Title: Thirteen Reasons Why
Author: Jay Asher
Publication Date: 18 October 2007
Pages: 352 pages
Start Date: 22 May
Finish Date: 28 May
Thirteen Reasons Why is about Clay Jenson, a boy who used to be friends with Hannah Baker. Hannah Baker killed herself. When Clay goes home one day there is a box of cassettes and when he listens to them he realises that Hannah has left a list of thirteen reasons why she killed herself. And Clay is one of them.
I know a lot of people see this as a revenge suicide story and think it is extremely harmful. And whilst I see where they are coming from I think that this is an important story and brings light to a lot of important issues that people may not have as much modern access to.
I think using a novel is a great way to convey a message to a large young adult audience. This book helps people to understand that every little thing you do matters. It seems like common sense but a lot of people need a reminder and this is an honest way of conveying that message.
I loved the two different perspectives between Clay’s perspective and Hannah tapes. Although I sometimes had some difficulty telling the difference just because of the italics used.
I do think from an outsiders point of view, that some of the reasons on the tapes were quite unfair on the characters involved but I suppose that a lot of little things do add up to large feelings and ultimately ended Hannah’s life.
There are better books in the world that handle depression and suicide but that isn’t to say that this story isn’t important and won’t help a lot of people.
Personally, I think this book will make you think about everything you’ve done or said to other people and how it could have affected their life. And I think a message as small as that is important and just what the author of the book would want.
The writing in this book wasn’t overly complicated but I think the story needed a simple writing style for such a hard-hitting plot.
There were only two main characters that you really get to know and that was Hannah and Clay. I really think the plot is the main focus of the book and getting to know the other characters above what they have done to Hannah would have taken away from the message of the book.
There was something missing. I don’t know what and I couldn’t come close to naming it but there was just something that kept me from really loving this book. Whatever it was, it kept me from giving this book a five-star rating. It was really enjoyable though.
I recommend this book to everyone. I think someone who has a more personal connection to suicide may find it quite difficult to read but everyone will have their own experience reading a book like this.