"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.
A timeless novel about consent and finding the courage to speak up for yourself, the twentieth anniversary edition of the classic novel that has spoken to so many young adults now includes a new introduction written and read by acclaimed writer, host, speaker, and cultural commentator Ashley C. Ford as well as an afterword written and read by New York Times-bestselling author of All American Boys and Long Way Down, Jason Reynolds. This edition will also feature an updated Q&A, resource list, and essay and poem written and read by Laurie Halse Anderson.
Praise for Speak:
"In a stunning first novel, Anderson uses keen observations and vivid imagery to pull readers into the head of an isolated teenager...? Will leave readers touched and inspired."
Publishers Weekly, starred review
"An uncannily funny book even as it plumbs the darkness, Speak will hold readers from first word to last."
The Horn Book, starred review
Accolades for Speak:
New York Times Bestseller
Publishers Weekly Bestseller
Michael L. Printz Honor Book
National Book Award Finalist
Edgar Allan Poe Award Finalist
Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist
ALA Top Ten Best Book for Young Adults
ALA Quick Pick
Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year
Booklist Top Ten First Novel
BCCB Blue Ribbon Book
School Library Journal Best Book of the Year
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by Laurie Halse Anderson
by Peter Abrahams
by Aprilynne Pike
by Sharon Creech
by Laurie Myers
by Laurie Keller
by Laurie Friedman
by M.T. Anderson
by Sherwood Anderson
"Melinda is an unlikely heroine--withdrawn and friendless. She even forgets to wash her hair. She is appropriately complicated for a high-school freshman grappling with feeling alone, grasping for originality, and hiding a terrible secret that has stifled her voice. Anderson's words often seem gleaned directly from a confused teenager's soul, and only occasionally do Melinda's thoughts sound too much like arch cultural commentary to be genuine. Mandy Siegfried has the right weary tone; as Melinda, she is lamenting, resigned, self-loathing, and at times as bleak as a Syracuse winter. But there's life in her cynical observations of her peers, teachers and parents, and in her fleeting feeling of sanctuary in art class. By the end, listeners will be urging Melinda to act, to open her compulsively chewed, scarred lips and speak. J.M.D. (c) AudioFile 2000, Portland, Maine"
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