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The Poet X Hardcover – March 6, 2018

4.8 out of 5 stars 1,385 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 7 Up—Magnificently crafted, Acevedo's bildungsroman in verse is a stunning account of a teen girl's path to poetry. Sophomore Xiomara Batista is simultaneously invisible and hyper visible at home, school, and in her largely Dominican community in Harlem—her body is "unhide-able" she tells readers early on, yet she bristles at how others project their desires, insecurities, failures, patriarchal attitudes toward her. Though she is quick to battle and defend herself and her twin brother Xavier, Xiomara's inner life sensitively grapples with these projections and the expectations of her strict, religious mother. Acevedo's depiction of a faith in crisis is exceedingly relatable and teens, especially those going through the sacrament of Confirmation, will deeply appreciate Xiomara's thoughtful questioning of the Church and how it treats women. Forbidden kisses with a crush and an impromptu performance at an open mic prove to be euphoric, affirming moments for Xiomara: "it's beautiful and real and what I wanted." Acevedo's poetry is skillfully and gorgeously crafted, each verse can be savored on its own, but together they create a portrait of a young poet sure to resonate with readers long after the book's end. VERDICT Truly a "lantern glowing in the dark" for aspiring poets everywhere. All YA collections will want to share and treasure this profoundly moving work.—Della Farrell, School Library Journal

Review

“The force and intensity behind her words practically pushes them off the page, resulting in a verse novel that is felt as much as it is heard. This is a book from the heart, and for the heart.” (New York Times Book Review)

“A story that will slam the power of poetry and love back into your heart.” (Laurie Halse Anderson, author of Speak and Chains)

“Crackles with energy and snaps with authenticity and voice. Every poem in this stunningly addictive and deliciously rhythmic verse novel begs to be read aloud.  Xiomara is a protagonist who readers will cheer for at every turn. As X might say, Acevedo’s got bars. Don’t pass this one by.” (Justina Ireland, author of Dread Nation)

In The Poet X, Acevedo skillfully sculpts powerful, self-contained poems into a masterpiece of a story, and has amplified the voices of girls en el barrio who are equal parts goddess, saint, warrior, and hero.” (Ibi Zoboi, author of American Street)

“Though vivid with detail about family, love, and culture, The Poet X is more of an exploration of when the poet becomes the poem... Acevedo delivers an incredibly potent debut.” (Jason Reynolds, author of National Book Award Finalist Ghost)

“A glorious achievement. This is a story about what it means to be a writer and how to survive when it feels like the whole world’s turned against you.” (Daniel José Older, author of the Shadowshaper Cypher series)

“A powerful, heartwarming tale of a girl not afraid to reach out and figure out her place in the world.” (Booklist)

★ “Themes as diverse as growing up first-generation American, Latinx culture, sizeism, music, burgeoning sexuality, and the power of the written and spoken word are all explored with nuance. Poignant and real, beautiful and intense.” (Kirkus Reviews (starred review))

★ “Debut novelist Acevedo’s free verse gives Xiomara’s coming-of-age story an undeniable pull, its emotionally charged bluntness reflecting her determination and strength. At its heart, this is a complex and sometimes painful exploration of love in its many forms, with Xiomara’s growing love for herself reigning supreme.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))

★ “In nearly every poem, there is at least one universal truth about adolescence, family, gender, race, religion, or sexuality that will have readers either nodding in grateful acknowledgment or blinking away tears.” (Horn Book (starred review))

Product details

  • Lexile Measure : HL800L
  • Grade Level : 8 - 9
  • Item Weight : 15.2 ounces
  • Hardcover : 368 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 0062662805
  • ISBN-13 : 978-0062662804
  • Product Dimensions : 5.5 x 1.17 x 8.25 inches
  • Publisher : Quill Tree Books; 1st Edition (March 6, 2018)
  • Reading level : 13 and up
  • Language: : English
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.8 out of 5 stars 1,385 ratings
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