Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Book Review: "Me Before You"

"Me Before You" by Jojo Moyes
First published in 2012
369 pages
My rating: 5 out of 5
(image source)

I absolutely tore through this addicting, funny, heartbreaking, wonderful book by British author Jojo Moyes.

Louisa Clark, a twenty-something who lives with her parents in a tiny English town, has just lost her job as a waitress and, after struggling through such harrows as a stint in a chicken processing plant, she ends up interviewing to be a companion for a quadriplegic. Despite having no medical or caregiving experience, she's hired.

Will Traynor was a handsome and very successful financier who lived life to fullest -- traveling, adventuring, doing crazy things like jumping out of airplanes -- until he was hit by a motorcycle on a rainy London morning and was left mostly paralyzed from the neck down with only slight movement in one of his arms.

Louisa and Will could hardly be more different, aside from their wit and intelligence, and they pretty much take an immediate dislike to each other. Contrary to the zest for life Will had before his accident, Louisa is content to just be -- with her cafe job, her long-time boyfriend she's not sure she loves, her parents house in her little village. But when she learns of Will's plan for his future, she's forced outside her comfort zone in a quest to show this once passionate man that life is still worth living.

"Me Before You" is an unconventional love story, but it was gripping all the same. Some reviewers have found Louisa self-centered and unlikeable, but I really connected with both her and Will. As you may have heard, "Me Before You" is a tear-jerker, and I have not cried so voluminously or sincerely over a book since I read the final Harry Potter novel. That's a testament to Jojo Moyes excellent writing -- which caused me to inhale this book in two short days. I loved the characters, I loved the plot, and the overall theme of living a good life really resonated with me

Moyes' novel was the best book I've read so far in 2013 and I definitely recommend it. Her newest book, "The Girl You Left Behind," came out last summer and it's now firmly planted on my to-be-read list.

Happy reading!

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