Useful for both those looking to run a poetry-writing workshop or readers looking specifically for advice with their own...

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GET LIT RISING

WORDS IGNITE. CLAIM YOUR POEM. CLAIM YOUR LIFE.

Nineteen members of a culturally diverse student poetry troupe each share their personal stories, classic poems that have inspired their writing, and a poem written specifically in response to the classic poetry selection.

Get Lit was founded on the principle that reading and using classic poems as inspiration for writing new poetry produces “magic, time and time again.” This volume aims to share this formula with those who may not be able to attend Get Lit events. Participants’ autobiographical essays showcase a range of personal struggles that include familial pressures to be perfect, shattered family dynamics, and bullying, and the book stresses that poetry can be a means of overcoming obstacles. Both the essays and the poetry selections are often emotionally raw, as troupe members explore personal pain and find hope for the future through writing. While the work showcases the fears of a young generation, the pieces also frequently call for self-acceptance, personal empowerment, and social justice. The suggested poems for additional reading are helpful for poetry novices and fanatics alike. The writing prompts included with each chapter are potentially useful, but they also could give the text a “workbook” feel that may alienate some readers.

Useful for both those looking to run a poetry-writing workshop or readers looking specifically for advice with their own writing. (Poetry/nonfiction. 12-18)

Pub Date: Oct. 25, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-58270-576-7

Page Count: 272

Publisher: Beyond Words/Simon Pulse/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: July 26, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2016

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A superb, complex romance full of heart, humor, and unforgettable characters.

ALL THE THINGS WE NEVER KNEW

Two promising Texas basketball players navigate the ups and downs of first love.

For 11th grade star players Carli and Rex, it’s love at first sight when he blows her a kiss from the free-throw line as she watches the game on the sidelines. Carli believes in magic and looks for signs in everyday life—like Rex’s kiss—to help her make decisions. Who should she live with after her parents’ divorce? What should she do with her future—one that won’t include basketball, which she knows will disappoint her father and teammates? Rex is a nature lover like his mother, who died giving birth to him. His father is distant, and inside their big, lonely house, Rex dreams of the NBA. Carli and Rex’s roller-coaster romance is rife with betrayal, heartbreak, grief, and family secrets. As narrators of alternating chapters, they are funny, smart, and unflinchingly candid. Well-written dialogue and fine attention to detail reveal Tamani’s strong insight into Gen Z life. The intensity and depth of Carli and Rex’s love story are conveyed as deftly as the high-energy play-by-plays in their basketball games. Tamani crafts layers of complexity around falling in love, making hard choices, and dealing with loss—on and off the court—in this deeply intimate story of two talented, sensitive teens. Carli, Rex, and their relatives and friends are black; Rex’s teammates are white.

A superb, complex romance full of heart, humor, and unforgettable characters. (Fiction. 13-18)

Pub Date: June 9, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-06-265691-9

Page Count: 384

Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Review Posted Online: April 5, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2020

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A sweet, slow-paced novel about a teen learning to love her body.

MY EYES ARE UP HERE

Greer Walsh wishes she were one person...unfortunately, with her large breasts, she feels like she’s actually three.

High school sophomore and math whiz Greer is self-conscious about her body. Maude and Mavis, as she’s named her large breasts, are causing problems for her. When Greer meets new kid Jackson Oates, she wishes even more that she had a body that she didn’t feel a need to hide underneath XXL T-shirts. While trying to impress Jackson, who has moved to the Chicago suburbs from Cleveland, Greer decides to try out for her school’s volleyball team. When she makes JV, Greer is forced to come to terms with how her body looks and feels in a uniform and in motion as well as with being physically close with her teammates. The story is told in the first person from Greer’s point of view. Inconsistent storytelling as well as Greer’s (somewhat distracting) personified inner butterfly make this realistic novel a slow but overall enjoyable read. The story contains elements of light romance as well as strong female friendships. Greer is white with a Christian mom and Jewish dad; Jackson seems to be white by default, and there is diversity among the secondary characters.

A sweet, slow-paced novel about a teen learning to love her body. (Fiction. 12-18)

Pub Date: June 23, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-9848-1524-8

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Dutton

Review Posted Online: March 29, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2020

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