Episode 154: All about verse novels

April 24, 2024

In episode 154 of the Your Kid’s Next Read podcast:

All about verse novels

Megan and Allison examine the rise and rise of verse novels: why verse novels are increasingly popular, why kids love them, how to read them and what to do with them in a classroom situation. Plus, a list of recommended verse novels and links to more!

Books we mention

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Bookmail and TBR pile

‘Into the Blue’ by Cristy Burne

‘The Apprentice Witnesser’ by Bren MacDibble 

Boots: The story of an ordinary pair of Australian working boots… and his family by Elizabeth Pulsford, illustrated by Krista Brennan

Itty Bitty Kitty #4 by Maddy Mara, illustrated by Noemie Gionet Landry

Little Ash Big Break! and Little Ash Sleepover Surprise! Presented by Ash Barty, created by Jasmin McGaughey and Jade Goodwin

You Can Do Hard Things by Jess Sanders, with art by Martina Stuhlberger


Native Plants Queensland


All About Verse Novels

Middle Primary

Mina and the whole wide world by Sherryl Clark

Bully on the Bus by Kathryn Apel

Pearl Versus the World by Sally Murphy, illustrated by Heather Potter

Toppling by Sally Murphy, illustrated by Rhian Nest James

Queen Narelle by Sally Murphy, illustrated by Simon O’Carrigan

What Snail Knows by Kathryn Apel

Leave Taking by Lorraine Marwood

Too Many Friends by Kathryn Apel


Upper Primary/Lower Secondary 

Sunshine on Vinegar Street by Karen Comer

Worse Things by Sally Murphy

Dragonfly Song by Wendy Orr

Are you there Buddha? By Pip Harry

The Way of Dog by Zana Fraillon

Footprints on the moon by Lorraine Marwood

Zoe, Max and the Bicycle Bus by Steven Herrick

The Little Wave by Pip Harry

Enchanted Air: Two Cultures, Two Wings: A Memoir by Margarita Engle, illustrated by Edel Rodriguez

The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate, illustrated by Patricia Casteleo

Inside Out and Back Again by Thanhha Lai

The Kindness Project by Deborah Abela 



The Bogan Mondrian by Steven Herrick

Crossover by Kwame Alexander

Grace Notes by Karen Comer

Bindi by Kirli Saunders, illustrated by Dub Leffler

Sister Heart by Sally Morgan

Shark Girl by Kelly Bingham

Silver People by Margarita Engle


The Verse Novel: Australia and New Zealand by Linda Weste


Title Teaching Poetry for Pleasure and Purpose
Author Dr Sally Murphy
Publisher Primary English Teaching Association Australia, 2021
ISBN 1925132633, 9781925132632


Australian Verse Novels Resource


How to read a verse novel


Quick tips

The magic of wordless picture books

wordless picture books

The famous Mrs Malta with Megan Daley in their school library.









Our books

The Mapmaker Chronicles series by A. L. Tait

The Ateban Cipher (duology) by A. L. Tait

The Maven & Reeve Mysteries by A. L. Tait

The First Summer of Callie McGee by A. L. Tait

The Beehive by Megan Daley

Teacher, Teacher (anthology), edited by Megan Daley

Raising Readers by Megan Daley


Connect with your show hosts

Facebook | Allison Tait | Megan Daley

Twitter | Allison Tait  | Megan Daley

Instagram at Allison Tait | Megan Daley

The YKNR community on Facebook here. 

Meet Allison Rushby, the third member of #teamyknr. Find out about Allison and her books here.

*See contact page for disclosure statement

All about verse novels