After I finished watching the TV series, 13 Reasons Why by Netflix, I immediately got myself a copy of the book by Jay Asher. I needed to read the story of Hannah Baker from the author himself.
Th1rteen R3asons Why by Jay Asher
You can’t stop the future. You can’t rewind the past. The only way to learn the secret.. is to press play. Clay Jensen Returns home from school to find a strange package with his name on it lying on his porch. Inside he discovers several cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker – his classmate and crush – who committed suicide two weeks earlier. Hannah’s voice tells him that there are thirteen reasons why she decided to end her life. Clay is one of them. If he listens, he’ll find out why. Clay spends the night crisscrossing his town with Hannah as his guide. He becomes a firsthand witness to Hannah’s pain and as he follows Hannah’s recorded words throughout his town, what he discovers changes his life forever.
I just completed reading Th1rteen R3asons Why today and I believe that differences introduced in the TV series are needed. The differences include the ordering of the tapes, a little bit of exaggeration in some of the actions done by some of the characters in the TV series and more involvement in the story by the parents of major characters.
Upon reading the book, I felt that I needed to share my thoughts about who should or should not get a copy of the book and read it. Th1rteen R3asons Why is a complicated, realistic and dark book but it has to be written.
It is written for the countless few who are experiencing depression and might be thinking about suicide. Th1rteen R3asons Why is written for them so that other people can understand where they are coming from. This book will give context to people on how their actions can impact other people in a positive or negative way. However, it is VERY VERY dangerous for people with depression to read Th1rteen R3asons Why. Whether we agree or not, the book glamorizes suicide. We do NOT want to encourage it further. I know it is ironic to advise the depressed people to read the book when it was actually written FOR them BUT they are NOT the target audience here.
Which brings me to my next point –> This world we live in is cruel. I truly believe that people are generally mean especially to people who are undergoing difficulties. People who are born blessed and are generally born in a positive and loving environment do not have the experience and the ability to empathize with people who are born otherwise. Consciously or unconsciously, they become mean and actually worsens the situation of the depressed people around them. I experienced this myself a few years back. That’s why I’m glad that Th1rteen R3asons Why is getting a lot of traction. These people are the target audience of the book. I hope it gives them the background on why some people feel what they feel. And eventually, I hope that after reading Th1rteen R3asons Why, these people will learn to be more sensitive and give the help & support that their friends badly needs.