Thursday, January 23, 2014

What I'm Reading Now - Hate List by Jennifer Brown

Hate List is a YA novel by Jennifer Brown with some acclaim, on a very, very tough subject. I'm already halfway through it actually. Pretty good so far. Reminds me a bit of Thirteen Reasons Why, which I thought was a powerful, horrible read, for obvious reasons.

And I'm Done Update:

Good read. Tough read. I hate that guns are such a prevalent thing in our culture, but there's no escaping it at the moment. And while a multiple shooting in a high school might seem like an overly provocative subject for a YA book, it's sadly becoming less and less bizarre and noteworthy. Anyway, Hate List can be pretty painful at times, but does a good job looking at the big questions. We all have bad thoughts about ourselves, and others, at times. Even terrible thoughts once in a while. What happens if those thoughts come true? Do we hold any responsibility? Should we?

There's no easy way to write about bullying, suicide, school shootings and murder. And I would never suggest any kind of outside or self-censorship on these kinds of topics. Still...still, I'm troubled by publicity of these kinds of actions. It's been shown that the number of suicides, in particular, can rise when another suicide is publicized - something called the Werther effect. And of course, there have been plenty of considerations to the publicity given to mass murderers. There's no easy answer. In the end, I think these things need to be discussed - it's out there, it's happening - and there's probably no place better to discuss it than in a novel, where you can actually get some nuance and insight.

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