“Just live well.”
Title – Me Before You
Author – Jojo Moyes
Pages – 481
Picking Me Before You up from the bookshelf around an hour ago, I forgot that this was a pretty big book, in terms of size. I read it a few weeks ago on my daily commute to work so here’s what I thought. As I say in every review, I’ll try my absolute best not to give too much away, but I can’t promise anything!
So, Me Before You introduces us to Lou Clark and Will Traynor. Leading a very successful career in London, a beautiful girlfriend and highly fulfilling life, the sky was the limit for Will. But on the way to work one day, he’s involved in a collision with a motorbike which results in him being a quadriplegic – robbing his desire to live. On the other hand, Louisa is a creature of habit, knowing exactly how many steps there are from the bus stop to her front door and having never really left her home town in the country.
However, this life of habit is about to change dramatically for Louisa. No longer is she working at The Buttered Bun but supporting Will in his new way of life. Can Lou break down the barrier between them and can she open his eyes to encourage him to keep on living?
It’s a story of love, loss and dare I say it, happiness! Some of you may be thinking; “How on earth is this story happy?!” But I definitely felt that the moral of the story is that whatever you do, live your life to the absolute max. And the story is a happy one as Lou and Will open each other’s eyes to different ways of being.
Anyone who knows me is aware that I don’t really get emotional. However, after reading this book, it’s true to say that the floodgates opened! I remember being sat in my living room, with my dog, in the middle of the day, reading a particular part (if you’ve read the book, you’ll know which bit I mean) and just starting to ball my eyes out. I don’t know why, but I finally understood why Will wanted to do what he set out to do. At the start, I couldn’t help but think how selfish he was being, but as the story develops, you, the reader, start putting yourself into his shoes more and more, and finally understand the daily struggles Will has to face.
So emotional and raw – it really did open my eyes to the difficulty some people who are disabled face on a daily basis. Generally, we don’t think about something as simple as walking across a field. However, for someone in a wheelchair, this is a challenge in itself. After reading the book, I’ve definitely started thinking more about wheelchair access into all sorts of different venues and locations. You’d be surprised how many places are just not suitable.
I thoroughly enjoyed the book – so much better than the film! Although I love Emilia Clarke in Game of Thrones and Sam Claflin generally (also on my laminated list!), I felt like it was a bit over acted – if that makes sense! A great read, but make sure you read it in private to avoid a panda eye situation in public!
Score – 3 out of 5