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The Poe in me: ya lit inspired by Edgar Allan Poe

“Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary,. . .” – The Raven
 
 The Poe in me: ya lit inspired by Edgar Allan Poe
 

Most teens get a wad of cash when they graduate high school, and some of them do smart things with them.  I, however, went the next day and bought 1) the ugliest flower shirt known to man, 2) The Whole Story on CD by Kate Bush and 3) The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe.  I love Poe so much that when I found out I was pregnant with my first and second daughter, I wanted to name her Annabelle Lee.  The Mr., however, had something against naming his daughters after dead girls in poetry.  But this – right now – is a great time of year for all things Poe so I bring you books inspired by Edgar Allan Poe.  (I wish I still had that ugly shirt and I would take a pic of me wearing it and holding my Poe anthology, but Poe was ruined in the great flood of 2011 and no one would still own that shirt.)

 The Poe in me: ya lit inspired by Edgar Allan Poe


Steampunk Poe
First, you’ll want to make sure that your teens have access to some of the original works themselves.  But you don’t want no boring stories, which is why you should get Steampunk Poe.  Here the original works of Poe are presented with some very cook Steampunk pictures. (Published October 4th 2011 by Running Press Teens) (ISBN 9780762441921)

 
“TRUE! nervous, very, very dreadfully nervous I had been and am; but why WILL you say that I am mad?”  – The Tell Tale Heart

 The Poe in me: ya lit inspired by Edgar Allan Poe
 
“There are chords in the hearts of the most reckless which cannot be touched without emotion, even by the utterly lost, to whom life and death are equally jests, there are matters of which no jest can be made.”  – Masque of the Red Death, Poe

Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin
This is a stinking dark and brillian re-imagining of the original Poe story.  This time, Griffin presents us with a dystopian future in which a plague roams the land.  In this dark underbelly of a world, Griffin excels in creating an atosmphere that is so oppressive, you feel like you can cut through it with a knife.  Masque of the Red Death is a great addition to this post on epidemics in ya lit. (Published April 24th 2012 by Greenwillow Books) (ISBN 9780062107794)

 The Poe in me: ya lit inspired by Edgar Allan Poe
 
“Ghastly, grim, and ancient Raven, wandering from the Nightly shore,– Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night’s Plutonian shore! Quoth the Raven “Nevermore!”” – The Raven


Nevermore by Kelly Creagh
Isobel finds herself drawn to the strange and aloof Varen and the image of Edgar Allan Poe that he draws in his journals.  These drawings seem almost to come to life; and Poe’s world is a world you wouldn’t want to find yourself in. (published August 31st 2010 by Atheneum Books for Young Readers) (ISBN13: 9781442402003)  ils…

 The Poe in me: ya lit inspired by Edgar Allan Poe

“I know not how it was–but, with the first glimpse of the building, a sense of insufferable gloom pervaded my spirit.” – The Fall of the House of Usher


Dead of Winter by Chris Priestley
Michael is invited to spend Christmas with a guardian in a desolate house.  As Michael wanders the halls of the desolate home he learns that lonely doesn’t always mean alone and even houses have secrets. An homage to The Fall of the House of Usher by Edgar Allan Poe. (Published October 4th 2010 by Bloomsbury UK) (ISBN 9781408800133)

baa2e poe2 The Poe in me: ya lit inspired by Edgar Allan Poe
 
“That is another of your odd notions,” said the Prefect, who had a fashion of calling every thing “odd” that was beyond his comprehension, and thus lived amid an absolute legion of “oddities.”  – The Purloined Letter


The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson
Many teens will not know this, but Poe is actually the originator of the modern day detective story (The Purloined Letter), which is why the Edgar Awards for Mystery is named after him.  In The Name of the Star, Johnson created a gothic mystery that would make Poe proud.  Although it appears that a modern day Jack the Ripper is roaming the streets of London, the truth is even more terrifying than Rory can even imagine. (Published September 29th 2011 by Putnam Juvenile) (ISBN 9780399256608)

And Two Titles Coming Soon . . .

“For the moon never beams without bringing me dreams
Of the beautiful Annabel Lee; ” – Annabel Lee
 
Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsey
 
 The Poe in me: ya lit inspired by Edgar Allan PoeLiam MacGregor is cursed. Haunted by the wails of fantastical Bean Sidhes and labeled a demon by the villagers of Dòchas, Liam has accepted that things will never get better for him—until a wealthy heiress named Annabel Leighton arrives on the island and Liam’s fate is changed forever.
 
With Anna, Liam finally finds the happiness he has always been denied; but, the violent, mythical Otherworlders, who inhabit the island and the sea around it, have other plans. They make a wager on the couple’s love, testing its strength through a series of cruel obstacles. But the tragedies draw Liam and Anna even closer. Frustrated, the creatures put the couple through one last trial—and this time it’s not only their love that’s in danger of being destroyed.
 
Based on Edgar Allan Poe’s chilling poem Annabel Lee, Mary Lindsey creates a frighteningly beautiful gothic novel that glorifies the power of true love. (Expected publication June 27, 2013 from Philomel/Penguin)


Of Monsters and Madness by Jessica Verday

NYT Bestselling author of THE HOLLOW series, Jessica Verday’s OF MONSTERS AND MADNESS, a series of romantic YA Gothic thrillers inspired by The Strange Case of Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde, Frankenstein, and the works of Edgar Allan Poe, as told by Annabel Lee, a young girl who moves to Philadelphia in 1826 to live with her father and discovers that he may be implicated in a series of murders across the city, and only she can prove his innocence and protect him from the true evil he has created in his basement lab, to Alison Weiss at Egmont, at auction, for publication in fall 2014, by Mollie Glick at Foundry Literary + Media.
Foreign: Rachel Hecht, rhecht@foundrymedia.com
 
Using Poe in the Classroom/Library
  • Read a Poe story and a ya lit book based on or inspired by said story and discuss
  • Have teens chose a Poe short story and write their own inspired by version
  • Study more at poestories.com
What other Poe inspired YA Lit is out there? Add to our list in the comments please.

Comments

  1. What a great list! And I love the idea of using modern takes on Poe in the classroom.

  2. Molly W says:

    Love this list! Thanks for sharing.

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