Title: Me Before You
Author: Jojo Moyes
Publisher: Pamela Dorman Books
“Lou Clark knows lots of things. She knows how many footsteps there are between the bus stop and home. She knows she likes working in The Buttered Bun tea shop and she knows she might not love her boyfriend Patrick.
What Lou doesn’t know is she’s about to lose her job or that knowing what’s coming is what keeps her sane.
Will Traynor knows his motorcycle accident took away his desire to live. He knows everything feels very small and rather joyless now and he knows exactly how he’s going to put a stop to that.
What Will doesn’t know is that Lou is about to burst into his world in a riot of colour. And neither of them knows they’re going to change the other for all time.”
I have never ever cried this hard over a book or TV show in my life. No joke, I swear. I’ve had a couple tears but this was long bouts of absolute uncontrolled sobbing. It’s been a long time since a book has spoken to my soul the way this one has.
I have no words. This book was absolutely beautiful and I can’t fully express how I feel about this book.
The first 3/4 of this book were brilliant. I loved every single part of it. And then… we took a sharp and distinct turn from heart breakingly beautiful to heart breakingly painful. That’s all I’ve got to say without spoiling you and believe me, you don’t want to be spoiled.
First, I wanted to quickly mention that one of my friends completely spoiled the ending. And so, a small part of me was (of course) in denial and went through the book finding points that hinted at a fate different from the one my friend had spoiled. But the bigger part of me knew the truth. And so, I read the book rejoicing in every bit of Will we had. Every moment, I read with baited breath.
Still, I wasn’t prepared. Not even close.
Also, the first part of this book had a very Secret Garden-like feel to it and I really enjoyed that. I loved the Secret Garden, and I guess that lulled me into a bit of a false sense of security, thinking that maybe against all odds, Will would end up like Colin and able to walk again. Oh well.
I loved Louisa’s character. I loved the buoyancy and lightness she carried within her and how comical and hilarious she was. I love the way she bites back and anything Will says and treats him like an equal.
Will. Oh Will. I hated what he did but I understood why. He was a man who loved adventure a man so unlike Louisa. I know that not being able to do anything hurt him so much. I just thought…that after the trip he’d changed his mind.
It’s amazing how quickly I became invested in this story. I read the two paragraphs and that was it. I knew I loved this book too much.
This story was heartbreaking yet it was stunningly beautiful. I don’t know how Jojo Moyes did it. This is a story I will never forget.
I wanted to address something that I saw going over the internet a while back, that said that this book implied that it is better to die than be disabled. I don’t want to offend anyone, this is just my personal opinion, but I think they couldn’t be more wrong. This book is about living life to the fullest and exploring. All the characters in this book wanted Will to live, they all fought long and hard for him but in the end, it was he who decided he wanted to go and didn’t give his family much of a choice. He would have killed himself with or without their help and the least they could do is honor his decision. Will loved adventure, and he just couldn’t live being trapped in the confines of the chair. Lou states that there are plenty of things to do for disabled people, that being disabled is not the end, and she even talks to plenty of disabled people over the internet who are content with their lives, and if the book really wanted to promote the idea of disabled people people not being able to live, the author would not have included the constant theme of living and the beauty of life. She would not have inserted all the disabled characters from the chat room that suggested places for quadriplegics to go to have an adventure. All this story says, is that one should live their life to the fullest because life is short and in any minute it can be taken from you.
That being said, this book made me realize what living really means. This story taught me that everything is worth a try and you should never waste an opportunity. It taught me to go outside and live to the fullest. To live until you’ve filled your life with as many new experiences and adventures as you possibly can. So, if you get the chance, take it. Take a walk in the park, talk to people from different cultures, look at the sky, watch the birds. Anything, just don’t stay in the same room, inside, for the rest of your life living emptily.
Don’t think or wish, do.