A teenage boy tries to understand his best friend’s suicide by listening to the playlist of songs he left behind in this smart, voice-driven debut novel.
Here’s what Sam knows: There was a party. There was a fight. The next morning, his best friend, Hayden, was dead. And all he left Sam was a playlist of songs, and a suicide note: For Sam—listens and you’ll understand. As he listens to song after song, Sam tries to face up to what happened the night Hayden killed himself. But it’s only by taking out his ear buds and opening his eyes to the people around him that he will finally be able to piece together his best friend’s story. And maybe have a chance to change his.
The song list accompanied per chapter really made the reading experience to be a different one as I was able to be present with Sam and really tried to uncover the meaning of Hayden’s death. The songs chosen went well with the entire book as I was able to indulge more in the understanding of frustration that Sam felt trying to figure the clues Hayden left for him. To include a playlist of such songs that was related in context of the book made me top over the moon while reading as it is my two favourite things combined.
Hayden suicide which was shocking to many for the other characters, I felt that there were not really enough signs for such actions. I do felt that the author should further create a concrete background story detailed on his suicide as it felt all sudden and rush due to it happened in the beginning of the story itself.
However, as the story unfolds each page, the sudden suicide and lack of signs made a it clear as it build up to it. It showed the terrible pain Hayden had been enduring from the bullying of his school friends as well as his brother, the constant degrading from his parents and not having proper attention anywhere else. It was painful to see that he kept it all to himself and not seek help about it.
The storyline was new for this concept of coming of age as it involves a deeper process of thinking of each different individual’s characters. The flow was easy for readers to catch on what the writer’s conveying and I felt that this book had brought a great perspective from the view of those who committed suicide. The pain and suffering that one experience does not necessarily depicts on his daily actions but it is the accumulation that at times drives them out of the edge.