Book of the Month: 13 Reasons Why by Jay Asher

Wow, this book. I knew as soon as I read the descriptive blurb that this story was not going to have a happy ending, but I don’t think I was quite prepared for the crushing grief that consumes the narrator as he listens to the tapes from a girl who committed suicide, a girl he loved but was too afraid to pursue. There are so many themes to this book: guilt, despair, remorse, indifference, isolation, persecution, but as I kept reading all I could think was every teenager, every school student, every bully should be made to read this book, to see how actions, jokes, and rumors that seem harmless can cut deep; how seemingly insignificant incidents can build and build and build until they crush a person to the point that anything and everything are simply too much to bear. The story Asher tells here is incredible, tragic, and haunting.

I read 13 Reasons Why in June 2011 and could not stop thinking about. It is one of the most powerful books I have ever read. For weeks after I turned the last page, Hannah and Clay haunted me. I thought about them at night when I tried to call asleep. They were in my head whenever I picked up a new book and tried to read, only to set it down as my thoughts went back to Asher’s masterpiece. I kept thinking what if she’d…. What if he’d… But she didn’t and he didn’t, and so we are left with the fallout of a tragedy.

This is such an incredible book. If you haven’t read it, get your hands on a copy. If you have read it, take it down from the shelf and read it again and then pass it on to someone. The world needs to read this book.

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