Novels in Verse for Young Teens

Celebrate poetry month all year with these novels written in verse for middle school aged readers. There are books for all kinds of readers on this list.

Updated March 18, 2023
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The door of no return
Alexander, Kwame
An instant #1 New York Times Bestseller! From the Newbery Medal and Coretta Scott King Award winning author Kwame Alexander, comes the first book in a searing, breathtaking trilogy that tells the story of a boy, a village, and the epic...
The crossover
Alexander, Kwame.
Series streaming now on Disney+, with executive producers including NBA great LeBron James! The Newbery Medal and Coretta Scott King Award-winning middle grade bestseller! Basketball and heartache share the court in this slam-dunk novel in verse. "With a bolt of lightning on my...
Iveliz explains it all
Arango, Andrea Beatriz
NEWBERY HONOR AWARD WINNER * In this timely and moving novel in verse, a preteen girl navigates seventh grade while facing mental health challenges. A hopeful, poetic story about learning to advocate for the help and understanding you deserve. "Powerful." --Lisa Fipps,...
Hidden powers : Lise Meitner's call to science
Atkins, Jeannine
From the acclaimed author of Finding Wonders and Grasping Mysteries comes a gorgeously written biography in "deliberate, delicate verse" (Kirkus Reviews) about the pioneering Jewish woman physicist whose scientific prowess changed the course of World War II. ...
They call her Fregona : a border kid's poems
Bowles, David
A companion to the Pura Belpre Honor book They Call Me G ero "You can be my boyfriend." It only takes five words to change G ero's life at the end of seventh grade.The summer becomes extra busy as he learns to balance new band practice with his old crew, Los Bobbys, and...
They call me G?uero : a border kid's poems
Bowles, David
Bluebonnet Award Master List 2020-2021 Pura Belpré Author Honor Book, 2019 ALSC Notable Children's Book, 2019 Walter Award Honor Book, 2019 This collection of narrative poetry explores a year in the life of a Mexican-American boy: caring, talented, and irrepressibly...
Rain rising
Comrie, Courtne
An inspiring debut middle grade novel-in-verse about Rain, who must overcome sadness after her all-star brother is badly beaten up at a frat party. Genesis Begins Again meets Brown Girl Dreaming in this powerful story of perseverance, family, and hope. "A gorgeous debut: a necessary,...
Elliott, Zetta
"This novel in verse, alternately narrated by two boys in 1980s Greenpoint, Brooklyn, one channeled by Elliott and one by Miller-Lachmann, eloquently tackles race, culture and life on the spectrum." -- The New York Times For fans of Jason Reynolds and Jacqueline Woodson,...
Rima's rebellion : courage in a time of tyranny
Engle, Margarita
An inspiring coming-of-age story told in prose and "spare, lyrical" verse (The Horn Book Magazine) from award-winning author Margarita Engle about a girl falling in love for the first time while finding the courage to protest for women's right to vote in 1920s Cuba. Rima...
Farid, Diana
Winner of the Cybils Award for Poetry Novel, Diana Farid's Wave is a coming-of-age novel in verse set in 1980s Southern California, about a Persian American girl who rides the waves, falls, and finds her way back to the shore, illustrated by Kris Goto. ...
Golden girl
Faruqi, Reem
From the award-winning, ALA Notable author of Unsettled and Lailah's Lunchbox, this is a captivating coming-of-age middle grade novel in verse about seventh grader Aafiyah Qamar, a Pakistani American girl who hatches a special plan to help her family but finds that doing what...
Fipps, Lisa
A Printz Honor winner! Ellie is tired of being fat-shamed and does something about it in this poignant debut novel-in-verse. Cover may vary. Ever since Ellie wore a whale swimsuit and made a big splash at her fifth birthday party, she's been bullied...
BenBee and the teacher griefer
Holt, K. A.
From the author of Rhyme Schemer, House Arrest, and Knockout! The Kids Under the Stairs: BenBee and the Teacher Griefer is a funny, clever novel-in-verse series about Ben Bellows--who failed the Language Arts section of the Florida State test--and...
House arrest
Holt, K. A.
This young adult novel-in-verse tells the moving story of one boy's hard-won path to redemption. Timothy is a good kid who did a bad thing. Now he's under house arrest for a whole year. He has to check in weekly with a probation officer and a therapist, keep a...
Redwood and Ponytail
Holt, K. A.
Eleanor & Park with a girl-meets-girl romance in this novel in verse about two girls falling in like.
Alias Anna : Zhanna Arshanskaya: a biography in verse : a true story of outwitting the Nazis
Hood, Susan
A Sydney Taylor Book Award 2023 Middle Grade Notable! A Jewish Book Council Award Middle Grade Finalist! The moving true story of how young Ukrainian Jewish piano prodigies Zhanna (alias "Anna") and her sister Frina outplayed their pursuers while hiding in plain sight...
Lifeboat 12
Hood, Susan
"This page-turning true-life adventure is filled with rich and riveting details and a timeless understanding of the things that matter most."--Dashka Slater, author of The 57 Bus "Brilliantly told in verse, readers will love Ken Sparks." --Patricia Reilly Giff, two-time Newbery Honor...
The road to after
Lowell, Rebekah
This poignant debut novel in verse is a portrait of healing, as a young girl rediscovers life and the soothing power of nature after being freed from her abusive father. For most of her life, Lacey has been a prisoner without even realizing it. Her dad rarely let her, her...
A seed in the sun
Salazar, Aida
**Four starred reviews!** A farm-working girl with big dreams meets activist Dolores Huerta and joins the 1965 protest for workers' rights in this tender-hearted novel in verse, perfect for fans of Rita Williams-Garcia and Pam Muñoz Ryan. Lula Viramontes aches to one...
Amber & Clay
Schlitz, Laura Amy
The Newbery Medal-winning author of Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! gives readers a virtuoso performance in verse in this profoundly original epic pitched just right for fans of poetry, history, mythology, and fantasy. Welcome to ancient Greece as only genius storyteller Laura...
Other words for home
Warga, Jasmine
New York Times bestseller and Newbery Honor Book! A gorgeously written, hopeful middle grade novel in verse about a young girl who must leave Syria to move to the United States, perfect for fans of Jason Reynolds and Aisha Saeed. Jude never thought she'd be...
Star child : a biographical constellation of Octavia Estelle Butler
Zoboi, Ibi Aanu
From the New York Times bestselling author and National Book Award finalist, a biography in verse and prose of science fiction visionary Octavia Butler, author of Parable of the Sower and Kindred. Acclaimed novelist Ibi Zoboi illuminates the young life...

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