21st Century Kids: Read Novels in Verse

Mona Gilbert, Children's Librarian, Northridge Branch Library,
Young girl reading a novel on lush green grass
Kids can expand their literary experiences by reading Novels in Verse. This unique style of writing uses poetry to relay a story

Poetry can be expressed in many ways. Although traditional poetry fills library shelves, so do novels written in verse. This unique style of storytelling encourages intentionality with every written word. Generally, this writing style explores complicated and diverse topics using less text than a traditional narrative. Here is a small sampling of books that introduce readers to this engaging lyrical genre.

Read Novels in Verse

The Red Pencil
Pinkney, Andrea Davis


“Our house is made of rice-bag scraps

No walls,
only plastic flaps,
in stale breezes.

The roof of this rice-bag house
is patched together
from roots
of diseased, brittle trees.

This place,
this dwelling,
a misshapen dome.


—Excert from The Red Pencil

Finding Wonders: Three Girls Who Changed Science
Atkins, Jeannine

Land of the Cranes
Salazar, Aida

Other Words for Home
Warga, Jasmine

Before the Ever After
Woodson, Jacqueline

Emmy in the Key of Code
Lucido, Aimee

This Promise of Change: One Girl's Story in the Fight for School Equality
Boyce, Jo Ann Allen

Inside Out & Back Again
Lai, Thanhha

Unbound: A Novel in Verse
Burg, Ann E.