Laurie Halse Anderson
After a party which results in the police being called, freshman Melinda Sordino isn’t the most popular girl in school. The only friend that she manages to make is Heather, a girl who has just moved into the neighborhood, and doesn’t really know anyone or anything that has happened at the school. Even then, Melinda thinks of her as a “disposable friend”. Melinda as a character changes much throughout the book. She goes from a very secluded person who thinks badly of most everyone, to a more mentally strong and stable person.
The author Laurie Halse Anderson has done a phenomenal job in developing the characters, especially main character Melinda Sordino. The also incredibly sensitive topic of sexual abuse is covered in this book and the author does it perfectly. The book flows beautifully, and often has flashbacks to the party where “it happened”. The author could have done a better job of elaborating what happened at the party where Melinda was sexually assaulted, and how she got invited into that party, but the way Anderson did it was fine. This book will resonate differently with different people, and depending on their background, this could be an emotional book. This title is definitely one that is worth having at the library, as it talks about topics such as bullying, ostracism, and sexual assault. This title is one that both middle schoolers and high-schoolers can read without much trouble, as it uses simpler words, though there is a bit of foul language here and there. Lyonel L.; Teen Reviewer