My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is the dark and depressing tale of a freshman in high school who is shunned by her so-called friends and everyone else in school for calling the cops during a party in the summer. She retreats into her mind and stops talking but the memories of that horrible night won't leave her alone and eventually she has to let it all out.
I really felt the pain of high school in this book. I remember how things like the cafeteria and who you are going to sit with are HUGE deals when you are in it. It's a place I never want to be again. I enjoyed seeing the progress of Melinda as she begins to crack open and the words start to come out. She finds ways to gain her strength and confidence again.
There are definite parallels to Sarah Dessen's Just Listen, but the plots are developed differently. It is probably one reason I liked reading Speak so much, I really loved Just Listen.
I read this book in a few hours without stopping, for this reason and the well-developed character and prose it is more like a 4.75 for me.
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