Colorado District Pull 13 Reasons Why After Spate of Suicides

By May 17, 2017Adaptations, News

A Colorado school district is speaking out against Jay Asher’s book 13 Reasons Why after a spate of suicides in the county. For a while the book was an indie classic, popular but not overly so but since Netflix adapted the book for a series it’s been launched into the public eye and criticised for its handling of a teen suicide.

While the book itself didn’t originally come under too much fire, and was in fact thought of as insightful and praised, the Netflix series has been accused of glorifying suicide and breaking guidelines on how suicides should be portrayed.

Seven teen suicides in recent months in Colorado have led the Mesa County Valley School District bringing in a temporary removal of the book from schools and libraries in the area. It’s not known whether any of the young people who committed suicide had either read the book or watched the series, but the school district is taking the whole thing seriously anyway.

The novel was published in 2007 and received much praise for highlighting marginalised young adults. For the bullied there was finally a protagonist who spoke to them, and for many bullied young adults the book was a life line. However, the Netflix series has received quite a different reception and much criticism with many going so far as to say it romanticised suicide.

Colorado librarians are calling it censorship and it seems a fight is brewing, and as the story rolls on, it appears that other districts are drawing similar parallels. What do you think? Are these suicides life imitating art or is the original book just an acute account of art imitating life?

Harper Lee’s Estate to Sue Over Broadway Mockingbird Adaptation

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It’s been reported today that the estate of the late Harper Lee is reportedly suing the producers of a Broadway adaptation of To Kill a Mockingbird. It’s argued that the much anticipated stage adaptation of the show written by Aaron Sorkin differs too much from the classic book.

To Kill a Mockingbird is an iconic text, exploring race relations in the Deep South. For years it’s been a pivotal text used by schools, but we heard little about the author. Deeply private, Harper Lee preferred to stay out of the limelight but since her death it seems her estate has been rarely out of the news.
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Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald Official Trailer Released

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Calling all Harry Potter fans, the first full length trailer for the second Fantastic Beasts film has been released, and it looks great! We’ve had plenty of teases over the past few months for the film, but now we can finally get a sneak peek at what to expect when the film is released in cinemas later this year. Eddie Redmayne returns as the ‘magizoologist’ Newt Scamander in the sequel to the 2016 hit film Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Read More

Book Lover Has Best Response to Angry Man on Bus

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What would you do if you merely wanted to read your book on the bus but discovered instead that some people find even that simple act offensive?

One woman from the UK discovered the perfect response when she was aboard a bus in her city. As the bus was very crowded, tempers were a little frayed, and one man allowed his aggression to get the better of him. Instead of asking the woman to keep her elbows in or tuck her book in a bit to make more room for others, he instead decided it was appropriate to call her a “fucking bitch”.

What book lover Jennifer Cairns did next was fantastically appropriate and a wonderfully gracious- she started reading aloud.

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Sun Newspaper ‘Journalist’ Reveals Frankenstein Ignorance and Gets Mocked on Twitter

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There should be one very red-faced Sun Newspaper journalist today after they judged students to be ‘snowflakes’ for understanding Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. 

The article in question mocked students who studied Frankenstein, who had correctly reflected on how the monster created by Dr Frankenstein was a misunderstood and sympathetic figure. A screenshot of the ignorant Tweet was saved (see right). Their article and the Tweet promoting it have since been deleted, but not before it was roundly trolled by those of us who had dared to read the book and understand its themes.

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Women’s Prize for Fiction Longlist Announced

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The Women’s Prize for Fiction has announced its longlist in time for International Women’s Day 2018.

Sixteen books were picked for the longlist by the judging panel, honouring both new and well-established writers, including six debut novels.

The Chair of the Judges is Sarah Sands, Editor of BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme who said:

“The longlist came out of a Chequers style meeting where different views were accommodated and peace reigned, at least for now. What is striking about the list, apart from the wealth of talent, is that women writers refuse to be pigeon-holed. We have searing social realism, adventure, comedy, poetic truths, ingenious plots and unforgettable characters. Women of the world are a literary force to be reckoned with.”

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