Title: 13 Reasons Why
Author: Jay Asher
Publication Year: 2007
Date Started: March 24, 2017
Date Finished: March 25, 2017
Beverage of choice: Chocolate Malted Milkshake
The Netflix adaptation is available for binge watching as of today. Wondering what I will be doing this weekend? Wonder no further.
13 Reasons Why follows one evening in the life of high schooler Clay Jensen. His crush committed suicide a couple of weeks prior, yet he receives a package in the mail with cassette tapes she recorded before her death. Essentially, she recorded her reasons for committing suicide, and pinpoints the people who were responsible. Each person (13 in total) in turn will receive the tapes and pass it on to the next on the list.
When it comes to television, I will spend countless hours watching teenage dramas because they take very little thought to watch and are often humorous in their execution, my ultimate guilty pleasure being Pretty Little Liars. And so with similar themes and threads promised in this book, I had very low expectations going in. And I was pleasantly surprised. Was this a great piece of literature? No. Was it enjoyable? Yes.
This novel incorporates many common high school problems, and points out that while each action in itself is innocent, it is the culmination that can change an individual’s life. Additionally, the narrative highlights the multitude of opportunities that could have prevented the outcome, which could have saved the young woman’s life. I really appreciated the signs of suicidal individuals being clearly sprinkled throughout the text, so that it could provide not only a story, but also inform the reader, to make everyone aware. Because doing nothing means you are also not stopping it and all it takes is one person to save a life.
But now to bring it back to the book. It was fast reading and sucked me in immediately. I especially liked the ending and how Clay grew from understanding the last thoughts of Hannah Baker (haha, get it? Baker’s dozen?). I look forward to seeing how it adapts to the screen.
Overall, 3/5 moose