Stacia (the 2010 club)'s Reviews > Me Before You

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
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Apr 19, 12

bookshelves: adult, contemporary-romance, made-me-emotional, realistic-general-or-lit-fiction
Read from April 16 to 18, 2012

3.5 stars.

Warning : There is an extremely misleading cover blurb on this book.
'Gorgeously romantic and partner-ignoringly compulsive.'

Is the story gorgeously romantic? Yes, it was in parts. Make no mistake though. This is not a "romance" book in the traditional sense.

Me Before You is the story of a quadriplegic man who had everything and lost it all in the blink of an eye after an accident left him helpless. Before the injury, Will lived on the edge and took risks. He had money, love, adventure, and anything else a young and attractive man could ever want.

Me Before You is also the story of a woman who comes from nothing, lives in fear, and plays it safe. Louisa's past keeps her from moving forward.

As luck would have it, fate brings these two together when Louisa is hired to help care for and be a companion to the wheelchair-bound Will. But will hard decisions rip them both apart?

This book made me cry. I probably could have been sad or angry or frustrated but I wasn't. I was just moved. Much like how I felt while reading the book Forbidden, I found myself questioning previous views on a controversial subject. Generally, when I read a book like this, I have a set path for the story that I hope the book will follow. When the path veered off onto a different direction, it should have made me angry. But I couldn't get angry. I understood why things had to happen the way they did. If my original path had stayed on course, the book would have ended, I would have written it off as average, and I would have moved on. Because things were shaken up, I found myself crying and contemplating and waiting to talk to others about the book.

The journey itself had me feeling constant emotion :

I would not have believed so many people could turn down a cry for help when it involved a wheelchair stuck in mud, especially as the cry came from a girl in a miniskirt and flashing her most endearing smile.

"Not 'perhaps.' Promise me you won't spend the rest of your life stuck around this bloody parody of a place mat.
"Promise me? Why? Where are you going?"
"I just can't bear the thought of you staying around here forever." He swallowed. "You're too bright." He looked away from me.

"You don't get it. I don't want to go there in this thing." He gestured at the chair, his voice dropping. "I want to be in Paris as me, the old me. I want to sit in a chair, leaning back, my favorite clothes on, with pretty French girls who pass by giving me the eye just as they would any other man sitting there. Not looking away when they realize I'm a man in an overgrown bloody pram."

Every two days I lathered up his jaw and made him presentable. If he wasn't having a bad day, he'd lean back in his chair, close his eyes, and the closest thing I saw to physical pleasure would spread across his face. Perhaps I've invented that. Perhaps I saw what I wanted to see.

"You know what? Nobody wants to hear that stuff. Nobody wants to know how it feels to know you will never have sex again, never eat food you've made with your hands again, never hold your own child. Nobody wants to know that sometimes I feel so claustrophobic, being in this chair, I just want to scream like a madman at the thought of spending another day in it."

I told myself that, somewhere, tiny particles of him would become tiny particles of me, ingested, swallowed, alive, perpetual. I wanted to press every bit of me against him. I wanted to will something into him. I wanted to give him every bit of life I felt and force him to live.


Just by typing all of that out, I started to get choked up again. I wish I could spoiler what happens next (good or bad) but there's no way I can. Reading this book, experiencing what happens with Louisa and Will, I wouldn't rob anyone of that. Have some tissues handy if you cry easily.

The reason for the 3.5 instead of the hard 4 star rating is because I felt like there was enough of a story without having every aspect drawn out. I was not a fan of the "alternate viewpoint" chapters that were randomly placed throughout the book. I don't feel like I gained anything from hearing a couple of extra characters share their feelings. Lou and Will were the stars of the book and I would have preferred to keep the focus on them alone.
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Comments (showing 1-26 of 26) (26 new)

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Leea HAHAHA!


Stacia (the 2010 club) I guess I need to find a better nickname for you.


Leea Nahh, it's cool!


message 5: by B0nnie (new) - added it

B0nnie This sounds a lot like Sayles's Passionfish - reaally a great movie.


Stacia (the 2010 club) Thanks Baba!

Bonnie, I'm going to go look up that movie right now.


Leea Let me know what you find, Stacia. It's a movie?


Stacia (the 2010 club) Not this book but there's a movie that Bonnie was reminded of. This one : http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0105107/


message 9: by Jules (new) - added it

Jules (Never enough time to read) I've been looking at this book for ages unsure about picking it up, you've completely convinced me! Lovely, lovely review x


Stacia (the 2010 club) Thank you Jules. :)


Lisa Jayne Really lovely review, I wept like a baby reading this book, not my normal reading type. I agree the blurb etc. is a tad misleading!


Stacia (the 2010 club) It is very misleading!


message 13: by Dija (new) - added it

Dija Beautiful review, Stacia. I'm slightly afraid to read this, but you've piqued my curiosity enough that I'll definitely give it a shot one day.


Stacia (the 2010 club) Gah. After just complaining about reading too much on another review, I almost want to go back and cut half of mine out. :P

It is an emotional book for sure. Reads almost like dark chick lit though, which is strange. But it worked.

Thanks. :)


Angie **loves angst** After reading your review all the feelings I felt while reading this book came back to me. Great review!


Stacia (the 2010 club) Thank you Angie!


Ioana Awesome review, I agree completely! I get what you're saying, about the path you wanted the story to take, which in turn would have made it mediocre. I sort of knew where the story was headed right from the start - my own fault for (view spoiler), but I figured it was the only possible ending. Didn't quite take into account how much it would move me and how I'd absolutely love the characters by the end. (view spoiler)


Stacia (the 2010 club) Exactly. There's what you want, and what works, and those two things don't always match up.


Ioana Stacia ~ Vixen of Variety wrote: "Exactly. There's what you want, and what works, and those two things don't always match up."

Indeed. And the fact it elicits such a response from the reader is what makes it a great book.


Rosalinda *KRASNORADA* Absolutely LOVED this one, one of my faves! Will will always have a place in my heart!

And I agree, it made me feel the same that I felt while reading Forbidden, I always compare these books even though they are not similar but they made me feel the same.

x


Karla Great review Stacia! You are right for warning people, this is NOT a romance, although there were some romantic moments.


Stacia (the 2010 club) Thanks Karla and Rosalinda. :)

Even though it wasn't a romance, it was still beautiful.


message 23: by Mb (last edited Jul 28, 2013 01:52AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Mb I know right,the cover was so misleading and I was so hesistant before reading it,but it kind of makes sense(I am a literature student and awfully scrutinize everything .lol) Like releasing of the bird (on the cover) is like letting Will free of all his worries and his pain,regardless of how much you adored him, And I completely agree on the statement :it is not a romance. I guess there are elements of romance but its more than that,friendship and family. Though a really good review :)


Stacia (the 2010 club) Thanks. Good comparison with the bird. :)


message 25: by Sandra (new)

Sandra I'm conflicted, I've heard good things about this book, but I really am not in the mood for a cry :-( .. So no HEA or HFN?


Stacia (the 2010 club) The answer would be (view spoiler)


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