Book Review, Speak
Written By: Laurie Halse Anderson
Reviewed By: Somya Moyya,
high school writer
Laurie Halse Anderson effectively communicates the toll rape takes on its victims in a novel that truly touches the heart.
Melinda Sordino, incoming high school freshman, is raped at a party one night, and consequently ostracized by her friends for calling the police. Unable to verbalize her pain and with no one to listen, she stops speaking altogether, letting her art class be her only true form of expression.
Written in diary format, consisting of flashbacks to the traumatic experience that have caused Melinda so much confusion and misery, Speak takes readers on the journey with a girl who must come to terms with her rape, and begin recovery.
Speak has been awarded several recognitions for its bold themes of dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder caused by rape; it has also been translated into sixteen languages. In 2004, a film adaptation was directed by Jessica Sharzer.
The message received by Speak's readers is extremely powerful in its emphasis to never blame yourself under assault, and know that your voice is worth something to society.
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