Friday, May 7, 2010

A Novel Challenge

Last year I surprised myself by reading a novel in verse and liking it. I read my second novel in verse earlier this year. Now that might not sound like a lot, but I've never been a person who really liked poetry. Yet both of these books, Because I am Furniture by Thalia Chaltas and Home of the Brave by Katherine Applegate, pulled me in quickly and impressed me with their sparse, beautiful use of language.

So I was fascinated when I saw this challenge from Caroline Starr Rose. The rules are simple:

1. Read five novels-in-verse by December 31
2. Create a post about the contest (and link to the original post)
3. Report back in December on your books (nothing fancy...just share your titles and any thoughts you might like to add)
4. One participant will win an ARC of MAY B., Caroline's debut historical novel-in-verse

I'm not familiar with a lot of novels in verse, but I'm looking forward to discovering more. I bought I Heart You, You Haunt Me by Lisa Schroeder a few weeks ago. It's a book I've thought about reading for a while so that will be my first book for the challenge.

If you'd like to join in the challenge, follow the link to Caroline's blog. And if you've got suggestions for some other novels in verse, tell me in the comments. Because my TBR pile isn't big enough already :D

Have a fabulous weekend!

24 comments:

Caroline Starr Rose said...

Fun to stumble across this! I'll go link you.

Janet Johnson said...

Very cool. I've never read a novel in verse either. I'll have to check it out.

JEM said...

I think that's too much of a challenge for me, but books in verse sounds like an interesting concept. I've never been one much for poetry, either. I might need to check one of those books out...

Carolyn V. said...

Wow! I've never read a novel in verse before. That would be so hard to write!

Creepy Query Girl said...

huh, I had never thought about books written in verse but this sounds really interesting.

gwendandridge said...

Yep. Me too. I've not drawn to verse but both of those books were compelling and wonderful.

Laura Pauling said...

I'd like to do that contest too. I read I heart you, You haunt me. But I need a list!

Sarah Laurenson said...

Ellen Hopkins has several. My niece devours them as soon as they hit the shelves. I've delved into them myself and found them to be quite awesome. Have not sat down and read one cover to cover yet though.

Julie Williams has Escaping Tornado Season. One of my personal faves, but it got killed by a bad review.

I believe Stephanie Hemphill has one or two out there as well.

Suzette Saxton said...

I've read a couple of novels in verse and struggled with them - they feel choppy to me. (Though I do love reading Shakespeare's plays...)

I applaud you for doing this! Do you think you'll someday write a novel in verse?

Solvang Sherrie said...

Caroline: Thanks for the link :)

Janet: I was surprised by how much I enjoyed these books. I don't know if I was expecting rhyming or totally esoteric commentary, but they were so much better than that. Great stories. Hope you try one!

JEM: I thought it would be hard to read, but these authors surprised me. Let me know if you read one. I'd love to know what you think!

Carolyn: I don't think I could write a novel in verse. Every word absolutely has to matter. It's amazing what these authors have done. Give one a try and let me know what you think!

Creepy Query Girl: They were quite interesting and I really need to find out your name!

Gwen: I couldn't agree more :)

Laura: I think Caroline might have a list.

Sarah: I heard Ellen Hopkins talk last summer at SCBWI and I was in tears. I can't imagine what one of her books would do to me!!

Suzette: I couldn't write a book in verse. Poetry was never my strong suit and I'm WAY too wordy :)

Lydia Kang said...

I haven't read a novel in verse yet!Thanks for the suggestions!

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Isn't this the greatest idea?! I'm struggling with time issues or I would definitely be participating!

Happy Mother's Day, Sherrie, and have a great weekend! :-)

T. Anne said...

My TBR pile is growing as well. Every time I think of a novel in verse I think Shell Sylverstien (sp?)

Candyland said...

OMG yes. Ellen Hopkins is the verse queen. Her books are amazing.

Jackee said...

How exciting! Caroline is always so full of wonderful ideas. And to win her ARC... perfect. I'm off to check it out.

Thanks, Sherrie!

Rebecca said...

Here are a few suggestions for you as you tackle this challenge:

by Karen Hesse: Out of the Dust, The Aleutian Sparrow, Witness

by Sharon Creech: Heartbeat, Love that Dog (I love love love that book!), Hate that Cat

by Lisa Ann Sandell: Song of the Sparrow

The first novel-in-verse I ever read was Out of the Dust and it made me completely fall in love with verse novels (and Karen Hesse's writing).

Beth Kephart said...

I adore novels in verse. They were very big about ten years ago, and indeed the 2001 NBA YA winner is such a book. This is a great challenge.

PJ Hoover said...

What a fun challenge, Sherrie. I've only read about 2 or 3 novels in verse to date, and really enjoyed them.
I may take the challenge and customize it a bit with my reading goals.
Have a great weekend!

beth said...

It's such a cool challenge! I used to hate novels in verse, but now I very much like them.

Gail said...

I don't know if I'm up to the challenge of 5 books in verse (busy writing, researching and of course, there's the summer LA conference!) but I will read one, at least.

I'm a new follower but I see your comments on many of the blogs I follow.

I have a giveaway contest going on right now on my blog so stop by if you have a chance!
writefromthesoulvisualeyes.blogspot.com

Becky Levine said...

You might try Susan Taylor Brown's Hugging the Rock. First (okay, and only!) novel in verse I've read--but I was impressed at the tight plot! And this was before I knew Susan. :)

Hardygirl said...

Karen Hesse's Out of the Dust is absolute perfection.

sf

Tess said...

I'm looking forward to Caroline's book as well. I've read very few novels in verse (Out of the Dust being the only one that comes to mind right now) .. but I'm open to it.

I'm actually impressed w/ anyone who can write them. I imagine that would be a challenge!

Christina Lee said...

I didn't realize I Heart You, You Haunt Me by Lisa Schroeder was in verse! So impressive!

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