Laurie Halse Anderson's Speak tells of Melinda Sordino's journey through her first year of high school. Prior to entering into high school, Melinda had many close friends. Rachel, Ivy, and Nicole were part of Melinda's social circle. The summer prior to ninth grade, the girls attended a party. At the party, Melinda was raped. Scared and alone, Melinda called the police. The party was broken up, and everyone is angry at Melinda for telling.
Her ex-friends, needing to separate themselves from her in order to maintain their own popularity, act completely alien to Melinda. Although Rachel is the only one who really alienates her, Ivy and Nicole do not go out of their way to be nice. Ivy, eventually, begins to loosen up in art class. Her clan, in a way, has found clans of their own.