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Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
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Thirteen Reasons Why (edition 2011)

by Jay Asher

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5,684476750 (4.02)199
Member:jshepherd929
Title:Thirteen Reasons Why
Authors:Jay Asher
Info:Razorbill (2011), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 336 pages
Collections:Your library, Favorites
Rating:*****
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Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

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Showing 1-5 of 463 (next | show all)
With those glorious reviews
and high ratings from the
readers. I thought this was
going to be a blast but it
turned out not. And I always
have this soft spot when it
comes to death/suicide. But
what I got was disapointment.
The thirteen reasons why
Hannah Barker committed
suicide were merely childish.
I mean she took her own life
just because people didn't do
good things to her, someone
used her, made fun of her,
stole her notes, or whatever
the reasons were. Everyone
experienced the same thing.
Even worst. I was annoyed by
it. But the idea of how this
book created was great. And
also there was this little touch
of romance which was cute. ( )
  Perco | Oct 11, 2014 |
There is not a whole lot I can say about this book that has not already been written, but I read it on suggestion of my 13 year old niece (we are very close), after there was a very serious suicide attempt at her school by a girl she knew (but not well). It is easy to forget how incredibly painful rumor, gossip and outright lies can be at that age, but it is important we listen, as the reality is that in the age of technology, kids are experiencing these horrors faster and sooner and sadly, globally. One rumor can spread like wildfire to the other side of the country in about two minutes; and destroy a reputation and life. So this book seems like a noble attempt to educate on the reality behind careless, thoughtless and downright mean behaviors and gossip. It also helped blast open a discussion about suicide, hopelessness and also, kindness between my niece and me. It is far easier for a teenager to talk in the context of another (fictional) person, rather than themselves sometimes. Anyway, it was an interesting book, sad, but real. While the blame was incredibly hard to read, the reality is that is often how kids think, so whether I agreed or not with Hannah's tapes was irrelevant, it surely was real. I felt the plot was a little contrived, especially how the entire accident/party events fell together, but then, it was quite a powerful illustration of the effects of our actions and I think it worked well for that. I have a few doubts whether this puts the seed of suicide in kids' head though, but then again, it is already happening and I tend to feel that it is not anything teenagers these days don't already know. Highly recommended, especially if you have a teenager to chat with about it. I'm grateful my niece opened up her world to me through this book. ( )
  CarolynSchroeder | Oct 6, 2014 |
I really loved this book, this was one book that made me really cry in a while. I would really recommend this! It's a realistic book, that teens and Adults should read.

Just one thing keeps on bothering me, some of the negative reviews. I keep reading "This isn't why you should commit suicide, it encourages suicide, I would never do this etc" the point is you are NOT Hannah. You are NOT supposed to relate to a character, simply understand. People handle things differently, and yes guilt/rape/helplessness are some of the reasons why people commit suicide. The character Hannah was vulnerable from the start, she was weaker than most - look at it from her perspective, and not your own. people are DIFFERENT. No matter what reason it is, I Would NOT commit suicide, but that's because I'm much stronger than Hannah. I'm me. And she is Hannah. I would not judge her for committing suicide. She had no one to turn to, she was helpless. Although, she could have told Clay the truth but people are afraid. If you "strong willed" people cannot understand that, then it is just sad. Suicide should never be an option, but when people do commit it - you should understand why they did it and who was responsible more than the victim. So judgmental. Imagine if this was a true story, and the victim was aware of these comments? Really sad what people are saying. ( )
  benishkhanx | Sep 26, 2014 |
I really enjoyed this book. First, the negatives... I could only really find one... the voices take some work to differentiate. Hannah's voice is italicized, while Clay's and everyone else's is not, but they are mingling with each other, as Clay reacts and responds to what Hannah says in her suicide tapes. I found myself having to back up and re-read things to get the voices right and keep them straight.

That said, I really enjoyed the story. It felt original, and I found several good, thought-provoking quotes. I also liked the message of the story, about how actions have ripple effects that people do not necessarily expect or know about. So many times we hear that we can do whatever we want as long as it hurts no one else, but many times we don't know how what we do affects other people.

Hannah leaves cassettes behind to a select few to tell her story, to explain what brought her to her suicide, to show how actions and sometimes non-actions make a difference. She exhibits all the telling signs of someone getting ready to commit suicide (changing appearance, giving things away, asking for help), but no one listened to her. The people chosen all have a hand to play in her suicide, or so she says (except for Clay).

I'm not sure I agree with placing blame on other people for making a decision like that, because ultimately it is the person's choice, and they can really only blame themselves. She had her whole life ahead of her. She would have graduated and left all of those people behind, starting over. She chose to live in that particular moment and end it all.

In my opinion she had a victim's mentality, which I don't really care for. Yes, she was treated poorly, yes she witnessed some pretty bad stuff, but nothing that happened to her was that shocking when you consider what teens are exposed to these days. She was the one who chose to let Bryce use her and take advantage of her, in the end. And even though Mr. Porter failed her, rather than being a voice for other people suffering from the same things, she gave up, placed her blame, and checked out. Suicide is such a selfish answer to temporary problems.

I still liked the originality of the story, and it was a page-turning quick read... I would recommend it... but I would stress that in my opinion although it sends one right message about the affects people have on each other, it has a bad message in that it blames those people for her final action. ( )
  recipe_addict | Sep 21, 2014 |
When I first heard about the book, I knew that I had to read it. When I heard that a movie was going to be made about it, I knew that I had to read it pretty soon.

Now that I read it, I'm not really sure how to feel about it. I feel like there are good things about this novel, but also really bad things too.

The good.

The concept. I loved it. It was the main reason why I was intrigued by this novel in the first place. A girl kills herself and sends tapes to those who wronged her. That's pretty powerful stuff. Whenever I read a news article about a teen who committed suicide, I do wonder why. And this novel takes us on that journey. It's not pretty, but it's something that Hannah wanted to tell.

The writing. The writing was good and flowed quite well. I do understand how it might be frustrating to go back and forth between Hannah and Clay (Hannah's tape is written in italics while Clay is in regular text), but the writing style didn't bother me. The only time I felt annoyed was when Clay started speaking during the interesting moments of the tape, because I wanted to just listen to Hannah. But even then, it made sense so I didn't mind it too much.

The moral of the story. What you say or do can affect someone in ways you may never imagine. I think this is a really profound and good message to have.

The bad.

Hannah and the execution of her story. I know, I know. I even feel bad writing her name here like this, but she annoyed me. I wanted to sympathize with her, I wanted to be on her corner, but some of the people she sent the tape to didn't deserve it.

Also, I felt like she had a defeatist attitude about everything. It wasn't that long ago since I was a teen, so I do understand her hardships. And I've suffered through depression, so I understand how sucky it is feeling that way. But she never does anything about her situation. Her gut tells her not to do something, but she does it anyways. Her gut tells her to step up and ask for help, but she doesn't do it.

She just lets things happen and criticizes others for it. She does mention that the suicide is her choice, but the book is about her blaming others, some of them do deserve this, others don't.

I like that she's flawed, self-absorbed, and kind of shallow, but some self reflection would have been nice to read.

The part of the story when Hannah tells us what happened during the party is what really made me annoyed with her.She pushes Clay away from her, because it's too late. She witnesses a rape of her former friend and just sits there and lets it happen. What's worse is that her former friend is unconscious while this is going on. She probably didn't find out about it until she got her tapes and that really peeved me off. Even though they're not friends anymore, let her know what happened. Finding out like this is just messed up!

I'll just stop, because I realize that I'm ranting at the moment.

Clay. I feel bad for this one too, but he was seriously way too good. I don't have a problem with this, but I kind of hate that Hannah sent him the tapes. He was nothing but good to her so she includes his name to apologize to him and say he's a great guy....I don't know about you, but I almost felt like it was better for him to not know what really happened, because this tape would probably scar him

He didn't deserve the tapes and seemed to only be there to enforce Hannah's message. I almost kind of wish Byrce or someone who did something wrong to her was providing commentary. Then we could see both sides of the story and have some guilt and self reflection on their part.

Overall

This book has and will touch many people. Teen suicide is a touchy but important topic that needs to be discussed more. There are just some things about this book that didn't work for me.

3 stars. ( )
  pdbkwm | Sep 8, 2014 |
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» Add other authors (5 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jay Asherprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Johnstone, JoelNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wiseman, DebraNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For JoanMarie
First words
"Sir?" she repeats. "How soon do you want it to get there?"
Quotations
But if I wanted a reminder, I could’ve made copies of the tapes or saved the map. But I never want to hear those tapes again, though her voice will never leave my head. And the houses, the streets, and the high school will always be there to remind me.
I hope you’re ready, because I’m about to tell you the story of my life. More specifically, why my life ended. And if you’re listening to these tapes, you’re one of the reasons why.
I would have helped her if she’d only let me. I would have helped her because I want her to be alive.
Who am I going to see today? Besides me, eight people at this school have already listened to the tapes. Eight people, today, are waiting to see what the tapes have done to me. And over the next week or so, as the tapes move on, I’ll be doing the same to the rest of them.
''After all, how often do we get a second chance?''
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 159514188X, Paperback)

Clay Jensen returns home from school to find a strange package with his name on it lying on his porch. Inside he discovers several cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker - his classmate and crush - who committed suicide two weeks earlier. Hannah's voice tells him that there are thirteen reasons why she decided to end her life. Clay is one of them. If he listens, he'll find out why. Clay spends the night crisscrossing his town with Hannah as his guide. He becomes a firsthand witness to Hannah's pain, and learns the truth about himself-a truth he never wanted to face.

Thirteen Reasons Why is the gripping, addictive international bestseller that has changed lives the world over. It's an unrelenting modern classic.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 14:04:26 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

When high school student Clay Jenkins receives a box in the mail containing thirteen cassette tapes recorded by his classmate Hannah, who committed suicide, he spends a bewildering and heartbreaking night crisscrossing their town, listening to Hannah's voice recounting the events leading up to her death.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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