Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Queen of Second Place” as Want to Read:
The Queen of Second Place
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Queen of Second Place

3.66  ·  Rating Details ·  289 Ratings  ·  35 Reviews
Cassie Howard believes that every human being on earth is born with one special talent. Unfortunately, hers is taking second place. No matter how hard she tries, she’s always second best . . . in school, in life, and especially in love.

When Cassie discovers new-boy-in-town Kevin Matthews, she wants him on sight. But so does Sterling Carter, a ridiculously beautiful preppy
Mass Market Paperback, 336 pages
Published December 18th 2007 by Laurel Leaf (first published September 13th 2005)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Queen of Second Place, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Queen of Second Place

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Me for

There's just something about reading stories that you can relate to that make them a joy to read. As someone who grew up feeling like her own version of THE QUEEN OF SECOND PLACE, relating to Cassie Howard was easy. She's pretty, she has friends, she's been on a date or two, she gets good grades--etc., etc., etc. But for Cassie, being a second-bester isn't good enough. She's looking for A-List status, for the admiration of her peers and, maybe more importantly,
Jan 30, 2011 Tamara rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read2011, ya
This was one of those kid-walks-into-my-classroom-and-says-read-this books. Since the first one of these was a Percy Jackson, which led me to happiness, I'm making it a policy to do what they say. Unless it's Goosebumps, probably. As I told said kid, I found the narrator pretty ditzy at first, but otherwise this was pretty entertaining YA. It didn't 100% go where I expected, and the characters didn't get exactly what they wanted OR exactly what they secretly wanted and hadn't realized until the ...more
Dec 05, 2008 Celestasaurus rated it liked it
Shelves: young-adult
The title is what caught my attention about this book. The Queen of Second Place. Isn't that how we all feel sometimes? I loved Cassie's idea about everyone having their own talent, most not so "glamorous," like always choosing the longest line, or getting the best parking place. The ending, with all the positive uses of seemingly useless talents, was very clever and cute. It may not be the best book, but it's definitely worth reading.
Apr 06, 2009 Caron rated it liked it
This book was so funny! I liked her writing style. It was absolultely written for teens, but I thought it was entertaining. It's about a girl who always comes in second place (something I can identify with at times) and she decides that she's done with it when her and a popular girl start competing over the new kid in school's attention. I enjoyed it, but I'm still deciding if I will read the next one.
Ma Cristina
Jan 31, 2017 Ma Cristina rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is very nice I loved the book. It's about this girl who always gets second best in everything. This girl name Cassie says that everyone has their own talents. Which is right and everyone does have their own talent.
Nattharika Thongthep
horrible, I'm sorry but this book made me want to pull out all my hairs and boil my eyeballs!!!!
Apr 17, 2014 Vivian rated it really liked it
The plot was interesting and a little cliche but it was really good. I found this book quite funny in some places and I loved how there was a really bad antagonist in the story. I really like books with people you just love to hate. I thought the book was continuous but it was also a little too jam packed with a lot of things going on. Contradiction? It's great how there's a sequel to this book because it's a great story although I think if the author wanted to, this book could have stood alone ...more
Mar 29, 2008 Laura rated it liked it
Cassie sees herself as the Second Place Queen, it seems no matter how hard she tries, she always manages to land back into that faithful and familiar spot of second place. Cassie doesn't let it bother her though, not until she sees Kevin Matthews walk into her English class. Everything would be perfect, except that Sterling Carter thinks that she is entitled to him. Is Cassie going to let Sterling get her way again?

I really thought this was a funny book for the first two chapters, but then it l
Jun 22, 2013 Corine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book had me hooked on the first page! The main character Cassie has an obsession with talents. She dutifully believes everyone has a true talent. Her brother's bothering talent, her mother's arguing talent, her best friend's whistling talent, and of course her talent... being the queen of second place. Cassie has fell short into second place all her life especially to Sterling Carter or as she calls her "fourteen-karat-carter" the prima-Donna of her high school. Cassie finds herself longing ...more
Jul 27, 2011 Julia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this good book because it told me a lot of feelings of the main character.

For example when Sterling took Kevin Cassie's boy friend. Cassie showed anger,sadness, and other feelings. Also this books is good because when Cassie was really angry she showed it to them without worrying that she was going to get in trouble! But when she does Cassie showes sadness and hides in the back of the bowling place. So I thought she was sneaky and doesn't show her sadness to anyone even her best friend.

Dec 24, 2014 Hawker rated it really liked it
This book is such a fun, real, delightful, unexpected, root-for-the-heroine / swoon-over-the-hero type story, and I loved it to pieces. It hit all my emotional buttons in a lighthearted way that made it easy to relate to the main character. The author really did a good job creating a coherent, fleshed out cast of characters, from Cassie's family to her friend group to the queen bees of the school. A surprising, light, feel-good read for any matter how many years you may be out of h ...more
Feb 25, 2011 Reg rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult, reviewed
I tried to like this book. I read it three times (okay, because there was nothing else to do), and I wanted it to be worth my while... and it was, probably. I didn't necessarily love it, but that didn't mean it was a waste of time. I could relate to Cassie a lot, although I didn't like what she did. Kevin wasn't interesting, and Sterling, well... she was such a stereotypical character, she bored me to tears.

It was okay. I wouldn't recommend anyone to read it immediately, but it was okay.
Jun 22, 2011 Emily rated it it was amazing
Shelves: young-adult
It was a great book. It is about a girl, Cassie, falling in love with this boy, Kevin. bBut then the popular girl, who is drooled over, Sterling Carter ( Soc, as in future SOCiolite), steals Kevin from Cassie. Sterling and Kevin become boyfriend and girlfriend and Cassie becomes jealous.
In the end Kevin and Cassie are a couple yadda yadda and all that sappy love romance stuff.
Jun 08, 2008 Mr rated it really liked it
Cassie always comes in second place. With guys, competitions, her grades are often B's, good but come in second to A's. BUt now there is a new boy, Kevin, who she adores. Cassie is determined not to come in second to ultimate popular girl, who she calls Fourteen Carat, again. But she ends up making a big fool of herself, and getting alot of detention, and bothering her friends. It turns out that winning isn't all that easy after all.
-Magda Golczynski
This book was really fun to read! It was about a high school girl, Cassie, who is always the second best in everything- school, life, and love. Recently, the most popular girl in school, Sterling Carter, is being ahead of Cassie in every way. Cassie is used to being second, but now she and Sterling both want Kevin Matthew, a really hot guy at school. Cassie fight for her love, and read the book to find out what happens!
JennyGrace  M.
Aug 27, 2010 JennyGrace M. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love this book because although it really doesnt have a great message about anything besides lying, I can identify with her. Not that there's a guy out that I think I'm in love with and some rhymes-with-witch is trying to take him, but I have plenty rhymes-with-witches in my life (no names will be revealed) and plenty of guys that I have liked (which I am not afraid to admit).
This is a 2008 Sequoyah winner, so I had very high expectations. The plot is well-developed, and the high school characters are definitely believable, but the story is weak. Written for 8-10 graders, I think this book is entertaining, but forgetful. It is easily teachable, but there would be nothing educational to gain. I would recommend this book to a student, but I would not teach it.
Mar 22, 2015 FandomNerdChic rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2015
A very funny book that teenage girls can definitely relate to! We all get crushes and most of us tend to do stupid and embarrassing things when we do. I know I do! It's a good book and I love the writing style! I really liked the ending of it.
Oct 19, 2012 Tressa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, young-adult
I enjoyed The Queen of Second Place. I thought Cassie was an interesting character and I did feel empathy for her. I do feel that she went overboard at times, but it seemed to work out in her favor in the long run.
Apr 10, 2012 Alice rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a great book that is realistic fiction. It's a great book that is about a girl, that wants this boy. She tries every she can but makes a fool of her self. When she finally becomes herself again she realizes that it's better to be herself than somebody else.
Sep 16, 2013 Tiffany rated it it was amazing
Shelves: teen
Cute, clean teen book. Has a good message about the importance of not losing your head over a crush you might have. Cassie was really annoying in the first part but it shows what she learns from the experience.
Sylvia McIvers
Know your strength. If you have to be second place, aim really high. Second place of really high is better than second place in the mud.

Fun story.
Nov 18, 2008 Kiara rated it really liked it
Its totally sad, but Cassie did the right thing! But I could never do that. (To find out what I'm talking about, READ THE BOOK.)
Feb 06, 2009 Joanne rated it really liked it
really really funny book. makes me think about what my talent is...
Jan 22, 2014 Meaghan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
loved the main character, but felt like the secondary characters were rather one dimensional. can't wait to see what happens in the second book!
Jul 08, 2009 Sara rated it really liked it
Makes me wonder what my talent is...
Oct 25, 2007 Danielle rated it liked it
Shelves: ya
Pretty cute...
Jul 06, 2012 colleen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: youth
Fun book. I like the concept -- and the execution -- and it wasn't toooo predictable.
Sep 11, 2008 Jessie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Cassie is always trying to win first place for everything, but somehow Sterlin always gets in the way. Can Cassie ever win first place for anything or will she be stuck in second place forever?
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Me and the Blondes: (The Blondes, #1)
  • The Other Half of Me
  • Life as It Comes
  • Shelf Life: Stories by the Book
  • Love, Football, and Other Contact Sports
  • High Dive
  • The Life History of a Star
  • The Darlings are Forever (The Darlings are Forever, #1)
  • That Girl Lucy Moon
  • My Mother Is a French Fry and Further Proof of My Fuzzed-Up Life
  • All About Vee (Fat Girls in LA, #1)
  • The Notebook Girls
  • Beauty
  • Cycler (Cycler, #1)
  • Invisible (Smith High, #2)
  • The Reinvention of Bessica Lefter
  • The Secret Rites of Social Butterflies
  • The Opposite of Tidy
Laura Peyton Roberts is the author of numerous books for teens and tweens, including the Clearwater Crossing series, Ghost of a Chance, The Queen of Second Place, Queen B, Green, and Walk on Water. Laura has degrees in both geology and English, and worked as a geologist before becoming a writer. Visit her at
More about Laura Peyton Roberts...

Share This Book