Category: YA Fiction
Published: October 2007
Read: May 2017
Synopsis: (Goodreads) Clay Jensen returns home from school to find a mysterious box with his name on it lying on his porch. Inside he discovers thirteen cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker, his classmate and crush who committed suicide two weeks earlier. On tape, Hannah explains that there are thirteen reasons why she decided to end her life. Clay is one of them. If he listens, he’ll find out how he made the list.
Review: This book is one that will live on past us all and will keep coming back as people get in to the new show that has everyone talking about. It tore me open and even now, despite finishing it last night, I can’t stop thinking about it. This will not be a long review as most people already know the story either by the book or by the new show on Netflix.
Just a quick recap, this book is a narrative of two different people. Clay and Hannah. Hannah killed herself and made a bunch of tapes before she did so detailing why and calling out people who didn’t help her along the way or did things to her. Clay is on this tape and he has to listen to them all to find out why. It’s a roller-coaster of a ride and messes with him emotionally.
At first, I thought this book was a little slow. We have all been in high school and know how really crappy it can be. Things happen, rumors start, people love each other one min and hate each other at the turn of a hat. It is what it is and it’s four years that can be amazing or hell depending on you and where you stand in it all and how much you care about certain things. So for me, the start was like …okay this is normal teenage stuff.
Than things changed…
I won’t get in to details as it will reveal spoilers and if you are like me and have just read it or have not yet I am not going to ruin it for you. A lot more things happen. A lot of things that kids are dealing with now that I don’t remember when I was in high school. There are things like rape, drugs, consent, protection just to name a few. Once the book goes on it just sucks you in and you can’t stop. I read this book in four days.
After your done you understand Hannah and why she did what she did. You wish you could help her as no one else seemed to be able to. I also really loved Clay. He is, as it is stated in the book, a really good guy and I loved him. What a great and honest character that got sucked in because of what he felt for this lost soul.
The reason I gave it a half star off of a perfect score was the beginning. As I said it was a little slow to start but picked up very fast. It’s a easy read. You know who is talking when and you can follow along no problem. It’s a teen book and quite frankly I think every teen should read. It’s issues we all deal with now a days and it’s a talking point. NO I don’t think it will glamorize suicide if anything people will talk and that is the first step in realizing what is happening around us and help out our fellow human beings. If you want to have a open conversation with your child have them read t his and it will be a great starting off point. Yes it has a very heavy subject and it’s not easy but this is life.
Now on to watching the show. Hopefully it’s as good as the book.
You Will Like This Book If You Like:
Tricks by Ellen Hopkins, Realistic teen stories about todays modern teens.