April is Poetry Month, which is the perfect reason to incorporate some verse in your reading routine! Here are 11 of our recommendations, ranging from books that rhyme and novels written in verse to stories of poets and writers themselves.
What are you reading this month? We'd love to hear from you! Tweet us @scholastic with your Poetry Month reading recommendations!
Books for little ones
Bark in the Park: Poems for Dog Lovers by Avery Corman and Hyewon Yum
Go on a walk to the park with all different kinds of dogs and their owners in this funny and charming poetry picture book.
Enjoy Avery Corman's canine poetry for an Afghan hound, basset hound, beagle, bloodhound, Daschshund, boxer, greyhound, and more as they stroll with their owners to the park.
The Word Collector by Peter H. Reynolds
Some people collect stamps. Some people collect coins. Some people collect art. And Jerome? Jerome collected words . . .
In this extraordinary new tale from Peter H. Reynolds, Jerome discovers the magic of the words all around him -- short and sweet words, two-syllable treats, and multisyllable words that sound like little songs. Words that connect, transform, and empower.
From the creator of The Dot, I Am Human, and Happy Dreamer comes a celebration of finding your own words -- and the impact you can have when you share them with the world.
Hi, Koo! by Jon J Muth
With a featherlight touch and disarming charm, Jon J Muth—and his delightful little panda bear, Koo—challenge readers to stretch their minds and imaginations with twenty-six haikus about the four seasons.
No Fair! No Fair! by Calvin Trillin, illustrated by Roz Chast
Get ready to laugh out loud with Calvin Trillin's first collection of poems for children (and nearby grown-ups). Enjoy the whimsical cartoon illustrations by New York Times bestselling illustrator Roz Chast as you find out if Justin is "the awfulest kid in the class," if there's anything that Matt won't eat, and if you can send back a new baby brother.
Books for 7- to 12-year-olds
Martin Rising: Requiem for a King by Andrea Davis Pinkney, illustrated by Brian Pinkney
In a rich embroidery of visions, musical cadence, and deep emotion, Andrea and Brian Pinkney convey the final months of Martin Luther King's life—and of his assassination—through metaphor, spirituality, and multilayers of meaning.
Neon Aliens Ate My Homework by Nick Cannon
Nick Cannon—the unstoppable entertainer, comedian, actor, and musician—was inspired to write Neon Aliens Ate My Homework as a way to combine the worlds of poetry and hip-hop. These two mediums have shaped Nick into the prolific artist he is today. To further pay respect to the urban storytelling that inspired him, each funny, gross, wacky, or thought-provoking poem in this collection is illustrated by one of six incredible street artists who have shown his or her work around the world.
The Moon Within by Aida Salazar
Celi Rivera's life swirls with questions. About her changing body. Her first attraction to a boy. And her best friend's exploration of what it means to be genderfluid.
But most of all, her mother's insistence she have a moon ceremony when her first period arrives. It's an ancestral Mexica ritual that Mima and her community have reclaimed, but Celi promises she will NOT be participating. Can she find the power within herself to take a stand for who she wants to be?
A dazzling story told with the sensitivity, humor, and brilliant verse of debut talent Aida Salazar.
The Dreamer by Pam Muñoz Ryan, illustrated by Peter Sís
From the time he is a young boy, Neftali hears the call of a mysterious voice. He knows he must follow it--even when the neighborhood children taunt him, and when his harsh, authoritarian father ridicules him, and when he doubts himself. It leads him under the canopy of the lush rain forest, into the fearsome sea, and through the persistent Chilean rain, until finally, he discovers its source. Combining elements of magical realism with biography, poetry, literary fiction, and sensorial, transporting illustrations, Pam Muñoz Ryan and Peter Sís take readers on a rare journey of the heart and imagination.
Books for teens
Vanilla by Billy Merrell
A bold, groundbreaking novel in verse about coming out, coming into your own, and coming apart.
I Felt a Funeral in My Brain by Will Walton
How do you deal with a hole in your life? Do you grieve? Do you drink? Do you make out with your best friend? Do you turn to poets and pop songs? Do you question everything? Do you lash out? Do you turn the lashing inward? If you're Avery, you do all of these things. And you write it all down in an attempt to understand what's happened—and is happening—to you. I Felt a Funeral, In My Brain is an astonishing novel about navigating death and navigating life, at a time when the only map you have is the one you can draw for yourself.
I Don't Want to be Crazy by Samantha Schutz
A harrowing, remarkable poetry memoir about one girl's struggle with anxiety disorder. This is a true story of growing up, breaking down, and coming to grips with a psychological disorder. When Samantha Schutz first left home for college, she was excited by the possibilities -- freedom from parents, freedom from a boyfriend who was reckless with her affections, freedom from the person she was supposed to be. At first, she revelled in the independence. . . but as pressures increased, she began to suffer anxiety attacks that would leave her mentally shaken and physically incapacitated. Thus began a hard road of discovery and coping, powerfully rendered in this poetry memoir.