During a random thought moment in my 4th period class, one of my students asked (loudly) if I had read this book. When I said I had not, she exclaimed that I had to read it. Immediately. She also said that she couldn’t put it down. Now this is a huge deal when my 21st century learners tell me that they couldn’t put a book down.
I read it. And all I have to say is “WOW!”.
Jay Asher’s “Thirteen Reasons Why” is a gripping young adult novel centering around Clay Jensen and a mysterious box of cassette tapes he finds on his front porch after school one day. Without giving too much away, the seven tapes contain 13 stories from a classmate who committed suicide weeks before – the tapes contain the 13 reasons why she ultimately decided to end her life.
My initial thoughts after processing the novel were as follows:
- What an amazing story.
- How fitting that our building focuses on anti-bullying.
- Would this encourage teenagers and adults alike to decrease the amount of bullying (covert and overt)?
- What can we do as members of society to aid in the anti-bullying effort?
- How can we help our fellow man?
- What outlets can we give our youth and adults so that suicide doesn’t seem like a viable option?
The book is truly a page-turner. I read every word and finished the novel in two hours. The novel seems fairly true to life. There’s heartbreak in every sense of the word and it tests the empathy of the reader.
Preppy Runner Grade: A+