April is National Poetry Month
If poetry isn't your thing, novels written in verse are a captivating way the get to the emotion or heart of a story. They use poetic structures to share stories about issues teenagers care most about, such as finding love, heartbreak, fitting in, and figuring out who you are. They make reading about topics like history, love, music, and trauma accessible and resonate with the reader long after they finish the book.
Plus they tend to be super quick reads! So even if you aren't a poetry lover, be sure to check out some of the novels below that are written in verse. You may be surprised how much you enjoy it!
White Rose by Kip Wilson
Disillusioned by the propaganda of Nazi Germany, Sophie Scholl, her brother, and his fellow soldiers formed the White Rose, a group that wrote and distributed anonymous letters criticizing the Nazi regime and calling for action from their fellow German citizens. The following year, Sophie and her brother were arrested for treason and interrogated for information about their collaborators.
Three Things I Know Are True by Betty Culley
Five months ago, Liv's big brother, Jonah, shot himself. It was an accident. He didn't know that the gun was loaded. But the damage was done. Now he won't ever be leaving their small mill town like he planned. Jonah can't speak, can't walk, can't take care of himself at all. Their house is full of machines and nurses working around the clock to keep Jonah alive. Liv's mom is struggling to cope with the aftermath, so Liv ends up being the one to soothe Jonah when he gets agitated, to lie with him when he can't sleep, and to see the carefree brother she's sure is still inside him somewhere. Liv hasn't spoken to Clay, Jonah's best friend, since the accident, even though he lives just across the street. The gun belonged to Clay's father, and Clay was with Jonah that terrible day. With Liv's mom suing Clay's father, there are lines Liv is not supposed to cross. As their entire community chooses sides, she feels the distance between them growing every day. Liv knows that Clay is nearly as broken as Jonah. She knows his life also changed forever the same moment as Jonah's. And she refuses to turn away from Clay, just as she refuses to give up on Jonah.
In Paris With You by Clémentine Beauvais
Eugene and Tatiana had fallen in love that summer ten years ago. But certain events stopped them from getting to truly know each other and they separated never knowing what could have been.
But one busy morning on the Paris metro, Eugene and Tatiana meet again, no longer the same teenagers they once were.
What happened during that summer? Does meeting again now change everything? With their lives ahead of them, can Eugene and Tatiana find a way to be together after everything?
Some Girls Bind by Rory James
Jamie knows that she isn't like other girls. She has a secret. She binds her chest every day to feel more like herself. Jamie questions why she is drawn to this practice and why she is afraid of telling her friends, who have their own secrets. Could she really be genderqueer?
The Black Flamingo by Dean Atta
Michael is a mixed-race gay teen growing up in London. All his life, he’s navigated what it means to be Greek-Cypriot and Jamaican—but never quite feeling Greek or Black enough.
As he gets older, Michael’s coming out is only the start of learning who he is and where he fits in. When he discovers the Drag Society, he finally finds where he belongs—and the Black Flamingo is born.
People Kill People by Ellen Hopkins
A gun is sold in the classifieds after killing a spouse, bought by a teenager for needed protection. But which was it? Each has the incentive to pick up a gun, to fire it. Was it Rand or Cami, married teenagers with a young son? Was it Silas or Ashlyn, members of a white supremacist youth organization? Daniel, who fears retaliation because of his race, who possessively clings to Grace, the love of his life? Or Noelle, who lost everything after a devastating accident, and has sunk quietly into depression?
One tense week brings all six people into close contact in a town wrought with political and personal tensions. Someone will fire. And someone will die. But who?