Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Speak - Laurie Halse Anderson

Speak: 10th Anniversary Edition by Laurie Halse Anderson has left me speechless. There are not words to express how moved I was by this book. It captured the raw and painful emotions of high school, entwined with the rape of Melinda. This book caught me completely off guard. I started it on a plane ride home and finished it by the time I arrived. I was entirely wrapped up in her pain, fear and anger.

I don’t know what surprised me more, the extraordinary emotion that radiates from the pages or some of the things Anderson said in the endnotes of the 10th Anniversary Edition. One thing she mentioned was that she repeatedly has guys asking her why Melinda was so upset about being raped! I was blown away, as was she, but I think she handled the question and trying to understand where these guys were coming from very well. That question reinforces how important this book is by allowing people to start talking.

This was a book that has not only allowed people to relate to it with their similar experiences, but it has also helped people to understand what someone else goes through. It has opened up communication for so many people, young and old, and I now understand why.

This is a must read for anyone. I was brought back to my school experiences with feeling so misunderstood and I wish I had a book like this to read when I was in 7th grade. I wish I had known about this book in high school, when it was released. I can’t wait to read more from Anderson.


Anonymous said...

"One thing she mentioned was that she repeatedly has guys asking her why Melinda was so upset about being raped!"

You have got to be kidding! I don't know what to say to that. But I'm amazed these guys could even read, let alone read this book.

I loved this book too. I read it some years ago - very powerful.

nat @book, line, and sinker said...

i'm guilty of just skimming your review--i have this book in my TBR pile--and don't want to know anything about it! :)

i fobbed the book off on my mom a few months ago because i had such a back-log but now i've cleared my nightstand and am ready to give it a read. i'll be back to see how my review squares up with yours! :)