YA Novels in Verse

April is National Poetry Month, so here's a highlight of compulsively readable poetic gems that read like novels. Fan of poetry or not, you'll want to try a novel written in verse—a story of love, friendship, fitting in, or a tough issue, with a long-form poetic structure.

Compiled by:
Jen H.

David Elliott
Young Adult Fiction – Elliott

A modern twist on the Theseus and Minotaur myth, told in verse.


Kwame Alexander
Young Adult Fiction – Alexander

Fourteen-year-old twin basketball stars Josh and Jordan wrestle with highs and lows—on and off the court—as their father ignores his own declining health.

Girls Like Me

Lola StVil
Young Adult Fiction – StVil

Insecure fifteen-year-old Shay is trying to cope with being overweight and getting bullied at school, and when she falls in love with mysterious Blake, she needs the help of her two best friends.

The Language Inside

Holly Thompson
Young Adult Fiction – Thompso

Raised in Japan, American-born tenth-grader Emma is disconcerted by a move to Massachusetts for her mother's breast cancer treatment, because Emma's heart remains with her friends, who are recovering after a tsunami.

Loving vs. Virginia

Patricia Hruby Powell
Young Adult Fiction – Powell

The story of an African American girl and a Caucasian boy who challenge the law forbidding interracial marriages in the 1950s. Written in blank verse.


Sarah Crossan
Young Adult Fiction – Crossan

Despite problems at home, sixteen-year-old conjoined twins Tippi and Grace love going to school for the first time and making real friends. Then they learn that a cardiac issue will force them to separate, which they've never before considered.

Saving Red

Sonya Sones
Young Adult Fiction – Sones

Fourteen-year-old Molly meets Red, a spirited homeless girl a few years older than she is. Molly makes it her mission to reunite Red with her family in time for Christmas—which is extremely difficult, because Red refuses to talk about them. When she realizes Red's friends are nothing more than voices inside her head, Molly becomes even more concerned; how will she keep Red safe until she can figure out a way to get her home?

The Sky Between You and Me

Catherine Alene
Young Adult Fiction – Alene

In an effort to get over her mother's death—and the jealousy she feels for the new girl at school—Raesha concentrates on losing weight to make her performance at the upcoming high school rodeo competition the best it can be.

A Time to Dance

Padma Venkatraman
Young Adult Fiction – Venkatr

In India, a girl who excels at Bharatanatyam dance refuses to give up after losing her leg in an accident.

The Watch That Ends the Night

Allan Wolf
Young Adult Fiction – Wolf

Recreates the 1912 sinking of the Titanic, as observed by millionaire John Jacob Astor, a beautiful young Lebanese refugee finding first love, "Unsinkable" Molly Brown, Captain Smith, and others—including the iceberg itself.

Wicked Girls

Stephanie Hemphill
Young Adult Fiction – Hemphill

A fictionalized account, told in verse, of the Salem witch trials, told from the perspective of three young women living in Salem in 1692: Mercy Lewis, Margaret Walcott, and Ann Putnam, Jr.