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A Confusion of Princes [Kindle Edition]

Garth Nix
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (120 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $9.99
Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers
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Book Description

Garth Nix, bestselling author of the Keys to the Kingdom series and Shade’s Children, combines space opera with a coming-of-age story in his YA novel A Confusion of Princes.
Superhuman. Immortal. Prince in a Galactic Empire. There has to be a catch….
Khemri learns the minute he becomes a Prince that princes need to be hard to kill—for they are always in danger. Their greatest threat? Other Princes. Every Prince wants to become Emperor and the surest way to do so is to kill, dishonor, or sideline any potential competitor. There are rules, but as Khemri discovers, rules can be bent and even broken.
There are also mysteries. Khemri is drawn into the hidden workings of the Empire and is dispatched on a secret mission. In the ruins of space battle, he meets a young woman, called Raine, who challenges his view of the Empire, of Princes, and of himself. But Khemri is a Prince, and even if he wanted to leave the Empire behind, there are forces there that have very definite plans for his future.

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 8 Up-Khemri, now 19, was taken from his parents at birth to be molded into a superhuman, nearly immortal prince of a vast intergalactic empire, joining millions of others like him who carry out the work of the mysterious "Imperial Mind." As his training wraps up and he is set to begin his duties, Khemri discovers that being a young prince of the empire is not all he hoped it would be, and he must prove himself worthy of the title. A year into his service, he is stripped of his super powers and sent on a secret mission where he falls in love and begins to question his destiny. Conceited and overconfident with grand plans of rising to Emperor himself, Khemri soon realizes there is more to life than immortality and all-encompassing power. Garth Nix weaves an intricate plot (HarperCollins 2012) and creates a fascinating futuristic world with enough action, space gadgetry, and tech lingo to appease hard-core science fiction fans, while providing a rich story and deep characterization that will win over those hesitant to delve into the genre. Michael Goldstrom's crisp voice brings the character to life, delivering the first-person text with an initial air of cockiness and later humility as the prince undergoes his internal transformation. He uses unique and sometimes electronically enhanced voices to distinguish the cast of characters, making this a highly enjoyable listen.-Amy Dreger, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Beachwood, OHα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Space battles! Political intrigue! Engineered warriors! Techno-wizardry! Assassins! Pirates! Rebels! Duels! Secrets, lies, sex and True Love! What more can anybody ask for? (Kirkus Reviews (starred review))

Nix’s fantasy has enough gadgets, escapes, battles, duels, deaths, and near-death experiences to keep die-hard adventure story readers enthralled. Happily, Khemri is also a thoughtful, winsome, and somewhat complex character, and his cheerfully self-deprecating tone and unpredictable choices make this romp entertaining on multiple levels. (Horn Book (starred review))

Nix once again proves his mastery of speculative fiction [as] he manages to tell a tale that is grand in scope with vivid characters and imaginative technology. (School Library Journal (starred review))

[An] exciting space opera. (Publishers Weekly)

Khemri’s first person point of view, along with a fast-paced, action- and plot-driven story, is sure to appeal to fans of the Star Wars universe and any number of first-person shooter video games. (ALA Booklist)


“Exuberant and insightful. The rocket-powered pace and epic world-building provide an ideal vehicle for what is, at heart, a sweet paean to what it means to be human.”— (Kirkus Reviews (starred review))

Product Details

  • File Size: 614 KB
  • Print Length: 355 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0007298358
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; Reprint edition (May 15, 2012)
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007ED6VWW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #341,266 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars We're the Princes of the universe! April 22, 2012
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The galaxy-spanning Empire is ruled primarily by the ten million Princes, young men and women enhanced by Bitek, Psitek and Mektek, and educated to rule. Psychically attached to the Imperial Mind, they can be reborn over and over.

But the Princes pretty much live in a gilded cage, and the protagonist of "A Confusion of Princes" takes awhile to discover that. Garth Nix's first sci-fi novel in fifteen years is an epic space opera, slowly following a young man through his lifetime as a Prince -- and while it's slow-moving at times, Nix's unique "teks" and society make it a delight.

The first days of Khemri's life as a Prince are less fun than he expected -- he's nearly assassinated twice, and his Master of Assassins Haddad whisks him off to join the Imperial Navy (which he doesn't want to do). And after he's connected to the Imperial Mind, Khemri begins to realize that unseen powers in the Empire have special plans for him... assuming he isn't permanently killed first.

But despite a rocky start (including a quiet feud with House Jerrazis), Khemri distinguishes himself when he dies defending a post from the alien Sad-Eyes. When he graduates, a mysterious priest offers him a special assignment as an "Adjuster."

However, the entry test for being an Adjuster involves months of living as a normal human, vulnerable to a permanent death. Khemri -- now renamed "Khem" and and without most of his tek abilities -- ends up living in the Kharalcha system, where he falls in love with a young woman named Raine. As his half-hidden destiny in the Empire approaches him, Khemri must figure out what he truly wants -- a life in the Empire, or a human life?
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Garth Nix's CONFUSION OF PRINCES reminds me of the classic scifi that I grew up with. Sort of a combination of Robert Heinlein's early work with a transfusion from Larry Niven and maybe a wee bit of Keith Laumer's RETIEF liberally sprinkled about.

As a consequence you can expect more science speculation than you get in most current YA literature, and some cleverly humorous observations about the way the Universe and it's inherent beaucracy works --now and apparently in the far future as well.

The world building in this book is excellent. The story is told in First Person but beautifully done so that you get a real feel for what it feels like to live in Prince Khemri's world. Khemri's been augmented in dozens of ways. Made into a real super human, but despite that, Nix manages to make the super-abilities not so much of an advantage, and the prince comes off as vulnerable, and frequently naive.

Which brings me to another wonderful aspect of this book: CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT. Hot D*, it's nice to run across because it's not something I find in the YA dystopias I've been reading. For while I truly enjoyed Divergent/Insurgent, Enclave, and Partials, their heroes and heroines really all find themselves at the end of the book with the same over-achiever competence they began with. You don't see anyone's eyes opening, nor any shocking internal revelation.

Now, on the downside, the secondary characters weren't that well developed.
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13 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Predictable plot that reads like a video game July 4, 2012
By Amanda
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Many of my friends have been certain to inform me about how horrible I am for not reading Garth Nix's Sabriel and its accompanying novels. Okay, so I haven't read them, and as many times as I try to get them back into my to-be-read pile, they never seem to make it to the top. Yet, I have attempted some other Nix novels, and always found myself somewhat disappointed. With all of the hype I've heard about Sabriel, my expectations for Nix are very high, and so far nothing has really lived up to those expectations. A Confusion of Princes is just another title in that long line of Nix disappointments.

A Confusion of Princes takes place in a highly science fiction-like world where Princes are programed from birth for their responsibilities. And when the time comes, out of the many Prince candidates, one will be chosen as Emperor. More than anything, Khemri wants that honor -he can even feel the crown of the empire on his head. But that crown threatens to slip after he's sent off on a secret mission after graduation from military school -a mission that brings him into contact with a woman named Raine.

Let's take a look at this book in pieces -there were some good pieces and some not-so-good pieces. First, the writing. Nix is undoubtedly an incredible writer, he weaves elements of the world and characters together effortlessly, his style is fun and easy to read, and he really brings characters to life on the page. If it wasn't for Nix's strong characters, I may not have been able to finish this book (and overlook the not-so-good elements).

And, the not-so-good elements: this book was incredibly predictable. I pretty much knew the plot as soon as the truth behind Khemri's secret mission was revealed and he started to get to know Raine.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars original work from one of my absolute favorite authors. The world into...
Interesting, original work from one of my absolute favorite authors. The world into which he moved me as a reader was complex, fascinating, believable and well constructed. Read more
Published 5 months ago by M. Clark
5.0 out of 5 stars Always Surprising
Love this author, and once again he wows me with his writing. Loved this novel to the very last page! Will definitely read again.
Published 6 months ago by Dawn M Wagner
5.0 out of 5 stars wow! fast moving from beginning to end. fun read!
wow! fast moving from beginning to end. fun read! I wish there were more books in this universe by this author.
Published 6 months ago by A. weiss
5.0 out of 5 stars great societies need a draft
how to maintain a massive and complex social structure is a question that needs answers
Published 7 months ago by Angela M Danessi
5.0 out of 5 stars Gread story
Great YA book--interesting premise, engaging characters, excellent overall
Published 8 months ago by Arystaelia
3.0 out of 5 stars Being a Prince isn't as glamorous as it sounds, in fact it's down...
Being an immortal prince in a galactic empire isn't all it's cracked up to be as one young hero learns. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Blue Spirit
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fun Read!
The author has written a wonderful story of the far future that holds together will with well thought out internal consistency. Read more
Published 12 months ago by William K. Eakins
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Character Transformation And Smooth Plot
Aside from the profusion of science jargon and descriptions, I think this book is a great read.
The main character alone is very fascinating. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Bukcrz
2.0 out of 5 stars good world, bad characters
the intro to this story is one of the most interesting i've seen in a while. Garth Nix is a very good writer, and the the world he creates in A Confusion Of Princes is both... Read more
Published 13 months ago by KrasneTigritsa
5.0 out of 5 stars Short but awesome
I'm a Nix fan in general and I was not disappointed with A Confusion of Princes. I felt there was more story that could've been told, but there was enough closure at the end that I... Read more
Published 13 months ago by Laura
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More About the Author

Garth Nix has worked as a bookseller, book sales representative, publicist, editor, marketing consultant and literary agent. He also spent five years as a part-time soldier in the Australian Army Reserve. A full-time writer since 2001, more than five million copies of his books have been sold around the world and his work has been translated into 40 languages. Garth's books have appeared on the bestseller lists of The New York Times, Publishers Weekly (US), The Bookseller(UK), The Australian and The Sunday Times (UK). He lives in Sydney, Australia, with his wife and two children.

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