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by Laurie Halse Anderson

Speak Questions

Bring on the tough stuff - there’s not just one right answer.

  1. Pick at least one character. Now imagine you're a fortune teller reading this character's future in your crystal ball. What do you see?
  2. Melinda finds some solutions to her problems by watching daytime talk show hosts discuss rape. What do you think about daytime talk shows? Can they offer much-needed advice to teens? Can they also give bad advice? How do you know which is which?
  3. How does your high school experience, or your idea of the high school experience, compare with Melinda's? Does Speak provide a realistic view of high school? Why, or why not?
  4. Is it possible that some victims heal and recover even if they don't talk about being sexually assaulted? Should a person's right not to speak be respected?
  5. What is Melinda's biggest motivation for talking about the rape? What is her biggest motivation for not talking about it?
  6. Does Melinda change as a narrator from the first day of school, when the novel begins, to the last day of school, when it ends?
  7. Do you like the way Speak ends? Why, or why not?
  8. Mr. Neck takes the position, unpopular with most of his students, that the US should have stopped all immigration in the year 1900. How do you feel about this statement? Does the issue of immigration tie in with any of the novel major themes? Why or why not?

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