A few days I finished Thirteen Reasons Why and I enjoyed it.
One day Clay Jensen receives a bunch of cassette tapes wrapped in brown packaging with no return address. As he starts to play the tapes, the voice of Hannah Baker begins to speak. A classmate who committed suicide. Throughout the book Hannah gives thirteen reasons why she ended her life and Clay is one of them. But why?
This piece of writing was so simple and yet so captivating. I like the fact that Jay Asher, the author, chose to write the book in Clay’s point of view. Someone who is neither first nor last on the tape. It was very interesting to see how Clay perceives the events that led up to Hannah’s death. I also like the idea of cassette tapes as her suicide notes rather than the typical pen and paper note.
The events the happened to Hannah were very relatable and at times I understood what she was going though. I felt bad for Clay, however. He liked Hannah and he kicked himself for not seeing the signs or talking to her before it was too late.
I think the book could’ve ended differently. I don’t want to give too much away but at some point Clay realizes that he’s going to have to encounter the people on those tapes. And that he’s going to view them differently. I would like to see Clay interact with at least one of those people.
Overall, the book was sad but also entertaining. It gave us a peek inside the mind of a person contemplating suicide. In the back of the book, at least the copy I have, there is a copy of an interview with the author. He got the inspiration from a relative who tried and failed to commit suicide. So, Asher himself has a personally connection here. He also asked his wife and other female relatives for stories about their time in high school. So he can get a real idea of how to write from Hannah’s point of view. As I said before, Hannah was relatable and Asher did a great job of talking from the female perspective.
I give the book a 5 out of 5.
PS- If you or anybody you know is thinking about suicide please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255. Or at least talk to someone. You’re life is worth more than you know.