Select language, opens an overlay
The False Prince

The False Prince

Book - 2012 | 1st ed
Average Rating:
Rate this:
In a discontented 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.
Publisher: New York : Scholastic Press, 2012
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780545284134
Call Number: j NIELSEN 2012
Characteristics: 342 pages : map ; 22 cm


From Library Staff

Sage and three other penniless boys are convinced they should try to impersonate a prince, but it looks like only one of the boys will survive.

A fast-paced re-telling of The Prince and the Pauper with vivid characters.

The Ascendance trilogy. 710 L, F&P: Q

From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Jun 03, 2021

I loved this book!!! It was hilarious at some points and many unexpected events took place that was really shocking for me when I was reading this. It was very adventurous and I loved how the author was so descriptive!

May 17, 2021

Very amusing, and the plot is really great. The violence and romance is for 10 and over in my opinion, as the series progresses. A definite should read. One of my favorites!👍💯

May 07, 2021

I loved this book! It had a lot of battles in it, which I don't prefer much. But I loved how the author put a beautiful romance between some of the characters. This is a must-read!

FPL_RachelR Apr 27, 2021

This is a true gentlemen’s adventure and was so much fun! I really enjoyed the characters, antics, and plot twists. Adventure takes the reigns with romance riding shotgun and I honestly preferred it that way. This is the first in a very interesting and enjoyable trilogy that teens and adults will appreciate.

Mar 22, 2021

5th out in October.

SAPL_Teens Jan 19, 2021

I really enjoyed this book and I found the adventure to be very entertaining to read. I liked the different characters and learning the little bits about their backstories and lives. The ending surprised me but in a very good way and made me excited to continue the series. I also really liked the differences in the settings throughout the adventure. The main character Sage I think was written really well, along with all of the others who were with him on the adventure. I think the False Prince was a great start to this series and it got me hooked on the series. One of my favourite things is all the twists and turns throughout, I think it just added an extra bit of excitement to the story. I would definitely rate this book five stars cause I was always wanting to read it any chance I could and I was always wanting to see what was going to happen next. 5/5 stars - Kailey, 14, SAPL Read It & Review Contributor

Dec 12, 2020

I loved it

Sep 12, 2020

Carthya is in turmoil. Over the course of one night, its entire royal family was murdered in secret, leaving the throne empty. There are no more heirs, and the one person that escaped the massacre has already been pronounced lost at sea from a previous attack years before. Prince Jaron has been thought dead for years. But now that the throne is up for grabs, a nobleman named Bevin Conner attempts to create a stand-in for the lost Jaron, collecting orphan boys around the country and teaching them the ways of royalty.
My favourite aspect of this book was the characters. Sage, one of the orphan boys, is our protagonist. He is ruthlessly sarcastic and stubborn, and makes his opinions clear from the start. He doesn’t want to be there, and the only reason he’s sticking around is to keep himself alive. The worldbuilding of the novel was pretty similar to most fantasy novels, but the plotline woven through the setting made up for it. Every character had a motive, and plot twists and turns kept the story moving at an extremely fast pace.
An engaging, enjoyable read.
4.5/5 -@storygirl of the Hamilton Public Library’s Teen Review Board

The False Prince is an incredible book that I recommend to everyone. I love that book because the characters really come to life. I love when I can connect to characters and this book makes it so easy. I don't mean that I can connect with the events of the book, because it takes place in a different time period, but with the personalities of the characters. This is a really fast paced book. It is impossible to put it down. The False Prince is an amazing book full of twists and turns, and I definitely recommend that you read it. 5 stars
@ToastieTaco of the Hamilton Public Library's Teen Review Board

lgmosher Sep 12, 2020

This book, was THAT book...

That book that you stay up reading till 3am.
That book that you put down and then grow sad that you had to put it down.
That book that you just... have... to.. finish.

This book was just, a really good book.

It was well written, it held your attention, and it goes BOOM in your face. You would think that you could figure it out... and perhaps you think you have. But oh no, this book is so well written that you figure out NOTHING until Nielsen wants you to figure it out.

You may have your assumptions, but they probably aren't right.

Sage was so well written, his mind shown off in the most subtle of ways, that you can't help but fall in love. Sage is one of those characters that acts like things just happen to him and it was just a mistake when really, hes ten steps ahead of you. He makes himself look the fool so that he doesn't actually become one like you are.... playing straight into his hands.

"Just because it's called than a hailstorm doesn't mean it's calm."

This book is nothing but calm. It may seem calm, it may seem like things are just lousing by for Sage but oh we find out that there is so much more to the False Prince then we ever anticipated or even knew we wanted.

This book wasn't fasted paced, but it wasn't slow either. It was perfectly paced for exactly how Nielsen wanted you to read it.

Again I repeat.... very well written book.

When I finished this book it saddened me to turn the last page. I just looked at my hands, wishing there was more.... then, then a tiny little thought popped into my head....

Book 2!

and now there is joy back into my life.

Yall.... Read the book!!

Aug 02, 2020

The leading book in Jennifer A. Nielsen’s Ascendance Trilogy, The False Prince is a terrific way to start the series. Sage, a fourteen-year-old orphan and thief, is stolen off the streets of Carthya along with three other orphans. It turns out that the entire royal family has been assassinated, and Lord Bevin Conner, their captor, has a plan to help them unify their kingdom. His plan is to have one of the four orphans impersonate the long lost Prince Jaron. However, Sage has fierce competition in two of the orphans, Tobias and Roden. With each twist and trick, the stakes rise. Will Sage be able to beat his competition and trick the entire kingdom? The False Prince is a great story, full of twists, actions, treachery , and interesting characters that will keep you reading.

View All Comments


Add a Quote
Nov 12, 2020

"Carthyans, tonight I am home again. Let it be a celebration. Tonight we dance!" - Jaron

Nov 12, 2020

""You have the betrothed princess. She will support you."
"She hates me."
"So do I. And I just crowned you king."" - The False Prince

Nov 12, 2020

"I sometimes lack the talent of knowing when to speak and when to keep quiet." - Jaron

Nov 12, 2020

"Roden looked back at Cregan, then to me. "Okay, the winner advances to the throne. Please give me the crown, Sage. I don't want to kill you."
"Lucky coincidence. I don't want to be killed."" - The False Prince

Nov 12, 2020

"Hail His Majesty, the scourge of my life. I fear the devils no longer, because I have the worst of them right here in my home!" - Conner

Nov 12, 2020

"Fair enough. So do you want to bow to me now or wait until we reach Drylliad?" - Sage

Nov 12, 2020

"He took one for himself and tossed me the other. I jumped away from it and it landed in the dirt.
"Afraid of a wooden sword?" Mott teased.
"Just demonstrating my skills in evading an attack," I said, a grin tugging at the edge of my mouth. "Impressed?"
"No. Pick it up."" - The False Prince

Nov 12, 2020

"You should go to the castle, Highness. You should always choose to be on the side of hope." - Sage

Nov 12, 2020

""Cregan hopes Conner chooses me, and he wants me to be reasy for when he does." Roden's voice raised in pitch. "What's wrong with that?"
"Nothing. I'm just glad you're practicing for Conner's benefit and not mine. I'm running out of places to get hurt."
"I don't see why that's funny. I think you must like the pain, because you're constantly pushing people until they hurt you."
"I definitely don't like the pain," I said firmly. "So if you decide to kill me, make it quick."" - The False Prince

Nov 12, 2020

"I don't see why the upper class object to food with weevils in it. They're very nutritious." - Sage

View All Quotes


Add Age Suitability
May 17, 2021

sophiaSHkim thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

Apr 08, 2021

pink_ox_57 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

Mar 12, 2021

violet_panda_2900 thinks this title is suitable for 11 years and over

Dec 06, 2020

JESSICA PILON thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 10 and 99

Aug 02, 2020

eliram493 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

Jan 08, 2019

KMMacfarlane thinks this title is suitable for 11 years and over

Nov 29, 2018

FaithR thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

navy_nightingale_207 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

Feb 12, 2018

gjrainey thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

Nov 15, 2017

taylor78736 thinks this title is suitable for 8 years and over

View All Ages


Add a Summary
olive_bird_01 Jun 13, 2015

In the country of Carthya, a devious nobleman engages four orphans in a brutal competition to be selected to impersonate the king's long-missing son in an effort to avoid a civil war.

Jun 04, 2015

Sage is a fourteen year-old orphan who steals a roast from a local butcher, but is saved from his wrath by a nobleman named Bevin Conner. Conner is visiting different orphanages, and buying teenage boys who resemble the missing Prince Jaron, heir to the throne of the Kingdom of Carthya. Conner is a minor regent of the circle that surrounds the King. The King's wife and oldest son have been murdered. Conner is a patriot who wants to see the kingdom of Carthya preserved, rather than fall into civil war at the hands of Prime Regent Veldergraft. He therefore concocts the plan to place a fraud on the throne to avert the coming war. Jaron has been missing for years, and is presumed dead following a pirate attack.

Over the next two weeks, Sage and two other boys compete against each other to become Conner's choice for the imposter. By the end of the two weeks, Sage emerges as the choice, but spares the lives of his two competitors. Sage reveals that he is indeed Prince Jaron himself, stunning all those around him, including the king's court. It is further revealed that Conner is responsible for the murder of the royal family and led the pirate attack aimed at claiming the life of Sage/Jaron. Conner is arrested and Jaron assumes his rightful throne.

Aug 02, 2014

sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo good


Sage has never been keen on the fact that he was an orphan but usually the trouble he got into was something he could handle.  No longer.  When Sage finds himself essentially sold to a nobleman named Conner it doesn’t take long for him to discover that he is now a pawn in a dangerous game.  Alongside three other orphans of similar age and build Sage is in the competition of a lifetime.  If he wins he will be crowned as prince (the real ruler having died years ago).  If he loses he will be killed.  It’s the ultimate competition and the stakes are as high as they can be.  Part mystery novel, part psychological war, you may see where the book is going at times but you’ll never forget the journey.


Add Notices
Mar 15, 2014

Violence: Whipping, hand violence, sword fighting and some killing.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings

MCL owns a similar edition of this title.

View originally-listed edition

Report edition-matching error

To Top