Young Adult Book Reading Challenges discussion

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Identical Discussions > Story In Poetry Format

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Ashley (readerandwriter) What do you think of the format of the book? Do you think it makes it easier or harder to comprehend the story? Do you like this format or do you prefer the Chapter format?


I like the format. I think it's unique and it is a new way of comprehending a story. I also think this format is what makes Ellen Hopkins stand out from other authors.


message 2: by Angie, YA lovin mod!! (new) - rated it 3 stars

Angie | 2687 comments Mod
I do not have the book yet, but after reading the face the book is written in poetry format makes me even more excited to get my hands on it. It sounds like a very unique way to write a book!


Emily | 2 comments I think that Hopkins' books are excellent on audio. I sometimes get distracted by the format of the poetry in the print versions, so listening to helps.


Lisa Vegan (lisavegan) I was afraid abut the story told in verse form, because I'm not as much a poetry fan as I was years ago, but I'm about a quarter of the way through, and it turns out the poetry, and the way she formats it, is my favorite part of the book. I think it's brilliant.


message 5: by Kristi (new)

Kristi | 4 comments I like the way it is written in verse. Sometimes it's designed to make your eyes move. It gives it a feeling and attitude of hostility, making you want to turn the page. Well, I like it a lot. :)


Diane (dianes) I love reading verse novels, and hers are some of the best. I have a "novels in verse" category on my Good Reads page and I try to read all of them that come in to my library (and since I help our youth services collection development librarian, I can usually make sure they get ordered).


Court | 0 comments I adore verse novels :D
They make me think more than the average novel, where I can just skim through everything; I can't do that here. Also, verse is reallly hard for me to write. I've tried it and it doesn't work for me...I admiree the fact that she can write is so...flawlessly.


Diane (dianes) I've tried to write in verse too, but just can't seem to do it. I even was in a workshop of Helen Frost's in which she gave us some ideas on how to write in verse, but it didn't help me.


message 9: by Angie, YA lovin mod!! (new) - rated it 3 stars

Angie | 2687 comments Mod
I am really bad at writing poetry, which is too bad because it is so beautiful!


Thomas | 9 comments I love the way she writes in verse, her prose is beautiful and she still communicates the story really well. In "Identical", whenever the point of view would switch, I would love reading the symmetrical thought that runs down the middle of each page.


message 11: by Lisa (new) - rated it 3 stars

Lisa (lisalia) I read only one other book by Ms Hopkins before "Identical" - "Crank". I picked "Crank" up because of the format of the book.

Initially, I thought it'd be difficult to follow the story due to the format. But it actually makes the story flow more. The story becomes more personal. Each emotion that the characters go through have a more direct impact on readers. It cuts out unnecessary bits out of the story and focuses on the heart of the story.

The story is more intense because of it - and since Ms Hopkins' story focuses on teenage angst, this particular style of writing is suitable. The format of the book is very effective in conveying the emotions of the characters.

I haven't had any problem following the narrative of "Identical" because the it has been set out in a logical way and there are clear indications when the story goes into flashback.

I don't prefer a format over another. If a format seems to fit the story, then that's fine with me.


message 12: by Angie, YA lovin mod!! (new) - rated it 3 stars

Angie | 2687 comments Mod
Ms. Hopkins, why do you write your books in the form of poems? Would you ever write a book in prose? (Though I think everyone would be disappointed if you did).


Natalee (nataleem00) | 43 comments When I first started the book, it took me a little while to get used to the format. It was very choppy for me and I couldn't retain what I was reading. But after I got used to it, I loved it. She is an amazingly talented writer. I am blown away.


Michelle (pinklets) | 23 comments This is a good question. I have never really thought about my preference, but I really think the form of this book was fitting. For me, poetry tends to be emotional and Kaliegh's journey was just that.


Julia | 432 comments Whoops! I didn't see this and addressed this elsewhere. I don't seek out novels in verse, but some that I've read have been *amazing.* Including this one.


Diana  (higura_natume) | 30 comments i like it because a 500 page book seems less intimidating

the one downfall is that sometimes, it doesn't cut off at clauses so i end up having to read the sentence two or three times to grasp the meaning

so as someone before said, it seems choppy sometimes


message 17: by Emma (new) - rated it 5 stars

Emma Holtrust (emma_holtrust) | 3 comments At first I really thought that the poetry format would suck, because I don't like poetry and I was scared that some details of would be missing from the story.

But now I'm half into the story and I love it. It is my first poetry-format novel and I really like it. I read it rather fast and I like that.


message 18: by Tatiana (new)

Tatiana (tatiana_g) I've never been a fan of verse, but after reading another book by Hopkins I was totally hooked. I love it! I like the emotional intensity of poetry.


message 19: by Ellen (new)

Ellen Hopkins (ellenhopkins) | 9 comments Happy to hear I've convinced you of the verse format. I don't think every writer should write in verse. It's harder than it looks, at least to do it well. Thanks so much everyone.


message 20: by Lisa (new) - rated it 5 stars

Lisa Vegan (lisavegan) Ellen, I loved it and it does show what a skillful writer you are, because I agree writing an entire novel (novels!) in verse is very challenging.


message 21: by Angie, YA lovin mod!! (last edited Oct 09, 2009 09:04PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Angie | 2687 comments Mod
I am starting this book today! I love love how this book is written. When I opened it up and scanned through the pages I couldn't believe what I was seeing! I like how some of the poems are put into pictures. For example page 8 the poem is in the form of a wine bottle. Love it! I am curious if Ms. Hopkins wrote the poem and then made the poem into a design? Or already had an idea for the design and then wrote the poem? Fantastic!


Natalee (nataleem00) | 43 comments Isn't it great, Angie? I loved it. I kept putting it down and thinking "how does she DO that??" Especially when she switches from one sister's POV to the other. So talented.


Natalee (nataleem00) | 43 comments And, totally off subject, but I see you brought Jack back! I'm jealous...maybe I should dig mine out, too. :-)


message 24: by Angie, YA lovin mod!! (last edited Oct 10, 2009 08:09AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Angie | 2687 comments Mod
Jack... Halloween time! I like yours though Natalee... Breast Cancer month, Denver just had their race for the cure.


message 25: by Angie, YA lovin mod!! (new) - rated it 3 stars

Angie | 2687 comments Mod
What I find interesting about the pages where she made the poem in the shape of an object is that she had to come up with the exact wording and spacing to create the picture. Like the heart one.... you would have to have exact wording for that shape. Neat!


Natalee (nataleem00) | 43 comments I just picked up Burned by Hopkins at the library. I can't wait to read it but I am making myself finish The Girl Who Played with Fire first.


message 27: by Angie, YA lovin mod!! (new) - rated it 3 stars

Angie | 2687 comments Mod
At first I thought this was going to be a long book since it is 600 pages long. But surprisingly the poetry makes the book easy to read and it is a pretty fast read also.


Meghan I wrote this on another thread, but I realy felt that the poetry format makes for a more powerful emotional impact on the reader. Plus, I think it's more "realistic" as a teen. I know a few teens who have been through various abuses and it is through poetry that they find their voice.


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