Synopses & Reviews
A heartrending, bold novel in verse about family, identity, and forgiveness
Mira is just beginning her senior year of high school when she discovers her father with his male lover. Her worldand everything she thought she knew about her familyis shattered instantly. Unable to comprehend the lies, betrayal, and secrets thatunbeknownst to Mirahave come to define and keep intact her familys existence, Mira distances herself from her sister and closest friends as a means of coping. But her fathers sexual orientation isnt all he's kept hidden. A shocking health scare brings to light his battle with HIV. As Mira struggles to make sense of the many fractures in her family's fabric and redefine her wavering sense of self, she must find a way to reconnect with her dadwhile there is still time.
Told in raw, exposed free verse, Skyscraping reminds us that there is no one way to be a family.
Advance praise for SKYSCRAPING:
Skyscraping is brilliant, sharp and bright. A stellar story. Jensen has written a powerful tale about love and loss, a story that will stick with readers long after theyve reached the end. Her poetry is vivid, tangible, and visceral. Shes a rising star with a breathtaking debut. This is a novel made of star stuff.”Skila Brown, author of Caminar
In gorgeous poetic verse, Jensen captures the raw emotions and hard truths of a family dealing with forgiveness and love.... Your heart will soar and break and heal anew.” An Na, author of Printz Award winner and National Book Award finalist A Step from Heaven
Lupita, a budding actor and poet in a close-knit Mexican-American immigrant family, comes of age as she struggles with adult responsibilities during her mother's battle with cancer.
As the Panama Canal turns one hundred, Newbery Honor winner Margarita Engle tells the story of its creation in this powerful new YA historical novel in verse.
One hundred years ago, the world celebrated the opening of the Panama Canal, which connected the worlds two largest oceans and signaled Americas emergence as a global superpower. It was a miracle, this path of water where a mountain had stood—and creating a miracle is no easy thing. Thousands lost their lives, and those who survived worked under the harshest conditions for only a few silver coins a day.
From the young "silver people" whose back-breaking labor built the Canal to the denizens of the endangered rainforest itself, this is the story of one of the largest and most difficult engineering projects ever undertaken, as only Newbery Honor-winning author Margarita Engle could tell it.
Newbery Honor-winner Margarita Engle tells the story of Cuban folk hero, abolitionist, and women's rights pioneer Gertrudis Gómez de Avellaneda in this powerful YA historical novel in verse.
“I find it so easy to forget / that I’m just a girl who is expected / to live / without thoughts.”
Opposing slavery in Cuba in the nineteenth century was dangerous. The most daring abolitionists were poets who veiled their work in metaphor. Of these, the boldest was Gertrudis Gómez de Avellaneda, nicknamed Tula. In passionate, accessible verses of her own, Engle evokes the voice of this book-loving feminist and abolitionist who bravely resisted an arranged marriage at the age of fourteen, and was ultimately courageous enough to fight against injustice. Historical notes, excerpts, and source notes round out this exceptional tribute.
About the Author
Cordelia Jensen was Poet Laureate of Perry County, PA in 2006 and 2007. She holds an MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts and teaches creative writing in Philadelphia, where she lives with her husband and children. Follow her on Twitter @cordeliajensen.