Saturday, December 19, 2015

Book Review: Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper

Author: Sharon M. Draper
Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers
Pages: 320
Format: E-book
Published: March, 2010
Price: $6.30 -> Rp86.745 (Amazon)
Rating: 5 / 5 stars

Date started: November 21, 2015 - Date finished: December 1, 2015

Eleven-year-old Melody has a photographic memory. Her head is like a video camera that is always recording. Always. And there's no delete button. She's the smartest kid in her whole school—but no one knows it. Most people—her teachers and doctors included—don't think she's capable of learning, and up until recently her school days consisted of listening to the same preschool-level alphabet lessons again and again and again. If only she could speak up, if only she could tell people what she thinks and knows . . . but she can't, because Melody can't talk. She can't walk. She can't write. Being stuck inside her head is making Melody go out of her mind—that is, until she discovers something that will allow her to speak for the first time ever. At last Melody has a voice . . . but not everyone around her is ready to hear it. From multiple Coretta Scott King Award winner Sharon M. Draper comes a story full of heartache and hope. Get ready to meet a girl whose voice you'll never, ever forget.
Melody is not like other kids her age. Ever since she was born Melody has a disability called spastic bilateral quadriplegia or better known as cerebral palsy which makes her unable to move parts of her body and not being able to speak. But, despite what you may call "disability" she has an advantage over anyone, she has a photographic memory, which makes her super smart.

Melody goes to a normal elementary school. She goes to Spaulding Street Elementary School but she's put in a "special" class alongside other kids with disabilities. Every once in a while the kids from her classroom are put together in a joint class with other normal kids of the school. Of course some kids accepted with open arms, some didn't really care, and others are just plain mean and think they're better than Melody and her disabled friends.

One day the teacher announced that there'll be open tryouts for members of a quiz team. The students chosen will get to represent the school in a prestigious quiz show aired on live television plus the winners of the national competition get to be on Good Morning America. Melody tried out for the team, during the practice tryouts she passed but her teacher didn't believe that Melody was smart enough to pass. Melody was hurt but she didn't give up hope.

With the help of Mrs. V, Melody studied really hard about anything that could come up on the real tryout for the quiz team. With the help of Mrs. V, Catherine, and her family. She's determined to prove everyone wrong.
“Everybody uses words to express themselves. Except me. And I bet most people don’t realize the real power of words. But I do. Thoughts need words. Words need a voice.”
Oh how I adore this book so much. I just want to shove this book up in everyone's faces and make them read it. When I have kids in the future, I'm gonna make them read this too. I want my kids to not be like Melody's schoolmates. I want to take a minute to say thanks to Sharon M. Draper for creating this beautiful story that I will forever hold near to my heart.

This book sends out such an important message, which is "never undermine or underestimate anyone". Reading about Melody's life I simply cannot imagine it, because of her disability so few people really believe that she's actually as smart as normal kids (if not smarter). The only people who believed in her were her family and her next door neighbor, which made me really glad because she has a strong support system. I cannot imagine if even her family doesn't believe in her.
“What would you do if you could fly?" Mrs. V asks as she glances from the bird to me. 
"Is that on the quiz?" I ask, grinning as I type.
"I think we've studied just about everything else." Mrs. V chuckles.
"I'd be scared to let go," I type.
"Afraid you'd fall?" she asks.
"No. Afraid it would feel so good, I'd just fly away.”
Upon reading this book I was introduced to a wide variety of characters. The author did a really great job in making the characters "stick" to the readers. From the main character herself, once you read this book you can't help but to root for her. Also you develop a certain journey about your feeling towards Melody's friends at school. Well, you'll love Melody's friends in her disability class (cause they're super hilarious) but you'll hate some and then you'll love some of Melody's normal friends. Some of them are nice and some are just plain nasty. For me, after I finished this book my feelings toward her friends are just pure hatred (I just can't believe how people can treat others like they did to Melody).
“We all have disabilities. What’s yours?”
There's not really anything you can hate about this book (well, for me at least). But I do (if i could) change the ending (purely because of my selfishness and my hatred towards normal people at Spaulding Street Elementary School). Don't get me wrong the ending was nice, cool, and ok. But if I were in Melody's shoes at that ending I would've done so much more than what she did.

5 stars for Melody, her mom and dad, her little sister, Catherine, and Mrs. V. I love you guys! Keep being strong, guys! (I say to them as if they're real people). Anyways, for those of you reading this review I need you to stop reading this review and start reading the book!

If you guys are wondering whether or not I cried, the answer is YES this book did make me cry.

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