Clay Jensen's first love records her last words.
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 explains that there are thirteen reasons 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 first-hand witness to Hannah's pain, and learns the truth about himself, a truth he never wanted to face.
Through Hannah and Clay's dual narratives, debut author Jay Asher weaves an intricate and heart-rending story of confusion and desperation that will deeply affect teen readers.
When I picked up this audiobook from the library I knew it was a young adult book about suicide, but I didn't know that the format of the story included cassette tapes. Because the story revolves around these tapes of Hannah's, it makes for a very powerful audio book. You are hearing Hannah's words through the speakers, just as Clay would.
There was both a male and female narrator on the audio, and they both were very well done. The emotion of the story came through strongly, and throughout the story I would get goose bumps.
Sometimes as Clay was listening to Hannah's tapes his thoughts and reactions to her statements would break into her narrative. While these often clarified or added to the story they were also a little distracting. I would be so engrossed in Hannah's story that I didn't want any interruptions.
This is a powerful and well-written story. It is definitely not just for teens, as suicide is a subject that doesn't just affect them. I highly recommend this book, especially the unabridged audio version. This is a story that will stay with me. 5 stars
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