Books with beat (novels in verse and poetry)

Novels in verse, books about written poetry and spoken-word poetry, and collections of poems.







Novels in Verse

All the Broken Pieces by Ann E. Burg
YA Fiction
Two years after being airlifted out of Vietnam in 1975, Matt Pin is haunted by the terrible secret he left behind and, now, in a loving adoptive home in the United States, a series of profound events forces him to confront his past.

Crossing Stones by Helen Frost
YA Fiction
In their own voices, four young people, Muriel, Frank, Emma, and Ollie, tell of their experiences during the first World War, as the boys enlist and are sent overseas, Emma finishes school, and Muriel fights for peace and women's suffrage.

A Girl Named Mister by Nikki Grimes
YA Fiction
A pregnant teenager finds support and forgiveness from God through a book of poetry presented from the Virgin Mary's perspective.

Things Left Unsaid by Stephanie Hemphill
YA Fiction
After a lifetime of conforming to the image of what her parents and high school friends want her to be, Sarah must come to terms with her own identity when her destructive best friend tries to commit suicide.

Wicked Girls by Stephanie Hemphill
YA Fiction
A fictionalized account 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.

Cold Skin by Steven Herrick
YA Fiction
In a rural Australian coal mining town shortly after World War II, teenaged Eddie makes a startling discovery when he investigates the murder of a local high school girl.

Crank by Ellen Hopkins
YA Fiction
Kristina is a gifted high school junior and the perfect daughter. But on a trip to visit her absentee father, Kristina disappears and Bree takes her place. Through a boy, Bree meets the monster: crank. What begins as an ecstatic ride turns into a struggle for her mind, her soul, her life.

Impulse by Ellen Hopkins
YA Fiction
Three teens who meet at Reno, Nevada's Aspen Springs mental hospital after each has attempted suicide connect with each other in a way they never have with their parents or anyone else in their lives.

Tricks by Ellen Hopkins
YA Fiction
Five troubled teenagers fall into prostitution as they search for freedom, safety, community, family, and love.

Shakespeare Bats Cleanup by Ron Koertge
YA Fiction
When a fourteen-year-old baseball player catches mononucleosis, he discovers that keeping a journal and experimenting with poetry not only helps fill the time, it also helps him deal with life, love, and loss.

Sold by Patricia McCormick
YA Fiction
Thirteen-year-old Lakshmi leaves her poor mountain home in Nepal thinking that she is to work in the city as a maid only to find that she has been sold into the sex slave trade in India and that there is no hope of escape.

Tofu Quilt by Ching Yeung Russell
YA Fiction
Growing up in 1960s Hong Kong, a young girl dreams of becoming a writer in spite of conventional limits placed on her by society and family.


Carver: A Life in Poems by Marilyn Nelson
Adult Biographies
A glimpse into the life of George Washington Carver, botanist and educator, who defied stereotypes of his time with his inventions.

How to Write Poetry by Paul B. Janeczko
Children's Non-fiction (J 808 J)
Provides practical advice with checklists on the art of writing poetry.

The Spoken Word Revolution: Slam, Hip-Hop, and the Poetry of a New Generation
Non-fiction (811.508 S)
Traces the evolution of spoken-word poetry from the Beats to rap, hip-hop, and performance art.

Poetry collections

Things I Have to Tell You: Poems and Writing by Teenage Girls
Non-fiction (810.8 T)
A collection of poems, stories, and essays written by girls twelve to eighteen years of age and revealing the secrets which enabled them to overcome the challenges they faced.

You Hear Me? Poems and Writing by Teenage Boys
Non-fiction (810.8 Y)
An anthology of stories, poems, and essays by adolescent boys on issues that concern them.

It's a Woman's World: A Century of Women's Voices in Poetry
Non-fiction (808.81 I)
An anthology of poetry by twentieth-century women from around the world including, Sylvia Plath, Nigar Hanim, Sonia Sanchez, and Nellie Wong.

Cool Salsa
Non-fiction (811 C)
A collection of student-penned poems on growing up Latino in the United States.

Poetry 180
Non-fiction (811.08 P)
A compilation of 180 poems of many kids and subjects that open up the world of poetry to teens.

Life Doesn't Frighten Me at All
Non-fiction (821 L)
A collection of poetry for teenagers that includes selections from such authors as Maya Angelou, W.B. Yeats, and Attila the Stockbroker.