Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
I am Outcast.
The kids behind me laugh so loud I know they’re laughing about me. I can’t help myself. I turn around. It’s Rachel, surrounded by a bunch of kids wearing clothes from the Eastside Mall. Rachel Bruin, my ex-best friend. She stares at something above my left ear. Words climb up my throat. This was the girl who suffered through Brownies with me, who taught me how to swim, who understood about my parents, who didn’t make fun of my bedroom. If there is anyone in the entire galaxy I am dying to tell what really happened, it’s Rachel. My throat burns.
Her eyes meet mine for a second. “I hate you,” she mouths silently.
Melinda Sordino’s freshman year is off to a horrible start. She busted an end-of-summer party by calling the cops, and now her friends–and even strangers–all hate her. Months pass and things aren’t getting better. She’s a pariah. The lowest of the low. Avoided by everyone. But eventually, she’ll reveal what happened at the party. And when she finally speaks the truth, everything will change.
After reading Wintegirls and seeing everyone rave about how Speak was even better I really had high hopes. For me however, this was a disapointment. It’s far too simply written for my tastes (I do think it was written for a younger audience and I am far too old so this could have been one aspect) and I just couldn’t connect with the character in the same way as Wintergirls. I did accidentally find out about the ‘twist’ before reading it so maybe this is why it didn’t have as much of an effect on me, although I did think it was pretty easy to figure out. It was still enjoyable but I didn’t really find it shocking or moving
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