Sunday, December 22, 2013

Thirteen Reasons Why: 3 Stars

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

Wow.....just wow.  This book was heavy and kind of a little messed up.  But I guess that was the intention. 

In Thirteen Reasons Why, a teenage boy named Clay comes home to find a package on the porch addressed to him. Like with most of us, he's filled with excitement and wonder. But his excitement is soon replaced by horror as he realizes the package contains tapes; tapes sent by a girl who recently killed herself. The tapes are to go, one by one, to the thirteen people who pushed her over the edge....and one of them is Clay.

Hannah Baker moved to this area in high school. Since she knew absolutely no one, she had to start out on her own. She initially made two friends, who were also new, but they outgrew each other.  Eventually she met a boy; a boy who lied about what kind of girl she was with him.  And that reputation grew and grew thanks to most of the people on the list.

Honestly, I am still not sure how to feel about this book.  This girl is sending a long message basically blaming 13 separate people for her actions. That's heavy.  I totally get that these kids did things that were not very nice at all.  But that's quite the thing to put on someone. "Hey, I killed myself and it's your fault."  I can almost understand 10 of them, but three really bothered me.  Two were Clay and the very last person; but one girl that was on the list really shouldn't have been.  

She put someone on the list who ends up being a victim at the end, thanks to other people.  That really bothered me.  She is one of the few people who knows what that poor girl is dealing with and she adds to it for blaming her for her suicide. And then she tells 12 other people.  That's really messed up. 

Ugh...I really feel like I am not explaining it very well.  I don't want to give away plot points, so I am going to have to leave it at this: I do not feel the girl was justified in her tape sending.

The story was well told and the author did a fantastic job conveying a message that you need to think about your actions and how they effect people. It's a really powerful message  However, I can't shake the feeling that she shouldn't have sent this to at three people on the list, if not more.

Rating: PG-13

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