Free Verse

This category contains 22 posts

CLAP WHEN YOU LAND by Elizabeth Acevedo

& there was a moment when the wheels first touched down that my heart plummeted in my chest, but when we were slowing   & a smattering of passengers erupted into applause. The old lady in the seat beside me said in Spanish,   “They don’t do that as much anymore. This must be a … Continue reading


Redwood and Ponytail is a beautiful LGBTQ coming of age novel for middle-grade readers. Written in free verse by K.A. Holt it is the story of Kate and Tam, who meet at the beginning of their seventh grade year. Kate appears at first to be a stereotypical cheerleader, complete with ponytail, red bow in her … Continue reading

A HOUSE WITHOUT WALLS by Ching Yeung Russell

A House Without Walls was an unexpected find for me at the library and I am so very glad that it was! It is the story of Lam (11 years old) and her brother Dee Dee (7 years old) and their flight from Vietnam in 1979 as part of ‘the Boat People.’ The author met … Continue reading

A SLIP OF A GIRL by Patricia Reilly Giff

Anna Mallon lives with her family in County Longford in the 1880s during the Land Wars in Ireland. They are tenant farmers on the Lord’s lands, struggling to raise enough crops to both feed themselves and make enough money to pay rent. Rent continues to climb and the weather continues to interfere with their ability … Continue reading


When we first meet 12-year-old Jude she is living in Syria with her parents and her older brother, Issa. Jude and her friend Fatima love to watch older American rom-com movies and act them out at home. Jude dreams of being a famous actress like Julia Roberts. As the unrest in Syria builds (mid-2010s), Issa … Continue reading


The You I’ve Never Known is a novel written in free verse by Ellen Hopkins. Our main characters are Ariel and Maya, both sixteen at the beginning of the book. Ariel’s story is told completely in free verse and Maya’s story is told through prose journal entries. (The reason for these two different approaches becomes … Continue reading

A TIME TO DANCE by Padma Venkatraman

A Time to Dance by Padma Venkatraman was a 4.5/5 star read for me! After reading Venkatraman’s most recent work–the middle grade novel The Bridge Home–I was curious about her backlist.  A Time to Dance was originally published in 2014.  The main character is Veda Venkat, a young, Indian girl who is extremely talented and skilled … Continue reading

THE POET X by Elizabeth Acevado

Having read Elizabeth Acevado’s With the Fire on High, I was excited to go back and read The Poet X.  I was not disappointed.  Acevado creates some of the strongest, most completely developed young female characters I have ever encountered.  Xiomara Batista from The Poet X is no exception. Xiomara’s mother is extremely religious and has raised … Continue reading

FORGET ME NOT by Ellie Terry

I just finished Forget Me Not, read it in one sitting and couldn’t wait to share it! Forget Me Not is a brilliant debut from new author Ellie Terry.  The story is written from the perspectives of Calliope (Calli), a young girl who loves astronomy, has moved to new towns (and schools)many more times than … Continue reading


Jason Parker lives in Japan with his parents, who teach at a university, and his younger sister, Cora.  He is in the 6th grade although he’s a year older than his Japanese classmates, having had to repeat a grade when his family moved to Japan. When I started Falling Into the Dragon’s Mouth I thought … Continue reading