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The Runaway King (Ascendance Trilogy Book 2) by [Nielsen, Jennifer A.]
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The Runaway King (Ascendance Trilogy Book 2) Kindle Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 436 customer reviews
Book 2 of 3 in Ascendance Trilogy (3 Book Series)
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Length: 357 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Age Level: 10 - 14
Grade Level: 5 - 9
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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 5-8–This sequel (2013) to The False Prince (2012, both Scholastic) continues the saga of Jaron, the young heir to the throne of Carthya, who assumes his crown at a most unfortunate time. His kingdom is ripe for attack by the neighboring country of Avenia and the cutthroat Pirates, and his enemies want him off the throne and replaced by a regent. On the night after the funeral for his entire family, Jaron does the impossible. By sneaking out of the country and reclaiming his former identity as Sage, he pretends to be a young thief and, with the help of Fink, a street urchin, he infiltrates the ranks of the enemy Pirates and gains their trust. Through cunning, sarcasm, and superhuman feats of swordplay, Jaron hopes to defeat the Pirates and weaken the alliance between them and the enemy country of Avenia. Although the adventure is exciting, Jaron is almost too amazingly cunning and strong; he has a broken leg and other injuries but manages to defeat the best swordsman. Charlie McWade narrates this amazing tale adequately; he tends to emphasize vowels and differentiate among male voices very slightly, which can be confusing during tight dialogue. Although the plot seems forced at times, and Jaron is almost too good to be true, the adventure is exciting enough to keep listeners engaged, and ready for the third installment.–MaryAnn Karre, West Middle School, Binghamton, NYα(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

Jaron, aka Sage, is new to his throne and surrounded by intrigue in this follow-up to The False Prince (2012). As jammed with action and violent swordplay as its predecessor, the plot takes the headstrong Jaron into a pirate stronghold where dangers increase steeply as the young king, in disguise, wrestles with saving his kingdom. Needless to say, he is always, almost fatally true to his character—stubborn and determined to do things on his own. The ending introduces a cliff-hanger of a new threat and will leave fans clutching their skulls. It’s never an easy thing to wait out the writing of a multiple-volume series. Grades 5-8. --Karen Cruze

Product Details

  • File Size: 13525 KB
  • Print Length: 357 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic Press (March 1, 2013)
  • Publication Date: March 1, 2013
  • Sold by: Scholastic Trade Publisher
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00B41FH5W
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #23,313 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By R. J. Hosford on February 12, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Waiting for me within my mailbox today was Jennifer Nielsen's Runaway King, the anxiously awaited second installment in her Ascendents Trilogy. After very carefully opening my Amazon package (read: frustratingly tugging at the tape until finally finding scissors to open the infernal thing), I quickly delved into the book, becoming immersed within the world that Nielsen has carefully crafted. Reminiscent of Megan Whalen Turner's Queen's Thief Series, the character Jaron, like Turner's Gen, captivates the reader. His confidence, his sarcasm, his quick retorts, and his carefully hidden doubts and vulnerabilities, all create a vivid and beloved main character. Nielson weaves us through his thoughts throughout his journey while still hiding most of Jaron's intent, showing again and again how strategic his mind is--a mind that thinks like a king. As the novel progresses, we get an even better insight to Jaron's kingly qualities, which are qualities that inspire his people and bring hope for his country.

Within the first few pages of Runaway King, Nielsen creates a tense atmosphere. We can feel the weight that has fallen on Jaron's shoulders and the loneliness with which he aches. He is still struggling with coming to terms with his father's dealings with him for the past four years while mourning the loss of his family and the fact that he will never be able to reconcile with them. He also hugely feels the differences between himself and his brother, finding himself lacking. On top of his personal struggles, Jaron also has to watch his back in a court the doubts his abilities as King and openly scorns him. Jaron has few he can truly trust, and he desperately needs friends to help him fight for his right to be king and for his country.
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Format: Hardcover
I had feelings for The False Prince that I'd never had before with a book. It holds a special place in my heart. After finishing it, I knew I could die happy. It ended on the perfect note, with just enough left open for the reader to imagine what could happen next. But then I found out about a sequel, and I was not happy. There was no way there could be a follow-up to such perfection that wouldn't fall flat.

I should not have doubted.

The Runaway King was even better than The False Prince. Sage is back and better than ever. He's stubborn and cocky and daring. He's got big, king-sized shoes to fill and a bunch of old guys telling him what to do. Luckily he's not one to blindly obey, and takes matters into his own hands, resulting in an unforgettable adventure!

Sage has such a distinct voice. Often, the voices in so many of the great books I've read tend to blend together in my mind after a while. But not Sage's. His personality shines through and makes for a memorable experience.

One thing I was excited about going into things was the prospect of the budding romance between Sage and Imogen finally blossoming. While things didn't go quite the way I'd hoped, we still got to see Imogen, who's a lot stronger than she initially appears. Their interactions were some of my absolute favorite parts.

The Runaway King has a darker, more mature tone than its predecessor, and that definitely contributed to my overall enjoyment. The country is on the brink of war, the stakes are even higher, and there are Pirate Assassins! This is one I will not soon forget, and will be endlessly recommending to readers of all shapes and sizes.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Up now at 1:00am, just received the book today, and could not put it down. Too often the second book in a series disappoints. Not the case in Runaway King. Rich characters, exciting action, and great wit make this a fabulous read for all ages. I cannot wait to recommend to my students!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I wasn't sure about reading The Runaway King when it looked like Jaron had to leave the throne so quickly after taking it in book one, but I am glad that I did.

Jaron is attacked by pirates, and an old "friend" Roden while his family's funeral is being held. Roden informs Jaron that the pirates look at his survival as an insult, and that the pirate king Devlin intends to finish the job he started 4 years ago, he will kill Jaron.
Carthya seems to be moving closer to war as well, the king of Avienia has ties to the pirates, and the regents agree that Jaron should be removed from the throne for a while, and that a regent should take his place.

Jaron responds in what could be considered typical for him - he runs off to join the pirates intending to put a stop to the threats one way or another. He's aided by a few new characters, Fink, a young street thief, and Erick the head of the thieves. Additionally he's got help from some old allies - Imogene, Mott and Tobias.

Once again I was surprised at the resolution Jaron came to, and the conclusion leads to the third book which will deal with the war that is to be waged against Carthya. I found Jaron to be more mature and less arrogant in this book. I had a hard time liking him in book one, but he's grown on me, and I am going to finish the trilogy to see what happens next.
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