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jackifulwood

Infinite Satellite

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Thirteen Reasons Why - Jay Asher Summary: Clay receives cassette tapes made by his crush Hannah, who committed suicide two weeks ago. The tapes have been sent to the thirteen people Hannah blames for her suicide. Clay is surprised to find himself included, but if he listens, he'll find out why...

Verdict: Great, albeit morbid concept, but poor writing weighs down the story.

Positive: Again, great concept. Even though I didn't enjoy the book very much, I had to keep reading to find out why Clay was on Hannah's list. And of course, the book deals with many important topics such as depression, suicide, and rape, and would probably be a good book for adults who deal with teens to read, just because it reminds you that the teen angst you don't take seriously is VERY serious for the teen.

Negative: Really, the writing was pretty bad. The interwoven narrative (Hannah talks for a couple of paragraphs, Clay talks for a couple) was difficult to follow. Also, the story of what Clay was doing while listening to the tapes just wasn't interesting. He follows a map from Hannah while listening to the tapes, and I felt like that device was just used to keep some action in his plotline.

Also, Hannah's reasons for killing herself were pretty thin. I just wanted to tell her to go read "Speak" and get a therapist. It basically boils down to her inability to deal with teasing and being objectified, and her failure to stand up for someone else. I was left much more concerned for the person Hannah failed to help than I was angry at the people who didn't help Hannah.

There's also a strange wrap-up that I think was supposed to end the book on a hopeful note and show that Clay had learned something about reaching out to people, but it was too conveniently coincidental/after school special for me.