THE RUNAWAY KING is released!

Posted by on Mar 1, 2013 in The Runaway King | 128 comments



From Goodreads:Β A kingdom teetering on the brink of destruction. A king gone missing. Who will survive? Find out in the highly anticipated sequel to Jennifer A. Nielsen’s blockbuster THE FALSE PRINCE!

Just weeks after Jaron has taken the throne, an assassination attempt forces him into a deadly situation. Rumors of a coming war are winding their way between the castle walls, and Jaron feels the pressure quietly mounting within Carthya. Soon, it becomes clear that deserting the kingdom may be his only hope of saving it. But the further Jaron is forced to run from his identity, the more he wonders if it is possible to go too far. Will he ever be able to return home again? Or will he have to sacrifice his own life in order to save his kingdom?

The stunning second installment of The Ascendance Trilogy takes readers on a roller-coaster ride of treason and murder, thrills and peril, as they journey with the Runaway King!

Here’s the UK cover, which I also love!:


THE RUNAWAY KING is available in hardcover, e-book, and audio. I strongly encourage people to buy from their local indie first, but copies are also online.

If you want to find me for a signing, I will post my tour schedule separately. If you want a signed copy, but can’t get to me, you can order online from The King’s English Bookstore. I’ll sign that copy and they will ship it to your front door!


  1. A huge congrats to you! So excited for you because this is another fantastic story.

    • Many thanks, Natalie!

      • Loved the first book can’t wait for the second its authors like jennifer neilson made me love tto read

        • Thank you, Meghan! I’m so glad you’re loving reading right now! The Runaway King is available now, and Book 3, the Shadow Throne, will be released on February 25, 2014.

          • Thats 2 day before my b-day! Yay!

    • Dear Jennifer
      I loved your first book! I wrote you a letter because my teacher said that you would write back but you haven’t . I know that you are busy but please write back. I was also wondering if there was a way I could win the runaway king instead of having tho buy it . If there is please tell me. Oh and one more thing. Why do you love writing books

      • Connor – I only just got your letter yesterday. It takes a while for the publisher to forward it to me. I’m out of town for a while, but I’ll respond when I get back with answers to these questions. I will cross my fingers for you to win a copy of the book at some point, but even if you don’t, I am very glad you are enjoying the series!

  2. I just finished this book yesterday. I was so excited to get it at school! A perfect sequel to The False Prince! So many good parts. Now I have to wait another year for the next one. Again.

    • Sorry it’s another year, Samantha, but I’m thrilled you enjoyed the book! Thanks for the comment!

  3. I just got The runaway King yesterday and I love it ! sword fighting, amazing Imagery, Twist and Turns and classic Jaron humor you just cant beat ! Im trying yet failing to put it down Its Awesome.

  4. Listened to The Runaway King yesterday and thoroughly enjoyed it. I really enjoy the narrator,so I’m hoping he is available for the 3rd installment. I’ll spread the word and get copies in my kid’s library at school. I think I’ll be listening again today….

    • Thank you, Shel! And I believe Charlie (the narrator) will be back for book 3. Or at least, I hope so too!

  5. I love your books and think they are great I just finished the runaway king and I think it is amazing. I can’t wait for the third book. πŸ™‚

  6. Absolutely loved The Runaway King! I’m only sorry I finished it so quickly ‘cuz now I have to wait for the third book.

    • I’m glad you enjoyed it, Serena, but sorry you have to wait again. I’ll try to make the wait worthwhile! thanks for reading!

  7. OH MY GOSH! It was amazing! I couldn’t put it down. I kept flipping the pages filled with nervous tension. How is Jaron going to get out the mess he is in. I love the way you ended the book(Don’t worry I won’t spoil it for those who haven’t read it yet)and can’t wait for the next one! Keep the books coming Jennifer!

    • Thank you Bridget! I’ll keep writing as long as people keep reading – seems like a fair deal to me!

  8. Wow! I’m surprised that I absolutely love these books! These were my first actual ‘king,queen,prince’ type books. I can’t wait until the third book come out. Because I will be buying as soon as possible!

  9. Hi Jennifer! Loved Runaway King! The ending was brilliant. This series is true epic fantasy in the tradition of Le Guin and Pierce. When do you expect to release the last book in the trilogy? Can’t wait! Keep writing!

    • Thank you Anita! I think the final book should release in another year – but I promise, it’ll be worth the wait!

  10. OHMYGOODNESS!!! I just got done reading the Runaway King! It was amazing. Jaron is quickly becoming one of my favorite literary characters of all time! Is he as much fun to write as he is to read about? Haha πŸ˜€

    • Thanks Kathryn – yes, I love writing Jaron as a character. He’s as unpredictable to me as he is to readers!

  11. I just finished reading THE RUNAWAY KING, and can I just say – it was brilliant! I knew I wouldn’t be disappointed in it, and I most certainly wasn’t. Thank you, Jennifer, for another terrific book! I can hardly wait for the third one. Sage/Jaron is definitely one of my all-time favorite male protagonists, and your pirates were genuinely cool. πŸ™‚

  12. I had very high expectation for The Runaway King because I loved The False Prince so much. And I wasn’t disappointed! Jaron is as brilliant and unpredictable as ever. I just wish the book was longer because reading it was so much fun. Now I can’t wait to read the last book!
    I’m attending your Secret Garden Bookstore event, so excited to finally meet you!

    • Kim –

      THank you – I’m so glad you enjoyed the book. I’ll look forward to meeting you at Secret Garden then!

      • It was so nice to meet you! Thank you for signing the books and talking to me. Can’t wait to show my signed copies to my friends and make them jealous πŸ˜€

        • You were awesome, Kim! It was an honor to meet you too and I wish you all the best!

  13. I loved the False Prince so much. I just finished reading it. I haven’t read the Runaway King, but I hope to be getting it really soon! I’m soo excited.
    I have a question. Right now I’m doing a project at school on the False Prince, and what I will be doing for it is Prince Jaron’s “blog”. I’m going to need a profile picture of him, and I honestly don’t know where to find one. Do you have any pictures or anything that might look like him that I might use? It can be anything, honestly. A picture from Google you like, a fan-art, whatever it is I’ll be sure to link back to it and everything. This is due very soon… but, I understand if you don’t have any pictures, which is also fine. I can just do a last-minute hunt. :p
    Thank you for reading all of that, and again, I’m so excited to read the Runaway King!! πŸ˜€
    ~Nicole (a massive fan)

  14. The Runaway King is a fantastic follow-up to the wonderful False Prince story. I was curious what lay ahead for Sage/Jaron and found that, once again, both he and the plot were engaging and unpredictable. I cannot wait for book three but I’m assuming the wait will be awhile since I devoured the Runaway King two days after it was released. Keep up the fabulous writing!

    • Thanks Kristin! It probably will be another year until the next book, but I promise to make it worth the wait! πŸ˜‰

      • I’m sure it will be worth the wait! My 11 year old daughter is reading The False Prince now and LOVES it – I keep catching her with the light way past bedtime. We both enjoy the characters you’ve created and how you weave a tale. πŸ™‚

  15. I just finished reading the Runaway King, and I loved it! I can’t wait for book three to come out. I have a few questions though. Where did you come up with the name Jaron? Also, how did you come up with Sage/Jaron? Like his personality and the tricks he can do.

    • Thanks Jena! For your questions, I once knew a kid named Jaron and he always struck me as a royal type of person. The character started in a song – “Guaranteed” by Eddie Vedder. I talk about it at the end of Book 1.

  16. Thank you very much for these wonderful stories.. I know It’s sort of a children’s book but I am looooooving it so so much and I am aready 28 years old! I guess what I really wanna say is that I would probably love your stories even if I was eighty (years old).. All the best to you on your journey to the book 3!

  17. Congrats on the new book!!! I read it in one day and I LOVE IT SO MUCH!!!!! Someone had to take away my kindle so I would stop reading both the False Prince and the Runaway King, I’m so impressed with Runaway King!!! Fantastic job!!

    • Thank you, Lauren! Sorry it caused the temporary loss of your kindle, but I’m really glad you enjoyed the books! (-;

  18. Congratulations on this new book! I was literally screaming when I got it on Monday at school, and I finished it in 2 days! I must say that I should have been more thorough though. It was really an awesome book! I love it, absolutely! The first book had been my favorite book ever since I read it, and it still is! This whole series is! Thank you so much for bringing me so much joy! πŸ˜› You’re osm!

  19. ‘Gratz on the new book! I absolutely loved the False Prince, especially the twist near the end, and although many other books adorn my shelves, The False Prince immediately became my favorite. I bought the Runaway King immediately after it was released and read it in a day. I love it almost more than the first one! Did you model Imogen after someone you know/knew?

    • Thanks Suri! I’m glad you enjoyed both of the books. To answer your question, Imogen isn’t modeled after anyone I know. I generally create original characters because I can be so hard on them. I think if they reminded me of someone I knew that I wouldn’t be able to be as hard on them.

  20. Jennifer, you are now one my favourite authors. I really hope The False Prince is made into a movie. I finished reading The Runaway King in a day! Such a brilliant storyline that I couldn’t literally put the book down. Now I cannot wait for Book 3. Team Imogen for me <3

    • Thank you Senavath! I’m glad you enjoyed the books and feel honored to be on your favorite author list. (And yeah, I hope it’s made into a movie too!)

  21. I love these series, but i am a little sad it is only a trilogy. If there is ever a movie for the series I will be at the opening day waiting in line to see it. Great job and I can’t wait for the next book, and I’m looking forward to more books you may write in the future. I think it would be great if you did a prequel on Jaron’s father and wife and first son, that would be great. Thanks again for making such a great series.

    • Roge – Thanks for much. Keep your fingers crossed for the movie – or at least, I am! And I love the idea of a prequel with his family. In that one, I think his mother would rise as the hero, which would be great fun to write about.

  22. I loved this book, the nice plot and interesting characters, and I wonder what great things to expect in the third book. πŸ˜€

    • Thanks Chance! Lots of great stuff to expect in the third book – for example, multiple uses of the word “Android,” vague references to old Simpsons episodes, and a rather dramatic scene where Jaron consumes a three course dinner.

      Or…quite possibly, none of that. But I hope you’ll love it just as much! Thanks for reading!

  23. I am a librarian in Texas, and we are LOOOOOOOVVVVVVING the “Jaron Trilogy” !!! I have multiple 4th and 5th graders already finishing up part two. We are NOT going to be patiently waiting for part three. Just saying.
    PS – If you are ever in the Houston area, drop on by. You won’t find a larger group of fans than are here at our big ol’ school!

    • Mitzi –

      I love that this comment came in today. I’m actually going to be in Houston from April 20-23. If your students want to meet me, I’ll be at the Houston Teen Book Con on the 20th and at McGovern-Stella Link Library at 4 pm on the 22nd. Or there’s a chance I may have some free time on the morning of the 22nd. If you need details, send me an email:

      And thanks for the kind words. I’m so thrilled the students are enjoying these books!

  24. any idea when the 3rd book is coming out?
    i am going to do a countdown…
    i can’t wait to read the 3rd book!!!!!!

    • Elizabeth, it’ll be out early next spring, maybe March. I think you’ll enjoy it when it’s released!

  25. Your books are just amazing!I have decided the Fasle Prince is the first best story I have ever read.Moreover you are the best author you make books so amazing.It holds suspense and is so breathtaking.Jaw dropping.I can’t just wait to get the next book.I will always remember you and your wonderful books they are unforgettable.

  26. Hi Jennifer,

    I really liked your book (The False Prince). It is really fantastic. I looked forward to reading it each day. The next one I will read is The Runaway King, because I am pretty sure it will be as good as the first. This was the best book I ever read. I hope the third one comes out very soon.

    Please write back to me.

    • Thank you, Hector! I hope you’ll enjoy Runaway King just as much! Book 3 comes out next spring – a long time, I know, but I think the wait will be worth it!

      • Whats the third book called and whats it about!

        • Well Brian, unfortunately the title of Book 3 is still a secret. And if you’ve finished the end of Runaway King, then you probably have a pretty good idea of where Book 3 is going to go. πŸ˜‰

  27. I (honestly) am not a huge fan of this type of books (fantasy, etc.), but as an obsessed reader, I’ll read anything without complaining. I started reading The False Prince by accident and I have to say it’s one of the best novels I’ve read so far. I like main characters with sarcasm and wits, yet brave and likable enough. Sage is that one perfect example. Jennifer, you are an excellent writer. Guess I’ll have to buy the sequel, or I’ll get desperate.
    Like I said before, you are an excellent writer.

    • Thanks Naty – I consider that a happy accident! I hope if you ever get desperate enough to get a copy of The Runaway King, that you’ll enjoy it too!

  28. When does the next one come out?

  29. i got this book yesterday and have 3 chapters left. i think even THE FALSE PRINCE has an opponent

  30. Hi ms. Jen im a fan of this book. I started reading the first book yesterday and i finished it already.

  31. I read that and the first one. πŸ˜€

  32. i loved both of your books what will the next one be called? do you have any sineing to do in oulder i have so many qetions for such a wonderful athor!

    • Thank you, O_O. The title for Book 3 has not been announced yet, but it will be announced soon on this blog!

  33. I loved The Runaway King, but I’m scared for Imogen! I keep wondering what will happen to her! I really wanted her and Jaron to be together, but that might not work out. πŸ™ And at the end she was captured! I really hope they make the False Prince into a movie. It would be really good. I can’t believe I have to wait another year for the next book!:(

    • Scared for Imogen? Hmm, that’s not a bad idea – after all, she is in a lot of danger. Keep your fingers crossed for a movie – I am too! Thanks Bailey!

  34. I hate you Jennifer, I hate you, I hate you! I finished reading “The Runaway King” today and I was so upset that you ended the book with possibility one of the biggest cliff hangers in a novel ever! I absolutely loved this book just as much as the first, “The False Prince”. I especially like how you added in two maps into “The Runaway King”, it was a nice touch to help give the reader get a sense of where all of the cities and towns in the novels are located.

    Ever since you released the announcement about β€œThe False Prince” made into a movie, I’ve been thinking even more about how wonderfully your book could be adapted into a huge blockbuster movie.

    I check your website almost every day now looking out for any news on book 3, which I am dying to read. I hope you make the last book the longest in this trilogy because with Imogen’s kidnapping at the end of the book and the war beginning, it would be devastating to know that it is shorter than the first two books.

    Good luck continuing to write book 3 and I look forward to seeing any news on the announcement of a title and a cover reveal for the book coming soon. πŸ˜€

    • Joseph –

      Yes, I did end the book with things a bit unsettled. Information about Book 3 should be released soon – it’s not shorter than the others because as you must guess, there’s a lot that has to happen! More news coming soon!

  35. Could you possibly post a sketch of what Jaron is supposed to look like? I want to draw him but I can’t find the right phisical features for him.

    • Bailey, you could Google “Sage” and “the False Prince” under images to get an idea for what art others have done. I describe him in the book as being of average height but with a strong build. Once free of the dyes he used to lighten his hair as Sage, he would have brown hair and (I think) green eyes. In “The Runaway King,” Serena describes him as handsome. The condition of his hair and clothes would depend on when you’re drawing him. Good luck!

      • thank you so much

        • blah blah showoff…

          • your books are amazing .I wish I could write like you!!!!!!!!!!

          • Keep writing then – becoming a writer has a lot more to do with hard work than natural talent. Keep it up and good luck!

          • I love your books. First I hated reading so badly until my teacher gave me the runaway king to read. From then on I loved reading:)

          • That is the highest of compliments, OMG. Thank you very much, and keep reading!

  36. I love the runaway king. I can’t wait for the third one…

  37. I wish I could write like you…

    • Keep practicing, keep writing! I had to start somewhere, just like you…

  38. sorry to say but I am leaving so I can’t read your second book.Oh well.

  39. I LOVE YOUR BOOKS! I actually got in trouble for reading during math.

    • Ha! That’s so funny! Well, your math teacher might not’ve liked that, but I think it’s great! Thanks, Jacob!

    • Same here.I got chucked out of class.Oh well I wanted to finish the book and I finished it outside.:)

      • Ha! Well, I hope it was a worthy sacrifice!

        • I know!My maths teacher found out and I was going to get chucked out of the top set maths class.Then he went and told my form teacher about it.But because she is a English and Drama teacher she smiled and said “She never likes to read and she has never read a book so at least she is reading now because of such a good book”My maths was angry and now she hates me.I don’t care because I hate her and her terrible maths lessons.She is so strict and boring.She gives us sums that she has never taught us before.But I am so happy that I got moved to the second set because the sums are so easy and I am the cleverest there.So sad, my friend Siantha is stuck in that terrible maths class.At least I am motivated in reading.Now I can’t stop reading.My parents are so shocked…Thanks for your amazing books:)

          • Ha! Even if it’s not fun, stick with math. We need more girls who are strong in math. Then read when it’s over!

  40. I love your books.I can’t wait for the next one.I feel so excited.How do u write so good!!!

    • Thanks Alaya – whenever I get stuck on a scene, I just eat lots of chocolate. It seems to do the job!

      • Oh thats cool!!!I love chocolate.

  41. Hi my friend emily said you have a website .I am so happy I can speak to you now.My whole year group is good at maths ,especailly the girls are the most cleverest.My friend Emily is good at maths but she doesn’t like the teacher,that is all…Everyone thinks girls should do the lowest jobs and boys should do the biggest.Well I do not think it is fair…..Do You???

  42. True.I should try and move to the top maths set again. Mostly girls in there anyway:)

    • Hey!Lets beat the boys……………….Girls for the wind…:)

  43. Can I plzzzzzzz have ur autograph!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!I so enjoy readin ur books.

    • Sure thing! Send me an email (from the contact me button on my webpage) and I’ll send you one!

  44. Hi.Um I just read your books yesterday in the library.I thought it was very good.Do you enjoy writing books?
    I am just asking because I am a English Teacher and you see I want to encourage my students to read and your books are simply amazing so it might encourage them:)

    • Thanks much, Miss Amy! Here’s my thought on writing: Do you know that crazy feeling you get when you have an itch in the middle of your back and no matter how much you bend, you can’t quite reach it? To me, that’s the feeling of having a story idea inside my head. And writing it is like finally reaching the itch.

      I do love writing, and it is the greatest privilege to know the stories I write have readers who love them.

  45. I want your autograph because your books in the series, The Ascendance Trilogy was awesome and those sort of like to call out to me and want to get my attention and those are the types of books I like.

    • If you send me a mailing address for you (to, I can send you a signed sticker to put into your books. Just let me know which book(s) you want it for.

  46. I think Sage/King Jaron is my favorite character bcuz

  47. He’s cute and outgoing and doesn’t stop until his enemies fall and peace is restored

  48. make a movie on the false prince and the runaway king plz

  49. i luv all ur books so much!

    • Thank you, Kaela!

      • I also sent you an e-mail, Jennifer.

        • I got it – I’m just slow on responding to those. But I’ll get to it eventually…

          • ok thanks

  50. i was wondering if you could send some tattoos, stickers and your autograph to my sister. she really wants some.

    Yours Truly,

  51. I wish I could meet you so much!! 😭😭😭😭😭

  52. Is there by any chance a new book coming out soon?

  53. can you make a second series to this book like a the great books have (Percy Jackson series, or wings of fire), not saying yours was bad it was pure amazingness. you can name it magic returns ,lol or the fall of whatever the kingdoms name was again I forgot. If you reply I will cry in happiness if you say yes to my question I will scream with happiness. please make a second series

    • Hi Alexander, I am replying so that gets at least one scream, right? As to the second request, I never say never to a continuation of books, though I’m working on other projects now. Perhaps one day!

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