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The False Princess

(The False Princess #1)

3.80  ·  Rating details ·  14,228 ratings  ·  1,688 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 th ...more
Hardcover, 319 pages
Published January 25th 2011 by EgmontUSA
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Kira Quintin Yes, I would call this book clean. There is one implication from an unsavory character early on, but other than that, nothing but a few kisses.

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Average rating 3.80  · 
Rating details
 ·  14,228 ratings  ·  1,688 reviews

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Jan 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
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 ma
Jun 01, 2011 rated it liked it
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
Aug 26, 2010 rated it it was amazing
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 superior
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 t
Aug 10, 2010 rated it really liked it
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 palace do
Apr 21, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya-books
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
Dec 26, 2011 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 lik
Aug 26, 2011 rated it it was ok
I think maybe this was just too young adult for me because the only thing that jumps to my mind about this book is the word "juvenile." Or maybe I'm just getting old. Never did the idea of a 16 year old girl saving an entire race/kingdom/etc appear more absurd to me than in this book. I just didn't particularly like anyone and I didn't particularly believe any of them. And I just got bored.
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
Feb 17, 2010 rated it really liked it
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
Mar 18, 2016 rated it liked it
So I pretty much guessed about 97% of what happened in this book before it actually happened. (view spoiler) In other words, it's pr ...more
Anne Osterlund
Sep 10, 2011 rated it really liked it
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 b
Feb 16, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: for-review, ya, fantasy
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
Grace Zhao
Nov 04, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy
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
Reading Vacation
Mar 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing


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
Sep 21, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, read-in-2011
This was good stuff! I was afraid it was going to be a boring story about a princess and the boy she loves, but it turned out to be a cool fantasy novel about a 16 year old plot to topple a monarchy. Niiice. There were some good twists and turns in the story, so I never had that Get-On-With-It! feeling that seems to plague me when I read some fantasy novels. There were also no boring hunks of useless information about the scenery, weather, or clothes. If there was a description of something it was usually relevant t ...more
The Captain
Dec 28, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult
Ahoy there matey! I found this young adult fantasy to be just an okay read. I actually really liked the protagonist Nalia. She learns at 16 that she is not the real princess but a decoy to a prophecy. I really enjoyed how Nalia’s new life takes unexpected trajectories. I enjoy what happens with the real princess. The problems with this one were all romance related. I didn’t hate the actual romance elements. I didn’t like the guy tossed in the middle as a bad plot point. I think the story overall ...more
Oct 11, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-in-2011
A case of a fantastic idea, poorly executed. Which is one of my pet peeves where books are concerned. I wanted to like this book, I really did. The plot was one that should have been truly enthralling and satisfying. It would have been had anything actually happened. Don't get me wrong, things happened. The problem with them happening was that the narrator, Sinda, was so stuck in her head and so easily distracted by her own thoughts that in the middle of almost every scene of action she stops to ...more
Jamie (ReadsinTrees) Dacyczyn
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
Apr 21, 2011 rated it it was amazing
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 i
Sep 28, 2012 rated it really liked it
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
Steph Su
Oct 05, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: debs11
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
Jan 21, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya-chapter-books
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!
Jan 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
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/>We're
Apr 07, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: blog, want-to-own
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 now safe t
Mar 03, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: recommended
It's 2.5 because I liked it but most of it was either predictable or weird or too magic-y for me.

The reason I didn't give this 3.5 or 4 stars was because (well one, because I only liked it but also) the wizard magic stuff was odd. I just don't like fantasy and I did a mental eye-roll whenever I read about the magic and the ties that held them together and the wizard college and everything.

It felt too much like Harry Potter.

Sidenote: was anyone else kind of bot
Dec 26, 2011 rated it really liked it
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 o
Feb 06, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, audiobook, ya
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, I'll s ...more
Miss Clark
Dec 13, 2009 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 2 Mar 17, 2015 11:43AM  

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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.

“How can you be nervous? Don't you see? We're in a library.” 60 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?” 39 likes
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