Saturday, November 13, 2010

Book Review: Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

Description (from Goodreads):
Clay Jensen returns home from school to find a mysterious box with his name on it lying on his porch. Inside he discovers cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker—his classmate and crush—who committed suicide two weeks earlier.

On tape, Hannah explains that there are thirteen reasons why she decided to end her life. Clay is one of them. If he listens, he’ll find out how he made the list.

Through Hannah and Clay’s dual narratives, debut author Jay Asher weaves an intricate and heartrending story of confusion and desperation that will deeply affect teen readers.
From the Publisher (Penguin)

My thoughts:
The day Clay receives the Hannah Bakes tapes is not like any day before in his life. And no of the days after that will be the same.

Clay has had a crush of Hannah for years. But because of this shyness his chances with Hannah are on the past now. And there is only one reason for that. Hannah killed herself. But before her suicide she recorded 13 tapes explaining why she took her life away. The tapes are sent to the people who made the list. When Clay gets the tapes and listens to the first tape, he gets to know that he is one reason why Hannah did what she did. 

The story is told through Hannah's tapes and Clay's thoughts. Having these two very different narrators gives a nice, interesting twist to the book. Hannah has been hurt and disappointed. When Clay receives the tapes he is hurt too. And scared. He cannot understand why he is on Hannah's tapes. 

The style Jay Asher uses in this book builds suspense and you just have to keep reading and reading. Some events are foreshadowed which makes the reader want to know more about events which eventually are explained with more detail. Hannah's tapes are disturbing, but what I really like about them is the honesty. And as my Finnish teacher said; If a novel does not make you disturbed/fall in love/emotional etc. the writer has not really succeeded in his/her work. In that area, Asher has succeeded extremely well. I think "Thirteen Reasons Why" tells about very important, and in a way, taboo issue. I recommend "Thirteen Reasons Why" to readers of all age (but maybe not under 13 because of the issue and some disturbing images). 

I promire this book will stay in your mind for weeks after reading it!


  1. Great review! I think I have this book on my wihlist, but have forgotten about it. Now, I want to read it again. Thanks for pointing it out! It seems to be a really unique and powerful story.

  2. I don't think I've ever heard anyone say they didn't like this one. One of these days, I'm going to have to pick it up. I think it's one I might be able to convince my daughter to read.

  3. This is such an interesting premise for a book. It sounds like it's well done, and I look forward to reading it!

  4. Thirteen Reasons Why sounds like a powerful read. I've had it on my wish list for a while but I think I will perhaps buy it the next time I feel the need to get a new book :) Great review, Milka :)

  5. Thanks for the comments!
    I hope that the ones who haven't hot the chance to read this book yet get to read it soon, this one is truly amazing. I cannot believe I kept it in my shelf for like a year before reading it!


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