NOW READING: The Ascendance Trilogy by Jennifer Nielson

And an Interview with Jennifer Nielson!

Ascendance Edit


A couple of months ago I went to my local library to see Jennifer Nielson speak at a book signing. As an aspiring writer I consider it my responsibility to attend as many author’s appearances and conferences as possible. The more I learn, especially from firsthand accounts of success, or even firsthand accounts of failure before success, the better writer I can be.

Prior to seeing the flyer on the bulletin board, I had never heard of Jennifer Nielson before. A friend had briefly mentioned The Ascendance Trilogy to me, but I confess I may not have been paying attention. 😦

Mrs. Nielson was so enthusiastic, and I was so much encouraged in my own efforts after hearing her story, I ended up with a complete set of the books before the night was over.

Now about this time, I was having an issue with my eyes and it was a while before I could take a trip to my optometrist. My headaches, and blurry vision couldn’t keep me from those books altogether, though. I read a book and half, through all that.

Once I did get new glasses, I finished them in six days.

The Royal Family of Carthya have been assassinated, and unless Prince Jaron can be found the regents will start a civil war for the throne. Only problem is, Prince Jaron died several years before, taken down by pirates on his way out of the country.
But one Regent has a plan. Connor intends to take one orphan boy and groom him to play the prince for the rest of his life. In exchange for the new king’s undying loyalty of course.
Sage was unlucky enough to be chosen as one of four boys Connor is considering for the role.

There’s something about the way they’re written that makes them irresistible. Maybe it’s Sage’s never-ceasing biting wit. Or maybe it’s the secrets that he manages to keep even from the reader, leading up to some great climax scenes.

The political issues that form the foundation of the story are well-written and sufficiently explained, but not overwhelming or confusing. Long, drawn out plans, and surprises at every turn, keep you turning the pages. Gut-wrenching goodbyes, and unexpected friends, duels, and princesses and maids who have a little too much independence for their own good, make this series a contender for my favorite books of all time.

I wish I could say more, but watching how events unfold it truly is the best part of the series. Secrets are the name of the game, and peace is the goal. Maybe Sage really is desperate enough to pull this off.

Now for a few words from Jennifer Nielson herself.

I asked Miss Nielson some questions I thought we all might like to know the answers to.

1. What is your favorite part in The False Prince, The Runaway King, or The Shadow Throne?

Hmm, I don’t know that I have any single favorite part. I tend to love the scenes most after I’ve pushed at Sage for the entire book and just done everything possible to him, and then he finds a way to win. I might look forward to writing those scenes for weeks and have a smile on my face as I type them.


  1. What do you consider the hardest part of writing?


For me, the hardest part of writing happens before I’ve put any words to paper, and that is in finding my hero. I usually start with the general plot or hook, but then I need exactly the right hero to carry that story forward. For example, with The Ascendance Trilogy, I had started the story a few times with different characters, but they were usually crushed under the weight of the story. Once I found Sage, the story just sailed forward.


3. Which part of writing do you think has the biggest payoff?

There are a lot of amazing payoffs from writing. Typing “the end” is always a wonderful feeling. Holding your latest book and seeing your name on the cover is heavenly. But I’d have to say my favorite is when I get a letter or email from a fan who tells me they weren’t much of a reader until finding one of my books, and now they love reading. The rewards of knowing I’ve had an impact in the life of a young person is the best of everything.


Big thanks to Miss Nielson, for taking the time to answer our questions, and for sharing Sage’s story with us!!

Don’t forget to check out the Ascendance Trilogy on Amazon!

And see what Miss Nielson is up to on her website.

And when you’ve done that, and totally fallen in love with Miss Nielson’s books, check out her latest! Mark of a Thief  sounds amazing! Don’t miss it. I can’t wait until my copy gets here!


Next up on NOW READING: The Ever After Series by Shannon Hale…


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