Tanya's Reviews > Thirteen Reasons Why

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
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Sep 22, 11

bookshelves: books-read-2011, big-disappointments, young-adult
Read from September 21 to 23, 2011

How does a teenage girl get to the point of killing herself? I've known people in my lifetime with real pain & have known those who have been so ate up inside with it that anything was better than facing it another day. There are kids in schools across the country that are so violently bullied & beaten down emotionally they will hang themselves instead of going to school on a Monday morning. does this book address this? Not really. It's about a teenage girl who has some fairly normal, yet crappy things happen to her that a lot of teenage girls face: boys that are disrespectful & grab her butt because another boy called her easy, people she thinks are her friends when she transfers to a new school later are not her friends any longer, girls being catty & making up lies about her- crappy, yet standard high school BS. And she kills herself because of it. Yeah.


So I'm pretty disappointed with this book. I heard all the acclaim about it, how it's changed kids lives, etc. And I knew this book was about a young girl who kills herself after mailing tapes to others who pushed her to her decision to die. I had myself prepared for a dark story & maybe to read some horrible things that happened to this girl that would cause her to go to such extreme measures. And through the whole book, after each tape is listened to, I'd think, "Wow that sucked but isn't that just a day in the life of a teenager?" and then I'd think that it was all leading up to something horrible to explain it & so I kept reading.

I mean I guess if I was 15 again I might react a little more to the situations she was in but honestly not much. Yes, kids can be little jerks & gossip & spread outright lies because it makes them feel important. Jealous girls call you a slut & loser guys say they slept with you when it's totally BS (that actually happened to me in highschool). Did I slit my wrists because for a little while some immature guys thought I was easy? I don't think anyone would over these hurtful but not life-altering rumors.

Some crappy things happened to this girl. But nothing that millions of highschool girls dont go through everyday. If every highschool girl committed suicide after being backstabbed or lied about there would be NO TEENAGE GIRLS ALIVE!
To me Hannah seemed like someone who was just a lonely coward. In my eyes, she was just as bad, if not worse than the many people she blamed for her death. I say that because there were people especially Clay, who cared & would've helped if she would've been open with them. But instead she screams & yells because they can't read her mind & leaves them frustrated & bewildered at what they did wrong. Ridiculous.

I think what has me so riled up about this book is that while in my opinion there is no excuse for the awful act of suicide & the aftermath it leaves for loved ones to agonize through, I can see how some people can get to that place when there is real deep pain. I didn't get that from this girl. The reasons for her suicide are so lame you would only expect her to become angsty & listen to some Avril Lavine and maybe become anti-social. Not flippin kill herself.

The more I write about this the more angry I get. I think this story could've been so compelling if it wouldve been portrayed realistically. It couldve been used as a tool to open up discussion about suicide & real teen problems. But this story is simply unbelievable.
As far as the writing goes, it was very interesting & well written. I just feel like the author would have made more of an impact had he written about someone with real heartache & volatile issues & her sending recorded messages exposing acts done to her that realistically might cause her to see suicide as her only way out.

That is just my opinion.
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