You don't need to read old-school Shakespeare to celebrate National Poetry Month. These new novels in verse capture teens' thoughts and feelings in modern language.
If you want a clever Shakespeare retelling, Ronit & Jamil updates Romeo and Juliet with a modern political plot. Set in present-day Israel, the novel reveals how Ronit, an Israeli pharmacist's daughter, and Jamil, a Palestinian doctor's son, fall in love. Soon they plan their escape from their war-torn surroundings and the wall that separates them.
Another romance for the ages, Loving Vs. Virginia, is a "documentary novel" that describes Richard and Mildred Loving's struggle to make their interracial marriage legal. Ruth Negga earned an Oscar nomination for Best Actress for her portrayal of Mildred in the 2016 film about the couple.
Rae faces a different sort of hardship in The Sky Between You and Me when her determination to lose weight evolves into full-blown anorexia. Her obsession with becoming "lighter, leaner, faster" before a national rodeo competition could jeopardize her lifelong dream.
The queen of novels in verse, Ellen Hopkins, returns with The You I've Never Known, another hard-hitting story of troubled teens. Just when Ariel finds some stability during her junior year, her new relationship with Mexican-American Monica worsens her already strained relationship with her homophobic and racist father.
Want more teen novels in verse? Check out this list.
Which novel in verse will you pick up in April?