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Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Book Review: Shout by Laurie Halse Anderson


A memoir about sexual assault is never going to be easy. And I wasn't sure about reading a book in verse--I'd never tried one of those before. But I heard such good things about this, that I figured I should give it a whirl. After all, last year when I first heard about the Reading Without Walls program (it's in the summer but what the hey), I scoffed at it, saying "I read so broadly I can't possibly need to stretch myself." Well the third thing mentioned as a possibility was "a book in verse." Oops. Well now I can say I've ticked that off my list.

This book was good. It was powerful. Anderson really got a lot off her chest. And it's good for teens--memoirs aren't just for adults. However, it hasn't stuck with me. Not like Speak did. I think Shout was more elusive because of its lack of a single narrative thread throughout and the multiplicity of topics. I did love it while I was reading it and it will be beloved by many, but Speak was still such a harrowing the visceral experience that it stands head and shoulders about all its peers. This is a good companion book and will lead to discussions and much thinking, especially in teens.

I got an ARC of this book for free from the publisher at SIBA.

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