Xiomara feels unheard and misunderstood by everyone. Even by her beloved twin brother. The girl who always uses her fists to be heard (to protect herself from unwanted advances and to protect her brother) wants to be heard and seen for something more powerful.Her words. But how can she when she's being pulled between her love and loyalty to family, the church and what is in her heart? Powerful coming of age story told in prose poetry. Ages 14 up. — Jeanette
First Generation, Dominican/American, Catholic. Words that define her. Words with meanings changing as years pass. Daughter, twin, friend... poet. Xiomara is pushing against obligations of family and religion, navigating expectations that don't apply to her generation. Poetry is her release, a safety valve to avoid confrontation over rules that she knows will never change. No dating. No backtalk. Go to church. Existence isn't really life, and X is ready to live, to speak, to throw her verse to the world. Does that mean leaving family and faith behind? A novel in verse, The Poet X will take you on a wild ride, slam into you like a subway train, and you will love every line! — Leah Moore
An urban girl's coming-of-age story, told by Acevedo, is a celebration of poetry, the written word, and life. — Mike Hare
“This book is a great coming-of-age story for any teenage girl. A collection of poems make it a quick and thoughtful read. Xiomara is a Dominican girl living in the city, getting used to her changing body and attention from her lab partner, and wrestling with ideas of right and wrong. Her ideas of right and wrong are completely different from her highly religious mother’s. Her poems are her freedom, but how can you be free when home makes you feel trapped?”
— Lulu Roush, Waucoma Bookstore, Hood River, OR
National Book Award and Golden Kite Award Honor Winner
Fans of Jacqueline Woodson, Meg Medina, and Jason Reynolds will fall hard for this astonishing New York Times-bestselling novel-in-verse by an award-winning slam poet, about an Afro-Latina heroine who tells her story with blazing words and powerful truth.
Xiomara Batista feels unheard and unable to hide in her Harlem neighborhood. Ever since her body grew into curves, she has learned to let her fists and her fierceness do the talking.
But Xiomara has plenty she wants to say, and she pours all her frustration and passion onto the pages of a leather notebook, reciting the words to herself like prayers--especially after she catches feelings for a boy in her bio class named Aman, who her family can never know about.
With Mami's determination to force her daughter to obey the laws of the church, Xiomara understands that her thoughts are best kept to herself. So when she is invited to join her school's slam poetry club, she doesn't know how she could ever attend without her mami finding out. But she still can't stop thinking about performing her poems.
Because in the face of a world that may not want to hear her, Xiomara refuses to be silent.
"Crackles with energy and snaps with authenticity and voice." --Justina Ireland, author of Dread Nation
"An incredibly potent debut." --Jason Reynolds, author of the National Book Award Finalist Ghost
"Acevedo has amplified the voices of girls en el barrio who are equal parts goddess, saint, warrior, and hero." --Ibi Zoboi, author of American Street