In honor of Poetry Month, Kathy Erskine decided to feature a “Verse-Novel-a-Day” on her Facebook page. She has graciously allowed us to use those to put together a blog post–and the result is a pretty excellent survey of this powerful art form.
By Alma Fullerton
Alma’s my co-faculty at the Novels in Verse workshop!
By Kwame Alexander
Also check out Booked!
|Brown Girl Dreaming
By Jacqueline Woodson
There’s a reason it has all those stickers on the cover — a LOT of reasons.
|Silver People: Voices From the Panama Canal
By Margarita Engle
Having just visited the Panama Canal, this really enlightened and touched me.
By Melanie Crowder
Thinking of the beautiful audacity of Loree Griffin Burns who refused to let me be stranded at Logan airport last night and coordinated a grand rescue plan despite the snowstorm…
|Love That Dog
By Sharon Creech
If you have a 9 year old who thinks he doesn’t like to read–or can’t read– give this to him and watch him mark up the pages (in a good way) with his thoughts.
|A Time to Dance
By Padma Venkatraman
Padma’s our special guest at the Novels in Verse workshop!
|Words With Wings
By Nikki Grimes
I LOVE that it has Mr. (Ed) Spicer in it.
By Ann E. Burg
I often use this in talks to show how we authors pile problem after problem on our characters’ shoulders.
By Ron Koertge
Hilarious and poignant.
|Dust of Eden
By Mariko Nagai
Powerful Japanese internment camp story.
|What My Mother Doesn’t Know
By Sonya Sones
A classic and I love the updated cover!
|The Red Pencil
By Andrea Davis Pinkney
How art and creativity can transcend even the most horrifying events.
|The Watch That Ends the Night
By Allan Wolf
Epic tale (thoroughly researched) of the Titanic, which sank 105 years ago.
|How I Discovered Poetry
By Marilyn Nelson
This is one of those “how can so few words say so much?” novels.
By Meg Wiviott
So beautifully done I didn’t want it to end. You know that feeling? Yup, that.
|Death Coming Up the Hill
By Chris Crowe
It HAD to be the choice for the 17th — read the novel and you’ll understand why.
By Skila Brown
A way to see a different country and a different life (makes things like rush hour traffic or the wrong kind of toilet paper seem suddenly as unimportant as they are).
By Patricia McCormick
I always use her books as examples of the extraordinary research it takes to create an authentic story.
|Becoming Billie Holiday
By Carole Weatherford
The poignant and beautiful story of Eleanora.
|Inside Out and Back Again
By Thanhha Lai
With immigration an issue again–or still– this is a particularly beautiful story.
By Caroline Starr Rose
Great, fast, survival story for any young reader, especially reluctant ones.
|Etched in Clay
By Andrea Cheng
Dave the Potter for the older crowd; beautiful.
By Karen Hesse
I love the voices — great example of how to make distinct characters even in a brief verse novel.
By K.A. Holt
Wow. Really powerful, poignant and funny. And great voice.
|October Mourning: A Song for Matthew Shepard
By Leslea Newman
Oh, so painful and hard to read but so necessary.
|Full Cicada Moon
By Marilyn Hilton
This was named a Jane Addams Peace Award Honor Book!
By Juan Felipe Herrera
The words are almost spat out in frustration. In the end, even a tough teen needs his mom.
|Under the Mesquite
By Guadalupe Garcia McCall
Beautifully written and the ultimate strong girl book!
|The One and Only Ivan
By Katherine Applegate
For animal lovers of all ages.