Thirteen Reasons Why is a YA fiction novel about a boy, Clay Jensen, who receives a box of tapes from Hannah Baker, but Hannah is dead, she committed suicide. Clay Jensen does narrate the story whilst listening to Hannah’s tapes, but both Hannah’s tapes and Clay’s P.O.V. are in first-person narration which makes reading the book a little confusing. Thirteen Reasons Why takes place in 2007 which is insane considering that is a sensation ten years later. This book accentuates the awareness of suicide. Through Hannah Baker, Asher portrays a suicidal teen girl who deals with a terrible school life and fake friendships, by describing Hannah’s life the reader is able to learn a great deal of what her peers put Hannah through. It is important to be aware of signs of depression in people near us because when those people are still here we can still help them. Jay Asher is prominent for Thirteen Reasons Why, but he has also written The Future of Us (with Carolyn Mackler) and What Light.
In my opinion, the story is a golden one, but the way in which it was written was confusing. Asher wrote Clay’s and Hannah’s P.O.V. in first person, which makes sense for Hannah because she is talking about herself, but the narration of Clay (in my opinion) should have been written in third-person narration to make it easier for the reader to differentiate between past and present as well as making it easier to read about the actions of other characters in the book. I encourage everyone to read this book because it does spread awareness for depression and suicide, but I wouldn’t read more books by Jay Asher. -K