21 July, 2017

REVIEW: SPEAK by Laurie Halse Anderson

Title: Speak
Author: Laurie Halse Anderson
Series: -
Genres: YA, Realistic Fiction, Contemporary
Publisher: Puffith, n
Release: April 1st 2001
Source: Kindle
Pages: 208

Goodreads // 

"Speak up for yourself--we want to know what you have to say." From the first moment of her freshman year at Merryweather High, Melinda knows this is a big fat lie, part of the nonsense of high school. She is friendless, outcast, because she busted an end-of-summer party by calling the cops, so now nobody will talk to her, let alone listen to her. As time passes, she becomes increasingly isolated and practically stops talking altogether. Only her art class offers any solace, and it is through her work on an art project that she is finally able to face what really happened at that terrible party: she was raped by an upperclassman, a guy who still attends Merryweather and is still a threat to her. Her healing process has just begun when she has another violent encounter with him. But this time Melinda fights back, refuses to be silent, and thereby achieves a measure of vindication. In Laurie Halse Anderson's powerful novel, an utterly believable heroine with a bitterly ironic voice delivers a blow to the hypocritical world of high school. She speaks for many a disenfranchised teenager while demonstrating the importance of speaking up for oneself.

Speak was a 1999 National Book Award Finalist for Young People's Literature

EXPECTATIONS: I actually saw the movie for this few of years ago and I liked it a lot, so when I figured out this was a book, I simply had to read it.

THE WORLD: The world is out normal everyday world. The plot takes place mostly in one of schools in Merrywather High School. I think the author captures the world of teenagers well, I could see myself in that school, with the kids.

CHARACTERS: Out main character in this book is Melinda. She is about to star her freshmen year in school when in a party a horrible horrible thing happens to her, and when she calls 911 but is unable to say anything, the police shows up and arrests some people in the party, so Melinda ends up being not only the victim or rape but also blamed for everything. When school starts she has no friends, everyone calls her names, no one wants to speak to her, so gradually she herself stops to speak! Melinda story is so painful, and the author did a wonderful job making her the type of character that wasn't just the victim, so I, the reader would only feel sorry for her, and bet annoyed eventually. No! Melinda had so much strength inside her, that I was mesmerized her her really soon. She had such a beautiful inside and when she starts to draw, because she finds art as a way to express herself, I just cried all night. She had her own little hiding place in school where she hides and put her pictures up all around the little room. Maybe the only thing that I wanted her to do faster was to actually speak up! It's so sad that so many young kids feel this way, that there is no one who cares, no one who would stand up for them, so they wonder the world feeling alone and abandoned.

I also liked Mr. Freeman, the art teacher, to me he was a real teacher, who embraced the unique qualities of all the kids. He also tried to slowly get close to Melinda, so she would open up a bit. I liked David as well, Melinda's classmates. He was a down to earth kid who just told things to Melisa as they are.

I disliked the parents - first job a parent should do is talk to their kids! I can't imagine a parent who would just ignore the way Melinda was acting to simply teenager. I also didn't like Melinda's friend who left her for the popular crowd. Friends stick by friends, they don't leave.

ROMANCE: Romance is not the point of this book!

GOOD: I liked the way this book spoke about difficult topics and rape, and depression. It didn't romantize it, it didn‘t make it seem like the person only wanted attection. It was painful, plain and hit right in the feels!

BAD: Actually cannot think of anything that big.

OVERALL: I actually think that mothers should read this book together with their baby girls! People need to understand that communication is everything! If you have been abused – do not stay silent- If you see anyone acting strange – do not thing the person is weird! Talk, communicate – Speak!

What do you think about SPEAK?


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