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Out of my mind. Ho 11 anni e non ho mai parlato PDF, ePub eBook

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Out of my mind. Ho 11 anni e non ho mai parlato

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Out of my mind. Ho 11 anni e non ho mai parlato PDF, ePub eBook Melody non è come gli altri bambini. Non può camminare, né parlare, ma ha una formidabile memoria fotografica; si ricorda ogni minimo dettaglio di tutto ciò che vive. È più intelligente della maggior parte degli adulti che provano a curarla e più intelligente dei suoi compagni di scuola. La maggior parte del tempo, però, Melody si sente come un uccellino in gabbia; è in gr Melody non è come gli altri bambini. Non può camminare, né parlare, ma ha una formidabile memoria fotografica; si ricorda ogni minimo dettaglio di tutto ciò che vive. È più intelligente della maggior parte degli adulti che provano a curarla e più intelligente dei suoi compagni di scuola. La maggior parte del tempo, però, Melody si sente come un uccellino in gabbia; è in grado di osservare il mondo intorno, ma non riesce ad interagire con esso. Sono tante le parole e i sentimenti che si accumulano e restano intrappolati dentro di lei. Ma Melody si rifiuta di essere definita cerebralmente paralizzata. Ed è determinata a farlo sapere a tutti... in qualche modo. L'autrice conosce bene l'argomento in quanto anche sua figlia Wendy è paralizzata cerebralmente. E anche se Melody non è Wendy, la veridicità della storia è lampante. Raccontato dalla voce di Melody, questo romanzo commovente da subito fa risaltare la sua intelligenza e la sua determinazione a superare quegli ostacoli che paiono insormontabili.

30 review for Out of my mind. Ho 11 anni e non ho mai parlato

  1. 5 out of 5

    Destinee Sutton

    Many people love love love this book, so I'm going to skip the praise (you can read plenty of it elsewhere) and go straight to criticism: 1. The phrase "untouched in my hands" really bothers me. How can something be untouched if it's in your hands? 2. I worry this book is dated already. Do kids in the year 2010 really say "tight" anymore? I know Draper is trying to make Melody sound like a real kid, but to me she sounds like an adult trying to sound like a kid. In fact, a lot of dialogue struck Many people love love love this book, so I'm going to skip the praise (you can read plenty of it elsewhere) and go straight to criticism: 1. The phrase "untouched in my hands" really bothers me. How can something be untouched if it's in your hands? 2. I worry this book is dated already. Do kids in the year 2010 really say "tight" anymore? I know Draper is trying to make Melody sound like a real kid, but to me she sounds like an adult trying to sound like a kid. In fact, a lot of dialogue struck me as unrealistic (i.e. an adult's version of what she thinks modern kids sound like). I've never heard anyone say, "She is tripping," without droppin' the g. I haven't heard anyone say, "He thinks he's all that," since 1998 (unless it was sarcastic). Now, I still say things are "the bomb," but I'm a lot older than the kids in this book. Other things that I think will date this book: MySpace, TiVo, Nintendo Wii, iPhones, and the phrase "That's what's up!" (Update: Okay, so iPhones are not going to date the book and I'm now married to a guy who says "That's what's up!" all the time. However, I still stand by droppin' the g in trippin' and kids not calling things tight or "all that." I've re-read sections of the book and I think it's Draper's overuse of exclamation points that makes her characters sound inauthentic.) 3. It strikes me as unrealistic that Melody, with her super intelligence, couldn't communicate better using her low-tech talking board. If she's a perfect speller, couldn't she spell out "I love you," to her parents? Or use the talking board to tell the story of what happened to her goldfish? Wouldn't her parents take the time to allow her to do that? Better yet, wouldn't her parents research adaptive technology so they could communicate better with their child? 4. The villains in this story (Molly and Claire, the bad teachers and the stupid psychologist that gives Melody her initial intelligence test) are totally one-dimensional. I get really annoyed when authors create flat characters that are easy to hate. You can have bad guys, but flesh them out a little. Why was the psychologist who gave Melody her initial intelligence test so terrible? I suppose this is why second opinions are so important. Why are Molly and Claire so mean? Why aren't they held accountable? 5. I thought the near-tragedy thrown in at the end of the book didn't really contribute to the story. It was a weird way to end the book, like the author wanted to crank up the melodrama in the end, and she overdid it. And how weird was the scene at the end where Melody reacts to a difficult situation by laughing hysterically? 6. This is a personal issue: I went to elementary school with a boy who had CP and he spent just a small part of each day away from the rest of our class. If this was the case in the 1980s, it's hard for me to believe that educators in the 21st Century have regressed into the situation Melody finds herself in. I could be completely wrong, but it still affected the way I felt about the book. I loved the first chapter, but I grew more and more skeptical as it went on. (Update: Many people have told me in the comments that it *is* common for children with disabilities to be segregated from the rest of the school. I suppose I should remove this criticism, but I will leave it -- it shows that what strikes one reader as unrealistic can be all too realistic for another reader. Thanks, commenters.) To conclude my review I want to say: I'm not heartless! I think this story has the potential to really move young readers, to make them look at their abilities in a more appreciative light. And I think it's important for kids to read stories told from a perspective like Melody's because it opens their minds and hearts. But this book had a lot of shortcomings and I'm not one to ignore them just because the subject matter is important. I really believe this could have been a much better book. Update: I just read something by author Patrick Ness on School Library Journal's Battle of the Books 2014. He said there are too many books he calls CBAITS, which stand for Crappy Books About Important Things. I was like, yes! I don't think I'd go so far as to call Out of My Mind a crappy book, but I do think its important subject matter blinded some readers to its literary flaws.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin

    I have a lot of say about this book. I had so many feels. I have cried and I have raged. BOOKS MAKE ME FEEL! ****FREAKING SPOILERS**** In this book we meet Melody. I'm going to write a good amount of excerpts about Melody. *Melody had a pink wheelchair until she upgraded. *Melody had a goldfish named Ollie until he jumped out of the bowl and died. (she got blamed) *Melody got a dog she names Butterscotch by pointing at candy until her parents get it right. *Melody has cerebral-palsy. *Melody can't sp I have a lot of say about this book. I had so many feels. I have cried and I have raged. BOOKS MAKE ME FEEL! ****FREAKING SPOILERS**** In this book we meet Melody. I'm going to write a good amount of excerpts about Melody. *Melody had a pink wheelchair until she upgraded. *Melody had a goldfish named Ollie until he jumped out of the bowl and died. (she got blamed) *Melody got a dog she names Butterscotch by pointing at candy until her parents get it right. *Melody has cerebral-palsy. *Melody can't speak, walk, eat on her own or take herself to the bathroom. *Melody had a doctor tell her mom that she has brain damage. (bastard) *Melody has a photographic memory. *Melody tells the story in her mind through-out the book. *Melody is fictional but there are many Melody's. *Melody has a wonderful neighbor named Violet who taught her to do things she couldn't. *Melody has a very loving mom and dad. *Melody has a new baby sister. *Melody has a wonderful aide, Catherine that helps her in school. *Melody goes to school with a couple of @ssholes. Here is a little more about Melody. I have no idea how I untangled the complicated process of words and thought, but it happened quickly and naturally. By the time I as two, all my memories had words, and all my words had meanings. But only in my head. I have never spoken one single word. I am almost eleven years old. ••••••• When I sleep, I dream. And in my dreams I can do anything. I get picked first on the playground for games. I can run so fast! I take gymnastics, and I never fall off the balance beam. I know how to square-dance, and I'm good at it. I call my friends on the phone, and we talk for hours. I whisper secrets. I sing. When I wake up in the morning, it's always sort of a letdown as reality hits me. I have to be fed and dressed so I can spend another long day in the happy-face room at Spaulding Street School. Melody is smart as a whip. Like I said before, she has a photographic memory. But no one knows this. She memorizes the shows she watches on Discovery Channel. Well, she memorizes everything. I would love to have a photographic memory. Melody's next door neighbor, Violet, would watch her when she was little while her parents worked. She taught Melody that she could roll over while she was on the floor. Melody knew everything Violet was saying to her. She learned from Violet. When Melody got a little older, Violet taught her how to fall out of her wheelchair correctly if someone forgot to strap her in, so she wouldn't bash her head. Violet made a board with as many words written down so Melody could point to certain words and people could sort of communicate with her. It wasn't much but it was something. I felt bad for Melody at school because she was in that one class with all of the handicapped kids and they weren't really taught much of anything. Melody was too bright for all of that but couldn't tell anyone. One day though, the school decided the kids should start being put in the normal classes for one day a week or so. Melody is so happy! This is where she thinks she meets a good friend in a girl named Rose and she does for the most part. Rose just messed up a couple of times. But she also meets the evil bitches, Claire and Molly. I will get to those @ssholes in a few minutes. One day Melody sees someone with a new lap top and she starting thinking about Stephen Hawking. She manages to give enough hints to Catherine about getting something just for Melody. They start searching online and they find the Medi-Talker! Catherine gets all of the information for Melody to take home to her parents. Melody is so excited when she gets to Violets and they research the Medi-Talker more so that when Melody's mom comes over to get her she sits down at the computer and they all discuss trying to get one. It turns out the insurance will pay for half of it. So they have to go through all of this stuff and paperwork and signatures and more paperwork and then FINALLY it gets there! Violet and Melody work on it until her parents get home. They were okay with it because of all the excitement. It was such a special moment. I cried, yeah. Melody got to actually speak to her parents for the first time. "Hi, Dad. Hi, Mom. I am so happy." Mom gets all teary-eyed, and her nose gets red. She is looking at me all soft and gooey. When I think about it, I realize I have never, ever said any words directly to my parents. So I push a couple of buttons, and the machine speaks the words I've never been able to say. "I love you." Mom completely loses it. She bubbles up with tears and grabs dad. I think he might be sniffling back a couple of tears himself. But he has recorded it all. At one point in one of the classes, Melody wants to try out for the Quiz Team. She was the highest one to score when they did a sample test. Mr. D. was reluctant at first but apologized later. I thought I was going to have to smack him too. Anyway, Melody's little Medi-Talker also prints out anything she types if she wants it to so she can participate in class and all kinds of things. Let me tell you, these bitches named Claire and Molly mouth off about Melody from the get go and I wanted to beat the shit out of them. I DO NOT TOLERATE PEOPLE THAT SAY BAD THINGS TO HANDICAPPED PEOPLE, ANY KIND OF ABUSER (PEOPLE & ANIMAL) ANIMAL KILLERS, PEOPLE KILLERS, PEDOPHILES. IT'S SAD THAT I CAN PROBABLY GO ON AND ON. But, I digress. Here is just a little excerpt from them that made me want to snatch them up out of their chairs. I found the perfect gif for that too. When we arrive at Mr. Dimming's room, a group of kids from my history class are already there, whispering together and going over note cards. They look up in surprise when Catherine wheels me in. "Hi, Melody," Rose says. "What are you doing here?" Her voice doesn't sound as friendly as usual. "Quiz team," I type. "She can't be on the team," I hear Claire whisper to Jessica, wrinkling up her nose. "She's from the retard room!" Molly thinks that really funny. She screeches like a blue jay when she laughs. THIS IS WHAT I THINK OF THAT! Anyhoo, Melody gets into the group and they are all going to DC after they win the first round. Well, lets just say some stuff happens and they didn't win. And some other horrible things happen but we won't talk about that, you can read all of that. I was so proud of Melody though. She held her head up as high as she could and told the whole class off in her own way. I totally loved this story. I love Melody. I love all of the wonderful people in the book. I loved how the author told the story. I just LOVED IT, K! And to think, I might never have read this book if I didn't get the paperback from Amazon for $5 and some change for a goodreads challenge. I thought it sounded good but I had no idea how good! MY BLOG: Melissa Martin's Reading List

  3. 4 out of 5

    Claire

    Oh, man. I'm finding this book very difficult to write about. I really want to like this book. Before I was a librarian, I was a disability rights advocate; and of the many experiences that I had during those six years, one of the most intense and formative was supporting a young woman my age who had CP and was nonverbal. She was a client and then a friend, and much of our time together was spent supporting her to learn how to use a speech device to communicate in her own words. She passed away Oh, man. I'm finding this book very difficult to write about. I really want to like this book. Before I was a librarian, I was a disability rights advocate; and of the many experiences that I had during those six years, one of the most intense and formative was supporting a young woman my age who had CP and was nonverbal. She was a client and then a friend, and much of our time together was spent supporting her to learn how to use a speech device to communicate in her own words. She passed away a few years ago, and I miss her. Our friendship, and the experience of supporting her to learn to speak using her own words, necessarily colors my reading of this book and others like it - so that's why I feel the need to include it in a book review. My family experience with disability in general and CP in particular changes my perspective too. It makes me an unobjective reader, and prone to judge the book on my own experiences - so of course, take my review with a grain or ten of salt. Please excuse any rambling! So as a reader, and in my librarian life, I frequently look for books for teens and kids that star characters with disabilities. There are truly wonderful ones (Rules) and terrible ones (So B. It). I particularly keep my eyes open for books that star characters with depth, complexity, and personhood, rather than ones that use people with disabilities as a foil or plot device acting on characters without disabilities. And I frequently get irritated at authors who write ridiculous, inauthentic portrayals of PWD (*cough* So B. It *cough*). I know that gifted authors can write anything -- whether or not it's close to their own life experience -- but I have found that for the most part, authors who write what they know about PWD rather than what they've gleaned from inaccurate pop-culture representations, tend to write better books. So when I heard about this book, shaped in part by Sharon Draper's own experience as the mother of a child with CP who is nonverbal, I had high hopes. Even though she's not writing about her daughter, her writing must be informed from her experiences - and in some ways, it's really successful. When Draper describes Melody's physical reactions -- really all the ways that everyone can see her from the outside -- it rings true. Her descriptions of Melody's physical reactions are pitch-perfect, as are the reactions she gets from many people around her, the special ed classrooms, and the incredibly frustrating nature of being confined to limited language. Clearly Draper has a lot of insight and an insider perspective that's valuable to us as readers. And she has a worthwhile agenda: she wants young readers to question their assumptions about PWD, including nonverbal people, and to recognize that Melody is brilliant, more than she appears, and underestimated. I think this is where the premise derails -- from the first page, really. The story is unapologetically didactic, but also stilted in its writing. Melody lacks complexity as a character -- she's brilliant in kind of an Encyclopedia Brown way, with a photographic memory, the ability to retain anything she learns, and perfect spelling. Unfortunately, she has about Encyclopedia's level of depth and well-roundedness as well. It's not just that this is unlikely -- that people's brains don't develop their neural pathways in quite that orthographic way without a lot of verbal and written practice, regardless of their intelligence. It takes a long, long time with a lot of practice to learn how to be fluent in verbal and written communication, whether you have a disability or not. It doesn't hold water - it's unrealistic and painfully hopeful. But let's assume that we accept Melody's Encylopedia-Brown-like reality, and suspend disbelief. If we believe that Melody has instant facility with spoken language -- or learned how to use a complex speech device in a single weekend without the support of a speech pathologist -- it makes no sense that Melody wouldn't have been able to communicate effectively with her family and peers. If she has access to even a low-tech letter board (which we know she does), with her perfect spelling and syntax she can communicate almost as effectively as a person who can speak. With a speech device that she can program and use fluently, and the will to use it and 24/7 access to it, she's unstoppable. It's impossible to believe that with such skills and involved parents, she would be so totally disenfranchised in her school and her life in general. Why is she in that isolated special ed classroom in 2010? Where is her IEP and her case worker? She has a 1:1 aide and an effective speech device -- clearly her parents have prevailed through MAJOR negotiations with insurance, school and state funders -- but isn't mainstreamed full-time? Where is her internet, for goodness sakes? It doesn't make any sense, in a real-world context. I could believe it if she had insurmountable barriers to communication, developmental delays, uninvolved or uninformed parents, or a school district that really stonewalled advocacy. Or even if she wasn't the world's best speller. I just can't believe it of her -- and I think it doesn't recognize the many nonverbal people who DO communicate and advocate for themselves effectively despite massive physical impairments. People type out Morse Code with their heels, use a head switch, or use a single working finger to access speech devices. The book felt like Julie Anne Peters's books to me: yes, the issues in her books DO arise for many LGBTQ youth. Is it realistic that they'd happen to her characters in that way? Not so much. Oh dear. I could go on about my thoughts on this book for a long time, and I don't mean to disrespect Ms. Draper's intelligence, experience, and hard work as an author. The book shines in the authenticity of its "shown" rather than "told" details - it's in those moments that it rises above the didactic and flat elements of the story. I wish we'd had more moments like those, and I appreciate that they were there.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Raeleen Lemay

    I really enjoyed this! It's perfect for fans of Wonder by R.J. Palacio, and I think this should be required reading in elementary schools. Really powerful.

  5. 5 out of 5

    April (Aprilius Maximus)

    I can't even begin to explain the importance of this book and how it has the power to influence so many people in how they treat others. I honestly don't even have words to describe my feelings for this book just yet, but once I do, I plan on screaming them from the rooftops so that everyone reads this book.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Suzanne

    Volunteering at my daughter’s high school library has its perks. Not only do I get to look at books all day, but I get to borrow. I was generifying the senior fiction section before Christmas when I found books on my list such as this one, and books by my Goodreads friends as well: Lynne Stringer and Adele Jones. Very exciting! I see some weird judgemental reviews here on this book. This book educates. This book is fiction. This book shows us life is not always a cup of coffee easy. Is it? This b Volunteering at my daughter’s high school library has its perks. Not only do I get to look at books all day, but I get to borrow. I was generifying the senior fiction section before Christmas when I found books on my list such as this one, and books by my Goodreads friends as well: Lynne Stringer and Adele Jones. Very exciting! I see some weird judgemental reviews here on this book. This book educates. This book is fiction. This book shows us life is not always a cup of coffee easy. Is it? This book should be required reading for Primary school age. I loved it. The power of the human spirit to have faith in helping another person to learn, and the strength of that person to learn against all adversity and other’s ignorance. This is highly recommended reading for humans of all ages. So I prepared two answers – one that is polite but kind of wordy, and one that is a little smart-mouthed. To those who are genuinely concerned, I push a button to say, “I have spastic bilateral quadriplegia, also known as cerebral palsy. It limits my body, not my mind” I think that last part is pretty cool. To people like Claire and Molly, I say, "We all have disabilities. What's yours?" “What would you do if you could fly?” Mrs. V asks… “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”. It took me a long time to type that.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Ann

    I felt like a terrible person the entire time I read this book because I disliked it so much, especially since I think that it's an important book and a really thoughtful book in many ways. I was impressed with the author for writing a story from the perspective of someone with cerebral palsy, and thought she did a great job of expressing the difficulties of living with that condition. The intentions were good, but wow, I couldn't stand Melody. If someone talked like she does throughout the book I felt like a terrible person the entire time I read this book because I disliked it so much, especially since I think that it's an important book and a really thoughtful book in many ways. I was impressed with the author for writing a story from the perspective of someone with cerebral palsy, and thought she did a great job of expressing the difficulties of living with that condition. The intentions were good, but wow, I couldn't stand Melody. If someone talked like she does throughout the book that didn't have cerebral palsy, then no reader would like her at all. But since she does, I'm supposed to think she's wonderful. She was completely arrogant and unlikable, and I never felt sympathetic for her because I disliked the way she talked about the people around her so much. I recognize that the author was trying to show her frustrations, but I still didn't like her at all. Additionally, every character in the book is cookie-cutter: from Mrs. V (her very name being a cliche) to the kids in the school - predictable stock characters. I hated the scenes in which Melody's mom "shows" the adults in her daughter's life how wrong they are by humiliating them and "putting them in their place". I hated the climactic interaction with kids at school. I thought the tacked-on Penny ending was completely unnecessary. The book had really great potential, and I still think that the perspective is important to tell, but I haven't disliked a character so much since I had to suffer through The Girls from Ames.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Rabia Sultana

    The book "Out of my mind" by Sharon M. Draper has changed my view of how people view others. This book is the story of a girl who was born unable to speak, walk, write, or anything on her own. Ever since the day she's been born she's always been helped by someone,never able to do something on her, not even talk. She was always seen as the girl in the wheel cahir who couldn't do anything. So when Melody finally can do something on her, can even speak for the first time, why do people still look The book "Out of my mind" by Sharon M. Draper has changed my view of how people view others. This book is the story of a girl who was born unable to speak, walk, write, or anything on her own. Ever since the day she's been born she's always been helped by someone,never able to do something on her, not even talk. She was always seen as the girl in the wheel cahir who couldn't do anything. So when Melody finally can do something on her, can even speak for the first time, why do people still look at her as helpless and weak? In the school Melody goes to, Spaulding Street Elementary School, she is in a goup with other with "what they call 'disabilities'." They're put in a group from ages 9-11 and they're "learning community"[pg.29:] has been together from the begining of school. But every single one of her teachers with a a exception of one has treated them as if they are babies and know nothing. Even they're classroom has been painted as if they were 4 not 9 or 11,with walls of "dozens of flowers...smiley faces", and "painted with happy bunnies, kittens, and puppies."[pg.30:]They are not little kids, so why is their classroom look like a little kids playhouse. Do people really think that they're not even smart enough to see the difference of their classrooms and others? Like, just becasue they're not as smart as others, does it mean you have to make everythin surrounding them seem as if for babies, even their learning environment? Of the teachers Ms. Billups was one of the worst, she would make them listen to "Old MacDonald Had a Farm", "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star", and "The Itsy-Bitsy Spider" every morning. I wonder what made her do that, like did she really believe that these kids even if they were 'special' weren't smart enough to understand these songs. Ms.Billups would also go over teh alphabet every single day with them, when they were third graders! This makes me wonder what kind of view society has put on these 'special' kids. Aren't they supposed to be treated the same, to teach them like they are no more different then the other students? Then why is this teacher teaching a third grade class the alphabet and making them listen to PreK songs. Does she really believe that they can listen to the same songs over and over without gettign bored, and really that these third graders haven't learned their alphabet yet. They may have bisabilities, but they are PHYSICAL ablilities, this has nothing to do with their minds and how they are able to comprehend, think, and learn. Melody proves this when she gets the computer that allows her to talk, and speak (through a computerized voice that is) what is really on her mind. The computer is set up with phrases and sentences that she can speak (through the computer). But people still don't think she's "smart", they still think she can't be "smart", that just because she has disabilites she shouldn't even be able to think or talk. Like what this girl (Clarie) in the book said,"I'm not trying to be mean--honest--but it just never occurred to me that Melody had thoughts in her head."(pg.143) This makes me wonder of how many other people out there think that, that how just beacuse a person is in a wheel cahir or has disabilities you assume that they must not be smart or even think. This book really made me wonder if people judge others too quickly. That maybe a person is in a wheel chair or has some disablity doesn't necessarily mean that they are 'not smart' or unable to do what we can. There is many people out their with disablities who has accomplished more in their life than many of us, with thos disabilities. They are still living a normal life, going to work (maybe), going to school, just living their life. Yet we still don't think of them as equal, and don't believe that they can be as accomplished as we are, when that is not true at all. I really liked this book, and thought it was just spectacular. The author really made me remember everything, and i learned so much. I would reccomend this book for all, and even though it is not really a topic we like to discuss it was different and nice to read about. :)

  9. 4 out of 5

    Rachel Reads Ravenously

    5 stars! So I'm going to tell a little story first. My mother is a teacher, has been my entire life. When I was little and sick and couldn't go to preschool she would bring me to her class (a high school class at the time) and I would play with her students. I loved them, still do to this day. When I began elementary school, that was the first time I ever heard the word "retarded" and it was aimed at students similar to my mother's. I went home and asked my mother if her students were different 5 stars! So I'm going to tell a little story first. My mother is a teacher, has been my entire life. When I was little and sick and couldn't go to preschool she would bring me to her class (a high school class at the time) and I would play with her students. I loved them, still do to this day. When I began elementary school, that was the first time I ever heard the word "retarded" and it was aimed at students similar to my mother's. I went home and asked my mother if her students were different, and that was when she explained to me what special education students were. I had no idea that her students were any different. It never occured to me. And my mother never treated them like they were different and never coached me to think they were. She let me make up my own mind. Reading this book made me think a lot about my mother and her students. It also reminded me of a girl I went to elementary school with who is very much like Melody. I couldn't get that girl out of my mind while reading this book, and I probably won't get Melody out of my mind for a long time to come. Out of My Mind is about an eleven year old girl who is brilliant, and no one knows it. Born disabled, she cannot talk and had trouble moving her limbs. When a new machine gives her the ability to speak, not everyone is ready to accept her as "normal". Sharon Draper is a brilliant writer. Words flow across the page effortlessly and I am wowed at how she captured and portrayed Melody. I want everyone to read this book. It's so special and it shows us how our perceptions are not always accurate, Follow me on ♥ Facebook ♥ Blog ♥ Instagram ♥ Twitter ♥

  10. 4 out of 5

    Joe

    I feel a bit heartless. After reading all the Newbery-hype about Out of My Mind, I went into it expecting an absolutely life-changing book about cerebral palsy. After reading Ben Mikaelsen's horrendous Petey this past spring, I was certain Draper's treatment of the subject would be leaps and bounds above that drivel. It is. And it isn't. (Mostly it is.) Unlike my feelings about Petey, my emotions about this book are mixed - in the strictest sense of the word. For every element of the book I enjoyed I feel a bit heartless. After reading all the Newbery-hype about Out of My Mind, I went into it expecting an absolutely life-changing book about cerebral palsy. After reading Ben Mikaelsen's horrendous Petey this past spring, I was certain Draper's treatment of the subject would be leaps and bounds above that drivel. It is. And it isn't. (Mostly it is.) Unlike my feelings about Petey, my emotions about this book are mixed - in the strictest sense of the word. For every element of the book I enjoyed there was something I abhorred. Good: Melody's characterization is a real eye-opener. She leaps off the page, and there are moments that feel as if she is in a room with you, telling her story. Whether it was the bold-faced font that indicates her 'speaking voice' or her vivid dissecting of the actions of those around her, she is a masterpiece of character development. Her interactions with Ms. V. are particularly heartfelt, especially in the opening chapters of the books when the details of their complex relationship are unveiled. Bad: As an educator, I am appalled by the portrayal of teachers in this book. Cold-hearted, nasty, lax disciplinarians... there's even a ruthless streak in the history teacher, Mr. Dimming, that's almost caricature-like. This man not only tolerates the taunts of class bullies Claire and Molly (only combating their nastiness once, and in a simpering manner at that), he himself participates in the bullying. Despite being painted as "nice", both the music and English teachers also fail to discipline the mean girls effectively, neither of them attempting to teach the little brats why their behavior is unacceptable and will not be tolerated. Additionally, the special education "teachers" are absurd. In an era of litigation and compulsory inclusion, the professionals who populate H-5 (with the exception of Mrs. Shannon) would have been fired within the first week of school. Despite having been an English teacher for 25 years, Draper seems to have a chip on her shoulder with those in the profession. Good: Melody is super-smart, and though other reviewers have found that to be a bit of a stretch, I think it's an extremely salient distinction for Draper to make. It's human nature, I think, to assume that those with physical disabilities are somehow mentally disabled as well. That this book gracefully navigates those waters is vitally important, and I think young readers need to have that information... that prejudice... presented to them compassionately, handled with dignity. Draper really succeeds here, because she triggers enough emotional reactions to inspire children to question their own actions around their classmates and to evaluate their own prejudices. There's a particularly powerful scene between Melody and a crewmember at a local television station. Lump, meet throat. Bad: The two BIG EVENTS at the end. I'm sorry. Both of these ridiculous plot contrivances are what dropped the book down to three stars. The first is predictable and mean-spirited (and further reinforces what a terrible person and incompetent educator Mr. Dimming is). The second, which is foreshadowed in Chapter 19 like a Sledgehammer of Obvious, is completely pointless. Was it designed to make Melody worry about her sister's normality? Was it supposed to draw the family closer together? I have no idea. It felt very last second. Good: Melody's comeuppance in the end. The trophy and abrupt exit were classic. And her loving revisiting of the characters who populate room H-5? Also incredible. Even though they're flat characters, through Melody's eyes, they are powerful examples of human potential. Bad: The verb tenses! Sweet God, they were all over the place! Past tense until chapter 10. Then present tense. But only for a chapter. Then it's back to past tense. Then present a few chapters later. Initially I thought, "Hmm. Maybe these are flashbacks." But no. Sometimes we get Melody recounting an event, sometimes we are with her when an event occurs. It's very jarring. Also, Draper's phrasings are so outdated, it's embarrassing. "The bomb"? Is it 1994? And the ending? Those final paragraphs? Lazy. Lazy, lazy, lazy. So. Will Out of My Mind win the Newbery? I'm not sure. I still haven't read the other hyped books. Will it win the Schneider? Probably. In fact, it should.

  11. 4 out of 5

    D.

    Goodness this book is dreadful. Unrealistic, overly-sentimental, pure drivel. YUCK. I am most bothered by the fact that Sharon Draper must really think very poorly of educators. Since EVERY SINGLE teacher (sans one, three paragraph, mention of a third grade teacher who liked to play books on tape for Melody) is a HORRIBLE HUMAN BEING. Not even bad teachers...like awful, horrible, despicable people. Where did these people go to school? Where are the occupational therapist? Where is her case-worker Goodness this book is dreadful. Unrealistic, overly-sentimental, pure drivel. YUCK. I am most bothered by the fact that Sharon Draper must really think very poorly of educators. Since EVERY SINGLE teacher (sans one, three paragraph, mention of a third grade teacher who liked to play books on tape for Melody) is a HORRIBLE HUMAN BEING. Not even bad teachers...like awful, horrible, despicable people. Where did these people go to school? Where are the occupational therapist? Where is her case-worker? Education doesn't work like this anymore. Melody's mom could actually SUE the school for their level of disregard for her education. Like firing. Law suits. THe SH*& has hit the fan type of stuff here. But to write about it like that's just the way education is? Way to continue teacher-bashing in your own way. Thanks Ms. Draper. Yikes. No -- I have no idea why this book has been so acclaimed. As an educator, I can tell you that kids who were that openly mean to a CP kid would be reprimanded, not encouraged. This book is stuck in some sort of 80s after-school-special time-warp where the bullies are the cool kids and you can still say "retard". What doctor wouldn't encourage more testing? What teachers would write her off? (***Maybe so actually...I just read that Draper has a nonverbal CP kid. Maybe this child is now in his/her 30s and she's ridiculously behind-the-times? OR...maybe this is a subject she shouldn't have touched with a ten foot pole.) It's just not the way of the world. And to base your entire premise of a novel on some sort of alternate universe should not earn you accolades. People should call this author on her clear misrepresentation of the 5th grade. Also, Melody had an alphabet at her disposal and could write early on. Why couldn't she write out "I love you" before receiving her medical-talker-thingie? This book doesn't make sense...and it was clearly designed to get people to shed some tears and feel all touchy-feely. I, on the other hand, am ashamed that this is what we're having kids read and calling good literature. Good God, people. Are you for real? I feel like an awful human being for hating this so much -- I understand being a mom of a kid with a disability...you tend to be heightened to the rudeness, the pain of your kid. But I still can't forgive this ridiculous book.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Vegan

    I highly recommend this book to everybody, but especially to disabled kids, kids who know disabled kids, anyone who works with disabled kids, especially non-verbal/speech impaired disabled people and people with cerebral palsy or similar neurological motor conditions. This is an absolutely wonderful book that almost made my favorites shelf. It’s wickedly funny and brutally, wonderfully honest. I’ve always enjoyed stories about special needs kids, special education, ill children, disabled children, I highly recommend this book to everybody, but especially to disabled kids, kids who know disabled kids, anyone who works with disabled kids, especially non-verbal/speech impaired disabled people and people with cerebral palsy or similar neurological motor conditions. This is an absolutely wonderful book that almost made my favorites shelf. It’s wickedly funny and brutally, wonderfully honest. I’ve always enjoyed stories about special needs kids, special education, ill children, disabled children, but they’re usually told by someone else, and usually an adult. This children’s novel is narrated by Melody, almost eleven years old, who has a photographic memory and synesthesia (she sees colors and tastes flavors when she hears music), and she is highly intelligent, but because she has cerebral palsy, she cannot talk or write or walk. I admire how this story evolved. Even though there is what seems to be the obligatory tearjerker “big end” it wasn’t the one (two actually) a reader would have expected the most, and it’s clear Melody’s life does not become perfect, or even as easy as some authors would have implied. However, Melody manages to shine in this book; I love her voice, and I love this book. It’s a very quick read; I inhaled it in less than a day. Oh, and I just realized how poignant the cover illustration is! And, I need to add that Butterscotch is now one of my favorite ever dogs in a novel!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Shawna

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Melody's the smartest kid in school, with so many things to say, but she can't because she's diagnosed with cerebral palsy leaving her unable to voice any of her thoughts. When her school starts an inclusion program where the special needs kids can join classrooms and get a chance to interact with others, Melody gets a teacher named who runs the Whiz Kids Quiz team. In his class, she meets two girls who are uncomfortable with her and so they start making crude comments; making sure she hears the Melody's the smartest kid in school, with so many things to say, but she can't because she's diagnosed with cerebral palsy leaving her unable to voice any of her thoughts. When her school starts an inclusion program where the special needs kids can join classrooms and get a chance to interact with others, Melody gets a teacher named who runs the Whiz Kids Quiz team. In his class, she meets two girls who are uncomfortable with her and so they start making crude comments; making sure she hears them. Melody befriends a girl named Rose who isn't afraid of standing up to others and helping her. When she hears that there are try-outs for the Whiz Kids Quiz team, her neighbour, her parents and her special aids helper encourages her to try out for the quiz team. She makes the team and leads the team to victory in their regional competition. The prize of winning the regional competition is competing in Washington, D.C. When they see the newspapers, on the front page is a picture of Melody; not the team, just Melody. The other members of the quiz team don't appreciate that. When Melody and her parents arrive at the airport, they find out that their flight is cancelled and the other kids had already left. She felt hurt that none of them bothered to tell her that they had an earlier flight. The next day, when Melody and her mother is about to leave for school, only Melody sees Penny, her little sister, running out of the house. She tries to warn her mother not to drive but the car ends up hitting Penny and she's hospitalized. When Melody arrives at school, the members of the quiz team try to apologize. She turns away from them to show that she doesn't need the people who abandoned her. I picked this book because many people have recommended it to me. I finished this book because I was curious as to if she would make the quiz team, if the team would win at the regional competition and also if they would win at the national competition in Washington, D.C. I think people who like to read realistic-fiction would like this book because it talks about real problems and disabilities that anyone can be diagnosed with or have.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Chelsea (chelseadolling reads)

    Man. Kids can be such jerks.

  15. 5 out of 5

    may ❀

    This book was recommended to me by a dear goodreads friend. (You know who you are. ;)) Man, did I ever underestimate this book. Here I was thinking it’s going to be one of those cute middle school books that’s all la, la, la, la and sharing is caring, but damn, was I wrong. Imagine living in a world where you cannot voice your thoughts? To me, that sounds incredibly exhausting. But that’s the life of eleven-year old Melody. Melody has cerebral palsy in other words, she cannot walk, talk, eat This book was recommended to me by a dear goodreads friend. (You know who you are. ;)) Man, did I ever underestimate this book. Here I was thinking it’s going to be one of those cute middle school books that’s all la, la, la, la and sharing is caring, but damn, was I wrong. Imagine living in a world where you cannot voice your thoughts? To me, that sounds incredibly exhausting. But that’s the life of eleven-year old Melody. Melody has cerebral palsy in other words, she cannot walk, talk, eat, or even use the washroom on her own. But what she can do, is think. Melody is an incredibly sharp and inquisitive girl. She has a dire thirst for knowledge, information, words, ideas, and it’s just so wonderful to read about. Middle school can be a tough time for most of us. Kids begin to change, they develop opinions, cliques start to form, and they can be hella cruel when they want. And Melody has to put up with all the usual middle school problems along with difficulties of her own. Not very fun. What I loved most about this book was that we actually got to see the world, day in day out, from Melody’s point of view. You get the feel of how incredibly frustrating it is to not be able to voice your thoughts, the hardship of not being able to do anything for yourself, and always feeling left out. Not to mention the not-so-subtle-bullying she has to deal. But Melody is so strong and bright and just a ball of sunshine. And she’s got quite the humour as well. There were some unnecessary parts, I must admit. For example, the ending kind of threw me off balance.There wasn’t really any benefit to that happening, it just sort of shook everyone up and left us all like um, okay? I really enjoyed reading this book and watching as Melody fought head on against the difficulties that were hurtled at her, such an eye-opening book. “We all have disabilities. What’s yours?” 4 stars!!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Syndi

    when i read this book, i am expecting chessey tear jearking kind of book. thats why it takes me so long to read this book. but... i am surprise. it is not chessey at all. rather it is honest, heartwarming and innocent kind of book. the point of view is from 10 years old kind. and at the end i fall in love with melody. i never think about words as much as it is now. even i am perferfectly capable talking, there are times where i am like melody. struggling with words. can not express my anger, my when i read this book, i am expecting chessey tear jearking kind of book. thats why it takes me so long to read this book. but... i am surprise. it is not chessey at all. rather it is honest, heartwarming and innocent kind of book. the point of view is from 10 years old kind. and at the end i fall in love with melody. i never think about words as much as it is now. even i am perferfectly capable talking, there are times where i am like melody. struggling with words. can not express my anger, my thought. good book.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Josiah

    This is the best book that I have read in years. It's right up there near the same plane as the very best books that I have ever read. I had never read any book by Sharon M. Draper before this one, but I think that's about to undergo a major reversal. If she's able to even approach the incredible level that she has achieved in the making of this novel in anything else that she has done, then I want to experience it. Where do I start in describing a story of the power and magnitude that marks Ou This is the best book that I have read in years. It's right up there near the same plane as the very best books that I have ever read. I had never read any book by Sharon M. Draper before this one, but I think that's about to undergo a major reversal. If she's able to even approach the incredible level that she has achieved in the making of this novel in anything else that she has done, then I want to experience it. Where do I start in describing a story of the power and magnitude that marks Out of My Mind? Melody is a fifth-grade girl who was born with cerebral palsy. Her body is crippled and she can do very little for herself. She can't even talk. She can, however, think, and oh, does she do that like no one else. Trapped inside of her speechless, mostly ineffective body is a golden mind that grasps concepts and factual information at a level nothing short of genius. Melody may look helpless to many outside observers who don't get the chance to actually come to know her, but if value is measured in terms of mental capacity for future learning and retention of what has already been taught, then Melody outshines virtually everyone she meets. She is, without exaggerating to say, a wonder. But life is never going to be easy or simple for a person with the challenges that belabor Melody every single day. Other kids who don't live the life that Melody lives can't really understand, even if they think they can, and if they're not willing to take the time to look deeper and see how smart and how good Melody is in the ways that matter, then Melody will, ultimately, be the one who pays for their ignorance by not having friends. So, Melody understands "unfair". It's encoded in her genes. She knows "unfair" more intimately than most of us ever will. The plot of this book rocks back and forth, lighting embers of hope for Melody's future and then extinguishing them, giving us things to laugh about followed by scenes that will move almost any reader to tears, both of happiness and grief. It's all so hard, and so painful, yet the writing of Sharon M. Draper is somehow beyond expert, leading us along the novel's rocky road with unsurpassed ability. There isn't a single paragraph of Melody's story that doesn't jump up from the page with life and vigor, filled with intense relevance to our own lives, and drawing us in to care about Melody even though we know that the happy ending we wish for her is just...impossible. I have no explanation for why this book did not win the 2011 Newbery Medal, or at least a Newbery Honor. Out of My Mind is one of the deepest, strongest, most innately profound books that I have had the privilege to read in a very, very long time. It's an instant masterpiece. I could never be the same after having read it, and there's no more important remark that I could make than that.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Skip

    In much the same way that RJ Palacio's book, Wonder resonated, this book shines a similar light on a child with physical developmental problems: Melody is an eleven-year old girl, suffering from cerebral palsy. Her body is crippled, making it impossible for her to do virtually anything for herself, especially communicate all of the things happening in her much developed brain. She is a mop for facts and ideas, which eventually is discovered when two seminal events occur: first, she and her schoo In much the same way that RJ Palacio's book, Wonder resonated, this book shines a similar light on a child with physical developmental problems: Melody is an eleven-year old girl, suffering from cerebral palsy. Her body is crippled, making it impossible for her to do virtually anything for herself, especially communicate all of the things happening in her much developed brain. She is a mop for facts and ideas, which eventually is discovered when two seminal events occur: first, she and her school aide find a Medi-Talker computer, and then, she is finally introduced into inclusion classes at Spaulding Street Elementary School. Much like August, she has to endure the taunts of classmates, the ignorance of doctors and teachers, and some enormous emotional highs and lows, but she is able to endure and excel with loving support from her parents, baby sister, a neighbor/caregiver (Mrs. Valencia), and her college-aged aide, Catherine. It is no accident that this book has been one of the NY Times bestseller lists for two years. Recommended.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Mariah Roze

    Sharon M. Drapper is a fantastic writer! She always covers difficult topics and characters and does it with ease and pleasure to read. My goal is to eventually have read every book by her :) "Melody is not like most people. She cannot walk or talk, but she has a photographic memory; she can remember every detail of everything she has ever experienced. She is smarter than most of the adults who try to diagnose her and smarter than her classmates in her integrated classroom - the very same classmat Sharon M. Drapper is a fantastic writer! She always covers difficult topics and characters and does it with ease and pleasure to read. My goal is to eventually have read every book by her :) "Melody is not like most people. She cannot walk or talk, but she has a photographic memory; she can remember every detail of everything she has ever experienced. She is smarter than most of the adults who try to diagnose her and smarter than her classmates in her integrated classroom - the very same classmates who dismiss her as mentally challenged because she cannot tell them otherwise. But Melody refuses to be defined by cerebral palsy. And she's determined to let everyone know it - somehow."

  20. 5 out of 5

    Kaitlin O

    The book Out of my mind is the saddest book I've read, ever. I normally never cry when reading books but for this book I was balling. The main character is Melody who can't walk or move most of her body. She sometimes gets ignored and bullied by the way she looks and does things, but mostly by two girls Molly and Clair. They always leave Melody out and whisper and laugh even though Melody has perfect hearing. Melody can't talk though, she has i the biggest and brightest mind in her grade if not The book Out of my mind is the saddest book I've read, ever. I normally never cry when reading books but for this book I was balling. The main character is Melody who can't walk or move most of her body. She sometimes gets ignored and bullied by the way she looks and does things, but mostly by two girls Molly and Clair. They always leave Melody out and whisper and laugh even though Melody has perfect hearing. Melody can't talk though, she has i the biggest and brightest mind in her grade if not school!! She also has a thing or two things (that if she could talk) say to Molly and Clair. One day Melody finds out about this Medi- talker thing and wants it so bad, after 30 minutes or so of trying to figure out what Melody wants by pointing hysterically at the computer, her mom orders it. Once the Medi-talker comes in the mail Melody feels like she can now finally express herself. Once Melody gets to school everyone is in ahhh. Melody can finally do want she has been wanting to do for her whole life... Try out for the trivia team. She makes it with one of the high test scores and leads her team to the championships, only to find out that her team leaves her at home and goes on an earlier plane. The plane they were originally going to go on got canceled, so Melody was stuck at home and couldn't help but cry the whole time. When her team comes back they apologize and explained why they didn't intentionally leave her. She couldn't get over it for a few days then she goes back to being her cheerful, loving, fun personality self. This book is realistic fiction, and can happen anyday and anytime to you or your friends, so i think you should be grateful for what you have and when you have it. I recommend this book to people who love on/off switches of sad to happy (but mostly happy :), I loved this book and I think you should read it to.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Julia

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Out of My Mind is offically one of my favorite books. If you are looking for a sad, yet amazing book this is the way to go!!! It is about a girl named Melody who has cerebral paly's and can't walk, talk, or move - except for her fists a little bit, she is in a wheelchair to. In the middle of the book she finally gets a medi-talker so she can program words into it and type words and it will talk for her. Also she has an aide and her name is Catherine. A girl named Claire thinks that Catherine jus Out of My Mind is offically one of my favorite books. If you are looking for a sad, yet amazing book this is the way to go!!! It is about a girl named Melody who has cerebral paly's and can't walk, talk, or move - except for her fists a little bit, she is in a wheelchair to. In the middle of the book she finally gets a medi-talker so she can program words into it and type words and it will talk for her. Also she has an aide and her name is Catherine. A girl named Claire thinks that Catherine just cheats for Melody on work so she will get good grades. Especially when the are going to take the Whiz Kidz test to see if you get on the team. The teacher says that he will give them a practice round and then the real test will be at a later time. On the practice test you have 30 seconds to answer each question - just like on the real test. Whoever gets the highest score on the practice test gets to have a candy bar, but whoever gets the highest score on the real test gets to be on the team. All the things you get to do on the team is compeete and if your team gets to the finals you get to travel to Washington D.C. Well everbody underestimated Melody, but she was the only one that got an 100 on the test. But all in all, I LOVED this book!

  22. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca McNutt

    This is an excellent novel with a powerful message about acceptance. Melody, the main character, has cerebral palsy and can hardly move and can't speak, but she has a lot to say, not to mention a photographic memory. When she receives a computer that can be used as a communication tool, her classmates have mixed reactions to her newly heard voice and she proves her intelligence as time goes on. Melody is a strong character that anyone who has ever felt different or limited in some way can relate This is an excellent novel with a powerful message about acceptance. Melody, the main character, has cerebral palsy and can hardly move and can't speak, but she has a lot to say, not to mention a photographic memory. When she receives a computer that can be used as a communication tool, her classmates have mixed reactions to her newly heard voice and she proves her intelligence as time goes on. Melody is a strong character that anyone who has ever felt different or limited in some way can relate to. I don't know a lot about cerebral palsy but from what I understand, there are different variations of it and I think that Draper was very accurate in her writing. This book is emotional, dramatic and intriguing, well-written and definitely an important book for kids to read. My only complaint was the ending, it was slightly off-putting.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Irshad

    Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper - 5/5 stars. Have you ever felt like an outcast and all you want to be is normal just for a day even if that's what everyone around you tells you that you're better off without being normal? Let me begin with saying that I really enjoyed this book so much! The whole disabled aspect brought light to my eyes for the first time. I've never once had a second thought to someone with a disability and I openly admit that I never believed that they were as intellectually Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper - 5/5 stars. Have you ever felt like an outcast and all you want to be is normal just for a day even if that's what everyone around you tells you that you're better off without being normal? Let me begin with saying that I really enjoyed this book so much! The whole disabled aspect brought light to my eyes for the first time. I've never once had a second thought to someone with a disability and I openly admit that I never believed that they were as intellectually able as the rest of us. Clearly I am wrong! This book was am eye opener for me. The novel follows the story of a eleven-year-old girl named Melody Brooks who has Cerebral Palsy. She can't walk and is wheelchair bound and she can't speak. But do not underestimate her. Melody is a genius. After years of not being accepted and growing up with difficulties, she finally has the chance to attend school. Like a real regular school with kids that function with norm standards. She had to fight her way for such opportunities and her Mom is an incredible woman who fought with her and got her daughter a brilliant opportunity. Melody impresses the norm kids with her intelligence and finally gets to be part of a whiz competition. That's the best I can summarize the plot without giving too much away. The friendships that Melody made were great. The friendship with Mrs. V is my favorite as it shows how much others are willing to go through with you and how patient a human can be. Humanity is coming back into this stone hearted world and I love it. Pick this book up and you'll not be disappointed.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Donalyn

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Eleven year-old Melody has cerebral palsy. She lives in a world of silence-- unable to talk or write. Although she is extremely intelligent, her classmates and more than a few teachers, see her as simple-minded. When Melody receives assistive technology that allows her to communicate, she finally proves to everyone that she is smart. Melody longs for acceptance, but events beyond her control throw Melody into conflict with her classmates. Touching and honest, the resolution of this conflict is r Eleven year-old Melody has cerebral palsy. She lives in a world of silence-- unable to talk or write. Although she is extremely intelligent, her classmates and more than a few teachers, see her as simple-minded. When Melody receives assistive technology that allows her to communicate, she finally proves to everyone that she is smart. Melody longs for acceptance, but events beyond her control throw Melody into conflict with her classmates. Touching and honest, the resolution of this conflict is realistic, and does not end perfectly for Melody. From the first page, Melody's thoughts and experiences show that language wields the power to free, crush, or illuminate the human spirit. I am predicting many awards for this book in the upcoming year. Read it before everyone else finds out about it.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Manybooks

    Melody Brooks is almost eleven years old, has a photographic memory and absolutely loves words. However, she also has very severe cerebral palsy and thus while she has all these words as well as a multitude of advanced ideas and concepts inside of her, she (being non verbal, being unable to speak) cannot get her ideas out and thus many people (including the majority of her teachers) consider her unintelligent and incapable of logical thought. A new type of computer which acts as Melody's voice, Melody Brooks is almost eleven years old, has a photographic memory and absolutely loves words. However, she also has very severe cerebral palsy and thus while she has all these words as well as a multitude of advanced ideas and concepts inside of her, she (being non verbal, being unable to speak) cannot get her ideas out and thus many people (including the majority of her teachers) consider her unintelligent and incapable of logical thought. A new type of computer which acts as Melody's voice, which allows Melody to showcase her knowledge, her wants, needs and such changes this personal frustration for the better, but will it be enough, will it silence the naysayers? Now when I first read Sharon M. Draper's Out of My Mind in 2011, I absolutely and utterly adored it, and during my recent rereading (in order to finally post a review) I still quite (if not actually very much) enjoyed the general storyline (and especially how authentic, emotionally realistic and age appropriate young narrator Melody's voice feels). However, my rereading has also presented to me certain noticeable narrational, textual flaws, nothing major or supremely aggravating in any way, but enough to now consider Out of My Mind no longer with a four star ranking (which I had originally envisioned in 2011) but a high three stars (as while I emotionally have adored Out of My Mind as much in 2018 as I did in 2011, the logical parts of my brain are indeed also in a bit of an internal uproar, especially with regard to questions and considerations about how accurately and how realistically in particular the more negative characters have been portrayed by Sharon M. Draper). For while I do indeed both know and understand that seriously mean-spirited bullying students such as Claire and Molly do exist, during the course of Out of My Mind they sure are portrayed in such a negatively cliched manner so as to more often than not appear more like cardboard and stock folk and fairy tale villains (with for me, the evil stepsisters of Cinderella being a very good and apt comparison). And while I do love folk and fairy tales as a genre, as a type of specific literature type, when I am reading, when I am perusing a patently realistic novel, I do crave, I do want a wee bit more subtlety, and especially Claire and Molly are just so over-the-top mean and vile so as to appear almost ridiculous. Combined with the fact that even with regard to Melody's teachers, there is a rather obvious and occasionally much frustrating tendency for Sharon M. Draper, for the author to divide them sharply and without all that much nuance into either total heroes or total villains, while I have still (and as already mentioned above) indeed very much enjoyed and appreciated Out of My Mind (and totally do love love love Melody as a character), I can now only consider a high three star ranking (as there could have been so much more done with this novel, had there been less stereotyping, less one-sided either positively or negatively conceptualised characters, and if the ending with Melody's little sister Penny being run over by the family car had been a trifle more integrated and not as tacked on, not as artificial feeling). Still highly recommended, and I for one also do think that the intended audience, that especially girls from about the age of nine to twelve would likely take much potential reading pleasure from Out of My Mind and would probably not be in any manner as annoyed and as textually, narrationally frustrated with what has been rather bothering older adult reader me (as I do tend to get a bit overly frustrated with and by one and two dimensional character descriptions and scenarios that appear more than a bit out of the blue so to speak).

  26. 4 out of 5

    Kasey H

    I just started reading Out of my Mind by Sharon M. Draper. It's a really great book because- well everything. Sharon does a great job of describing Melody, the main character, and her classmates. Melody sounds super nice, some of her friends are nice too, but some of them can't be so nice sometimes. Melody feels like she's trapped in a box. She can't talk, sit up strait, and can't move very well. Melody has a photographic memory, but she can't use it, or show anybody how smart she is! I could n I just started reading Out of my Mind by Sharon M. Draper. It's a really great book because- well everything. Sharon does a great job of describing Melody, the main character, and her classmates. Melody sounds super nice, some of her friends are nice too, but some of them can't be so nice sometimes. Melody feels like she's trapped in a box. She can't talk, sit up strait, and can't move very well. Melody has a photographic memory, but she can't use it, or show anybody how smart she is! I could never do that! I would just scream and shriek all day and night! There's a point in the story where Melody isn't very excited to bring out a snowman which she gets to decorate. There's a point in my life when I wasn't very excited about bringing out the Halloween decorations, just like Melody, but she wasn't excited about bringing out a snowman to decorate. My personality is like and is not like Melody's, because Melody wants to show, and tell people what she thinks. I want to tell people what I think sometimes, but it depends on what would work best at the moment. Melody always like to tell people what she thinks because she never has. At this point of the story no important event has really happened. I've heard that there's something that makes the story extremely good! I can't wait to get to that part! I would recommend this book to people who like a book that's not really sad, but pretty sad, and has a lot of description. I haven't got that far in this book, but so far it's definitely a five star book! ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ I'm still reading Out of my Mind by Sharon M. Draper. I remember my exact page, I'm on page 116. Over Thanksgiving break I read more about what Melody's life is like. Melody is welcomed into real classes now, instead of her having to stay with everybody else who has disabilities. She is really excited! She got a new electronic wheelchair, which is really cool compared to what she used to have. Second, she can be with every other kid in the school. I feel really happy for Melody, because she gets to start a brand new start to her life. Which is really nice to do after a while. I know how happy she is. I've had an experience that was a little like that. You know how you get really bored of being in the exact same room with the exact same furniture arrangement for a while? Well, I was really getting upset with that. So for one of my birthdays I got to change rooms. It was such a relief! I think that Sharon, the author of Out of my Mind is such an amazing writer! I love books about kids who have to overcome something. Out of my Mind is perfect! It tells a story about Melody a girl who has disabilities. Melody is a really good person! She always tries her hardest to do her best. Over all I rate this book as high as possible. In this situation, I rate it five stars -––---------–-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------–------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- DATE: December 11, 2012 I was reading a lot of other books, and put this book off for a little while. I'm starting to get back to only reading Out of my Mind. Now, to get started on the real book review! Melody the main character decided she wanted to participate in a little practice quiz for the Whiz Quiz team, a contest that one chosen group of kids participate in a trivia contest. I'm not one of the best people at trivia, but I know plenty of people who are. Melody didn't have to participate in the practice but she chose to. There has been a time where I've done something that I didn't have to do. One time (which was actually about two weeks ago) I did something I didn't have to do. I got one of my tests back and I forgot to answer a question. That was the only question on the whole test that I got wrong so my grade was still very high. So, I wanted to show my teacher that I knew the answer to the question, and I didn't miss it because I didn't know it. What I did is I made test corrections end though I knew my score would only be brought up two points, I still did it! This book is slow paced, and very character driven! It's actually slow paced, because it's character driven. The book is very focused on Melody's life, and personality. I think that Sharon M. Draper is so creative! If I had a chance to ask her a question, I would ask her if this book had or has anything to do with her personal life. She comes up with such creative things that Melody does and thinks! This book is definitely still a five stars book!

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    Sometimes funny, sometimes sad story of a brilliant young girl whose body does not reflect what is happening in her mind. It was a bit of a mix of Wonder and The View From Saturday. The book is very honest, and captures the ups and downs of Melody's life, as well as that of her family. I did feel like, as observant as Melody was, we didn't get a lot of details about the parents or her schoolmates as we went along that would have helped us understand their reactions to things, but other than that Sometimes funny, sometimes sad story of a brilliant young girl whose body does not reflect what is happening in her mind. It was a bit of a mix of Wonder and The View From Saturday. The book is very honest, and captures the ups and downs of Melody's life, as well as that of her family. I did feel like, as observant as Melody was, we didn't get a lot of details about the parents or her schoolmates as we went along that would have helped us understand their reactions to things, but other than that I can really see why this book gets so many accolades.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Ashley

    THIS BOOK WAS AMAZING AND PERFECT!! It was soooo inspirational! <3 Melody is an OUTSTANDING, INTELLGENT, and KIND fictional character that I absolutely LOVED!! I love everything about Melody and learning more about her life and the difficulties she has to face made me respect her more. Melody is such a strong and powerful character that has really influenced me and hit me right in the heart!! I HATED most of the her inclusion classmates! They are so cruel and I wanted to punch Claire, Molly, an THIS BOOK WAS AMAZING AND PERFECT!! It was soooo inspirational! <3 Melody is an OUTSTANDING, INTELLGENT, and KIND fictional character that I absolutely LOVED!! I love everything about Melody and learning more about her life and the difficulties she has to face made me respect her more. Melody is such a strong and powerful character that has really influenced me and hit me right in the heart!! I HATED most of the her inclusion classmates! They are so cruel and I wanted to punch Claire, Molly, and Rose in the face at times! It seems that normal people are so cruel while ones with disabilities have been through so much that they are generous and forgiving of one another. I wish everyone was like H-5's students because they all rock!! "Out of My Mind" made me tear up near the end! Only a few books are able to do that! I could actually feel the pain Melody had to put up with her crappy ass teacher and shit peers. MELODY FOR THE WIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This book was just PURE AMAZINGNESS!!! I loved every little detail and read the words with hunger for more!!!!!! LOVELOVELOVE! <3 If I encounter someone with disabilities I will say HELLO to them, smile, act normal around them and NOT pity them. They are normal too! And I think many people need to open their eyes in order to see that. (Or read this phenomenal book! Haha!)(:

  29. 5 out of 5

    Pamela

    Evidently, if you didn't like this book, it seems like commenters jump all over you for being a Bad Person. If you don't like this book, somehow you're automatically assumed to also be insensitive to the issues discussed in this book. Here's the deal: I think the concept of a book--aimed at elementary/middle-schoolers--that puts a face, a name, and a voice to one of the kids that they'd normally be inclined to think was "weird" (or some other more cruel word that I cannot write) is very good, and Evidently, if you didn't like this book, it seems like commenters jump all over you for being a Bad Person. If you don't like this book, somehow you're automatically assumed to also be insensitive to the issues discussed in this book. Here's the deal: I think the concept of a book--aimed at elementary/middle-schoolers--that puts a face, a name, and a voice to one of the kids that they'd normally be inclined to think was "weird" (or some other more cruel word that I cannot write) is very good, and very important. The reader learns that just because Melody cannot speak verbally does not mean she does not have the mental capacity to do so. Just because she cannot express her feelings in words does not mean that she has no feelings. And so on. Thus, the second star added on to my review. However, I found so many elements of the book to be problematic. It falls back on so many clichés that it was almost painful to read through to the end. You know where this is going from about 1/3 of the way in. Other commenters have noted the time period disparity that pops up. Often, it feels as though this is late-70s, early-80s, but then we get a reference to iTunes tossed in, or laptops. If this were set several decades ago, then I could understand that Melody's parents seem clueless about the existence of devices like Melody's talking computer. The dialogue was extraordinarily stilted and waffled between trying-to-sound-cool and just-plain-improbable. "But wait!" I hear you say. "That doesn't matter! What matters is that we learn from this story." Yes, readers need to take something away from this. However, a book is the whole package. It's not just the themes or social issues addressed. It's how it's put together to create a convincing world that affects the reader. Another thing I had a problem with was the very black and white delineation of characters. Generally, Melody and her classmates with disabilities were good, they were smart, and they were somehow untouchably innocent because of what made them different. People with Down Syndrome, or CP, or any other disability or illness are still human. That means there is the ability to lie, to deceive, to manipulate (I'm not saying that this is ALL they do, but rather that they are HUMAN, and that these are human qualities). Only the able-bodied characters here are cruel, malicious, and your general Wicked Witch of the West-type villains. Hmm. A book with good intentions, definitely, but a rather unbelievable and frustrating execution.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Nathaniel

    This is a novel about a 11 year old girl named Melody. Who is mentally disabled cannot run, walk or even talk. She has these momentes called tornado momentes, where her arms and legs randomley swing about when shes mad. She also has a wonderious ability to see colors when listening to music. When she also makes the academic team, everyone thinks that shes "dumb" so she shouldn`t particapate. When she gets her team to the championship match she is really exited............. TO BE CONTINUED This is a novel about a 11 year old girl named Melody. Who is mentally disabled cannot run, walk or even talk. She has these momentes called tornado momentes, where her arms and legs randomley swing about when shes mad. She also has a wonderious ability to see colors when listening to music. When she also makes the academic team, everyone thinks that shes "dumb" so she shouldn`t particapate. When she gets her team to the championship match she is really exited............. TO BE CONTINUED

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