April is Poetry Month; Reader's Roundup Poetry Books

Staff Writer
Baystateparent Magazine

Celebrate Poetry Month and check out Penguin Young Reader’s poetry recommendations for all age groups, published by Penguin Random House.

Ages 5-8

DANIEL FINDS A POEM, by Micha Archer

What is poetry? Is it glistening morning dew? Spider thinks so. Is it crisp leaves crunching? That’s what Squirrel says. Could it be a cool pond, sun-warmed sand, or moonlight on the grass? Maybe poetry is all of these things, as it is something special for everyone. Hardcover, $16.99

Ages 6-9

ECHO ECHO: Reverso Poems About the Greek Myths, by Marilyn Singer; Illustrated by Josee Masse

A collection of reverso poems from Marilyn Singer. Read one way, each poem tells the story of a familiar myth; but when read in reverse, the poems reveal a new point of view. Hardcover picture book, $16.99

Ages 8-12

FULL CICADA MOON, by Marilyn Hilton

It's 1969, and the Apollo 11 mission is getting ready to go to the moon. Mimi dreams of becoming an astronaut but being half-black and half-Japanese, moving to a predominantly white Vermont town is enough to make her feel alien. This historical novel is told in poems from Mimi's perspective over the course of one year in her new town shows readers that positive change can start with just one person speaking up. Hardcover, $17.99

Ages 10 & up

BROWN GIRL DREAMING by Jacqueline Woodson

The story of Woodson’s childhood told in verse. Raised in South Carolina and New York, Woodson shares what it was like to grow up as an African American in the 1960s and 1970s, living with the remnants of Jim Crow and her growing awareness of the Civil Rights movement. Hardcover, $16.99

FREE VERSE by Sarah Dooley

Bittersweet tale where poetry helps the main character find a new way to express herself when spoken words just won’t do. In this sensitive and poignant portrayal, Sarah Dooley shows us that life, like poetry, doesn’t always take the form you intend. Hardcover, $16.99.

BLUE BIRDS, by Caroline Starr Rose

A novel in verse where Alis and her parents make the long journey from England to settle the New World and 12-year-old Alis, her parents, and the others of their small community soon find themselves at odds with the Roanoke tribe. As tensions rise between the settlers and the Native peoples, Alis forms an impossible friendship with a Roanoke named Kimi. Paperback, $8.99

Ages 12 & up

AMERICAN ACE, by Marilyn Nelson

A novel in verse that explores American history and race through the eyes of a teenage boy embracing his newfound identity. Connor’s grandmother leaves his dad a letter when she dies, and the letter’s confession shakes their tight-knit Italian-American family: The man who raised Dad is not his birth father. What Connor discovers will lead him and his father to a new, richer understanding of race, identity, and each other. Hardcover, $17.99

AUDACITY, by Melanie Crowder

A novel in verse inspired by the real-life story of Clara Lemlich, a spirited young woman who emigrated from Russia to New York at the turn of the 20th century and fought for equal rights. For years, Clara devotes herself to the labor fight, speaking up for those who suffer in silence. In time, Clara convinces the women in the factories to strike and unionize, culminating in the famous Uprising of the 20,000. Paperback, $10.99.

Ages 14 and up

PLEASE EXCUSE THIS POEM: 100 New Poets for the Next Generation, Edited by Brett F. Lauer and Lynn Melnick; Introduction by Carolyn Forche

A cross-section of American poetry as it is right now, featuring 100 acclaimed younger poets from diverse backgrounds and points of view, whose work has appeared everywhere from The New Yorker to Twitter. Hardcover, $16.99