One of the first YA books that I had read and made me want to explore the world that is YA literature is Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher….so I’m super excited that it is now available in paperback and thanks to Big Honcho Media I have TWO copies to give away to two lucky readers!!
I went through an emotional rollercoaster while reading this book. I felt sorry for Hannah, I hated Hannah, I wanted to get through all the tapes to figure out WHY she did it, my heart broke for Clay, I wanted to punch certain people and I wanted to never ever have to experience the confusion, the guilt and the “what-ifs” of someone I knew taking their own life. There are so many questions surrounding suicide. At this point in my life while reading this book, I hadn’t really known anyone to commit suicide aside from a neighbor but I was too little to remember. I had lost my mom to cancer a year before I read this but I knew that at least she didn’t CHOOSE to leave me. My heart broke for people who had loved ones that committed suicide and I got emotional and angry at people who did that sort of thing because I know my mom would have given anything to live. And then I after my anger subsided I felt truly sorry for people who had made that decision. I felt sorry that they literally felt they had nothing worth living for. Not one thing that made it worth it. I wanted to hug these people. I truly did. Especially the young ones.
Since reading this book, I have watched my little sister lose one of her good friends at 15 to suicide. I watched her wrestle through the grief and the “what could I have done”, “if only I would have done this” scenarios. And my heart broke. My heart broke that my little sister had to know about these things. My heart broke that a boy of 15, who hadn’t really experienced life, thought that he wanted it to be over. Since reading this book, I lost a friend to suicide. She was beautiful and kind and just graduated from nursing school. And her friends and her family….we’ll always have questions and never ever get any answers.
Despite what some people think, I believe books like this are special…and not too dark for teen readers. Let’s be honest…life can be too dark. And I feel like I keep seeing young people making this decision to end it and teens deserve to be able to talk about it and reflect on it and know their options. The beauty of a book like this is that there is SO MUCH DISCUSSION that can come from it. A wonderful thing that has come from this book is an initiative from Penguin — The Thirteen Reasons Why Project. Teens from all over (each review is also logged on a map) can share how this book has affected them through text, video or photo. You should check it out! I found it to be a really powerful initiative to see teens speaking out about it.
Now for the giveaway: Two lucky people will win a paperback version of Thirteen Reasons Why. Leave a comment (and with a way I can get in contact with you– Twitter, blog url, email) about either a) why you want to read this book b) your thoughts about this book if you have read it or c) a comment about whether or not books like this are “too dark” for teens. I’d really love to get a discussion started.
+ You don’t have to be a follower.
+ US only since it is being shipped out from the publisher.
+ This giveaway ends 11:59 PM on June 13th
If you aren’t familiar with this book here is a summary: