After having this book on my To-Be-Read shelf for more than a year, I finally got down to reading it early this month. I literally craved for this book as I felt connected to the story after I’d read the synopsis. A teenage girl suicides and all that and who hasn’t been through that depressing phase in their lives, at least once.
So it all starts here.
Clay Jensen finds a shoebox gift-wrapped lying at his doorstep which contains thirteen cassettes. Surprised, he starts to listen to the first cassette and is dumbstruck when he finds Hannah speaking out of the player. The same Hannah Baker he went to school with, the same Hannah he worked with, the same Hannah he long crushed upon, probably, even loved, the same Hannah Baker who committed suicide two weeks ago.
And begins the story of Hannah Baker, her life and what made her end her life.
The 13 cassettes that Clay finds are nothing but Hannah’s 13 reasons why she killed herself. 13 people she holds responsible for her death.
The story is written from a 2 person point of view, Clay and Hannah, describing intricately, events, and incidents that take place in Hannah’s life that caused/led to mounting tension and depression and ultimately forced her to suicide.
What I loved about this book
– This is a very fast paced book audio-narrated through 13 cassettes giving comprehensive details of Hannah’s life and how she was related to each of the 13 people responsible for her suicide.
– The book is written from Clay and Hannah’s perspective and the plot runs parallel describing incidents from both Hannah and Clay’s points of view leaving a connection for the readers to follow the plot which is, I guess, outstandingly brilliant for a debut novel.
– The 13 reasons the author has cited/highlighted that he makes seem responsible for Hannah’s act of suicide seems fairly convincing for an age category that the author has picked for this story as we come across many similar stories and incidents happening in real life.
What I did not quite like
– As portrayed, Hannah is seemingly, low and depressed all the time. In those conditions and also otherwise there is no mention of Hannah’s parents at all which should have been the case.
– Hannah seems terribly disturbed with all the rumors running around about her in school, she faces none of them but lets them live and grow. Also, not once has she protested against the other students she’s held responsible or the physical abuse she endured rather she let them lead her to ending herself which is not a real end to the trouble, is it?
Anyway, I still love this book because it is not often that you come across a book that threatens you to take away your sleep, kill your hunger and similarly.
I read it constantly for hours until I finished it totally. If you love it as much as I do, you also will feel that no force and seriously no force in nature can make you put the book down. You also will feel to be living Hannah’s life through her voice smooth, shivery, depressed coming out of the player. You also will share Clay’s sweet painful emotions just like I did. And maybe even you might end up crying for Clay’s agonies like I did.
Because it is all of those things, one has experienced in their lives, maybe not to an extent like that but did. And so will you feel when you read this awesome book.
I agree with many here, who fall under the criticism category that suicide is not the only option, that Hannah should have seen a psychiatrist, that she should have considered options by talking about it with friends, family etc. and blah blah blah…. but quite seriously, is that not what teenagers do, what we did? Keep our secrets stuck to our hearts alone? And therefore, I feel it’s quite simply natural what Hannah did, succumbed to miseries, now again it is not something I support, don’t get me wrong, but it is plain natural to fall prey to teenage-troubles.
To Jay Asher, this is an amazingly awesome novel, one I will keep going back to time and again not only for the pinch of bitter-sweet feelings, but also the deep innocent emotions it has stirred in me. It is a story I will never forget. Also, I look forward to reading other books from you.
For rest who haven’t read it yet, do read it as you are probably missing a good book in your collection.
If you happen to read it or have already read it, do share your thoughts below.
The Unread Book©
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- Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher (lazybookworm.wordpress.com)
- Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher (abookandabutton.wordpress.com)
- Why teen-suicide novel ‘Thirteen Reasons Why’ is saving lives: An interview with Jay Asher (shelf-life.ew.com)
- Travis_J_Smith’s #CBR5 Review #46: Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher (cannonballread5.wordpress.com)