By: Laurie Halse Anderson

How to find your voice....

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"This is where you can find your soul, if you dare. Where you can touch that part of you you've never dared look at before." (4.5)


Melinda battles with herself and her surroundings because of the extremely painful incident that occurred at the party. Due to the self-deprecating and shamefulness, she struggles to maintain relationships and focus on school. Melinda has only told one person about what Ändy did to her, which causes the problem of not getting any help or anyone understanding. Not even Melinda´s parents know.


The theme for the book ¨Speak¨ is depression and the affects it has not just on the outside, but also on the inside to a person. Melinda is the victim of rape and becomes depressed and self-destructive, which causes a problem for her in school and personal life. Depression and denial are the biggest points in this book and the struggles one goes through to overcome these issues.

¨I close my eyes, this is what I've been dreading. As we leave the last stop, I am the only person sitting alone.¨ (1.3)

¨I am outcast.¨ (1.8)

Speak Book Trailer

¨I should probably tell someone, just tell someone. Get it over with. Let it out, blurt it out.¨ (48.8)

"Andy Evans will use you. He is not what he pretends to be. I heard he attacked a ninth grader. Be very, very careful." (70.6)

Book Review

Speak is about a young girl named Melinda who attends Merryweather High School. She gets sexually abused at a high school party by a guy named Andy Evans and is too scared to tell anyone about the incident. Melinda is trying to fit in to a clique but no one wants to be friends with someone who calls the police at a party. She has a history with many girls that used to be long time friends that have abandoned her and she feels alone and depressed. However she does meet some important ones like David, Mr. Freeman, and Rachel. As she tries to overcome this gigantic obstacle by completely isolating herself, Melinda meets a teacher that will change her life. Melinda goes through many trials and tribulations throughout the book, including ditching classes and getting into trouble constantly as a form of self-destructiveness. She finally learns how and why she needs to find her voice,which becomes her saving grace. Andy or otherwise called ¨IT¨ by Melinda is an antagonist in the Melinda´s life not making the situation any easier. Mr. Freeman, the Art teacher, gives an all year-long assignment that starts off kind of silly and useless. However, throughout this assignment it forces Melinda to see what she has been hiding from herself all along and becomes a perfect healing tool.
Say What You Need To Say - Melinda (Speak)


  1. Anderson Halse, Laurie. Speak. October 22, 1999. Print
  2. The Purdue OWL Family of Sites. The writing Lab and OWL at Purdue and Purdue U. 2008. Web. 8 May, 2016. https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/747/08/
  3. Shmoop Editorial Team. "Speak Quotes." Shmoop. Shmoop University, Inc., 11 Nov. 2008. Web. 8 May, 2016. http://www.shmoop.com/speak-anderson/transformation-quotes.html