AUTHOR: Laurie Halse Anderson
PUBLICATION DATE: 10/22/1999
BACK COVER SUMMARY: 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.
OVERALL IMPRESSION: Every high school should have this book on their required reading list. It shows that you never know what anyone is going through and you shouldn't judge people before you know their story. This book is filled with emotion and I believe that it depicts how many teenagers feel, even if they never experience anything near as traumatic as Melinda did. High school is a rough time where teens are trying to find themselves and figure out how to deal with emotions and life and they don't always have someone they can talk to about it. This book taught me that when I have kids, I need to make sure I don't get wrapped up in my own life so much that I'm not there for them and they know they always have someone to come to.
CHARACTERS: Mr Freeman is my favorite character. I feel like he is the only supportive character in the book. He forces Melinda to face her emotions/past without even realizing it.
Melinda's parents make me angry. They're so wrapped up in their own worlds that they don't even realize that Melinda is crying out for help in the only way she knows how (by staying silent).
COVER: The cover is really symbolic of the book. I love the tree, as that is a big part of this story, but I also love how the tree covers her mouth.
MOVIE COMPARISON: When I was reading the interview at the back of the book, I discovered that a movie had been made starring Kristen Stewart. I actually like the movie quite a bit, but as usual the book was much better. I don't like the way the movie portrayed Andy, he just didn't come off the same way as he did in the book. If you liked the book, I would suggest giving the movie a try.