Thirteen Reasons Why

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Summer Reading English 12 Thirteen Reasons Why
By Jay Asher

Jay Asher grew up in California, and has always had a thing for books. Growing up, he worked in several different book stores and libraries. He attended Cuesta college right after he graduated high school, majoring in elementary education. He then transferred to California Polytechnic State University where he left in his senior year. He decided he wanted to pursue a career as a serious writer. Thirteen Reasons Why is Jay’s first novel, and it has won several awards. Jay is 34 years old, and has been married for eight years. Asher used a way of telling this story that was easily interpretable for many teens. The style was a two-part narration between two characters, throughout the chapters as opposed to alternating every other chapter. By doing this, it really made you want to keep reading.

The reason I chose this particular book was because it was recommended by my very close friend. We share many interests, so she knew I’d enjoy this novel just as much as she did. The short summary on the inside cover had a way of drawing you in, and I could not wait to start reading. I felt that it deals with a very serious and dangerous issue; it was incredibly compelling.

The author uses an interesting way to make this story contemporary, and stay contemporary. He used already “outdated” elements in a contemporary setting to make this a virtually ageless book. Cassette tapes were a major item in this novel, and Asher had the characters acknowledge that they were outdated. He did this with other items and ideas as well, such as the kinds of cars people drove. The setting of the story took place in a small town, which the author chooses to leave unnamed. Throughout the story the main character visits various houses, stores, and other buildings that had certain significance.

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