Thursday, February 3, 2011

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson

Melinda is a freshman beginning her first year of high school, and already a social pariah. At a party before school began, she called the police, getting the party busted. Her friends pretend she doesn't exist, everyone seems to know who she is, and she is completely outcast from everything.

Her only reprieve is art class and the janitor's closet she uses to hide. She's ok with no one talking to her--then they aren't asking her what happened. Something horrible happened to her the night of the party, something she would prefer to forget. But when IT starts dating her former best friend, Melinda feels she needs to speak up. When she finally shares what happens, her best friend doesn't believe her...but not everyone has such a great opinion of IT.

A powerful and moving story about how painful things can be to talk about--especially rape. Melinda's character is believable and sympathetic, and her situation is heartbreaking.

They also made a movie out of this book--it was fabulous. Very well done--check it out if you get a chance!

Spirit Seeker by Joan Lowery Nixon

Holly's life is full of small stresses. The strain on her from her parents' marriage, school, friends, and just being a teenager.

Then Holly's father--a police detective--comes home to tell her Cody, her boyfriend, is a suspect in the murder of his parents.

Holly must race the clock in order to prove Cody's innocence--even though all the evidence points at him. And she needs to open herself up to the abilities she's tried to ignore.

Some paranormal aspects in the story. Holly is a sympathetic character, and although a lot of the situations need a heavy suspension of disbelief, the action, mystery, and solution are well done. The reader is left questioning Cody's guilt and Holly's belief right to the end.