Publisher: Inkyard Press; Original edition (September 14, 2021)
Hardcover: 320 pages
This fearless debut novel explores racism, injustice, and self-expression through the story of a promising Black football star in Louisiana.
The system is rigged.
For guys like Russell Boudreaux, football is the only way out of their small town. As the team’s varsity tight end, Rus has a singular goal: to get a scholarship and play on the national stage. But when his best friend is unfairly arrested and kicked off the team, Rus faces an impossible choice: speak up or live in fear.
“Please rise for the national anthem.”
Desperate for change, Rus kneels during the national anthem. In one instant, he falls from local stardom and becomes a target for hatred. But he’s not alone. With the help of his best friend and an unlikely ally, Rus will fight for his dreams, and for justice.
“Debut author Buford delivers a novel that bridges the mighty dreams of Last Chance U with the trenchant social critique of The Hate U Give. Sports’ biggest social movement moment of the decade gets a special homage.”—Kirkus Reviews, starred review
“Absolutely Timely and gripping. Couldn’t put it down. Speaks to the current social climate, and is a must read. 10/10.” —Broderick Hunter, actor, model, and activist
“A powerful and timely debut novel, Kneel is a gripping story about what it looks like when we demand equity, justice, and recognition of our own humanity. It examines the mental and emotional costs of activism but also gives us a reason to stay in the fight. I could not put it down.”—Kalynn Bayron, author of Cinderella Is Dead
Candace Buford has been an avid reader since childhood—always looking for stories with strong and complex POCs. She graduated from Duke University with a degree in German Literature, which exposed her to the delightfully creepy side of storytelling by writers like Kafka and Brecht. Raised in Houston, she now lives in the PNW. She shares her life with a rocket scientist and a Plott Hound, who both ensure there is never a dull day. Kneel is her debut.
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