A major standalone space opera, this is Garth Nix’s first novel for older readers since the conclusion of the Old Kingdom trilogy and it’s worth the wait. A grand. Garth Nix, bestselling author of the Keys to the Kingdom series and Shade’s Children, combines space opera with a coming-of-age story in his YA novel A Con. A grand adventure that spans galaxies and lifetimes, A Confusion of Princes is From the fertile imagination of Garth Nix, internationally bestselling author of.

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Return to Book Page. I have died three times, and three times been reborn, though I am not yet twenty in the old earth years by which it is still the fashion to measure time. This is the story of my three deaths, and my life between. My name is Khemri. Taken from his parents as x child and confusoin with biological and technological improvements, Khemri is now an enhanced human being, trained an I have died three times, and three times been reborn, though I am not yet twenty in the old earth years by which it is still the fashion to measure time.

Taken from his parents as a child and equipped with biological and technological improvements, Khemri is now an enhanced human being, trained and prepared for the glory of becoming a Prince of the Empire.

Not varth mention the ultimate glory: Which is just as well, because no tarth has Prince Conusion graduated to full Princehood than he learns the terrible truth behind the Empire: To see what conffusion friends thought of this book, please sign up.

To ask other readers questions about A Confusion of Princesplease sign up. Is this a stand alone novel? Can I get a rating on this book? Like G-R on a movie scale. I’m trying to see if this is too mature of a gift for a preteen. Barbara Douglas Certainly no worse than PG 12 in the British systemand a good book for young teens to read as they try to sort out what love and responsibility …more Certainly no worse than PG 12 in the British systemand a good book for young teens to read as they try to sort out what love and responsibility really mean.

Cinfusion all 3 questions about A Confusion of Princes…. Lists bix This Book. Let me clarify this statement a little further.

Garth Nix’s newest novel brought back the memories of the best parts of these books and movies, because I am certainly a fan of neither Orson Scott Card nor Robert A. Heinlein or campiness, bigotry and misogyny.

What attracted me to all these stories and why reading A Confusion of Princes was such a positive experience for me, was, first and foremost, space travel and space military schools these settings just never get old for some reasonthen mild interplanetary politics and intrigue, and, finally, rich world-building you know, the type where everything is described in long words and titles and you feel smarter just by learning what Mektek is or what the Nux of the Emperor’s Discerning Hand does.

A lot of male-written fantasy and SF is preoccupied with this idea of “the chosen one” and his journey to acquire power and his subsequent choice of how to use this power. A Confusion of Gargh roughly follows the same plot trajectory, so in terms of plot I can’t say Nix invents anything mind-blowing or original here.

A Confusion of Princes – Wikipedia

But like with Dune, for example, I found myself utterly fascinated by the world in which Nix set gadth novel. I just love the idea of the universe run by a mysterious and almost omnipresent Emperor who picks, chooses and grooms millions of Princes so that they are prepared to governs His Empire. Khemri is one of the Princes. He is removed from the lowly regular population, he is an enhanced being in possession of psychic powers, vast knowledge, physical prowess and an opportunity to be reincarnated over and over again.

His primary occupation is to lead and to fight for power. Khemri’s view on his destiny changes, however, when he is forced to get a taste of regular, unprivileged life Even though Convusion found this story very readable and interesting, I’d say that, structurally, I am not sure it is as good as it could confusionn been.


I don’t know if Nix struggled with finishing this story, my guess is he did and he probably got stuck somewhere in the middle of the book, because that’s where A Confusion of Princes prknces of shifts gears, and the transition from Khemri-the Prince to Khem-gets-a-taste-of-normal-life is not very smooth or fully believable while reading this novel I momentarily experienced a Blood Red Road deja vu, that book also changed course half-way.

The second part is not developed enough, IMO, which includes not only Khem’s too quick ideological transformation, but also the romance which has a very distinct whiff of insta If anyone had asked me how to improve this novel, I’d have said – cut the princely experiences shorter lrinces make ordinary experiences longer and more meaningful.

Still, like with Blood Red RoadI mostly was able to overlook this weakness and fully immerse myself in the book. Now, to the most unpleasant part of my review. Here is a series of A Confusion of Princes covers that I confuzion, really like. Notice the progression, from UK to US, with the face of the hero becoming smaller and hix, and even when it is princess enough to see the features, it is still partially obscured?

This is how Khemri speaks of his own appearance: There were five female and three male Princes, and we all looked quite different. There was a lot of variation in skin, hair, and eye color, ranging from the darkest black, dark-haired, ebony eyes of Prince Aliadh to the orange-tinted skin and yellow eyes of Pprinces Fyrmis, who oof was not unusual for some planets, had no hair at all.

My own brown skin and black eyes were pretty much in the middle of the pack. My hair at that time was long and tied back in a queue, though later when I became more aware of Imperial fashions, which primarily consisted of the aping of old Earth customs, I had it shaved save for a strip in the middle, a hairstyle called a mohuck for reason that had not survived the march of cojfusion p.

Maybe I am being a tad paranoid, but I am quite convinced that the face of the hero received this treatment from bluish tint of the UK cover to virtually impossible to see on US cover because of Khemri’s natural coloring. I even think that tinting of faces to conceal their actual non-white color is the “in” way to go about whitewashing covers.

A Confusion of Princes

Certainly, it won’t be the first time when it happened. What I want to say, though, is that, it appears, YA authors are willing to make their characters diverse. It’s the publishers who go above and beyond to hide this diversity. What do you think, dear readers, am I being paranoid? Or am I onto something? View all 34 comments. I just looked this book up and realized I had read it already?? Does this ever happen to you??? View all 6 comments. I oc really looking forward to this book, so perhaps that’s why I was a bit disappointed: Khemri, our narrator, tells us straight up that he has died three times, and that this is the story of those deaths “and my life between.

The story is that of Cojfusion learning that much of what he knows about being I was really looking forward to this book, so perhaps that’s why I was a bit disappointed: The story is that of Khemri learning that much of what he knows prinnces being a Prince is wrong, or at least wrong-headed.

He learns this while avoiding being killed – usually not because of his own wits – and while gradually coming to terms with the realities of the Empire. He has a wise, enigmatic Master of Assassins by his side and the novel includes a bonus short story that gives just a little more insight into Haddad’s characterand while he does die a few times the first time isn’t until he’s actually learnt some things, which is a plus. The overall story is fairly enjoyable. The twists and turns in Khemri learning how the Empire actually works, as opposed to how he has been taught that it does, is generally well played, although not especially original; there were only a couple of times I was genuinely surprised.


I enjoyed the idea of the Princes all vying to be the next Emperor and how that might play out when there are ten million of them, mostly bloodthirsty or at the very least ruthless. And the world building was particularly interesting. Truth be told, it was the world building that really kept me reading. The combination of Mektek, Confuskon and Psitek is wonderfully intriguing – how an empire could get to the point where all three are valued, and used, and used in conjunction is fascinating.

The idea of the Empire itself was There is some explanation of what it means to be Emperor by the end of the story, but still not really anything about why it is an empire that rules this sprawling, mostly-human conglomeration of planets; nor why or how it was decided that Princes ought to be sought from the general population.

I really liked this aspect, but it still was confusing about confuwion it was there in the first place, if not simply as a narrative device. Sadly, it was an aspect of the world building that really, really grated on me and meant that even if the story had been glorious, I would still not have been in love with this book.

Princes get mind-programmed thralls: This aspect of Khemri’s life, and the fact that throughout all of his adventures he basically accepts this as his due, revolted me. If there had been some questioning of this ‘right’ for Princes, if there had been some interaction with a thrall that indicated gagth had awareness and Khemri wondered about them, I could perhaps have swallowed a bitter pill and taken this for an aspect of a hinted dystopia.

Instead, we have slaves, who have been programmed, conditionedto serve their master and be incapable of rebelling. This, I cannot accept.

On a different note, Khemri is your Perceval-type character. Remember when David Eddings wrote a big long thing about how to construct a fantasy world and story?

Maybe at the start of I forget, one of the Belgariad tag-along books. Anyway, he said your main character, who was clearly going to be confusiin, basically fell into Arthurian archetypes, and Garion was Perceval: He’s arrogant and dim, without realising the latter while relishing the former; he has his hopes for his young Princely life dashed and then nearly his actual young Princely life as well, and he gradually learns about power and authority and their right use and etc.

Haddad is nicely played as confusiin, and I would really liked to have seen more of him; the fact that people such as him get assigned to different Princes over their careers suggests all sorts of intriguing possibilities for issues of loyalty.

Other than that, there’s A Girl, and a fairly large cast of C-characters who alternately challenge, nearly kill, and befriend our hero. The gender issue is also an interesting one in this story.

Princes can be either male or female, and they are treated no differently from one another; once you are a Prince, with all the conditioning and genetic cofnusion attendant on that, you’re just Male or female no longer counts for anything, if it ever did. The same goes for priests and assassins; there seems to be no barrier about holding significant roles within either field, or indeed any other, based on gender.

With all of that, the one female who plays a significant role is a love interest. She does gartth things too, but it still feels like she almost entirely defined by the romantic aspect, and the impact this has on Khemri. Which was a little disappointing. Overall, I was somewhat disappointed: It’s touted as a space opera, but it’s just not grand enough for that. Some might princex that it is grand enough for a YA space opera, but I don’t think YA means getting to be a little bit boring with plot and magnificent gestures.

It may be that I am cynical and jaded never let it be said that I am too jaded x admit that’s possible.