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Speak (Paperback)

Walmart # 562768676
$6.59$6.59
List Was $10.99
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Customer Review Snapshot

4.3 out of 5 stars
291 total reviews
5 stars
142
4 stars
111
3 stars
23
2 stars
11
1 star
4
Most helpful positive review
"I wonder how long it would take for anyone to notice if I just stopped talking." Melinda never said a word about what happened that night at the party. She never said anything when she was accused of calling the cops, getting a lot of people in major trouble. She never spoke up against her classmates when they pushed and bullied and belittled her for it. She never told her bestfriend Rachel why she called them or how it feels to have your bestfriend say she hates you. She never said anything to her teachers who scolded her for going from a good student to a failure. She never told her parents who just can't understand what their child has become. She never said anything, to anyone, at all. Sometimes what you have to say is so horrible, it's unspeakable. "I have no friends. I have nothing. I say nothing. I am nothing." This book is the very reason I am so enamoured of the YA genre. Books like this, and Thirteen Reasons Why and I'm sure countless others I've yet to encounter are on a playing field all their own. They are written not only so that everyone can understand, but in a voice that reflects the conflict of emotions that happens in the heart of every teenager. "Like OMG, SHUT UP" that's the surface and the majority of YA books and those happy go lucky books, while entertaining really don't give you any insight into humanity, which more than anything right now our impressionable youth needs. Books like this that deal with actions and consequences and force you to think on it's terms teach you so much more than you could ever imagine you'd learn from a young adult book. EVERYONE should read this book. I'm glad it's required reading material for some programs. It should be required reading material for life. The usual words that spring to mind to describe this book are "haunting", "beautiful", "dark" but those are so generic. The language of this book doesn't paint pretty pictures, it paints black holes. The story doesn't haunt you, it stays with you, right there, always, not like a ghost- like a heavy rock you can't move, and you'll stumble on it again and again. I can tell you this if you read it- you will never forget it, even if you want to. The edition I have is the Platinum Edition, excellently packaged (covers/jackets as bookmarks=bonus) and includes a discussion with the author, Laurie Halse Anderson.

About This Item

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In this powerful novel, a teenage heroine delivers a blow to the hypocritical world of high school.

The first ten lies they tell you in high school.

"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.

Specifications

Publisher
Square Fish
Book Format
Paperback
Original Languages
English
Number of Pages
224
Author
Laurie Halse Anderson
ISBN-13
9780312674397
Publication Date
May, 2011
Assembled Product Dimensions (L x W x H)
8.21 x 5.49 x 0.64 Inches
ISBN-10
0312674392

Customer Reviews

5 stars
142
4 stars
111
3 stars
23
2 stars
11
1 star
4
Most helpful positive review
3 customers found this helpful
I wonder how long it ...
"I wonder how long it would take for anyone to notice if I just stopped talking." Melinda never said a word about what happened that night at the party. She never said anything when she was accused of calling the cops, getting a lot of people in major trouble. She never spoke up against her classmates when they pushed and bullied and belittled her for it. She never told her bestfriend Rachel why she called them or how it feels to have your bestfriend say she hates you. She never said anything to her teachers who scolded her for going from a good student to a failure. She never told her parents who just can't understand what their child has become. She never said anything, to anyone, at all. Sometimes what you have to say is so horrible, it's unspeakable. "I have no friends. I have nothing. I say nothing. I am nothing." This book is the very reason I am so enamoured of the YA genre. Books like this, and Thirteen Reasons Why and I'm sure countless others I've yet to encounter are on a playing field all their own. They are written not only so that everyone can understand, but in a voice that reflects the conflict of emotions that happens in the heart of every teenager. "Like OMG, SHUT UP" that's the surface and the majority of YA books and those happy go lucky books, while entertaining really don't give you any insight into humanity, which more than anything right now our impressionable youth needs. Books like this that deal with actions and consequences and force you to think on it's terms teach you so much more than you could ever imagine you'd learn from a young adult book. EVERYONE should read this book. I'm glad it's required reading material for some programs. It should be required reading material for life. The usual words that spring to mind to describe this book are "haunting", "beautiful", "dark" but those are so generic. The language of this book doesn't paint pretty pictures, it paints black holes. The story doesn't haunt you, it stays with you, right there, always, not like a ghost- like a heavy rock you can't move, and you'll stumble on it again and again. I can tell you this if you read it- you will never forget it, even if you want to. The edition I have is the Platinum Edition, excellently packaged (covers/jackets as bookmarks=bonus) and includes a discussion with the author, Laurie Halse Anderson.
Most helpful negative review
1 customers found this helpful
Melinda is a young adu...
Melinda is a young adult that is struggling to fit in at school. She had a traumatic experience the summer before school started. She loses the majority of her friends because she called the cops that night and they came to the party. Since then, she has had difficulty speaking. She will have to face her fears in order to regain self confidence and get her voice back. In this story, everybody shuns Melinda. No one takes the initiative to find out what is wrong even though she hasn't spoken. Students need to learn how important it is to be accepting and to be kind to everyone. Students should discuss and write about how they would feel if they were Melinda. It would also be beneficial for the students to think about a time that they felt troubled and had no one to turn to. They could design a poster that displayed what they turn to in troubled times; like Melinda turned to art. I did not like this book. In my opinion, it is unrealistic that not a single person would notice that something was bothering Melinda. It seemed very bland and did not describe things very well. I think that in this situation somebody would notice and reach out to Melinda.
Most helpful positive review
3 customers found this helpful
I wonder how long it ...
"I wonder how long it would take for anyone to notice if I just stopped talking." Melinda never said a word about what happened that night at the party. She never said anything when she was accused of calling the cops, getting a lot of people in major trouble. She never spoke up against her classmates when they pushed and bullied and belittled her for it. She never told her bestfriend Rachel why she called them or how it feels to have your bestfriend say she hates you. She never said anything to her teachers who scolded her for going from a good student to a failure. She never told her parents who just can't understand what their child has become. She never said anything, to anyone, at all. Sometimes what you have to say is so horrible, it's unspeakable. "I have no friends. I have nothing. I say nothing. I am nothing." This book is the very reason I am so enamoured of the YA genre. Books like this, and Thirteen Reasons Why and I'm sure countless others I've yet to encounter are on a playing field all their own. They are written not only so that everyone can understand, but in a voice that reflects the conflict of emotions that happens in the heart of every teenager. "Like OMG, SHUT UP" that's the surface and the majority of YA books and those happy go lucky books, while entertaining really don't give you any insight into humanity, which more than anything right now our impressionable youth needs. Books like this that deal with actions and consequences and force you to think on it's terms teach you so much more than you could ever imagine you'd learn from a young adult book. EVERYONE should read this book. I'm glad it's required reading material for some programs. It should be required reading material for life. The usual words that spring to mind to describe this book are "haunting", "beautiful", "dark" but those are so generic. The language of this book doesn't paint pretty pictures, it paints black holes. The story doesn't haunt you, it stays with you, right there, always, not like a ghost- like a heavy rock you can't move, and you'll stumble on it again and again. I can tell you this if you read it- you will never forget it, even if you want to. The edition I have is the Platinum Edition, excellently packaged (covers/jackets as bookmarks=bonus) and includes a discussion with the author, Laurie Halse Anderson.
Most helpful negative review
1 customers found this helpful
Melinda is a young adu...
Melinda is a young adult that is struggling to fit in at school. She had a traumatic experience the summer before school started. She loses the majority of her friends because she called the cops that night and they came to the party. Since then, she has had difficulty speaking. She will have to face her fears in order to regain self confidence and get her voice back. In this story, everybody shuns Melinda. No one takes the initiative to find out what is wrong even though she hasn't spoken. Students need to learn how important it is to be accepting and to be kind to everyone. Students should discuss and write about how they would feel if they were Melinda. It would also be beneficial for the students to think about a time that they felt troubled and had no one to turn to. They could design a poster that displayed what they turn to in troubled times; like Melinda turned to art. I did not like this book. In my opinion, it is unrealistic that not a single person would notice that something was bothering Melinda. It seemed very bland and did not describe things very well. I think that in this situation somebody would notice and reach out to Melinda.
1-5 of 291 reviews

High school freshman M...

High school freshman Melinda Sordino is finding it hard to speak up: "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." Of course no one at school is speaking to her, she's a virtual outcast among her peers. We learn right away the reason no one likes her: she called the cops at a party and got a lot of people busted. She had good reason to call out for help, but the reader doesn't learn about it until much later. Ostracized by the entire student body, Melinda is completely isolated. She had a small group of close friends, once upon a time, but we all know how quickly allies can become enemies when you're a teenager. I was stunned by this book - it is very well written, and the experience of Melinda's trauma and the pain she suffers every day is palpable. Her story is compelling from cover to cover. Melinda's journey of self-discovery takes place largely in her art class. It is only through art that she is capable of expressing her agony. Speak is affecting, heartbreaking, inspiring, and clever. Anderson portrays the reality of high school with absolute clarity and accuracy. Melinda's sarcastic sense of humor will have you alternately laughing and crying all the way through.

I wonder how long it ...

"I wonder how long it would take for anyone to notice if I just stopped talking." Melinda never said a word about what happened that night at the party. She never said anything when she was accused of calling the cops, getting a lot of people in major trouble. She never spoke up against her classmates when they pushed and bullied and belittled her for it. She never told her bestfriend Rachel why she called them or how it feels to have your bestfriend say she hates you. She never said anything to her teachers who scolded her for going from a good student to a failure. She never told her parents who just can't understand what their child has become. She never said anything, to anyone, at all. Sometimes what you have to say is so horrible, it's unspeakable. "I have no friends. I have nothing. I say nothing. I am nothing." This book is the very reason I am so enamoured of the YA genre. Books like this, and Thirteen Reasons Why and I'm sure countless others I've yet to encounter are on a playing field all their own. They are written not only so that everyone can understand, but in a voice that reflects the conflict of emotions that happens in the heart of every teenager. "Like OMG, SHUT UP" that's the surface and the majority of YA books and those happy go lucky books, while entertaining really don't give you any insight into humanity, which more than anything right now our impressionable youth needs. Books like this that deal with actions and consequences and force you to think on it's terms teach you so much more than you could ever imagine you'd learn from a young adult book. EVERYONE should read this book. I'm glad it's required reading material for some programs. It should be required reading material for life. The usual words that spring to mind to describe this book are "haunting", "beautiful", "dark" but those are so generic. The language of this book doesn't paint pretty pictures, it paints black holes. The story doesn't haunt you, it stays with you, right there, always, not like a ghost- like a heavy rock you can't move, and you'll stumble on it again and again. I can tell you this if you read it- you will never forget it, even if you want to. The edition I have is the Platinum Edition, excellently packaged (covers/jackets as bookmarks=bonus) and includes a discussion with the author, Laurie Halse Anderson.

There are some books t...

There are some books that have gained some notoriety, and yet somehow, curiously, have passed you by. I first encountered Speak through the movie, which was very well done. I made a note to read the book sometime, but only encountered it again recently. I picked up the book and immediately fell into the story, reading the entire book in one fell swoop. If someone had told me that a book which is, at its core, about a depressed teenager who was raped, could be funny, I would have been skeptical. But here, Laurie Halse Anderson pulls it off. The book starts with Melinda, a freshman who is entering her first year at high school ostracized from her previous friends. We find out that Melinda had attended a party earlier with her friend, but the party was broken up after Melinda called the police. Carefully, Anderson doles out hints: "IT" is referred to, Melinda wishes her friends knew what "really happened", and it is clear that there is something traumatic hiding in Melinda's past. However, Melinda's snarky commentary on the events of the novel, from the school struggling to rename their mascot to the cliques in the school, balance out the story so that the tragic backstory is never so overwhelming as to slip into maudlin. It also makes it very easy to root for Melinda as she stands up to a "friend" who uses her and dumps her, or ultimately, to her own greatest fear.This book is not shy. It has a painful ring of truth to it. Melinda is not a broken bird who recovers fully in Act III; she is a wounded young girl who is making her way through a trauma as best she can. What the book, I think, does better is that it shows Melinda's spark. She is funny, and smart, and quick-witted. She has a dry sense of humor. None of that went away because she was raped; it just becomes part of her inner world rather than her outer. Well worth a read, and I'm sorry it passed me by for so long. Speak is a genuinely moving, authentic story that is worthy of every ounce of praise it has earned.

At first, this story s...

At first, this story seems like it's about your average high schooler - Melinda is none too happy about starting high school, especially after a falling out with her friends, and withdraws to the point of barely speaking. But as she tells her story and you find out just why she's so withdrawn, your opinion of her changes completely. The story is scary realistic. Melinda sounds like she could be someone at just about any high school out there and the dialog is dead on. It's a book you'll want to read over and over because it's so easy to relate to Melinda, since we've all had times in our lives where we've felt like outcasts.

Bought this because my son had to read this for high school English class. Interesting read glad I took the time.

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Electrode, Comp-812499166, DC-prod-az-southcentralus-15, ENV-prod-a, PROF-PROD, VER-30.0.0, SHA-4c05261de7b7524702d8d137579365498522abc0, CID-01d4deb6-e6a-16df4b77763613, Generated: Tue, 22 Oct 2019 18:25:27 GMT