Why You Should Teach a Novel in Verse

Middle grade and young adult novels in verse have exploded in popularity in recent years. Books like Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds, Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo, and Closer to Nowhere by Ellen Hopkins have been game-changers for many readers. Novels in verse are engaging and powerful, and they’re often the books that truly hook students on reading. Many verse novels do not shy away from the tough stuff, tackling topics like grief in Me (Moth), the death penalty in Moonrise, and addiction in What About Will. Young readers appreciate this and gravitate to these raw, emotional, books.

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