The False Princess is my kind of book – light and fun with a sprinkling of intrigue, Princesses, love, and magic.
Princess Nalia is brought before her parents one day after she turns 16 only to find out that she is not the real princess Nalia, but a common-born stand in named Sinda. The real princess was hidden away in order to avoid a prophesied early death. Sinda is quickly sent to her only living relative, an Aunt, and discovers that she is ill-prepared for common life. Though she can speak 4 languages and read and draw she must learn how to cook and keep house and dye (the occupation of her aunt). She is unfortunately slow to learn the new skills expected of her and chafes in her new life. She misses her best friend, Keirnan, but knows that their stations in life are now too far.
Things change when Sinda realizes that she has magic. She leaves again for the city to find a teacher.
Returning to Vivaskari for answers, Sinda finds her purpose as a wizard scribe, rediscovers the boy who saw her all along, and uncovers a secret that could change the course of Thorvaldor’s history, forever.
I really liked how Sinda went from this mousey, passive girl to someone who fights for what is right – even when driven only by morals and a desire to prove that she’s more than a simple common scribe. She fits the Strong Female Character bill (even though she does have a lot of self-doubts, especially initially).
This is the first book by Eilis O’Neil, and although I loved it, there was something just a tiny bit unpolished about it. The flow was at times just a little bit off or maybe I didn’t quite connect with the characters enough. So I won’t give this a 5, but will give it a 4.5 / 5!!