THE FALSE PRINCE by Jennifer A. Nielsen (Scholastic, April 1, 2012)
So, a friend read the book, and then another friend read the book, and both told me how amazing it was. And so first, I passed it to my son (10 years old) to read who gave it a huge stamp of approval. And as it worked out, the Scholastic Book Fair had copies early (whoot!), so I got enough for the fifth grade boys' book club I run, and it became our March read.
Our meeting isn't for a couple weeks, so I can't give you complete feedback on what they think yet, but I have read it myself now, and I've also talked to some of them ahead of time. And with that in mind, I'll give you...
...five reason why you have to read THE FALSE PRINCE!
1) You've been searching for a fun middle grade book. Okay, this is it. THE FALSE PRINCE is witty and charming and sure to have you cheering the whole way through. And talk about hard to put down. Once I hit the half-way point, there was no way I was going to bed. I had to know what was going to happen!
2) You love to root for an underdog! Sage is a character worth caring about. He's charming and sympathetic, and real, and I have a total sweet spot for him in my heart.
3) You love a happy ending. I mean, sure, the book is not all sunshine and roses. Things happen, and people are sad and lonely. But the ending rocks. And that's all I'm going to say about that.
4) You're trying to inspire a kid to read. I've had boys from the book club begging me to have the meeting sooner so we could talk about this book because they enjoyed it so much. I love that!
5) You love the rich feel of a high fantasy mixed with a fresh voice. You know everybody in kingdoms didn't talk all fancy and stuff. And you want to just be able to relate.
The consensus? This book is not to be missed! The boys loved it. Their sisters loved it. I loved it. And as far as middle grade goes, it doesn't get much better than this!
Highly recommended! And I'll go with 4th grade and up for this one.
Source of book: From publisher at ALA Midwinter
THE FALSE PRINCE is the thrilling first book in a brand-new trilogy filled with danger and deceit and hidden identities that will have readers rushing breathlessly to the end.
In a discontent 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.
An extraordinary adventure filled with danger and action, lies and deadly truths that will have readers clinging to the edge of their seats.