Kyle's Reviews > Thirteen Reasons Why

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
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Sep 21, 11

bookshelves: 2011-reads, do-not-own, teen, nook-in-store-reads, the-barn-kids-bestsellers
Read from September 11 to 21, 2011

I have really mixed feelings about this book. I totally support the cause of suicide awareness so I'm not being critical of the subject matter, but of how the author approached it. The whole book just rang false for me. It read like a smarmy potboiler, drawing the reader in through the anticipation of discovering what dirty secret would be revealed next that "forced" Hannah Baker to commit suicide. I also felt that the book was all about Hannah blaming other people for an act she committed herself. Discussions about depression and therapy never came up, which I think is a travesty for a teen book dealing with this subject matter. And it's hard to sympathize with a character who took all this time and effort to destroy not only her own life but so many others' as well. The whole concept of recording the tapes and mailing them out as a chain letter is sadistic and wrong. As I came to the end of the book I realized that the story the book should have been about was the aftermath. How do the people who received the tapes react to them? Surely they'll be changed forever, but what do they glean from the whole situation? Are they changed for the better or the worse? What do they think of Hannah now? I feel that story would have much more of a moral center and be more complex. This one was just one slow and steady descent into hopelessness. Oh and one more thing--what teenager in this day and age would use audio cassettes? That completely baffles me.
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09/11/2011 page 60
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