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The Knockout Queen by Rufi Thorpe
Literary fiction

The Knockout Queen

by Rufi Thorpe

Quick take

Remember how fun high school was? Yeah, we don’t either. For everyone who wasn’t prom queen or homecoming king.

Good to know

  • LGBTQ+ friendly

  • Sad

  • Teens

  • Underdog


This is a character-driven novel with themes of violence, bullying, and discrimination. Flawed characters and dark humor abound!

Why I love it

This is my favorite book of the year so far. One of the dangers of reading so many new books each month is that I overuse these words a lot. But I can’t help it. In January I was telling everyone about The Sun Down Motel. Then April came along and I couldn’t stop talking about Valentine. So consider this my endorsement, with an asterisk: The Knockout Queen is my favorite book of 2020 (so far!).



Bunny Lampert is the princess of North Shore⁠—beautiful, tall, blond, with a rich real-estate-developer father and a swimming pool in her backyard. Michael⁠⁠—with a ponytail down his back and a septum piercing⁠—lives with his aunt in the cramped stucco cottage next door. When Bunny catches Michael smoking in her yard, he discovers that her life is not as perfect as it seems.

At six foot three, B...


Get an early look from the first pages of The Knockout Queen.

Read a sample →

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  • 41% Love
  • 46% Like
  • 12% Dislike
    May 2020