‘Thirteen Reasons Why’ by Jay Asher [Book Review]

With the launch of the new Netflix TV show (and having had the book in my possession for an age), this month I decided to read Thirteen Reasons Why to get in on the hype (and for the 2017 Reading Challenge).

Title: Thirteen Reasons Why
Author: Jay Asher
Released: 2007
Pages: 288
Category: #29 A book with an unreliable narrator
Rating: 6/10

“No one knows for certain how much impact they have on the lives of other people. Oftentimes, we have no clue. Yet we push it just the same.”

After a teenage girl, Hannah, commits suicide, a mysterious box of tapes is passed around her school highlighting her motivations. The novel focuses on Clay, Hannah’s work colleague, throughout his journey of discovery. Each chapter represents one side of a tape, and is specifically dedicated to one person who inadvertently led Hannah to her death.

The characters are all incredibly well developed, and their stories are wonderfully woven. Clearly, the novel deals with difficult concepts, but they are well explored within the confines of YA.

The novel was a compulsive read, however given the subject matter and intended audience, the writing often seemed a little childish and trivial. I loved Clay as a character – he’s the boy every teenage girl should want to be with (don’t worry mate, the girls will realise and rectify their mistakes during or after university) – and I found myself heavily invested in his personal story arc, just as much as the novel’s itself. I guess that I’d better watch the show next!

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2 thoughts on “‘Thirteen Reasons Why’ by Jay Asher [Book Review]

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