Reviewsday: Thirteen Reasons Why

" A lot of you cared, just not enough."

thirteen reasons whyI’m going to be honest. Thirteen Reasons Why is a hard book to read – but it’s worth it. Any book that deals with an issue as sensitive as teenage suicide is going to be emotional and this one really hits hard. The main message that the book conveys is a powerful one that needs to be heard.

Clay Jensen is still reeling from the death of his friend and first love, Hannah Baker, two weeks previous. When he arrives home one afternoon to a strange package on his doorstep, what he imagines is inside it is nothing compared to what lurks in the box. A stack of cassette tapes that chronicle Hannah’s reasons for taking her own life are being passed around to the people who lent a helping hand. Clay can’t imagine why he would be included. He never did anything wrong. But in listening to the tapes, he soon learns that what can push people to the edge isn’t always one big, bad occurrence. It can be a domino effect of small events building on top of each other. Hannah’s thirteen reasons why.

As Clay progresses through the tapes, his life changes – for better or worse – and so does yours. Hannah’s stories are raw, powerful and scarily relatable. All of the things that send her toppling are common events in a teenager’s life. Not only does this novel shed light on a topical issue, it’s ultimately uplifting. Through Hannah’s tapes, Clay finds himself appreciating life more and not taking for granted the little things as is so easy to do. Every facet of Hannah’s experience is magnified and explored in depth and her voice is one that needs to be heard. To make the impact of the story more powerful, you can listen to Hannah’s tapes at www.hannahsreasons.blogspot.com.au.

Books like these deserve all the praise they’re given. Sensitive subjects really need to be handled well and Thirteen Reasons Why is an outstanding example of this. You will laugh, you will cry and you will finish the book enlightened and full of gratitude for your friends, family and life in general.

-Karen C. @Tweed Heads QBD