Rhyme Schemer

Kevin has a bad attitude. He’s the one who laughs when you trip and fall. In fact, he may have been the one who tripped you in the first place. He has a real knack for rubbing people the wrong way—and he’s even figured out a secret way to do it with poems. But what happens when the tables are turned and he is the one getting picked on? Rhyme Schemer is a touching middle-grade novel in verse about one seventh-grader’s journey from bully-er to bully-ee, as he learns about friendship, family, and the influence that words can have on your life.

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“A strong anti-bullying message. Ideal for classroom use.”

School Library Journal

“This transformative tale offers important lessons for all persuasions of middle graders, whether bullies or targets, complicit or horrified bystanders.”

Kirkus Reviews

“Poetry-writing seventh-grade bully both is believable and sympathetic, and his voice rings totally authentic.”


Awards and Honors

“In the richly imaginative Rhyme Schemer (which I laughed through on a 90 minute plane ride) K.A. Holt’s sparkling poetry is akin to Cliff Huxtable’s loonylook—eccentric, entertaining, essential. From the first Flaming Turtle to the last Shrieking Tornado, all I could think was, just like Kevin (her 7th Grade poet narrator), verse novels will never be the same. . ”
— Kwame Alexander, author of The Crossover

NYC Reads Recommended Book List for grades 7-8
Bank Street Best Book of 2014
Amazon Best Book for Kids and Teens
Wisconsin State Reading Association Just One More Page list 2015
2015 NCTE Notable Children’s Book in the Language Arts
Writers’ League of Texas, Middle Grade/Young Adult Finalist 2014
School Library Connection Editors’ Choice Best Books of 2015
Nominee for the 2017 Illinois Rebecca Caudill Young Readers’ Award
Michigan’s Great Lakes Great Books list for 2016-2017
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