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Thirteen Reasons Why

Written by: Jay Asher
Length: 6 hrs and 24 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (42 ratings)
Price: CDN$ 35.75
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Publisher's Summary

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 13 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.

©2007 Jay Asher (P)2007 Random House, Inc. Listening Library, an imprint of the Random House Audio Publishing Group

What the critics say

"A brilliant and mesmerizing debut from a gifted new author." ( Kirkus Reviews)
"The message about how we treat one another...makes for compelling reading." ( Booklist)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Love this book

I purchased the audiobook to listen to while travelling. Really addictive to listen to and the narration was great! #Audible1

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Better than just reading it

I physically read the book and then when I went camping, I downloaded the audiobook to listen to on the way there and it just made reading the book that much better, it was great. I also think having another voice for Hannah added a lot more character and made it easier to follow along. I would recommend this book as a good YA novel. #Audible1

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Diana
  • Kanata, Ontario, Canada
  • 2011-01-10

An Ideal Audio Book

The trouble with making books into audiobooks is that some simply do not survive the translation in media intact. Not so with 13 Reasons Why. Compellingly written and evocatively voiced, this audiobook comes from a novel whose premise - a boy's inner monologue as he is listening to audiotapes of a dead girl's voice - is ideally suited to the listened. On top of that, Jay Asher's novel is an accurate, sometimes painfully so, rendering of teen life, teen sorrow, and teen frustration. His main character's reactions are realistic and inevitable, and his storytelling weaves together 12 stories into one cohesive whole. I loved this book so much that I taught it to a Grade 9 and 10 class low-literacy class, who were inspired to become active in their community to help people "So no one has to get a box on their door...or mp3s in their email...and hurt like Clay and Hannah did." When the students ask me if they're allowed to lend the book to friends and family, when a mother phones me in happy tears because her daughter wants a BOOK for Christmas, that's when I know the novel is great.

84 of 87 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • FanB14
  • 2012-07-06

Good Book for Parents & Teens to Share

I enjoyed the idea, format, and execution of this book. I felt mixed emotions about the narrator, as was intended and this opened up a good dialogue between me and my 13 yr old daughter. Worth your credit if you're interesting in understanding the inner workings of a young girl's mind.

88 of 94 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Sarah
  • 2010-09-14

Beautiful and Tragic

I found this book on accident and Its not something that I usually read. In fact in my giant book shelf its one of a kind. I thought the story was tragic but beautifully told. Its sad that a young girl would feel such a way but it really does show you the "snowball effect" and that everyone is connected, a "six degrees of separation" type deal. I myself couldn't put it down, like the boy listening to the audio tapes, you felt what he felt. There isn't a book like this that would've been written better and the character voices they chose to use was wonderful and I felt fit the people perfectly. Definitely something I would read/listen to again!

28 of 30 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Martin
  • irvine, CA, USA
  • 2008-07-06

A beautifully written book on an ugly subject

My daughter found this book and while she is reading it, I listened to the audiobook. This was an amazing story, crafted beautifully and I think the audiobook version adds something extra with the dual character voices.

This story is also a great way to connect with my teenage daughter and keep those lines of communication open and honest. This book deals with lots of ugly issues many of which you never want to discuss with your kids and that is the reason that you have to. To be able to use this book as a parenting tool has just been a bonus.

I highly recommend this to parents and their teens to read together or individually for discussion.




22 of 24 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Theodore
  • Kingston, Jamaica
  • 2013-11-03

Beautiful, Tragic, Beaitiful & Honest

So this is one of those rare titles that you best listen to on a weekend when you have NOTHING better to do with your time. Why? The book is so exceptionally enthralling that you will find yourself immediately drawn into the story if you are even remotely a fan of literature of this kind. The narration was faultless and the story was tragic but honest and done so well. Absolutely superb.

I think this book has the potential to polarize an audience. I say this because the topics the book touches... topics such as high school, suicide and date rape... all these topics are highly sensitive. These also are topics that some are not comfortable talking about and are in general very 'heavy' emotions to deal with. The book comes off as that, heavy.... riddled with feelings and emotions... That being said the somewhat heavy tone lends to making each portion of this book seem meaningful in some way. You know a book is great when it feels organic in a sense and unforced which was exactly what this was.You knew the outcome of the novel, the tragic end of the girl who left the tapes, and yet you find yourself engrossed in the novel from beginning to end.

I agree that this book is tragic and if you are looking for a happy ending then you will miss out here. I mean yes, there is some amounts of closure and the main character here does find some sort of redemption in the end but there can be no true happy ending in a book where one of the main characters commits suicide. What appeals most me though in this book is the honesty.... it's tragic, it sucks but it's also true and it needs to be told. It also helps that the book is written so beautifully with the phrasing, the pauses, the choice of words being just plain immaculate.

It's the sort of book that makes you want to be a bit nicer to people for the mere reason that you never know what they are going through and you never know if maybe they are teetering at the edge of their breaking point. It makes you want to ask someone "how are you" and actually mean it.... Sharing a kind word with someone just for the mere fact that you can just in case.

The book had that ability to bring me back to some not so nice moments in my own life maybe not as bad as what Hannah went through but bad in its own right (I think everyone goes through something like this at one point or another) and it made me thankful for it not 'snowballing' as it did with Hannah because really, who knows how different I would have been now?

When I finished the book and told a certain someone about it, they told me I shouldn't 'gush' about it in my review.... Well.... I am gushing and I believe this book was absolutely worth every moment of gushing. I mean I went through this book cover to cover in one sitting.... For a usual busy body like me doing 1 million things at once that truly is a task for a book to accomplish.

I would recommend this book to anyone who wants a sobering and honest title. To break up the monotony of sci-fi or action or romance or fantasy or whatever you're accustomed to. To delve in the mind of someone who simply was pushed too much... Where a series of unfortunate occurrences snowballed into something tragic... Something, that if you take the time out to reflect on and really allow to marinate within you can actually make you a better person after you finish it....

43 of 48 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Cassandra
  • Fontana, CA, United States
  • 2010-11-24

Loved It!

I truly loved this book, I felt as if I was there hearing her through the tapes along with him. I was very moved by the way this book shows that your actions truly have consequences and no matter how small something might seem to you for someone else it can be devistating. Its a Great book!!!

12 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Felicity Fairchild
  • 2010-03-05

Turned out Better!

It wasn't anyting at all what I expected but it was a whole lot better. 13 reasons why tells about a teen and why she wants to kill herself, right? I think it was a lot deeper than that. All the mixed feelings how Hannah feel are so complicated that it's hard to understnad. But Jay Asher convey it pretty well. This book is not like happily ever after book, but yet you can still enjoy it.

25 of 29 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Rafiatu
  • Brooklyn, NY, United States
  • 2013-03-17

Absolutely fantastic!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes! This tale takes the readers on a heartbreaking journey.

What did you like best about this story?

The interesting way it was written.

What about Debra Wiseman and Joel Johnstone ’s performance did you like?

Amazing job!

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I came across this book three years ago and aways wanted to read it. I'm glad I finally did. This tale had me questioning my actions. The saying: Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me are not good parental advise.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Michelle
  • Charlotte, NC, United States
  • 2012-04-18

Maybe I just didnt get it

Based on several reviews I read on this book, I am guessing I am one of the people who thought it was just ok, well maybe not even that. I wanted to love this book, this look at how bullying and peoples everyday decisions affected others, how off handed comments and actions can be taken to heart and the unforeseen and unexpected outcomes of those decisions on others. I wanted to understand Hannah and her choice, to understand how what some see as little things could be so very serious to her, enough to kill herself. But honestly, I just found, I didn’t like her. I thought she was being spiteful and vindictive in her tapes, they did not read/sound like a person saying Hey, this really hurt me and here is why. No, it was like you didn’t invite me to prom and you suck, now I killed myself and it was all your fault…ha! Ok, so I exaggerate, but honestly I felt worse for Clay and some of the others than Hannah herself.

Now, I am not suggesting that some (all 2 of them) of the “13 people” that are addressed in the book are not deserving of such hate and disgust. I hate to think that these things really happen and I know they do because I was in high school once too, and honestly for people to be so cruel and sick at such a young age is not only sad but scary. But most of the 13, Clay included (Why was he even included, I still don’t get that. He was good and kind and I have to say part of my resentment and dislike towards Hannah is her choice to involve him.) did nothing more than what happens every day to everyone in life. You get embarrassed sometimes, you get annoyed, and people say things, but to kill yourself over it, it just felt so shallow of a reason. And maybe it was because to me, what some of those included said or did were so, not a big deal, for the most part I did not truly feel most of them did anything really bullying at all. I think that really is what really sums up my dislike for this book overall. There are people out there who are getting verbal abused with such cruel cutting words, I want to cry for them, who are being physically assaulted, we see it in the news and displayed on you-tube all the time, yet Hannah’s upset her kiss that she wanted was not like that in a love story? Also was it just me or did it seem that she started to act in ways that put herself in more danger of bad things happening…but then was mad and blamed others because if two months ago you had taken me to the movies I would not have gotten in the hot tub naked with him that night…really?!? So now all the kids (yes children) have to live with Hannah’s tape to them because God forbid, they did not treat her like the world revolved around her, she is just as guilty for her lack of caring and cruelty towards them with these tapes as she claims they were toward her.

I will say I like the duel narration of the story and very much like Joel Johnstone’s voice, so much so I have looked into other books he has narrated, simply because he’s reading them. I thought the narrators were clear and crisp in their execution and did what they could emotionally with the story they were given. I liked the author’s decision to write the story in this way, even if I did not love what he was writing. The overall performance of the narrators was one redeeming quality.

I apologize in advance if my review offends, it’s not my intention. I just felt like this book took a very sensitive and serious topic and sent a horrible and confusing message to those teens who are struggling with true bullying and thoughts of suicide. I wanted to love it, to cry with it and to find some deeper understanding, but it fell short for me in almost all aspects.

58 of 71 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Victor @ theAudiobookBlog
  • 2017-05-26

Fantastic book, awesome performance

What did you love best about Thirteen Reasons Why?

It has substance

What was one of the most memorable moments of Thirteen Reasons Why?

Many were memorable. No spoilers.

Which character – as performed by Debra Wiseman and Joel Johnstone – was your favorite?

Clay and Hanna, of course

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Yes

Any additional comments?

Thirteen Reasons Why is probably one of the most talked about TV Series of the moment and it was in the public’s eye since Netflix released their very controversial Original Series based on the amazing book with the same name by the bestselling author Jay Asher. I have to admit that I didn’t know anything about this book until a few weeks ago when I was browsing Netflix. After I saw the highlight, I wanted to see what the book was like, and boy, what an amazing story I got treated to… So, this is a short review for the audiobook version, not the for Netflix Original Series.

I would like to give a word of advice to those who watched the series, please, if you want to understand why the producers chose to tell a different story, adding to the one in the book, check out this short documentary Thirteen Reasons Why – Beyond the Reasons and everything will make sense. Now, lets get to the review!

Jay Asher in Thirteen Reasons Why tells us the dramatic, riveting and mesmerizing story about a teenage girl, Hannah Baker, who committed suicide because she couldn’t take it anymore. But, the brilliant part is that she has recorded a few cassette tapes giving 13 Reasons for her action and those tapes are now making the rounds between those who she thought were responsible for her pain.

The story follows Clay Jensen, Hannah‘s school mate, who has received a strange box, containing the tapes and now he needs to know why Hannah is dead and why he is on the list of persons responsible. Clay is a nice guy, he doesn’t remember saying or doing anything wrong to Hannah and takes to the streets of the small town as he listens to the voice of a dead girl who was alive just 2 weeks ago…

What could have happened to drive her to do such a thing? Why the tapes? Who is responsible? Who else knows? Could it all have being prevented? I found the answers to all of these questions in the 6 hours in which I listened to the audiobook. Hannah‘s story is one that will mark you for life, really, I know that it’s fiction, but it will make you think twice before you say of do something to someone, because you won’t know if you could start a snowball effect that could ruin his or her life…

Narrators Debra Wiseman and Joel Johnstone give life with passion to Hannah Baker‘s story. Debra is Hannah and Joel is Clay, they interact with one another throughout the book, as Clay listens to Hannah‘s motives, he walks the streets, he treks to all the spots that Hannah mentions and he realizes that their paths have crossed more times than he had thought before.

Debra and Joel deliver a perfect performance for Thirteen Reasons Why! Although the book is mainly focused on the interaction between Hannah, a beautiful, special, quiet and good girl which at times becomes aloof and dispassionate and a guilt stricken, bookish, nerdy, Clay, both narrators give their very best, making the listener see everything clearly in his mind’s eye with surreal vividness.

They carry us from the first love, to the first kiss, to bullies, to best friends, to stupid rumors, to sleepovers, to traumatic events and at last to redemption. They read, they act and most important of all, they care about the characters they bring to life! Both distinguish themselves by being extremely talented with different voices and accents, wrapping this tragic story in complete immersiveness for those who listen. I experienced Thirteen Reason Why in one sitting. I pushed play and couldn’t stop until the last word…

Thirteen Reasons Why is a book that should be read by teenagers and adults alike, its deep, serious, it addresses many of the problems with which young adults are strugleing every day and yes, I think that we could save someones life just by doing something nice for him / her or by not being mean just because we can be. This book has a message, a very important one: Take care how you treat those around you!

I could write until tomorrow on this subject, but this is a review, so I’ll end by highly recommending Thirteen Reasons Why, the book, to everyone!

Please vote Yes below if you enjoyed this review and find more of them at theAudiobookBlog dot com.

Thank you,

Victor

11 of 14 people found this review helpful