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Stories in Rhyme and Novels in Verse: Home

Juvenile books with stories told in poetry..

Stories in Rhyme

In a rhyming story, every single element has to do THREE jobs. It has to tell the story (without wandering off the point). It must work with the rhyme and meter. AND it must work as a book to be ILLUSTRATED. That's big job for the writer and not easily tossed off. But the rewards are huge since small children respond to a good rhyming picture book by asking to hear it again and again and again and...

Jan Fields.  (2013)  "Stories in Rhyme," Institute of Children's Literature,, accessed 2015 May 13.

Some Classic Picture Books in RHYME

Verse Novels

Verse novels have special appeal to middle graders and reluctant readers. Why?  Media specialist Dorie Raybuck has three reasons:

Fewer Words

Compared to a conventional novel, a novel in verse has perhaps half the number of words per page.

Vivid Imagery

Novels in verse use so much vivid imagery, and many reluctant readers are visual learners. Poetic devices like onomatopoeia also appeal to kinesthetic learners and auditory learners.

Appeal to Emotions

Novels in verse often tap more directly into the emotions of their characters. Middle graders' high-octane emotions sometimes manifest in tears, fights, moodiness, fits of laughter, and defiance.

Novels in verse come in many genres and with diverse characters, with enough variety to please many readers.

Raybuck, Dorie.  (2015)  This Is Too Much! Why Verse Novels Work for Reluctant Readers, Horn Book Magazine 91, 2 (March/April) : 62-64, 66.

Recent Novels in Verse for Tweens & Teens

Other Contributors

The original layout for this page was created by Karen Morris, updated in April 2016 by Shannon Bowman.