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Keesha's House

3.79  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,588 Ratings  ·  249 Reviews
An unforgettable narrative collage told in poems

Keesha has found a safe place to live, and other kids gravitate to her house when they just can’t make it on their own. They are Stephie – pregnant, trying to make the right decisions for herself and those she cares about; Jason – Stephie’s boyfriend, torn between his responsibility to Stephie and the baby and the promise of
...more
Paperback, 116 pages
Published February 20th 2007 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) (first published April 2nd 2003)
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Novels in Verse
43rd out of 245 books — 591 voters
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Idris Reed
Oct 10, 2012 Idris Reed rated it liked it
I read this book and almost cried when I got finished. I was very angry that it wasn't longer, so shame on you Helen Frost. Like really WHY write a good book if its not going to be long. I really really really liked this book and when I was finished I was like are you serious what the F word author. Ha ha now that I am done ranting lets talk about this book. As soon as I opened this short read I was geeking heavy. I like books with alot of drama and things like that. It really pisses me off thou ...more
Sara Butts
Jan 27, 2015 Sara Butts rated it it was amazing
I would love to use this book with students. Frost writes poetry that flows so well that you don't realize it's poetry. I think my students could relate to some of the subject matter. I like the use of sextets, sonnets, and other poetry forms.
Savcra19
Mar 09, 2011 Savcra19 rated it it was ok
Shelves: bookshelf-11-20
This is a story written in poetic form about a group of teenagers struggling with various things. Some have experienced abuse. Some have experienced the harsh realities of home life. Some have had to grow up too fast. But all of them are struggling in some way, shape, or form. Although their struggles are different, their common bond is this place known as Keesha's House. It's a place they can go to escape the bad and feel safe. It is the one thing that happens to bring them all together in thei ...more
Liza Centeio
Dec 07, 2008 Liza Centeio rated it liked it
Elizabeth Centeio December , 5 , 2008




Keesha’s House. That’s the book I just finished reading. The outstanding author that wrote this book is Helen Frost. The genre is fiction but feels like reality. The theme of this book is that there’s always a person you can count on and lift you up when your going through a difficult time.
There’s more to this book than just six people living together in a home. It gets deeper than that. It tells a life lesson about these six young teenagers trying to get t
...more
Paula
Jul 29, 2013 Paula rated it it was amazing
Shelves: young-adult
Reading Keesha's House should be a prerequisite for calling yourself a human being. Each person, each poem, is a treasure. Frost takes us into the pain and love of teen characters to whom life has not been kind. Some have failed themselves, but overwhelmingly, they have been failed by adults whose moral obligation to care for them they seem to have overlooked, or been too cowardly to meet.

Interestingly, none of these teens suffer from mental illness or physical or mental disabilities. All hail f
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Karen Cordon
Apr 29, 2016 Karen Cordon rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya-lit-class
Keesha’s House, written by Helen Frost, is a lovely book. It is a verse novel which is a type of narrative poetry. It narrates the feelings of seven teens facing problems such as teen pregnancy, homosexuality, alcoholism, and abuse. Joe owns a house in the middle of the city. He knows what it is like to not have a safe place to sleep, so he opens his house to kids who need a place to go. Keesha has made this house her home and spreads the word that it is a safe place to stay, thus it becomes kno ...more
Justice Parker
Apr 27, 2016 Justice Parker rated it really liked it
Keesha decides to leave home because her mother is verbally abusive and her dad is an alcoholic. She befriends a guy named Joe, who is very kind hearted and helps her by letting Keesha stay at his house. Moved my Joe’s kind heart, Keesha decides to pay it forward by helping her 6 friends: Stephie, Jason, Dontay, Carmen, and Katie, that are going through a rough time as well. The book tells many short stories of each character’s situation he/she has gotten into and how Keesha helps them by giving ...more
Katelin Baker
Apr 25, 2016 Katelin Baker rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya-books-1-7
I loved this book! I chose to read this book because multiple people raved about it. I was aware of the controversial content of the book, but to be completely honest, that was what enticed me even more. I wanted to read about something that would grab my attention and interest me. This book did just that. It was shocking, sombering, and uplifting all at the same time. I think the main reason why I enjoyed this book so much was because it gives the reader some insight into the lives of young adu ...more
Kira (Budge) Brighton
I picked up this book from my professor's shelf because I'm interested in "problem novels" and the complexity that they depict. It's also an award-winner. I might recommend it for teens who need more insight into one or all of the issues that are shown in this novel, whether for themselves or others around them, but who are not yet ready for a more thorough approach. A beginner's "problem novel," if you will.

I find to be a mixed bag. As I said, this would be lighter on the scale of "problem nove
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Cole
Dec 13, 2015 Cole added it
The independent reading book I read was called “Keesha’s House” by Helen Frost, and I would give it a 3/5 because it's enjoyable and interesting for highschool students. I thought that the book was pretty decent and had a good amount of things going on an example of this is “Coach keeps asking me what's wrong. I missed the free throw, cost our team the game.’I thought I could count on you’, he said”(Frost 4). My evidence shows how it’s pretty enjoyable because of the problems he's facing and in ...more
Kemry Johnakin
Jun 05, 2014 Kemry Johnakin rated it liked it
Shelves: ya-13-25
Through Keesha's House, author Helen Frost shows multiple sides to many stories that all seem to intertwine. Teen pregnancy, death, loss, and being scared of where you live - Is there a safe place somewhere out there? Keesha has a place for you and you can stay as long as you need. Many social problems are address in this book that is written in the form of multiple poems. With these characters the reader learns to look at situations from many ways and to try and accept people, putting their pro ...more
Kaikam Yao
Jun 01, 2014 Kaikam Yao rated it really liked it
I read a book ‘Keesha’s house’ by Helen Frost. This book received Michael L. Printz Honor Award in 2004. This book is about 6 teenagers are having different trouble or worry in their life, so they go to Keesha’s house since it a place where can escape trouble and fell safety.

Keesha’s house have six main character, they all live in Keesha’s house by different reasons. I think the writer want to show us teenager’s always make wrong decision during they in adolescence, because it a transition peri
...more
Haley
May 17, 2009 Haley rated it really liked it
Shelves: book-club
The book Keesha's House is about six young teens that have difficulties in their lives. One of the teens is named Keesha Walker, she found a house were a lot of people can go if there is no place else. I really enjoyed this booked because all of the peolple lead such different lives, yet, they are all connected in one way, that is Keesha's house. I would recommend this to readers, because the author, Helen Frost, holds your attention and never lets go.
Becky Welch
Keesha's house is a collection of stories told through poetry about five kids who find shelter at a single house. Despite being owned by a guy named Joe, most people know that a girl named Keesha lives there and has an open policy for anyone who doesn't have a place to go. Stephanie is pregnant and doesn't know what to do with herself while her basketball star of a boyfriend is too focused on his career to help her. Dontay feels unwanted by his foster family and Carmen is stuck in jail because o ...more
Elizabeth Esterholdt
Apr 20, 2016 Elizabeth Esterholdt rated it it was ok
Shelves: class-1-8
Keesha’s House was recommended to me by my Young Adult Lit professor, and I read it solely on her recommendation. It is an accurate description of too many teenage lives, and I would recommend it only as a stark slice of life and a wonderful exposition on using viewpoints to tell a multi-layered story to readers aged 15 and up.

This book could be used in high school to teach viewpoints and how to use speech to bring a story to life, and to show how poetry can be used to tell a story. We could dis
...more
Kim Busby
Oct 16, 2014 Kim Busby rated it really liked it
In the book Keesha's House , the main character, Keesha, is more than a teenager; she acts like an adult, and she is generous, kind and supportive. The other characters are Katie, Harris, Dontay, Jason, Carmen, Stephie, and Tobias, teenagers who work hard to meet their basic needs. The teenagers who are at Keesha's house have a common situation in their lives; they are neglected by their parents. They spend time at Keesha's house, the only place they trust. Even though there are some conflicts t ...more
Hayle Roy
Dec 07, 2015 Hayle Roy rated it liked it
Shelves: ya-lit-fall-2015
This type of novel is something I really enjoy. I'm a slow reader, so books written in poetic stanzas are very encouraging for me. The story flows well even though it jumps from one characters point of view to the next every two pages. I would have liked it to be a bit longer so that we could hear more about each character, but it was a good read. The characters were very diverse and showed you an actual spectrum of teenagers. It wasn't just poor kids in the ghetto with drugged up parents being ...more
Jane Healy
This free verse novel won the Printz Honor in 2004 for its edgy themes and excellent writing. Young adult characters tell their stories, poem by poem. A girl becomes pregnant by the star high school basketball player who has a scholarship to play in college when he graduates. A young man deals with his gay identity and is disowned by his father. Young people in gangs, young people drinking and doing drugs. Young people wishing for a home, which they find when Keesha takes them in, one by one, at ...more
Michelle
what the book was about is that a girl named keesha found a safe house to live in. other kids go there when they can't make it on their own.

I recommend this book because its intresting and it is a very good book.
Dustin Saunders
Feb 19, 2014 Dustin Saunders rated it really liked it
Keesha's House tells the story of several different High school students told using a series of poems, the various people are going through tough circumstances, such as teen pregnancy, being gay, and not feeling safe at home. Keesh lives in a house where they can come and be safe, they can take a break from the hard judgmental world, and collect themselves, allowing most to cope with their problems better.

Keesha's House is an interesting read, the poetry element gives it some unique character, a
...more
Sean Mcguire
Dec 14, 2014 Sean Mcguire rated it really liked it
Shelves: final-books
I saw this book in class and just wanted to read it. I am so glad that I was able to find this book. It is so full of stories about these kids who have such difficult lives. I feel that the kids in this book represent teens in the world today. There are so many issue that they have to deal with, and you see it all the time.

I feel that I would offer this book to kids who are having hard times. I would not recommend it to them because of that reason, but because I feel they would understand the s
...more
Hillary Hall
Jun 26, 2012 Hillary Hall rated it it was amazing
Excellent!! Inspires me to write about my experience working with amazing foster kids.
Hailey Gregg palagar
Keesha's house follows several high school teenagers. Each teen is struggling with a problem. These problems range from foster care, death, parental abuse, teen pregnancy and so forth. Keesha's house provides a safe place where these teenagers can come together in their time of need.

This was the first book that I read written in prose. It is a quick enjoyable read. I would recommend it for the YA appreciator. It does not delve into the characters on a deep level as there are so many. However it
...more
Coney Zealley
Feb 17, 2015 Coney Zealley rated it it was amazing
Told in poetry form, this is the story of several kids whose circumstances put them in less than desirable positions. From teen pregnancies, to a gay son whose parents can't accept it, a runaway foster kid, a teen DUI, and most importantly: Keesha.
A story that makes you question your own comforts and the things you take for granted. It's beautifully written and the poems are all in forms, but told in such an expressive way you'd never know. I loved this book. It made you think about the world an
...more
Kanike Kuoha
May 04, 2016 Kanike Kuoha rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya-books-1-7
This book is quite moving. It is made up entirely in sestina format. It takes you through the various points of view of different teenagers, all with their own set of problems, and the people around them. It inspired me to remember that there are other people out their who fight their own demons. There were many parts I found the urge to highlight, but it's not my copy. I highly recommend it.

Trigger Warnings:
Does mention drugs and sex, but on a scale of 1-10 with 10 being the worst, I'd probabl
...more
Alison Worrell
Jul 21, 2014 Alison Worrell rated it liked it
Shelves: ya-13-25
Written in verse, Keesha's House follows several teens who go to Keesha's house seeking a safe place from the world. Teen pregnancy, abuse, and coming out are some of the things that the teens are struggling with. Each character has their own unique story and struggle that are still universal.

I am not a fan of poetry, but I'll make an exception for this one. There are several stories with heavy hitting subjects that are united by the safe place Keesha creates. Despite the huge number of characte
...more
Amelia Cornell
Keesha has found a safe place to live and since then her home has become a refuge for other kids who can't make it on their own. Their intertwining stories are told with poems that emulate their struggles and how they overcome their difficulties and life decisions.

I thought this book was alright and was told in a new way. I have never read a book that was written in poems. I think that this book is good for any age and especially for those who are struggling with similar problems as those chara
...more
Starr Isaacs
Apr 30, 2016 Starr Isaacs rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya-books-1-7
This was such a heartwarming book. Very interestingly written. It deals with real life and is easy to relate to. I would recommencement it to anyone who is looking for a safe place to stay for a while.

I would use this book just to let youth know that they are not alone. Often in this age of our lives, teenagers feel like no one really understands them. It is important for them to know that some people do.

Warnings: (Out of 5)
Language: none
Sex: 1.5
Drugs:1
Disturbing content: 1.5
Violence: 1
Barbara Balke
Apr 27, 2016 Barbara Balke rated it really liked it
Shelves: lit-for-ya
Students could discuss the use of imagery and how it paints a picture in the mind of the reader. They could also discuss how the characters stand alone but eventually intertwine and support each other.



Professional Review:



Kirkus Reviews (March 15, 2003)

Sestinas and sonnets carry the storyline in Frost's multi-voiced story of teens struggling to find their way in the world. While playing somewhat with the structure required, Frost underplays her virtuosity to let readers focus on the characters
...more
Drew Nevitt
May 10, 2012 Drew Nevitt rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: High school kids
Recommended to Drew by: Donna Soper
Shelves: young-adult-lit
This has been the most fantastic book I've read since Frankenstein or Fahrenheit 451! It's got depth and human emotion, and reality and pain in it! It's crafted beautifully with it's rhyme and meter, and uses images and words that young readers can identify with. I found myself reflecting back to when I was in high school and facing problems, looking to run away and be accepted, or live on the streets. It's dirty, and cold, like sleeping on park bench feels. But the same warmth as a hot shower c ...more
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I'm dipping my toes into goodreads to see how it works. Thanks for finding me here, and thanks to everyone who has read and written about my books. I love to know you're there, even if I don't come here too often to say so.

Helen Frost is the author of six novels-in-poems and two picture books for children and young adults. She lives in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

http://us.macmillan.com/author/helenf...
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