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Speak: 10th Anniversary Edition by Laurie…
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Speak: 10th Anniversary Edition (edition 2009)

by Laurie Halse Anderson

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
9,077541330 (4.13)1 / 302
Member:Carmenere
Title:Speak: 10th Anniversary Edition
Authors:Laurie Halse Anderson
Info:Speak (2009), Edition: 10 Anv, Paperback, 240 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:chagrin falls booksale 5-2012

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Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson

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English (538)  Italian (2)  All languages (540)
Showing 1-5 of 538 (next | show all)
Heart-wrenching. It's a very realistic and believable look at high school and the stupidity of teens. ( )
  benuathanasia | Dec 11, 2014 |
Laurie Halse Andeson's Speak hit right to the heart. I can see why this book has been threatened to be banned - not because of the content, but because it sends a message, it has a meaning. Those messages and meanings frighten some people, who then try to silence those voices.

This book's voice is loudest in it's silence, and the message needs to be passed along. ( )
  amymyoung | Nov 27, 2014 |
The thing that bothered me the most about this story is how oblivious the adults were. This girl had all the obvious signs of trauma and no one connected the dots. The thing I liked most was how Melinda claims her life back from fear. ( )
  tjsjohanna | Nov 26, 2014 |
Speak is an amazing novel. Anderson drew me in, enveloping me in one of the most genuine and convincing teenage narrators I have ever come across. I read the entire thing in one sitting, unable to put it down. It is powerful.

Melinda is damaged, depressed, an outcast on the very first day of high school. She belongs to no cliques, has no one to sit with and no where to belong.

”I wasted the last weeks of August watching bad cartoons. I didn’t go to the mall, the lake, or the pool, or answer the phone. I have entered high school with the wrong hair, the wrong clothes, the wrong attitude. And I don’t have anyone to sit with.” (p. 4)

In fact, it’s worse than that - the student body actively hates Melinda, because she called the police and broke up a party near the end of summer. The traumatic incident that caused Melinda to dial 9-1-1 is too painful for her to speak of - to anyone - or even to think about. She keeps “IT” locked away tight within her. But as this goes on, she finds her throat closing off and she is unable to speak most of the time, becoming nearly mute. Her parents and teachers grow angry and impatient with her, former friends have blacklisted her, and the one girl she manages to befriend dumps her because she’s too “weird” and “depressed.”

But this isn’t one of those YA novels where every adult is evil. Melinda’s parents are flawed but realistic - they argue and fight a lot, but they aren’t abusive. They are shown as being stressed and tired from their jobs, which leads to them not paying enough attention to their daughter. The author does a great job of showing a spectrum of teachers at the high school - from the bully “Mr. Neck” with his xenophobic rants, to the weird but kind of okay English teacher, “Hairwoman,” to the Librarian who is kind and forgives her lateness, and finally the art teacher, Mr. Freeman, who continuously encourages and reaches out to Melinda. The art teacher provides her with a sanctuary in the art room, and a means of expressing herself through painting and sculpture.

One minor complaint, I would have liked to see a longer ending and more denouement, with the different characters reactions to Melinda’s story finally coming out in the open. How do her parents react? Does she get back with her old friends again? Mostly, I think I just wanted to keep spending time with Melinda. Will look for more by this author. ( )
  catfantastic | Nov 24, 2014 |
High school is a three- or four-year stint most of us would pay NOT to have to repeat, for one reason or another: ostracism, teasing, manipulation, drama, and more roam the halls in every shape, form, and degree.

Melinda Sordino knows about ostracism, teasing, and drama. From her first day at high school, she's an outcast, practically a pariah, because she made a fateful phone call that broke up an end-of-summer party and resulted in the arrival of the police.

Now, no one will speak to her, and even the new girl, from out of state, who is at first friendly, eventually dumps her for more popular company. There isn't room in a single clique --- or clan, to use Melinda's term --- for her to belong. No space on the social hierarchy, determined by popularity, appearance, and whether or not you were loyal enough to your friends not to blow the whistle on them at a party.

The thing is, Melinda didn't call the police because of the party. She called for another reason, and it's a secret that haunts her, but she can't bring herself to talk about it in the face of so much hatred and anger. The only place she feels safe is in art class, where she struggles with a year-long project that turns out to be the key to unlocking her silence.

Author Laurie Halse Anderson writes an evocative, compelling, character-driven novel with SPEAK. Protagonist Melinda narrates the novel in bitterly ironical vignettes, uncovering one hypocrisy after another about high school in as sarcastic, cynical, and cutting a voice as only a teenager can produce.

From the very first paragraph --- "It is my first morning of high school. I have seven new notebooks, a skirt I hate, and a stomachache" --- the immediacy of the first-person, present-tense point of view yanked me into the story and into Melinda's personal space, where, after just that first page, I was eager and more than willing to remain until the very last page.

Melinda is an eminently sympathetic character, three-dimensional, a fascinating mass of juxtapositions --- attitudinal teenager plus vulnerable artist --- that make her a pleasure to cheer for and side with throughout her story.

Awarded the Michael L. Printz Award for Excellence in Young Adult Literature by the American Library Association, Laurie Halse Anderson's YA novel SPEAK is one every teenager will empathize with, and one that every adult will appreciate.

# # #

Title: SPEAK
Author: Laurie Halse Anderson
ISBN: 978-0-374-37152-4
Purchase here: http://amzn.to/1nOvkkd

Disclaimer: The opinions I have expressed are my own. ( )
1 vote Eleanore_Trupkiewicz | Oct 30, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 538 (next | show all)
The plot is gripping and the characters are powerfully drawn, but it is its raw and unvarnished look at the dynamics of the high school experience that makes this a novel that will be hard for readers to forget.
added by khuggard | editKirkus Reviews
 
In her YA fiction debut, Anderson perfectly captures the harsh conformity of high-school cliques and one teen's struggle to find acceptance from her peers. Melinda's sarcastic wit, honesty, and courage make her a memorable character whose ultimate triumph will inspire and empower readers.
added by khuggard | editBooklist, Debbie Carton
 
Anderson expresses the emotions and the struggles of teenagers perfectly. Melinda's pain is palpable, and readers will totally empathize with her. This is a compelling book, with sharp, crisp writing that draws readers in, engulfing them in the story.
added by khuggard | editSchool Library Journal, Dina Sherman
 
But the book's overall gritty realism and Melinda's hard-won metamorphosis will leave readers touched and inspired.
added by khuggard | editPublishers Weekly
 
Laurie Halse Anderson's first novel is a stunning and sympathetic tribute to the teenage outcast. The triumphant ending, in which Melinda finds her voice, is cause for cheering (while many readers might also shed a tear or two).
added by khuggard | editAmazon.com, Jennifer Hubert
 

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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Laurie Halse Andersonprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Correa, María MercedesTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To Sandy Bernstein, who helped me find my voice, and to my husband Greg, who listens
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It is my first morning of high school.
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
This book describes the struggle of a teenage girl to find her voice. You watch the character fall into depression, go mute, drop tremendously in school, and isolate herself from society. As if feeling unsafe in the world isn't enough, Melinda doesn't even feel safe in her own mind. And why? Maybe because all of her once best friends refuse to talk to her for busting an end of the summer party. Or perhaps it has something to do with the fact that her parents couldn't take less of an interest in her, and refuse to communicate as they get sucked into their workaholic lives. Deep down, Melinda Sordino knows the reason that her life has turned into a living hell. The only way to escape this whirlwind of torture is to speak, but that's not as easy as it may seem.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0142407321, Paperback)

Since the beginning of the school year, high school freshman Melinda has found that it's been getting harder and harder for her to speak out loud: "My throat is always sore, my lips raw.... Every time I try to talk to my parents or a teacher, I sputter or freeze.... It's like I have some kind of spastic laryngitis." What could have caused Melinda to suddenly fall mute? Could it be due to the fact that no one at school is speaking to her because she called the cops and got everyone busted at the seniors' big end-of-summer party? Or maybe it's because her parents' only form of communication is Post-It notes written on their way out the door to their nine-to-whenever jobs. While Melinda is bothered by these things, deep down she knows the real reason why she's been struck mute...

Laurie Halse Anderson's first novel is a stunning and sympathetic tribute to the teenage outcast. The triumphant ending, in which Melinda finds her voice, is cause for cheering (while many readers might also shed a tear or two). After reading Speak, it will be hard for any teen to look at the class scapegoat again without a measure of compassion and understanding for that person--who may be screaming beneath the silence. (Ages 13 and older) --Jennifer Hubert

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:29:34 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

A traumatic event near the end of the summer has a devastating effect on Melinda's freshman year in high school.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 5 descriptions

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