Out of My Mind - Sharon M. Draper

From award-winning author Sharon Draper comes Out of My Mind, the story of a brilliant girl who cannot speak or write.

“If there is one book teens and parents (and everyone else) should read this year, Out of My Mind should be it” (Denver Post).

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.

In this breakthrough story—reminiscent of The Diving Bell and the Butterfly—from multiple Coretta Scott King Award-winner Sharon Draper, readers will come to know a brilliant mind and a brave spirit who will change forever how they look at anyone with a disability.

 

For a middle grade audience, this is an incredibly powerful and thought-provoking book.

 

This book hopefully makes a reader reconsider any preconceived notions they might have of people with disabilities. I could relate to this book as I have a lot of foreign friends learning English and sometimes communication is a barrier, a really frustrating but unavoidable barrier.

 

I loved that this was realistic. Draper didn't pretty it up. A few of the events that took place were cruel, but not unsurprising. The kids felt sophisticated for fifth graders, but their emotions and thoughts were very real. In addition to opening people's eyes to those with disabilities, I think this would be powerful for people who forget how smart kids can be and how much they understand.

 

Though written for a younger audience, I found this story captivating and easy to get involved with. This was an easy read and I highly recommend it for anyone middle school aged or for anyone who works with kids.