Book three of the Ascendance trilogy
By Jennifer A. Nielsen
Available now from Scholastic
Read my review of The Runaway King
THE SHADOW THRONE brings Jennifer A. Nielsen's popular Ascendance trilogy to a close. It is firmly in the upper middle grade category. It's a bit to simple to be young adult, but the violence is too intense for lower middle grade.
Jaron can't avoid it any longer: his country is going to war. He and his loved ones are all at risk of capture, torture, and death. Jaron might have a head for clever plans and infiltration, but he's used to working on a small level. A multi-front war is something else entirely.
I thought that it was a wonderful opportunity for Jaron to stretch himself and really show some new qualities. I don't think that really happened, but as the story went on THE SHADOW THRONE fell into a groove and really moved along to the thrilling conclusion. THE FALSE PRINCE remains my favorite book in the trilogy, but THE SHADOW THRONE is a truly fitting end.
It's hard to talk about the third book in a series without giving too much away! I would say that THE SHADOW THRONE can stand on its own, but I can't see it being half as much fun without the first two books. This is one of the best middle grade series of the past few years, and I highly recommend it. The trilogy is full of delightful twists, intrigue, and action. It also pairs quite well with Megan Whalen Turner's fabulous Queen's Thief series.