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Thirteen Reasons Why

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

470 out of 496 people found this review helpful.

Thirteen Reasons Why You Should Read This Book

1. It's wonderfully written
2. It keeps you on the edge of your seat the entire time
3. You'll fall in love with the characters
4. You'll hate the antagonists of the book
5. At the end, you'll be cheering for Clay
6. At the end, you'll be crying for Hannah
7. It'l...
1. It's wonderfully written
2. It keeps you on the edge of your seat the entire time
3. You'll fall in love with the characters
4. You'll hate the antagonists of the book
5. At the end, you'll be cheering for Clay
6. At the end, you'll be crying for Hannah
7. It'll give you a greater understanding of teenage suicide
8. It's inspiring
9. It's unforgettable
10. At the end you'll be hungry for more
11. It's original and, well, quite awesome
12. You won't find books like this often
13. What are you doing reading reviews? Read the freakin' BOOK already!

posted by twilight_fanatic_01 on June 23, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

80 out of 204 people found this review helpful.

Disappointed.

I think I was the rare person who did NOT love Thirteen Reasons Why. Unlike much of the excellent teen fiction that is being written, Thirteen Reasons Why rang false to me. The characters seemed hollow and like caricatures of real teenagers. The teens in the story acted...
I think I was the rare person who did NOT love Thirteen Reasons Why. Unlike much of the excellent teen fiction that is being written, Thirteen Reasons Why rang false to me. The characters seemed hollow and like caricatures of real teenagers. The teens in the story acted like an adult's idea of how teenagers act. Worst of all, there is no sympathy to be found for the subject of the book, Hannah Baker, who killed herself and left behind tapes detailing why for those people who made her miserable. She came off perhaps worst of all the characters in the boo -- she seems petty and vindictive, having left tapes telling people that she killed herself because of them. We at least get to witness some of these characters experiencing remorse.

Perhaps the flattening of Hannah Baker's character is an affect of the fact that she is already dead when the book begins. We only know of her what she recorded on these tapes, but what is there isn't flattering. Hannah is the ultimate passive-aggressive, not really doing anything to help her cause. This book didn't make me feel anything but annoyance, and I would recommend many other teen titles before this one.

posted by SamGNA on August 22, 2009

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  • Posted January 3, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    HannahG

    When the main character, Clay Jensen, discovers a package on his porch, he opens it to find seven audiotapes with the recorded voice of his former classmate, Hannah Baker, on them. Hannah had killed herself several weeks earlier. Eerie, isn't it?
    Eerie is definitely the right word to describe this book. I think that the disembodied voice of Hannah has a ghostly way of keeping me reading. I can hear anger, revenge and regret spewing from her voice, and Clay's reactions to her stories make me want to cry. Although it is already a good book, what makes this book special is the twist the author put on a "typical" teen suicide story. Hannah just seemed like a normal sixteen year old to me. She had her share of heartbreaks and rumors, but it didn't seem like it was enough to make her want to die. But unlike other novels about teens attempting suicide, Hannah shares her side of the story, and I learned how much her experiences affected her. Although I would have not done something so drastic to get rid of problems like hers, the feelings Hannah expressed showed that she was in a great deal of emotional pain.
    This book is definitely not a lighthearted read. But, it is an interesting one that is very touching.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 6, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Morbidly Creative

    Always a fan of teen angst, I enjoyed this book. It's an interesting take on suicide. The idea that a teen who is going to kill herself would leave behind tapes that explain why she did it is a new one (to me at least). It's a powerful story, and a very sad one. Do not pick this up if you are looking for light reading.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 29, 2013

    Good but not great

    After I started the book and was a few chapters in, I decided to look at the reviews and see what people said about it. People are right when they say it's a page-turner. The first half of the book I could barely put it down. It really hooks you in and is written in such a unique way. So maybe now you're wondering why I gave this 3 stars. So far so good right? Well, the next half of the book was the issue. It's like I was forcing myself to get through it. It started feeling so slow. The main thing that bugged me though was after I finished I was kind of like, "that's it? Those are the reasons she killed herself?" Let's get one thing straight. I have no idea what the level of the characters pain was, but in my eyes, none of the 13 reasons were valid enough to actually do it. I'm not saying you have to have a certain level of crap happen in your life to make suicide an option because suicide definitely should never be an option. But if you're going to write a book that gives reasons and stories behind why someone was going to actually do it, maybe for once in the readers life make them feel like suicide was the characters only way out but wasn't at the same time. Make us hope and hope they wouldn't do it even if you know they will but at the same time can see why they do. Writing is so powerful and can make you feel things you never thought it could make you feel, and with a topic like suicide, it can do that. For me, umfortunatley, I didn't feel much. I'm not a heartless person I promise, but by the end, all I felt was irritation.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 7, 2012

    Just listen to the story.

    Alot of people are saying they hate it because Hannah didnt have good enough reasons to kill herself. But who are you to say what she can or cant handle? The situations dont matter if shes feeling overwhelmed like that. I agree that she could have tried more, but suicidal people are very sensitive. Thats why the last days of her life seem so trival to the actual situation. Someone who breaks their foot could be having just as hard of a time as a person who has a brain tumor. Whats hard for them is hard for them. Dont get me wrong, ill never believe that suicide is right. But when youre looking at the story line, its well written. I got to meet Jay Asher. He came to my school and he explained the book in detail. He never intended for anyone to take it like this. So if you dont like it, you dont like it. But it was a well written and thought out book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 12, 2012

    Overall, a good story line BUT not a clean or uplifting book

    The book was very interesting and welk written. I like the autgors idea if impacting people on how they might hurt people emotiinally and that suicide is not the answer. The book kept me turning pages but was disturbing and discriptively graphic during some scenes including one in which Hannah (suicidal girl) goes into a hot tub with a boy and another girl wearing nothing but her garments. When they got wet they became see through. Later the girl left and the boy and Hannah were alone. The book describes him rubbing her breasts under her bra and rolling her undies down and feeling underneath. The graphic description stop ther but suggest sexual goings on afterward. DO NOT READ thisbook if you are offended by graphic descriptions.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 24, 2011

    ok.....

    This book was only ok. I found it a little hard to beleive that someone would even think about suicide because of the reasons listed. Near the end I could see that some bad things did happen to her but she could've stopped all of it. any normal girl would. on the other hand the writting was really good. and lots of good description. I could really picture everyhing that was happening.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 24, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Couldn't Put it Down!

    I thought this book was pretty good. I was not blown away by it by any means, but I could not put it down. I read it in two sittings! It's a pretty sad novel. I think it's good for everyone to read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 17, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    13 Reasons why

    this book gave me a different perspective on life, i was amazed that these fictional characters could make me feel so many different emotions, when Hannah cried i found my self getting teary when clay got upset i could feel his pain, i think everyone has someone like Hannah in them, the one who sits back and feels everything. Just by having Hannah's story told i think it could save young people in her situation.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 12, 2010

    Just So-so

    I am going to give Thirteen Reasons Why 3 stars. While I enjoyed the novel idea of having two narrators-one being the deceased Hannah on the tapes, and the other being Clay reacting to them-I often found myself getting tripped up on who was speaking, even though Hannah's dialog is in all italics and Clay's is a regular font. The premise seemed interesting too. But after reading halfway through the book I found myself hoping there would be some more compelling reasons for this girl to end her life. I mean, suicide is a very extreme action to take. While high school is a dramatic time, sure, the reasons simply didn't resonate with me as being serious enough for her to take the actions that she did. The sending of the tapes was an original idea, but the reasons she blames people for their actions almost seems petty except for a few. I did not dislike this book, rather I would've liked it more if the actions she blames people for were a little more extreme.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 9, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    And that's it??

    The book is interesting,well written. But those 13 reasons are not even nearly enough to end your life!!! It's a story of a weak girl, who just decided to give up without even trying. She knew, she had somebody who liked her, who would support her, who would not let her fall. But she didn't give him even a chance. Why to put effort, when you can just swallow bunch of pills and that's it.<BR/> The whole book is 13 REASONS WHY you should choose your friends more carefully, stop taking everything in life so personal, be strong and move on, like any other girl does.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 19, 2008

    This book will GIVE you depression

    I just finished reading this book last night. I liked the idea of the book and it kept me turning the pages. It was hard to put down. However, it was very depressing and I haven't been able to shake it since. Being a teenager is hard. Others can be brutal, however, I did not think the reasons the author gave for Hannah's ultimate choice were valid. But it is a message others need to consider...treating people with kindness and respect because you don't know what othes may be going through. This book has a weak plot that doesn't ever reach a climatic point, but if it helps to change other's actions, then I recommend it.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 4, 2014

    Peregrins@cox.net

    Add me

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  • Posted July 29, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    See full review @ The Indigo Quill . blogspot . com       Thirt

    See full review @ The Indigo Quill . blogspot . com

          Thirteen Reasons Why, Jay Asher's first published book, should probably be read in every High School in America at least once. Is it the absolute best book out there tackling the topic of teenage suicide? No. And I'm sure there are others like it that I have yet to read, but until that happens, I think this could be a very useful tool in our High Schools. There are also Anti-Bullying tours and resources on the website, but I'll get to that later.

         In the book, Hannah had committed suicide two weeks ago. Before she died, she recorded a series of tapes explaining 13 reasons why she did it. Each person the reasons are about has to send the tapes along to the next person. The reader enters into the story when the tapes arrive into the hands of another unlucky person whom Hannah blames for her choices, Clay Jensen. 

         When I was in High School, my school went through a year where we had about 5 suicides. This was really uncommon for us, so it was really shocking for our entire community. After I graduated, at least 3 more of my classmates had committed suicide. I wish we had a book like this as a required reading in English (of course, this wasn't published until a year after I graduated).The way the book was written makes it easily readable and relatable for teens. Although it's not the best developed plot I've read, I think it could keep the attention of High Schoolers of different reading levels if it was brought into the school system. It introduces the topic of teenage suicide for discussion and just may open some eyes to see that although their negative actions toward others may seem small to them, the person on the receiving end may be blowing it up 5 times bigger.

         Did I feel like Hannah fully justified her reasons? Honestly, no. At first, I didn't really like her. She sounded self-centered and bratty, and like she had taken normal everyday things that people do to each other way too seriously. I had to stop and tell myself &quot;this girl is obviously sick. There's a reason why all these things added up in her head to being so big that she felt she needed to kill herself.&quot; I was then reminded of a few articles I had read in 2012 about a teenage girl from Canada who committed suicide as a result of bullying. To her, the things her peers were saying about her and the way they treated her were maximized, and the good things in her life (including friends she spent time with often) were minimized. It was like there was a voice in her head that kept feeding her insecurities and weakening her will to live. But also, the rumors going around about her also made her a target for the boys just like in Thirteen Reasons Why. In the book, the character of Hannah mentions briefly that many other things were going on in her life, but they weren't important enough to put on the tapes. I think this can easily be identified as the things she minimized because that voice in her head was speaking too loudly for her to hear them.

         I think some of the reasons could have been better ones. There are plenty of examples you can pull up in articles on the internet about different horrible ways that kids bully each other. Some of them are pretty terrible, but unfortunately are very common. Granted, this book is a few years old so it wasn't as common in 2007 for people to post YouTube videos and whatnot before committing suicide like they do now. However, I felt like the story was slightly underdeveloped and could've gone so much further than it did to bring the reality of this issue even more to readers.

         I would recommend picking up this book and reading it at least once. It had a good anti-bullying message and could be used as a good introduction to suicide awareness. However, if you're a teen and you look deeper into the context, you can probably see that Hannah's decision was a permanent solution to a temporary problem. Sometimes, the feelings of hopelessness caused by peers traps people into thinking they're inadequate and unloved, and that their lives will never be anything more than what it is at that moment. But that isn't the case. I remember feeling like that sometimes, and I've been graduated for about 8 years now...and I'll tell you, none of the negative people or situations from High School have followed me. I don't even know who that girl is anymore, and I'm so glad I pushed through any bullying I experienced.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 28, 2014

    Didnt really feel it to much...

    Pretty good book but more for younger teens. Not really captivating. But has a good moral to the story.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 26, 2014

    Decent

    It depends on what kind of stories you're into. During some scenes i couldn't tear away from the book but some parts were very slow. The author had a very great idea, very original. Olly olly oxen!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 6, 2014

    what do u win

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2014

    Good but not great

    I liked this book but didn't love it. Being a teenager is hard and there are rumors that go around all the time but Hannah did absolutely nothing to change that. She just let it get the best if her. And she chose to make all the wrong decisions but she chose to blame them on other people. And as for Mr. Porter, why didn't he stop her? He knew what she was talking about, but yet he let her walk right out the door. If it was real life, the teacher would have done everything he/she could to get the child some help. Hanna was a very weak person and she just let everyone walk all over her and she did absolutely nothing to stop it. She didn't really give good reasons why she killed herself she just blamed other people. All the rumors could have been stopped had she confronted them head on. And she let two people who, had they only known what was going on in her life wanted to help but it was too late, let suffer and blame themselves. All I can say is this, it was a good book but after you read the entire thing and realize where and how it ends, it's kind of stupid. She didn't really reach out to anyone for help, until after she had already made up her mind and it was to late. Read it for yourselves and make up your own mind.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 4, 2014

    Imagine a desolate world where it seems everything that could g

    Imagine a desolate world where it seems everything that could go wrong does. This is the world of Hannah Baker, the subject of Jay Asher’s novel Thirteen Reasons Why. Readers are guided through the reasons for her suicide by Clay Jensen, who wonders what he’s doing on Hannah’s suicide tapes. The tapes were dedicated to revealing the culprits in her downward spiral, and Clay gradually comes to accept the fact that the tapes aren’t designed for revenge or a cry for attention, but for a much larger purpose. The plot circles around from one event to another, forming so many connections between separate anecdotes, settings, and characters the reader is blown away. For example, Hannah’s old house and a pivotal road intersection are revisited multiple times, each time the depth of those settings being further elaborated on. Clay’s shy and protective character and his interactions with the other tape subjects, as well as his mother and mysterious best friend Tony, provide readers with further background and characterization for Hannah’s targets, and allows readers to immerse themselves in his emotional struggle through the story. This indirect characterization is especially seen with Marcus, whom Clay verifies is just as Hannah’s story makes him out to be: a “‘d***.’” Marcus also embodies Clay’s foil as a tape recipient-Marcus accepts no blame, and is angry that Hannah “look[ed] for a reason to kill herself.” Just as important to the story is Asher’s theme, the idea of a snowball effect and the ignorance of consequences; the theme rears its head time and time again in his Thirteen Reasons Why and the reader is staggered each time by how deep this arrow of truth pierces through the novel, and is compelled to reflect on how the theme applies to his or her own experiences. The writing style is in the form of Clay’s flow of conscience and Hannah’s recollections. This style and the content are ideal for young adults; however, I feel the mature matter and emotional depth appeals to adult readers just as well, and the theme can apply to all readers. I highly recommend Asher’s Thirteen Reasons Why for mature readers looking for an emotional tale and critical theme. 

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2014

    Sample

    I wanted to read the sample before buying this book but when I opened the sample all it had were the copyright pages and then it said that it was the end of the sample. I was very dissapointed

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 14, 2014

    Great Book!!!

    This book is about a teenager who comitted succid and their a big mistruy behind it...

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