Me Before You
by Jojo Moyes Series: Me Before You #1 Published by Pamela Dorman Books
on December 31, 2012 Pages:
369 Source: Library Buy from Amazon
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Louisa Clark is an ordinary young woman living an exceedingly ordinary life—steady boyfriend, close family—who has never been farther afield than their tiny village. She takes a badly needed job working for ex-Master of the Universe Will Traynor, who is wheelchair-bound after an accident. Will has always lived a huge life—big deals, extreme sports, worldwide travel—and now he’s pretty sure he cannot live the way he is.
Will is acerbic, moody, bossy—but Lou refuses to treat him with kid gloves, and soon his happiness means more to her than she expected. When she learns that Will has shocking plans of his own, she sets out to show him that life is still worth living.
A love story for this generation, Me Before You brings to life two people who couldn’t have less in common—a heartbreakingly romantic novel that asks, What do you do when making the person you love happy also means breaking your own heart?
WHY I Wanted to Re-Read: I chose to read Me Before You by Jojo Moyes for two reasons:
1) Have you guys heard about the sequel coming out this fall? It’s exciting right? YES. I wanted to reread before I dove back into Lou’s world. Like you guys, I want good things for Lou!
2) Mostly, this: I wanted to get into Lou’s head again and see what it was like as she transitioned from not-a-caregiver to being a caregiver to someone that needs near-total care. Some of you know that my Dad has had a recent diagnosis that will potentially put him in a position to need complete care, and Lou is a character in similar shoes.
WHEN I First Read It: I first read Me Before You back in March 2013 and it became a favorite, but only after I cried the ugly cry for a long, long time. (I wrote my initial thoughts here.)
WHAT I Remember: I remember being invested in this story in a way that made me afraid, because I was afraid for how things would end. I remember loving the relationship that evolved between Lou and Will, the caregiver-client relationship, then the friendship, then the very complex relationship that followed. I remember being gutted by the last portion of the book and my warring feelings as I felt pulled in a few different directions with regard to different characters and their respective choices.
I remember LOVING how this book was so discussable. LOVING. IT.
HOW I Felt After Re-Reading: I mean, my reasons for rereading were a little on the darker side, I think. So I felt some odd things, maybe? As a reader that is purely rereading a story that I loved, my emotions that mirrored the ones I had before. Even knowing the ending, I couldn’t help but feel everything as I had before. I had this little mountain of Kleenex at the end of the book and the tears dripped off of my chin. But I am an emotional reader anyway, and I expected this.
Otherwise: I felt oddly comforted by the way Lou felt in various placed in the story. She gave words to several things that I feel now, and some things that I know I will feel later, and I think that sometimes all I want is for someone to understand what I am feeling in this process with my Dad. (I’m so sure other people have felt this!) In this case, I turned to a fictional person, and it helped me just as much as a “real” person could have at the time, and for that I am grateful. So, part of my emotional outburst at the end was for the Lou-as-caregiver and how I identified with her both now and how I anticipate that for my future. That may not make any sense at all. That may be incredibly morbid. I don’t know, I do not know. That’s just how I felt.
WOULD I Re-Read Again: Oh, yes. This book is a favorite, so yes, I will reread it. I need to have my own print copy at some point to underline and highlight. Reading is healing sometimes. But yes, I will reread this.
I don’t know when, but this will be in my future again.