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3.83  ·  Rating Details ·  1,030 Ratings  ·  152 Reviews
Jersey Hatch seemed to have it all together—he played sports, was popular, had a great girlfriend, best friend, and supportive parents. But when he emerges from a recuperative care center, all that is gone, his legs and hands don't work right, his mouth says every word that pops into his brain, and he has to write down his thoughts so that he remembers even the most basic ...more
Paperback, 320 pages
Published December 26th 2007 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens (first published August 22nd 2006)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Kynthos-the-Archer (Kyn)

Suicide victims often times are misunderstood by others. Many tends to be judgemental of them, calling them selfish, attention seeker or even mad. Suicides account for twice as many deaths as AIDS and over half of suicide deaths are by firearm.

Jersey Hatch is the voice of all those vulnerable, troubled teens out there. Vaught has crafted him based on her experience of working with young people as a practising neuropsychologist.

Jersey suffered permanent physical and neurological impairment after
Jul 01, 2008 Melissa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult-lit
Whoa! Interesting premise for a book: a boy attempts suicide by shooting himself, but survives. The books begins as he comes home for the first time after a year of rehab. He barely believes he tried to kill himself and spends the whole book figuring out why he pulled the trigger (hence the title). He also has to reconcile with his extremely upset parents and angry friends. On top of all this, he is now severely physically handicapped and can barely think or speak coherently. The enire book is n ...more

****5 Moving, Inspirational, and Captivating Stars***
I haven't written a review in a while. Nothing really worth the time recently, until I came across this gem!!! I really step out of my box with this one, not being a fan of young adult. From the first chapter your dragged into the damaged mind of Jersey Hatch, and you don't want to leave.

Without giving to much away, Jersey is a young man who tried to commit sucide, but fails. He now has to live with the reprucions of his actions. Going through
Cassie Rompala
Sep 12, 2011 Cassie Rompala rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Susan Vaught
New York: Bloomsbury USA, 2008
292 pp. $8.95

Suicide can ruin a teenager's life, as well as affect everyone else's around that person. In Trigger, the author Susan Vaught, portrays this aspect very clearly. She also uses other tactics to put the reader into the mindset of 17-year-old Jersey Hatch, who attempted suicide and is now dealing with random outbursts and scars all over his body. The last trait of the novel is how much science is lying beneath the story
Jun 10, 2009 Mandy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Excellent, excellent book. It gets better each time I read it. I believe this is the third time I've read it. Told from Jersey's pov, it is really an eye opening way to look at how all people suffer a suicide attempt, including the person who attempted suicide. This review does contain SPOILERS, so if you don't want to know ahead of time of some events in the book, don't continue reading this review.
Jersey may have seemed like he lived the perfect life to everyone on the outside, but the pressu
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Amy's Book Reviews
4 of 5 stars

TRIGGER is told from the POV of high school senior Jersey, who has just been released from a rehabilitation facility, recovering from severe brain injuries from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. He doesn't remember the incident, or know why he would attempt suicide. What he does know is that his parents are walking on eggshells, his ex-best friend hates him, he's bullied at school, and the harder he tries to speak and make sense of things, the more jumbled his thoughts and speech. With
Jun 29, 2008 Debbie rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: mature readers
We first meet Jersey Hatch on the day he comes home after a year in the hospital. Jersey tried to commit suicide by shooting himself in the head. Not only does he not remember pulling the trigger, but he has also forgotten the year leading up to the event. Jersey, who had once been a star athlete and honor student, now struggles with physical and mental difficulties. His old friends shun him and his parents don't want to talk about anything important.

With the help of the outspoken, no-nonsense
Kolden Baehman
Oct 19, 2016 Kolden Baehman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Personal Response:
At first this book was very confusing and dull.l, but towards the end it got really good. I really liked it, because I didn't imagine the climax to have such an impact on the book.

Plot Summary:
At the start of the book, Jersey woke up in a mental center. He eventually got to leave the center and return home. For weeks. he has been trying to figure out why he was different than most people and why he had a massive scar on his head. He figures out that he attempted suicide in his
Sep 16, 2009 Mary rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya-juv
"...maybe the way I break people, they can't ever be fixed."

"Volcanoes. Hot inside. Way, way down inside, flying up, trying to get out...More hot, flying up, about to blow out, about to cover everything in red."

"Fast like a finger-snap, everything went away. Snap. Poof. No insides, no outsides. No hurts or happy or tears or anything. Just nothing. Empty and cold and ice and nothing."

"I'm a ruiner."


I am oddly always amazed at the emotional effects a book has on me simply because of how I w
Edwin Sun
This book was very interesting compared to anything that I've ever read before. I found it really interesting how I almost lived in the mind of a brain damaged genius and experienced everything he went through. It was just at some points I found myself easily lost in what was going on and the book spent too much time on some little topics that I found very boring. I felt like it did this briefly for every chapter and it really slowed down the pace of the book. If u disregard that though I really ...more
Jul 03, 2008 Lisa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 05, 2009 Jennifer rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book was about a teen who attempts to commit suicide and fails. The book had a lot of promise but just didn't deliver. I started skipping paragraphs and was losing nothing important.

Michael Snachez
May 09, 2017 Michael Snachez rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
AN amazing book o
It's been a while since I've read a YA novel & I'm glad I picked this one up. While not a YA full of romance & relationship angst, it was full of real emotional depth & dealt with the subject of suicide in a thoughtful & poignant manner. Jersey was a great character & I felt quite a lot of empathy for him as he tried to figure out what led him to the fateful moment when he attempted suicide. I was on pins & needles with him as he made lists, asked people about himself bef ...more
This book was about a teen who tried to commit suicide and survived with resulting brain damage. I thought the brain damage part was well done. It was so interesting being able to read from the perspective of someone with a head injury. The main character, Jersey Hatch, felt like a realistic character. My only criticism about this aspect of the story is that some of Hatch's rambling thoughts could have been edited out. There were times where I was tempted to skip ahead as the story stalled.

I mai
Jun 25, 2008 Brittany rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Young people struggling with emotional issues, Parents, Teachers
Recommended to Brittany by: A readplease member
How I Came To Read This Book: A member of the LiveJournal community readplease said she'd never cried as much as she did when reading this book. I decided to test that theory.

The Plot: Jersey Hatch is being released from a hospital he's spent the past year at. One of his eyes is partially blind, one side of his body is pretty decrepit, and his brain feels like an uncontrollable mush of words and ideas. Now that he's out, Jersey is faced with some tough questions, most notably...why did he try to
MissWhite White
Dec 29, 2016 MissWhite White rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
WOW! I COULD NOT put this book down! Jersey is coming home 1 year and five hospitals after an event that gives him a traumatic brain injuring. While he's trying to focus enough to not yell-out random words and complete simple tasks like pulling up his zipper, he's also trying to put the pieces together of what led up to the event, and why everyone seems so angry with him.
You will be shocked as the story unfolds, and the true delicacy of life is revealed.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Mechele R. Dillard for

Seventeen-year-old Jersey Hatch cannot remember that day in his bedroom with his father's gun, and no amount of questioning from family, friends, or therapists can change that. Why did he do it? He wishes he could answer that question, but if he cannot even remember the actual act of shooting himself in the head, how can he be expected to remember why he decided to do it in the first place? Only through a painful search for answers can Jersey di
Oct 26, 2007 Caroline rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read Trigger in one night, from start to finish. Started and couldn’t stop. It resonated, it hurt, at times I put the book down in my lap because I couldn’t read through my tears, couldn’t breathe past the lump in my throat. It showed me the tragic consequences of untreated depression in a way I’ve never allowed myself to consider. Where I wanted to experience pity and regret for Jersey, the characters around him demonstrated contempt. It hurt, but that's the lesson.

Jersey Hatch is no hero. He
I liked it and would recommend it. I appreciated that the whole story is told from Jersey's perspective and not the other characters, since it seems that people with disabilities rarely get to narrate their own lives. (That being said, FYI the author does not have a brain injury.)
Madison Miller
I will definitely continue reading this book. So far in the book "Trigger", some interesting things have happened. The main character is named Jersey. He lost almost all of his memory due to a failed suicide attempt. It was a miracle that he survived. Jersey is now crippled, He only has one eye that he can see through, and a limp arm. Him and his parents _______ and ______ move back to their home town after Jersey's recovery (even though Jersey still had some difficulties.) When he tries to con ...more
Oct 28, 2011 Brian rated it it was amazing
Trigger is a powerfully emotional read of a high school boy, Jersey, who committed suicide and survived. He doesn't remember anything from the year prior or the event itself, and is struggling to pick up the pieces. His best friend Todd hates him, but Todd's younger sister is being helpful. His mom appears to be cracking at the seams, but his dad seems to have his back. In all of this, one question is invading every relationship he had and has: what caused him to do it?

At first, I thought this b
Mar 27, 2013 Huma rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good, good, book. Very involved with Jersey's thoughts (Jersey is the main character and protagonist).
I know what depression feels like, you feel alone, and like no one gets you, and your friends (if you have any left) just seem like trivial people.
Jersey from before the suicide attempt felt like this, but even thought after the attempt Jersey doesn't remember actually attempting suicide he dreams about it according to what he sees and observes now. The author does a good job of telling wh
Edward Lezama
Feb 03, 2016 Edward Lezama rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is about a boy named Jersey Hatch you are first introduced to him on the day he comes home after a year in the hospital. Jersey tried to commit suicide by shooting himself in the head. He has no recollection of the event that took place, and the year before his attempt has been wiped from his memory. Jersey, who had once been a star athlete and honor student, now struggles with physical and mental difficulties. His once "friends" and even "best friend" Todd has shunned him and his pare ...more
Abby Jones
This story sits on the middle to older end of YA fiction with its topic of suicide and some pretty vivid descriptions of the damage a bullet does to a human brain and the horror of finding your child in that manner.
In a very imaginative and creative way, Vaught lets us see what happens to those left behind when someone takes their own life by having the protagonist fail to kill himself. Instead, he returns home to his family and friends with brain damage. The book covers his search for the reaso
Anna Marie
Apr 19, 2014 Anna Marie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an INCREDIBLY difficult book to read. The reason is due to the boy whose POV we read from: Jersey (where do they GET these names?!?!) has shot himself in the head and is just being released from rehab to go home.

The thing is, the bullet severely messed him up. Physically, his left side doesn't function well, he's blind in one eye, and scarred up. Mentally, he has the equivalent of something like Tourette's syndrome, where he fixates on certain words, and the thoughts you're trying to fo
Jan 02, 2014 Trimble rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
While the subject of this book is depressing, Vaught did an amazing job of not making it too heavy. I didn't expect to laugh but she included a lot of humor to lighten the mood a bit while not detracting from the message. It was incredibly eye-opening to be able to get into the head of the main character, Jersey, who had unsuccessfully tried to commit suicide, and better understand what a person in a similar circumstance might struggle with physically, mentally and emotionally. Through her exper ...more
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SOH-Par Book Club: Hooray for choosing a book! 3 12 Mar 07, 2012 01:18PM  
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astrology sign: Libra

favorite book: Harry Potter (all of them) and His Dark Materials
(all of those, too)

favorite song:I Will Follow You Into The Dark by Death Cab for Cutie

current pet total:12 if you don't count the chickens, peafowl,
turkeys, ducks, geese, pigeons, or guineas.

names of my schools:
Vanderbilt University (MS, Ph.D.)
University of Mississippi (Ole Miss) (B
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