There is a plethora of gorgeously talented authors who are writing novels in verse. I am taken aback by how effective this is in capturing true emotions, character and atmosphere. Think Toppling and Cinnamon Rain.
The Weight of Water by Sarah Crossan, featuring a beautiful cover by Oliver Jeffers, is a truly beautiful story eloquently delivered in poignant verse.
Kasienka travels from Poland to England with her Mama, a bulging suitcase and a laundry bag ... and her Mama's determination to track down her husband, Tata.
Kasienka knows her dad doesn't want to be found, but still she trapses up and down the streets each night with her mum,
"Because hope is all Mama has,
And I cannot take it from her."
With a quiet determination and strong spirit Kasienka struggles to adapt to her new life. Her experiences highlight the difficulties of trying to fit in to a new culture, a strange country where everything is just not quite right ..
"Today I was told
It is all wrong.
I'm looking at the bag.
I'm desperate to know
What doesn't work.
But I just can't figure it out."
Kasienka finds strength in her swimming, she uses it to escape the problems of day to day life. It is here she meets William, a gentle individual who gives her hope.
The Weight of Water has been described as a coming of age novel, it traces Kasienka as she finds her way - both in school and within her small family. Her isolation is keenly felt on many of the pages, but the novel also highlights her determination fired by her strength of spirit and self.
Click on this link, for a free teacher's guide from the lovely people at Bloomsbury!