Review: Jay Asher – 13 Reasons Why

13 Reasons Why
Jay Asher
Hannah Baker committed suicide. That’s not the end of her though – she has made a map and audiotape a bunch of reasons why she has killed herself. Poor Clay is on her list, and he feels compelled to keep listening.
1217100I didn’t actually like Hannah very much. I felt that she could have avoided the trouble she got herself into – it wasn’t fair to blame her year level. She should have known better! She gave up.

I liked Clay, good boy Clay, and felt he was really short changed by Hannah. He’s so nice! And she put him through this after her death. It was so unfair.

I found the first chapter of this book confusing more than anything. Initially I thought it was the person who’s chapter it was with the interspersed comments, but it wasn’t. I checked the blurb of the book multiple times to make sure I wasn’t confused.
The book was compelling in a weird way. Asher did suck me in and I wanted to know what Clay had done. And then I was disappointed there too. I can’t say I found it comfortable to read – but then it wasn’t supposed to be comfortable. I ended up skimming the end. I just wasn’t into it enough to accept it.
I felt let down by this book. I expected so much more, maybe unrealistically hoping that Hannah had bigger problems than just being labelled a slut. Yes, it’s bad, but there are other things you can do rather than killing yourself. There is help available! She didn’t really try very hard, and although people didn’t help her, it was unfair to blame everyone else for a choice that ultimately only she could make. I guess I was looking for depth, but I didn’t find it.The discussion question type things at the end are ok. I guess this could make a good school book, which would be ever so relevant, particularly to American teens. Sorry, perhaps Australians are a little less wimpy. I’d recommend this book for teens. I really didn’t love it enough to properly recommend it – maybe other people will enjoy it more than me. I know there are a number of people out there who love this book. But it’s not me. I feel like I have wasted 10 reviews on ‘earning’ this book, and I could have picked something with more substance.

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