Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Nyxen's Review of "Speak"

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
197 Pages
Paperback Platinum Edition
Speak 2006

Melinda Sordino busted an end-of-summer party by calling the cops, so her old friends won't talk to herm and people she doesn't know hate her from a distance. It's no use explaining to her parents; they've never known what her life is really like. The safest place for Melinda to be is alone, inside her own head. But even that's not safe. Because there's something she's trying not to think about, something about that night of the party that, if she admitted it and let it in, would blow her carefully constructed disguise to smithereens. And then she would have no choice. Melinda would have to speak the truth.

Spoilers Ahead. Read At Own Risk

Speak is a remarkable story that moved me in all the right direction. Anderson has a way of writing with precision that it's hard not to like her. As a debut novel, I think Anderson did a wonderful job. I've never read anything quite like this and I enjoyed every second. It tells a story of a ninth grade girl who get's raped at a party one summer and then calls the cops, causing everyone to hate her. Ever since that horrible night, Melinda hasn't had the courage to speak out because she thinks that the memories would h=just disapear if she stopped thinking about them and stopped talking.

I just loved the character Melinda. SHe's quirky, funny, and I really related to her at times. It was easy connecting to her because she just seemed so real to me. I pictured myself in her shoes and I realized I would do the same thing. She's not different, nor weird. She's merely a victim of rape, who doesn't know if her life will ever be the same.

Laurie Halse Anderson is my hero for writing this book. She tells us that no matter what happens in your life, always speak out, even if you think no one is listening because chances are someone is. If you like humor but also heart-wrenching saddness, you should read the book. It will keep you up all night.

I rate this novel Five Stars.


  1. I love Laurie Halse Anderson's books! Speak is one of my favorites. You should definitely check out her other books. Wintergirls is really good too. Good review! I agree with you about Melinda, she's not weird just going through something. I like how you put it.

  2. What a great review. And 5 stars - wow. I like that you warned about spoilers too.


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