From her first moment at Merryweather High, Melinda Sordino knows she’s an outcast. She busted an end-of-summer party by calling the cops – a major infraction in high-school society – so her old friends won’t talk to her, and people she doesn’t know glare at her. No one knows why she called the police, and she can’t get out the words to explain. So she retreats into her head, where the lies and hypocrisies of high school stand in stark relief to her own silence. But it’s not so comfortable in her head, either – there’s something banging around in there that she doesn’t want to think about. But, try as she might, it just won’t go away.
A stunning first novel… Anderson infuses the narrative with a wit that sustains the heroine through her pain and holds readers’ empathy. The book’s overall gritty realism and Melinda’s hard-won metamorphosis will leave readers touched and inspired. — PUBLISHERS WEEKLY Nails the high school experience cold. An uncannily funny book even as it plumbs the darkness, Speak will hold readers from first word to last. — THE HORN BOOK The plot is gripping and the characters are powerfully drawn, but it is its raw and unvarnished look at the dynamics of the high school experience that makes this a novel that will be hard for readers to forget. — KIRKUS REVIEWS ‘Strong and searching novels that cover very difficult scenarios…The humanity of the protagonist really shines through in the expert characterisation and writing, making these novels really challenge the reader’s empathy. I would strongly recommend these stark and thought provoking titles.’ — The Bookseller, 13th April 2001 ‘Anderson has produced an outstanding book which invites the reader’s admiration and empathy ! The power of Speak to evoke a positive response in spite of harrowing realism lies in Anderson’s poetic prose and witty first person narration.’ — BfK, July 2001 ‘Highly recommended.’ — THE SCOTSMAN