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All April long we’ve been celebrating National Poetry Month at the Willmar Public Library and to help get you in the spirit, I’ve compiled a list of some YA Novels in Verse. Enjoy!
A Girl Named Mister by Nikki Grimes
A pregnant teenager finds support and forgiveness from God through a book of poetry presented from the Virgin Mary’s perspective.
And We Stay by Jenny Hubbard
Sent to an Amherst, Massachusetts, boarding school after her ex-boyfriend shoots himself, seventeen-year-old Emily expresses herself through poetry as she relives their relationship, copes with her guilt, and begins to heal.
*Bronx Masquerade by Nikki Grimes
While studying the Harlem Renaissance, students at a Bronx high school read aloud poems they’ve written, revealing their innermost thoughts and fears to their formerly clueless classmates.
*This is another novel by Nikki Grimes that is not completely written in verse though it does feature a lot of original poetry and I couldn’t not mention it.
Freakboy by Kristin Elizabeth Clark
Told from three viewpoints, seventeen-year-old Brendan, a wrestler, struggles to come to terms with his place on the transgender spectrum while Vanessa, the girl he loves, and Angel, a transgender acquaintance, try to help.
Realm of Possibility by David Levithan
A variety of students at the same high school describe their ideas, experiences, and relationships in a series of interconnected free verse stories.
Shark Girl by Kelly Bingham
After a shark attack causes the amputation of her right arm, fifteen-year-old Jane, an aspiring artist, struggles to come to terms with her loss and the changes it imposes on her day-to-day life and her plans for the future.
*Smoke by Ellen Hopkins
After the death of her abusive father and loss of her beloved Ethan and their unborn child, Pattyn runs away, desperately seeking peace, as her younger sister, a sophomore in high school, also tries to put the pieces of her life back together.
*Ellen Hopkins is probably one of the most well known novel in verse authors out there. She has tons of verse novels to choose from and I chose Smoke because it is one of her latest though it should be noted that it is the sequel to Burned.
Sold by Patricia McCormick
Thirteen-year-old Lakshmi leaves her poor mountain home in Nepal thinking that she is to work in the city as a maid only to find that she has been sold into the sex slave trade in India and that there is no hope of escape.
The Sound of Letting Go by Stasia Ward Kehoe
At seventeen, Daisy feels imprisoned by her brother Steven’s autism and its effects and her only escape is through her trumpet into the world of jazz, but when her parents decide to send Steven to an institution she is not ready to let him go.
To Be Perfectly Honest by Sonya Sones
Fifteen-year-old Colette is a compulsive liar spending a miserable summer in San Luis Obispo, California, babysitting her seven-year-old brother while her famous mother shoots a movie, but things look up when Connor enters the scene.
Under The Mesquite by Guadalupe Garcia McCall
Throughout her high school years, as her mother battles cancer, Lupita takes on more responsibility for her house and seven younger siblings, while finding refuge in acting and writing poetry.
Waiting by Carol Lynch Williams
As the tragic death of her older brother devastates the family, teenaged London struggles to find redemption and finds herself torn between her brother’s best friend and a handsome new boy in town.
*What My Mother Doesn’t Know by Sonya Sones
Sophie describes her relationships with a series of boys as she searches for Mr. Right.
*This is another Sonya Sones verse novel. This one is the first in a series so if you like it, don’t forget to check out the others!
Today is the start of National Poetry Month. To celebrate we’ve got a magnetic poetry board at the checkout desk and Blackout Poetry in the Teen Space. Stop on by and get your creative juices flowing!
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