You know how last week I wrote a post about soul and mentioned I'd be doing a review of the book that gave me the lightbulb moment? Well, SPEAK is that book.
I'm the kind of person who likes to give everyone the benefit of the doubt. I like to try to understand why a person believes the way he/she does by getting as much information as possible about the subject. So when all this drama concerning a particular gentleman who claimed SPEAK contained scenes of soft core porn started surfacing around the internet, I decided I needed to read the book to understand why he might have come to that conclusion.
Well let me tell you, dear readers, I really wish this man had read the book. I'm afraid his fears might have been the result of hearsay rather than firsthand knowledge because SPEAK is less about rape and more about the despair, loneliness, terror, and utter depression that comes from something like that happening to a person. And it was written beautifully. I actually cried while reading this book and it's been years since a book has made me shed a tear. Ms. Anderson adequately dredged up every horrible memory of my own to trigger my own despair to sympathize with poor Melinda Sordino.
And those two rape scenes the gentleman showed particular concern over? Not even remotely graphic. Chilling yes, but not sexually graphic. This is a book that is perfectly appropriate for the entire 12-18 year old range of YA. I, personally, would not restrict any teenager from reading it because kids at that age need to know that everyone suffers one way or another during those hormone driven years of school. This book would be helpful to ANYONE, not just rape victims.
If you haven't read SPEAK yet, I highly suggest you do so.