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Speak

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really liked it 4.0  ·  Rating details ·  398,888 Ratings  ·  19,763 Reviews
"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 becom ...more
Paperback, 208 pages
Published April 1st 2001 by Puffin (first published October 22nd 1999)
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Uma Therman
This answer contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Kylie George This is so tough! They are a little bit similar but so entirely different! In my opinion, I liked Speak better than Perks just because it resonated…moreThis is so tough! They are a little bit similar but so entirely different! In my opinion, I liked Speak better than Perks just because it resonated with me more. I felt a deeper connection and it touched me more emotionally. So I'd go with Speak, but they are both beautiful books.(less)

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Madeline
Apr 16, 2010 rated it it was amazing
"THE FIRST TEN LIES THEY TELL YOU IN HIGH SCHOOL
1. We are here to help you.
2. You will have enough time to get to your class before the bell rings.
3. The dress code will be enforced.
4. No smoking is allowed on school grounds.
5. Our football team will win the championship this year.
6. We expect more of you here.
7. Guidance counselors are always available to listen.
8. Your schedule was created with your needs in mind.
9. Your locker combination is private.
10. These will be the years you will look b
...more
Zoë
Jun 06, 2012 rated it really liked it
2017 Reread: I read this for my young adult literature class along with scholastic articles about the book, which added a great new layer to my interpretation of the novel.

Original Review: I've owned this book for years and never got around to reading it until yesterday. I'm happy I did because this was one of the best books that I have read lately. Speak was very well paced and I never found the story to be dragging or boring. I loved the character development and Melinda's voice throughout th
...more
Emma Giordano
Jul 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars! I think this is a really powerful novel that should be read by so many, especially teens.
Speak is a fascinating tale of learning to use your voice when you previously believed it did not matter. The message is one I think all can benefit from and I’m so glad I finally read it.

Trigger warning: rape

Laurie Halse Anderson is a fabulous writer. She has a very distinctive writing style; It’s an unfiltered stream of consciousness that feels so real. I previously read Wintergirls and found t
...more
Cara
Jul 17, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Cara by: Ash
Once I finished reading the last word I knew I was going to reread it. Yes that profound.

Honest. Authentic. Real. Use all those words and their synonyms and you have this book. I literally wanted to hop into the sea of words and tell Melinda Sordino " I'll be your friend! Don't despair !" Alas I couldn't do that though. I had to see her struggle. It's painful but since I watched the movie (which was done well by the way) first before reading the book I knew where she was coming from. Melinda's
...more
Lola  Reviewer

Well, I can’t help but feel a little disappointed. I mean, the summary doesn’t reveal much (kind of like Melinda herself) and so, obviously, I made my own assumptions of the plot. Turns out, there’s no killing involved. It’s not a mystery or a thriller; it’s a psychological story. If I had known before, I think I might have enjoyed this a tiny bit more.

So, Melinda. She’s confused, scared—terrified—and convinced that she’s alone in this wide, animalistic world. Things are somewhat bearable, but t
...more
Maddie
May 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
ALL AGES - Can read this Gem!

According to me a Prologue or the 1st Chapter of a book is THE reflection →

Be Tougher Than Your Life Is - 2016 Motivation
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PyDlB...


Herewith my review!

description

Type of Characters and my choices according to pictures! :

Eminem - Not Afraid
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j5-yK...


description
Relationship development
description

Chapter Development

This book made me cry, and laugh and cry!!

I had WTF moments, laughing moments then sobbing like a baby moments.

I did not know
...more
Emily May
Feb 04, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Teens
Shelves: young-adult, 2011

I didn't think I'd be so gripped by this book but the author captures the pains and troubles of everyday high school life with such honesty and emotion that I couldn't help recognise half the characters from my own high school days. There's Rachel, the ex best friend who's had a personality transplant over the summer... Heather, the temporary friend who's only waiting to be snapped up my a cooler clique... and, of course, the protagonist who doesn't quite fit in anywhere.

The beauty of this novel
...more
V. PARENTAL GUIDANCE ALERT:  A Court of Wings and Ruin is NEW ADULT/EROTICA but Goodreads editors won't tell you
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The following review will touch upon serious topics and under the spoiler section I might hide TMI (too much information) tags. If you don't want to know about my own personal journey don't read because it might be umconfortable and triggering. I'll use strong language.

I also want to point out that I read this book long ago and that I won't re-read for this review. I just want to discuss the following question(s) which I found in the review of one of my favorite Goodreads reviewers ever: my dear
...more
Maureen
Jul 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
3.5/5
This is such an important book for the content and message it presents. The writing was fantastic and Melinda was such an interesting character to read. I didn't totally LOVE everything about it, but overall it was a fantastic book.
Laurie
Mar 07, 2008 rated it it was ok
Shelves: ya
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jessica Abarquez
Apr 09, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: misc
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Elyse
Nov 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: teen-young-adult
Library - Overdrive-ebook!

I’m very late to this reading this really wonderful young adult book.....but oh,I’m sooooo glad I read it!

Melinda Sordino, sarcastically witty, bright, and courageous, is very memorable character. A freshman in High School, .... most of the time Melinda’s goal in life is to go home and take a nap.
We emphasized with her.....as she is misunderstood- and shunned by friends. Melinda doesn’t understand her own situation clearly enough to speak out for herself.
She’s an av
...more
Susanne Strong
Apr 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobooks
4 Stars.

Speaking. Sometimes it’s absolutely impossible, isn’t it? Sometimes you are so filled with anxiety and fear, you can’t even think of the words, let alone spit them out. And sometimes, life itself is crippling. You will undergo something that overtakes you, that consumes every waking thought, that fills you with fear and changes every aspect of your life and still you cannot talk about it. To anyone, whether you have someone to confide in or not.

Melinda is that girl. She is a misfit. A p
...more
April (Aprilius Maximus)
Hmmmm I can definitely see how important this book is and would have been at the time of its publication, but the thing is, I was bored until the last 30 pages. I felt really disconnected to the story and I don't know why. I am so glad that books like this exist in the YA genre though, and that this one was around a long time ago because these things happen and really do need to be discussed. Such an important message.
Thomas
"Speak" is about Melinda Sordino, an angst-filled freshman who is hated by all of her "best friends" because she called the cops during the end of the summer senior party. Everyone got busted. Her parents aren't much help either, always fighting about what's best for Melinda and communicating through post-it notes on the refrigerator wall. These are only a few of the things that have Melinda depressed. When what really happened at the senior party is revealed, it will be easy, although painful, ...more
Mary
Jul 10, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Get me a Delorean! I'm giving this book to myself and every girl I knew ten years ago!
Shelves: ya
Wow. I started reading this to entertain myself on a long subway ride home at 2 am, thinking I'd skim a bit and start reading it the next day. The next time I looked at the clock it was five in the morning and I was devouring the last lines of the novel. It is dangerously, fantastically gripping, not necessarily because the plot is so amazing, but because Anderson gets Melinda's voice so very, very right. Melinda is such a thoughtfully rendered portrait of a smart, funny, terribly depressed teen ...more
Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
Mar 15, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: read-2014
I know. A ton of people liked this book. I'm giving this crap a one star though.


I never did connect with this books main character. I finally was to the point where I didn't give a shit anymore when the big reveal came about why she was having so many problems. I felt somewhat sorry for her then but it still just didn't pull through enough for me.
Manju
There are no doubts that it is a very important book for the subject it deals with. We need so many more books on this subject but I want them to actually “speak”.

So something happened at a party to Melinda and she stops speaking. She is not popular in school; in fact her friends have started to cut her. They don’t want to see her anymore as they find this “not speaking” behavior strange but they don’t try hard to extract the reason for this. They just accept without questioning her. Same is the
...more
karen
Jun 08, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mark-harmon
bleg. greg loooooved this book and said it made him wish he had written his own angst-books in high school, but i was a teenage girl and he wasnt, and this just didnt do it for me. its not poorly written at all, i just have never liked books that were about clique-y high schools because i couldnt relate to them at all. maybe i just went to a smaller, or a nicer, high school. but i can definitely see the value of this for a teen reader, and i really liked the authors note on censorship at the end ...more
Hailey (HaileyinBookland)
Apr 30, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
Updating to add a trigger warning which I really should've before
*TRIGGER WARNING FOR RAPE*
I debated for a long time what to rate this and decided on 4 stars because this book honestly perfectly captures the thoughts and feelings that run through your head when you go through a situation like Melinda's. This book was extremely hard for me to read as it hit very, very close to home and for that reason, I just couldn't give it 5 stars.
Kat (Lost in Neverland)


I liked Speak. For the most part.
Mostly the end.
The majority of the book was pretty bland. I had a voice in my head pestering me and saying; "Oh my god, who the fuck cares?!"

Thankfully, it paid off in the end. The ending really made the book for me.

Though I wish Melinda had given Andy (aka IT) a good kick in the balls.

description

Indeed.


www.youtube.com/watch?v=DaXd2AmWtPI&a...

I'm sorry, I'm having WAY too much fun with this!

But when you watch it, it's actually quite close to a situation in the boo
...more
Ariel
Mar 04, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a very powerful book: it deals with rape and depression in one of the most realistic and poignant ways I've read. I rated it 4.5.

The only reason I didn't give it a 5 was because I could not see myself in Melinda. I am very self-aware and I know that I would not have responded in any of the same ways that she did. This does not devalue any of the book though. I could still absolutely empathize with Melinda, I completely understood and appreciated her.

One of the things that I most enjoyed
...more
Louize
Nov 14, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone, especially parents
Recommended to Louize by: Apokripos
"When people don't express themselves, they die one piece at a time."

Silence dominates Melinda Sordino’s freshman year in Merryweather High School. A recent traumatic experience that led to a very complicated misunderstanding sent a sudden collapse on her being. Aside from being completely mute in public, Melinda’s private and social life is in ruins. Slowly, she began to lose interest in everything, including her family and school. If possible, she also wants to lose the memory of that trauma
...more
Elizabeth
May 22, 2010 rated it it was ok
Bleak YA novel that reads as a cautionary tale. This was assigned reading for our #1 in her Language Arts class. Students were asked to read this book for a bullying unit though it is more about the injustice of rape (it does not address the particular damage of rape). It is the story of a young girl who is so disconnected from everyone that she is unable to speak after being assaulted until her rapist targets her ex best friend. She tells no one about her own assault and though she is much chan ...more
Tamora Pierce
Jan 10, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya-yr, contemporary
I just re-read SPEAK for the first time since it came out, so you know I'd forgotten the details of the story. I remembered it being a harder read this time than it was the first time. I'm not sure if knowledge of the big reveal made the tension bigger for me this time, but I still have to say this is a smashing read.

Melinda called the cops on a wild end-of-summer party before she started ninth grade, and now she doesn't have a friend in the world except new girl Heather, who has plans for getti
...more
Mon
Aug 06, 2010 rated it it was ok
Maybe I'm being too cynical, and that the protagonist (I forgot her name already, so I'm just going to call her Jane) did go through something worth lamenting for 200 pages. But for God's sake just because your character is a silent withdrawn introvert doesn't mean your plot has to be the same, it's 150 pages of nothing then BAM! she speaks up! finds courage! The end!!!! LOOK MY HEART IS BLEEDING AND YOU CAN HEAR MY SCREAMS BECAUSE IM LITERALLY TALKING LIKE THIS!!!!! This has to be the worst psy ...more
Aj the Ravenous Reader
May 16, 2014 rated it really liked it
More like a synopsis than a review. Lol. ^^

The title of this book intrigued me and somehow demanded me to read the book. My intuition that I will not regret reading this book did not fail me because this book tells of an inspiring and touching story of a young girl, Melinda who lost herself, her confidence and her ability to speak after she was raped by the most popular senior a year ago.

Because of her inability to speak, Melinda loses her best friend who thought that she was betrayed by Meli
...more
Kelly
I read this in high school. When I was in high school.

Now I reread it, at 30.

It's not only perennial. It's not only still powerful. But this is a masterclass in construction, in voice, and in story telling.

Damn good. DAMN good.

But how I wish it weren't still relevant.
Priscilla
Sep 01, 2011 rated it it was amazing
An amazing, and inspiring read!

Initial thoughts:
1. Melinda's voice is snarky, sarcastic, and cynical. I loved it! (I was conflicted about liking her voice because I didn't know if this was innate to Melinda's personality, or transformed after the party).
2. I really liked reading the day to day aspects of Melinda's school year. Great and different moments, from the sad and frustrating, to the fun and inspiring. Not overly dramatic.
3. Beautifully written. Heartfelt and emotional.
4. Loved the symbo
...more
Beatrice Masaluñga
Oct 11, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: young-adult, owned
I've been wanting to read this book for such a long time and luckily, I found this in the bargain section of our local bookstore. Speak is a challenging novel to read as it tackles sexual abuse, depression, censorship and bullying. Here are the characters and their significance in the story:

Melinda Sordino: The story is told in her perspective. She's aloof, timid and guarded. She's a freshmen high school student treated like an outcast in her school. They are furious when she called the cops du
...more
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UPDATE!

The SPEAK graphic novel, illustrated by Emily Carroll, will be published on Feb 6, 2018!


I recently answered all kinds of great questions over at Reddit. Check it out for loads about my writing process and my books:http://www.reddit.com/r/books/commen...

For bio stuff: Laurie Halse Anderson is the New York Times-bestselling author who wri
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“THE FIRST TEN LIES THEY TELL YOU IN HIGH SCHOOL

1. We are here to help you.
2. You will have time to get to your class before the bell rings.
3. The dress code will be enforced.
4. No smoking is allowed on school grounds.
5. Our football team will win the championship this year.
6. We expect more of you here.
7. Guidance counselors are always available to listen.
8. Your schedule was created with you in mind.
9. Your locker combination is private.
10. These will be the years you look back on fondly.

TEN MORE LIES THEY TELL YOU IN HIGH SCHOOL

1. You will use algebra in your adult lives.
2. Driving to school is a privilege that can be taken away.
3. Students must stay on campus during lunch.
4. The new text books will arrive any day now.
5. Colleges care more about you than your SAT scores.
6. We are enforcing the dress code.
7. We will figure out how to turn off the heat soon.
8. Our bus drivers are highly trained professionals.
9. There is nothing wrong with summer school.
10. We want to hear what you have to say.”
7776 likes
“You have to know what you stand for, not just what you stand against.” 3308 likes
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