous plan he believes will save Carthya from a war that will surely destroy the country. The boys are forced to compete with each other for the “privilege” of posing as the long-lost son of the queen and king, and now heir to the throne, each knowing that if he is not chosen, he will die, and if he is chosen, he will have to lie the rest of his life to avoid much worse than death.
Lies, deception and duplicity blend together in hopes of pulling off the greatest scandal in Carthya’s history, and a truth is revealed that is as dangerous as all the lies together.
Sage is a character that one cannot help but adore. He is defiant and uncaring and almost definitely too clever for his own good, and this, along with his wit and humor, endears him to readers.
I really like how the author keeps the story moving with secrets to be understood, arguments to be fought, and overall Sage being as defiant as possible while making his own plans to win this awful game, but on his terms.
I would give this book a 4.6 / 5 . incredibly clever and fun to read with plenty of adventure and danger along the way.