"Speak" by Laurie Halse Anderson

  • Period: to

    Freshman year

  • The rape

    It was the summer before Melinda's freshman year of high school, and she goes to a party. At this party, Melinda and her friends get drunk and meet an older boy named Andy. Later on, Andy takes Melinda into the woods nearby and rapes her.
  • Quiet

    For the remaining part of the summer, Melinda doesn't hang out with any of her friends. While they carry on going to parties, Melinda stays home and spirals into a depression.
  • School starts

    On the first day of school, Melinda sees all her old friends, but they refuse to talk to her. They pretty much forgot about her, after she called the cops at the party and got them busted. Melinda meets Heather, who is her only friend at this point.
  • Art class

    Art class
    The only class Melinda likes is her art class. She feels like this is the only way she can escape and express herself without feeling judged.
  • Janitor's closet

    Shortly after school starts, Melinda discovers a janitor's closet. This is where she goes to escape. She sleeps, draws, and just sits and thinks here. She spends a good part of the year in this closet.
  • Report card

    Melinda recieves her first report card of the year, and her parents are very dissapointed.
  • Thanksgiving

    Melinda's Thanksgiving is horrible, but she makes an awesome sculpture out of the turkey bones. So she doesn't think it was so bad.
  • Skipping school

    Melinda recieves yet another bad report card, and starts skipping school often.
  • Christmas

    Melinda's parents give her a sketchpad and charcoals for Christmas. Melinda thought the sketchpad was thoughtful, since she likes to draw. This gave her some hope that her parents actually care about her.
  • ISS

    After Melinda goes to ISS with Andy, she decides to start going to all her classes again to avoid seeing him.
  • Heather

    Heather tells Melinda she no longer wants to be friends, so now Melinda is completely friendless.
  • Andy & Rachel

    Andy and Rachel (Melinda's ex best friend) start dating, and Melinda doesn't know how to react. So she just lets them be for a while.
  • Confession

    Melinda tries to tell Rachel what happened and to be warned about Andy, but Rachel doesn't believe her. She thinks Melinda is just jealous of her and Andy's relationship.
  • No more

    Melinda decides it's time to start talking about what Andy did.
  • Attempt #2

    Melinda decides she can't just hide in the janitor's closet anymore, so she's in there cleaning out her stuff when Andy comes in. He attempts to rape her again, when she breaks a mirror and threatens him to get off of her. Thankfully, people hear her screaming and come to her rescue.
  • Happy

    By this time, everyone knows about Melinda and Andy's situation. Everybody sees Melinda as a sort of hero, for being so "strong". But now, she's finally happy.
  • Mr. Freeman

    Finally, on the last day of school, Melinda tells Mr. Freeman everything that happened. He was always her favorite teacher, and he always knew there was something wrong. So she finally decided to tell him.
  • Research

    Article 1: http://www.911rape.org/impact-of-rape/common-reactions
    This article talks about the common reactions to rape. Most people suffer severe and long lasting emotional trauma. Article 2: http://www.experienceproject.com/stories/Am-A-Teen-Rape-Victim/1171042
    This article is a story written by a girl, who was raped by her older step-brother at a young age. It's similar to my book because of the way she reacted. She never told anyone, which made recovery that much worse.