"Speak" by Laurie Halse Anderson is a Young Adult Novel that was published in 1999. Since it's publication, "Speak" has received both critical acclaim and censorship. The novel was a New York Times Best-Seller the year it was released and it was a National Book Award finalist as well as the winner of the 2000 ALA Best … [Read more...] about Speak
Laurie Halse Anderson
Laurie Halse Anderson was born Laurie Halse in Potsdam, New York on October 23rd, 1961. The daughter of a reverend, she was interested in writing from a young age, as early as the second grade. She also enjoyed reading science fiction and fantasy. Anderson attended high school in Manlius, New York and at the age of sixteen, she moved out of her parents house and lived in Denmark as a foreign exchange student. After the exchange program ended, she returned to her home in New York and began working at a clothing store.
Soon, she began attended college at Onondaga Community College, later attending Georgetown University and graduating with a bachelor's degree in linguistics in 1984. In 1985, Anderson married Greg Anderson and they went on to have two children together before divorcing several years later.
Anderson began writing for The Philadelphia Inquirer in the 1990's, beginning her writing career. It was during this time that she also began writing Young Adult novels. Her first children's book, "Ndito Runs" was published in 1996 and that same year she published another children's book "Turkey Pox".
In 1999, Anderson published what is still her best known book, "Speak". The novel was a critical success and went on to be published in 16 languages as well as becoming a National Book Award finalist. In 2002, she published a book that took place in the same high school as "Speak" called "Catalyst". Anderson continued to make the New York Times Bestseller list throughout the early 2000's with her book "Prom" (2005) and "Twisted" (2007). Her novels deal with tough issues that face teenagers like rape, eating disorders and other issues.
Anderson has also written several historical novels including "Fever 1973" (2000) and "Chains" (2008), both of which take place in historical settings, the first being in the Philadelphia during an epidemic and the second being about a Revolutionary War era slave. Anderson has won many awards for her work, including the ALA Margaret A. Edwards award and the Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction. She currently lives in Mexico, New York with her husband Scott Larrabee.