Sep 252010

Title: Speak
Author: Laurie Halse Anderson
Publisher: Puffin
Publication Date: April 23, 2001
Pages: 198

From Goodreads:
Melinda Sordino busted an end-of-summer party by calling the cops. Now her old friends won’t talk to her, and people she doesn’t even know hate her from a distance. The safest place 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 the night of the party that, if she let it in, would blow her carefully constructed disguise to smithereens. And then she would have to speak the truth.

In honor of Banned Books Week starting today, I wanted to post my review of Speak. I purchased this book a few months ago but it was one of those books that just kind of sat on the shelf waiting for me to get to it. When I signed on to Twitter last week and saw how the topic of potentially banning this book was exploding online, I decided to bump this up on my TBR list and read it immediately.

All I can say is – I really wish I had read it sooner! Melinda is clearly dealing with a serious issue right from the very start of the book. She speaks very, very little, so the reader is really just reading her thoughts and feelings. I like this approach from the author because it really gives you insight on what Melinda is going through and how traumatic the rape was for her. For the record Mr. Scroggins – there is only one rape scene in the book, and it is not in the least bit pornographic. It is a very painful scene and truly breaks your heart that this happens to young girls and women everyday.

I absolutely loved the ending and how Melinda finally defeats Andy controlling her life. He truly makes me sick – I seriously felt nauseous every time he was mentioned in the book. It is never mentioned what happens to him in the end, but my only hope is that he rots in hell.

Speak is truly a powerful, heart-breaking, yet hopeful story that should most definitely stay on the shelves and not be subject to a ban.

  3 Responses to “Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson”

  1. I read this book a good while ago, and I still remember how poignant it is. It’s one of those stories that stays with you. Great review, Tara :)

  2. Great review! I have not read this one yet but plan to. Thanks.

  3. This one is on my Wishlist but like you I realised it is every where on the blogosphere, didn’t realise the power of people being able ban books, just crazy.

    Great review.

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