Novels in Verse

Novels in Verse

Do you like to read poetry?
Then read these books and see
All that a novel written in verse can be!

Has a teacher, librarian or parent asked you to diversify your reading? Meaning they don’t want you ONLY reading graphic novels or sci-fi? (What they mean is, try something different – read outside your normal box!) Try one of these books written in verse. Great stories in a quick to read version!


Books:

Moo Moo by Sharon Creech – Brand New! This uplifting tale reminds us that if we’re open to new experiences, life is full of surprises. Following one family’s momentous move from the city to rural Maine, an unexpected bond develops between twelve-year-old Reena and one very ornery cow.
Love That Dog Love That Dog by Sharon Creech – A young student, who comes to love poetry through a personal understanding of what different famous poems mean to him, surprises himself by writing his own inspired poem. Young Hoosier Book Award, 2003-2004, 4-6 Nominee.
Hate That Cat Hate That Cat by Sharon Creech – Jack is studying poetry again in school, and he continues to write poems reflecting his understanding of famous poems and how they relate to his life.
Brown Girl Dreaming Brown Girl Dreaming by Jaqueline Woodson – Jacqueline Woodson, one of today’s finest writers, tells the moving story of her childhood in mesmerizing verse. Raised in South Carolina and New York, Woodson always felt halfway home in each place. In vivid poems, she shares what it was like to grow up as an African American in the 1960s and 1970s, living with the remnants of Jim Crow and her growing awareness of the Civil Rights movement. National Book Award 2014
The Crossover The Crossover by Kwame Alexander – Fourteen-year-old twin basketball stars Josh and Jordan wrestle with highs and lows on and off the court as their father ignores his declining health.
Out of the Dust Out of the Dust by Sharon Hesse – In a series of poems, fourteen-year-old Billie Jo relates the hardships of living on her family’s wheat farm in Oklahoma during the dust bowl years of the Depression.
May B May B by Caroline Starr Rose – When a failed wheat crop nearly bankrupts the Betterly family, Pa pulls twelve-year-old May from school and hires her out to a couple new to the Kansas frontier. Young Hoosier Book Award, 2014-2015, 4-6 Nominee.
Words with Wings Words With Wings by Nikki Grimes – Gabby daydreams to tune out her parents’ arguments, but when her parents divorce and she begins a new school, daydreaming gets her into trouble. Her mother scolds her for it, her teacher keeps telling her to pay attention, and the other kids tease her…until she finds a friend who also daydreams and her teacher decides to work a daydreaming-writing session into every school day. With a notebook “thick withdaydreams,” Gabby grows more confident about herself and her future. This verse novel poignantly celebrates the power of writing and the inspiration a good teacher can deliver. Young Hoosier Book Award, 2016-2017, 4-6 Nominee.
The Red Pencil The Red Pencil by Andrea Davis Pinkney – After her tribal village is attacked by militants, Amira, a young Sudanese girl, must flee to safety at a refugee camp, where she finds hope and the chance to pursue an education in the form of a single redpencil and the friendship and encouragement of a wise elder.

Books recommended by: Kristen Williams, guest blogger and former Indianapolis school teacher


The books on this page are chapter book stories…written in verse. You might not think of these kinds of books right away when you think of poetry. The word “poetry” probably makes you think of “Where the Sidewalk Ends” and Shel Silverstein. But these books are poetry too, and how amazing, an author writing a whole chapter book in verse! If you like these stories, here are some more:

Brains for Lunch All the Broken Pieces Gone Fishing Inside Out and Back Again
Little Dog Lost Planet Middle School Running With Trains The Wild Book
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