Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Review: The Runaway King by Jennifer A. Nielsen

The Runaway King (The Ascendance Trilogy, #2)

Title: The Runaway King 
Author: Jennifer A. Nielsen
Publisher:  Scholastic Press
Publishing Date: March 1st 2013
Pages: 331
Genre:  MG/YA High Fantasy 
Series: The Ascendance Trilogy #2
Source: Audio


A kingdom teetering on the brink of destruction. A king gone missing. Who will survive? Find out in the highly anticipated sequel to Jennifer A. Nielsen's blockbuster THE FALSE PRINCE!
Just weeks after Jaron has taken the throne, an assassination attempt forces him into a deadly situation. Rumors of a coming war are winding their way between the castle walls, and Jaron feels the pressure quietly mounting within Carthya. Soon, it becomes clear that deserting the kingdom may be his only hope of saving it. But the further Jaron is forced to run from his identity, the more he wonders if it is possible to go too far. Will he ever be able to return home again? Or will he have to sacrifice his own life in order to save his kingdom?
The stunning second installment of The Ascendance Trilogy takes readers on a roller-coaster ride of treason and murder, thrills and peril, as they journey with the Runaway King!

This book was just as good as the first one, it rocked, it did not disappoint! I absolutely adored the first book in this series when I read it last year. I am not sure what took me so long to get to the second book, but I finally did and wowzers. This book pulls out all the stops on romance, action, mystery, suspense, humor, and everything in between. Loved it. 

OK I will keep this really short because there are so many twists and turns in this book, I would probably accidentally give something away. So Prince Jaron is now King of Carthya; however there are quite a few that don't agree with this turn of events. I mean where has he been for all these years, he is still a kid, he knows nothing of this country or the crown, oh and it seems someone wants to kill him. Well it seems more than one wants to kill him. SO Jaron must run... yes run. But don't be dismayed, he has a plan. It would be nice for Jaron to tell me, the reader, of his plans before they unfold so I don't have to hold my breath throughout the entire book, OK sorry off topic. Anyways yes, he runs, has a plan, gets in trouble, is crushed by betrayal, has lots of feelings to sort through, has to fight, has to lie, has to be awesome. So that sums it up pretty well.

My thoughts are pretty much THIS BOOK ROCKED, but I should probably elaborate. The story continues pretty much right at the end of the first book. Things seem to still be in chaos but Jaron always figures it out. There is so much good and awesome in this book. I love this story, the writing is magnificent, the pacing is fabulous, the characters are wondrous, and its just full of awesomeness. Its hard for me to really write a review for this book, I can't settle down long enough to put words to my thoughts, but I will try. 

I actually love high fantasy but I am really picky over my high fantasy. I can easily get bored or distracted by the detail of the stories in high fantasy. There are a few that put me in a state of shock, and this series is one of those. The writing is done so well that I get so much of the story and character building that I just fall right into the setting and tone. I forget what I am reading and I can't seem to tear myself away for any length of time. I can't decide what I love more, the actual story or the characters.

The story is great as is. Its a classic story with a prince, betrayal, a love that can't be, and great friendship and loyalty. Oh and bravery too. It really is classic but it doesn't feel classic. I think this is where the sensational writing comes in and paints a full picture for me. There is so much good and a really great balance between action and emotion. SO many times I think a book has pretty terrific action or all consuming emotion, but its hard to get both to be wonderful within the story. This author did an amazing job. The fight scenes were great, the humor was so much fun, and the emotions were just a roller coaster of a ride.

The characters are for sure a great addition to this story and do make the story even more smashing. Jaron is by far one of my all time favorite heroes. He is rough but sophisticated. He is smart but reckless. He is wonderful. He loves those around him fiercely and is very protective of his loved ones and his country. He does not take his duty lightly and he doesn't run. He actually runs into everything head first but it still seems well thought out. He is a walking contradiction.

Jaron isn't the only stupendous character in the cast. Imogen rocks, she is faithful and loyal beyond understanding. Sweet, loving, nurturing, intelligent, yup she has it all. Then there is Fink, a small boy that annoyed me at first but ended up stealing my heart. Of course there is the evil too, all of the enemies are just enemies. Sly, unpredictable, and slimy.

Another great thing... the pacing. The book is full of surprises, twists, turns, hold on wait a minute moments. This keeps the book story very interesting and keeps the pages flying. Never a dull moment, only nail biting, gasping, hand flying to mouth moments. The book really did go to quickly and I can't wait til the next one comes out. Which will be very very soon!

Astonishing, incredible, fantastic read! 

Jennifer A. Nielsen
Jennifer lives at the base of a very tall mountain in Northern Utah with her husband, three children, and a naughty puppy. She loves the smell of rainy days, hot chocolate, and old books, preferably all at once. She is a former speech teacher, theater director, and enjoyed a brief but disastrous career as a door-to-door pollster. In her spare time, Jennifer tends to panic, wondering what she has forgotten to do that has allowed her any spare time.


  1. I love this series soooo much! Jaron especially. But you hit the nail on the head when you said it's hard to decide which is better - the story or the characters. They're both so good, which makes for totally un-put-down-able books. :D I can't wait for the third one!

  2. I loved the first book, so I don't know why I haven't picked this one up yet! Your review reminded me I should get to it and soon! :) Glad you loved this one!


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