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Publisher's Summary

Fans of Jacqueline Woodson, Meg Medina, and Jason Reynolds will fall hard for this astonishing #ownvoices 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, whom 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)

©2018 Elizabeth Acevedo (P)2018 HarperCollins Publishers

Critic Reviews

"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)

"The author's passion and pacing unite in her rhythmic reading of linked free-verse poems telling the story of Xiomara Barista. The author, a performance poet, and her heroine possess a gift for arranging words, sequencing sounds, and enriching both with emotions.... The subject, tone, form, and expression of this audiobook are diverse and poignant." (AudioFile)

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What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

open mic night

It's like sitting in the front table at a cafe on open mic night. Listening to and bearing witness to a teen's life with the strength, angst, love, and struggle

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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AMAZING!!!

I loved everything about this book. I felt every emotion and would read it again. Love that the author narrated this. Although my mom doesn’t rice me at the knees, she is a strong Christian. Xio has the same questions I have about the Bible and the curiosity. This book is going to be in my Top 5!! Love it love it love it!!!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Brilliant!!

I don’t even know how to review this in all honestly. Acevedo, who has earned herself favorite new author status in my eyes, has written ( in verse!!) the moving story of Xiomara. A girl just trying to figure herself out while living with a ultra religious mom, a cinnamon roll brother, and a dad who pretty much stays out of matters at home. Acevedo did a marvelous with the narration. The emotion she put into this made the characters seem so unbelievably real. LISTEN TO IT!! You will not be disappointed.

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Beautiful inside & out

This book seems best suited for audio. I'm so glad I listened! And it feels like the first book I've ever read that actually portrayed what it's like to be a beautiful girl in high school - it's not all rainbows

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Amazing

What a well-written story. I loved how both poetry and prose were woven together. I loved that the author read the final poems two ways and articulated why it was written that way. I just loved this story!

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nothing short of amazing!

beautifully narrated novel...words made true flesh!!

amazing story ! loved every moment of this book

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The best book I've listened to this year!

Poet X is so engaging I had to purchase a copy for my best reader pal!

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Great Poetic Story

I don't usually read poetry unless it's in a book that's actually a story that has poems in it like Maya Angelou. So when I heard we'd be reading poetry this month for our book club, I was bracing for which book of poems I'd have to endure. Thankfully, it was this one. Although it is a book of poems, the combination of them all reads like a story. Loved how it flowed and really enjoyed the author's narration. There were a few spanish words I didn't understand, but it didn't take away from the story. It was a great read/listen for our book club discussion as well.

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Amazing!

I loved how this book brought me a different perspective to a different style of life. I love how the poetry was written and how relatable it was. An absolutely wonderful book!

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Spoken Word just HAS to be heard!

This story is phenomenal, but more than that I promise you that listening to Acevedo read her prose novel is the best way to experience it!

A well known Spoken Word artist, Elizabeth Acevedo has an incredible gift for delivery and emotion that you don't want to miss. I went out immediately after listening to the book to pick up a physical copy as well for notes and I'll be teaching this text in the coming school year, but I GUARANTEE we'll be listening to her performance of it!

Listen immediately, I promise you won't regret it.

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  • Laura Pohl
  • 08-10-18

Great!

This book is one of the most amazing things I've ever listened to. I don't even enjoy poetry all that much, but it's powerful and it gave me so many chills while listening. Xiomara's story is one of the most beautiful experiences I've had while reading, and I loved every moment.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 07-11-18

A stunning performance

You NEED to listen to this audiobook!!! Incredibly performed by the author, who is herself a slam poet, and wow does it show - I don't even have to words to describe just how good this is, just download it, please!!!!