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The False Princess (The False Princess #1)

3.79 of 5 stars 3.79  ·  rating details  ·  11,694 ratings  ·  1,483 reviews
Princess and heir to the throne of Thorvaldor, Nalia's led a privileged life at court. But everything changes when it's revealed, just after her sixteenth birthday, that she is a false princess, a stand-in for the real Nalia, who has been hidden away for her protection. Cast out with little more than the clothes on her back, the girl now called Sinda must leave behind the ...more
Hardcover, 319 pages
Published January 25th 2011 by EgmontUSA (first published July 13th 2010)
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Community Reviews

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I hereby declare that people should stop reading so many YA paranormals and begin to read YA fantasy! The genre has some really good literature that is slipping under the radar thanks to multi-million dollar deals about flowers and demi-gods. Pish!

Eilis O'Neal's The False Princess interested me from the day I first read the blurb for the book. I finally managed to get my hands on a copy, and it's lived up to my expectations. Plot, writing characterization — they were all up to the mark, and the
Apr 29, 2015 Erin rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: the Y half of YA fans
It was very, very difficult for me to rate this book. Before even opening it, my expectations were at a 3-star level. The first hundred pages or so were super enjoyable, so I started raising it to the 4 range. But after that my interest almost completely disappeared. I was debating between 2 and 3 stars, but as you can see I went with three.

Well, that was an interesting anecdote. If you can't tell, I am not exactly thrilled to be writing this review. When books don't elicit much of a response fr
4.5 stars.

I’ve been wanting to read this book for a really long time. Why? It has everything I like: magic, courtly intrigues, a slow burn romance, and a fairy tale touch.

What really struck me was how this book emulates the fairy tale of Cinderella. It follows the same plot trajectory being that someone goes from a position of status and wealth to one of a lower class and then finally balance is re-established once again when she rises up to her original level of superiority. What everyone reall
Princess Nalia is given the shock of her life on her 16th birthday when the King and Queen of Thorvaldor inform her that she is not actually the princess Nalia, but a false princess who was raised in place of the true princess to counter a dire prophecy that threatened the life of the princess before her 16th birthday. Nalia, now known by her real name Sinda, is cast out of the palace and sent to live with her aunt in the country.

With the spells that made the world believe she was Nalia removed
3.5 stars

This book is a sweet addition to the ranks of light, younger fantasy and it deserves a place next to Shannon Hale and Gale Carson Levine. I never felt bored (although I got frustrated a few times by how simple the story is) and overall I enjoyed reading this. It’s not amazing (I kept kind of wishing that it was Plain Kate) but it’s better than many.

Nalia is sixteen years old and has been trained in the arts of language, diplomacy, history, and etiquette since birth, all so that she can
Imagine your life. Imagine the people in it, where you live, how you live. Now, how would you feel if it was all one big lie? Everything you are...your not. And you are just send away from everything you hold dear to a life you know nothing of.
The False Princess is a story about exactly that. False. Nalia was a princess for sixteen years and then one day she gets told that it was a set up and the true princess is coming home and she gets dismissed just like that. Only till she's away from the p
Spoiler alert. I’m… I’m totally going to ruin the plot here, for you.

First off, you need to ignore the cover, where it looks like our False Princess has a little bit of giraffe in her genes. Good lord. Was she tortured as a child? Is this a birth defect of some kind? I know they had to get her head out of the way so the title could fit nicely, but couldn’t the publishers think of a better design?

Okay. That’s my complaint. Now the story.

Princess Nalia is summoned on her 16th birthday to meet wit
Jun 04, 2012 Lissa added it
Shelves: 2012
The False Princess is a reverse Cinderella story, or, if you like, a Cinderella story. It can work both ways. Sinda’s nobility and heritage, her rank, wealth, and everything she identifies with is stripped from her and she must start from absolutely nothing and work her way back up to prestige and respect. This is because she’s cast out of royalty after spending sixteen years as a stand-in princess while the real girl was in hiding, to save her from a horrific prophesised death.

I liked Sinda, fo
Nalia, princess of Thorvaldor, receives the scare of her life when she finds out she is in fact not princess Nalia, but Sinda, a girl without any royal blood whatsoever. Sixteen years ago, a prophecy about the princess was made; there was a chance that she would be murdered before her sixteenth birthday. So the king and queen switched their daughter with a regular baby and raised her as their own, only to be tossed aside after Sinda turns sixteen. A wizard removes the spell Sinda was under, maki ...more
This sounds so much like the Decoy Princess by Dawn Cook. Other than being the exact same plot...

I liked this one much better than Dawn Cook's book. I didn't find myself having an extreme dislike for the main character. And I love the interactions with the main love interest. I hope to have someone make a smile burn across my face someday. :D
Anne Osterlund
Her name was Nalia. And she was a princess. The only princess of Thorvaldor.

Until the day her parents informed her of the prophecy. And the other princess. The one who had been hidden away. The one who bore the right to the throne. The one who had to the right to everything Nalia had ever known. Including her own name.

Overnight Nalia becomes Sinda.

But who is Sinda?
The unwanted niece of a common village dyer.
The daughter of a dead man who gave her away because he didn’t want to remember her.
The r
False Princess, I’ll tumble for ya. There are WIZARDS and CONSPIRACIES, and ROYALTY, and WUV TRUE WUV. The False Princess by Eilis O’Neal is a bang-up debut novel. If you enjoyed The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale and that style of writing, friend, you’ll LOVE this book. Plot in a nutshell? So Nalia is heir to the Thorvaldian throne, princess of the kingdom, best friends with jokester Kiernan, life is good. Then she is summoned by her parents and finds out that she isn’t the real princess. Her name ...more
Fairy tales are wondrous. They offer us a look into a world that we aspire to. They show us possibilities and tell us that dreams can come true. Well, they also perpetuate gender assimilation in children and are one of the very first ways children learn culture (and the English Lit student in my is obliged to point out at this juncture that fairy tales really aren’t as harmless as they are portrayed). What does this all have to do with The False Princess, you ask me? Well, The False Princess is ...more
Reading Vacation


Prepare for some seriously gushy book love.

The False Princess is the perfect storm. It delivers magic, secret identities, hidden truths, and a bit of romance in one incredible story. I am in LOVE with this book!

The intricate story-line is perfectly laid out. It is not at all confusing, but it is most certainly compelling. Let’s just say that Eilis O’Neal is an expert at building suspense and I did not want to stop reading for even a minute. With moments that will make you cry, scream, laug
“A high room with thrones at the end, and lying before them in a pool of blood, a girl, pale with death. A golden crown lay near her, the blood spreading out toward it. Behind her, fifteen lamps winked out.” (ramalan untuk putri mahkota Thorvaldor)

Putri Nalia, putri mahkota kerajaan Thorvaldor, sejak lahir telah dipersiapkan untuk menjadi ratu, memerintah kerajaannya setelah ayahnya meninggal. Walaupun pemalu, kikuk dan sering merasa tidak anggun, Nalia pintar dalam hal pelajaran. Dan ia selalu
Steph Su
Reading the jacket synopsis, I thought this book was going to be yet another “princess finds out she’s not the real princess and attempts to make a new life for herself” tale. Happily, however, THE FALSE PRINCESS is all that, and more. It is an engaging light fantasy that will charm you no matter how well read you think you are in the genre.

Past the first chapter, the plot of THE FALSE PRINCESS moves at an entertainingly brisk pace, as it follows Sinda into the country, back into the city, and i
Jan 17, 2013 Wealhtheow rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Wealhtheow by: monica
Shelves: ya, fantasy
Despite the generic YA cover, this isn't paint-by-numbers fantasy. This book was clearly written out of a deep appreciation for and knowledge of fantasy tropes.

Nalia is a princess whose only real joys are old documents, languages, and her one friend, Kiernan. She's shy and clumsy, but she hopes to grow up to rule her country well. Then her parents summon her to their throne room and reveal that she isn't a princess at all. 16 years ago they paid her father for her, so that the real princess cou
I love fantasy. After reading so many different books about fantasy worlds and fantasy characters, I’ve been dying to get my hands on something really good. I heard about this book A LONG time ago and I’ve been waiting for it to be ready for reviewing. When I got my hands on it, I read it immediately. I was looking for something good. Eilis O’Neal delivered.

In most fantasies, a lot of the plot and story are focused on explain the world and how everything works. While this is a good idea, it’s no
Switched-at-birth identities, suppressed magical powers, romance, suppressed romance, imprisonment, madcap horseback riding, palace intrigue, secret magical doors, further switched identities, ancient runes on scrolls.....OH MY GOD. I may have missed a few key exciting tropes, but isn't that enough? I can't wait for this to be out!
Well, I typed a review for this... but my lovely computer decided to freeze while saving it. So now I am fuming and don't really feel like typing this review over again!!!

4 stars

good book.
Small Review
Good. But cut out 100 pages and tweak a few things and it would have been great. Review to come. May 23, 2011

Really enjoyed this on audio! October 8, 2014

Originally posted on Small Review

We're on the road to nowhere

The story starts off quickly enough with Sinda having the news of her non-princess status broken to her in the very first chapter. This is good.

What wasn't so good was the 100 page digression that happened next. As if that weren't frustrating enough, this is a digression of suck. I d
I really liked THE FALSE PRINCESS. I wasn't blown over by it but it was good. YA needs more good books like this. I'm not asking for much; not all books need to have me squealing with joy. But if I came across more genuinely good books like THE FALSE PRINCESS I'd be a hell of a lot happier reader.

One, it's a stand-alone fantasy. Let me say that again: STAND-ALONE FANTASY. These things are about as common as unicorns at bus stops.

Two, the story is great. Nalia/Sinda gets ousted as the false princ
The False Princess has everything I could ask for in a fairy tale. It was full of romance and intrigue, it was engaging and funny. And a plot with twists and turns you're not sure where its going to end up.

Sinda is a treasure, always trying to be good and do the right thing. And my heart just broke for her when the king and queen told her who she really was and just sent her on her way without hardly a thank you. I really enjoyed watching Sinda grow and discover who she was and where she would f
I would have given this book three stars (it was enjoyable, but bland) EXCEPT that I've already read "The Decoy Princess" by Dawn Cook. "The False Princess" was basically the exact same opening premise, but with a way less exciting outcome.

Here is the synopsis for both books (in "The Decoy Princess" there is a little more build up to the whole substitute princess thing. In "The False Princess" everything happens in the first chapter):

We have a tomboyish princess (Tess in "The Decoy Princess" and
Joana (The Boundless Booklist)
check out the full review here:

Plot: This book has pretty much everything you would want to read about; romance, adventure, magic, fantasy, mystery, etc. There is a lot happening in the story-line, but it is not at all confusing and is really easy to follow along with. There were some parts that were easy to guess, but there were just as many that surprised me. I had a hard time putting this book down because of all the suspense. I needed to know what hap
Grace Zhao
Over all it is an enjoyable light read that that really doesn't make you think too much. HOWEVER, there are a few things that bothers me. Warning: spoilers.

First of all, I find her reaction to finding out that she is not the princess too toned down. Sure, she was depressed and unhappy in the book but that was it. She did not go through a period of denial or make a scene (which would have been understandable) and that was simply justified because she was a docile and rule abiding girl. However, h
Well. For the most part, I enjoyed this a lot more than I'd have expected, based on its being a medievalesque fantasy, involving a rightful heir(ess), and it being crucial that said rightful heiress be the one to inherit the throne. I think part of what made me like it was that the premise was just so extreme, that I thought it would be hard to go back to the standard fantasy setting of monarchy is the only proper system of governance. Although there are numerous reviews setting out that premise ...more
Originally reviewed on my blog, Books from Bleh to Basically Amazing.

The False Princess by Ellis O'Neal is the story of Nalia, a 16 year old princess who finds out shortly after her birthday that she is not the princess after all. After a prophecy that stated the princess could die before her 16th birthday, the king and queen and their trusted magical advisors secretly switched the true princess with a peasant to keep her safe. Now that they have reached 16, the princess will live, and it is no
Terry (Ter05 TwiMoms/ MundieMoms)
This is a YA fantasy that reads much like a fairy tale and has it's share of adventure, difficult choices, and a sweet romance throughout the book (definitely YA and suitable for young teens). As the title indicates, this is about a girl raised as a princess only to find out when she is 16 that she was substituted for the real princess at birth due to a prophecy that the princess would die before she was 16. She is pretty much cast out with very little to take with her and sent to an aunt who wa ...more
Nalia has grown up her whole life as the princess of Thorvaldor - until the day she is called in to see the king and queen and informed that because of a prophecy made about the princess dying, she is actually an orphan who has been a stand-in for the real princess, who has been hidden away at a convent her whole life. A magic spell had been placed on her that gave her a little piece of the real princess's soul. Now Nalia is Sinda, and she is sent off to live with her only living relative, an au ...more
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Mar 17, 2015 11:43AM  
  • Secondhand Charm
  • Liar's Moon (Thief Errant, #2)
  • A Posse of Princesses
  • My Unfair Godmother (My Fair Godmother, #2)
  • Warped
  • A True Princess
  • Exile (Aurelia, #2)
  • The Princess Curse
  • Wildwing
  • Entwined
  • Princess of the Silver Woods (Princess, #3)
  • The Princess and the Hound (The Hound Saga, #1)
  • A Matter of Magic (Mairelon, #1-2)
  • The Wide-Awake Princess (Wide-Awake Princess, #1)
  • Wrapped (Wrapped, #1)
  • Troubled Waters (Elemental Blessings, #1)
  • Dragonswood (Wilde Island Chronicles, #2)
  • The Sweetest Spell
Eilis is a writer of fantasy and the Managing Editor of the literary magazine Nimrod International Journal. She started writing at the age of three (though the story was only four sentences long). Her short fantasy has been published in various print and online journals, and you can find links to some of her stories here. Eilis was born, raised in, and currently lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

More about Eilis O'Neal...

Other Books in the Series

The False Princess (2 books)
  • A Royal Birthday: A False Princess Short Story
A Royal Birthday: A False Princess Short Story Charmed Deception

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“How can you be nervous? Don't you see? We're in a library.” 57 likes
“He watches you, Sinda. Like you're his best treasure, only he can't think of a way to slip you into is pocket. Hasn't he-of-the-throwing-daggers been brave enough to mention it?” 41 likes
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