November 17, 2015

Disclaimer: This review will contain spoilers towards the end.

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. - Goodreads

I started this book November 3 and finished it November 11. I can easily say Me Before You is the one of the best books I've ever read. I laughed and I cried. Everything about it was spot on and there was never a dull moment. I never wanted to put it down and I was reading it everywhere I went. I'm just in complete awe over this book. The character development was something I thoroughly enjoyed. Will was hands down my favorite character as soon as I met him. Lou was absolutely hilarious and awkward, but that's why I loved her so much. The ending did leave me in a pool of tears. I wasn't shocked, but I was definitely heart broken. With that being said, I wouldn't have preferred it any other way. An author who can draw so much emotion out of a reader is an author worth mentioning. Jojo Moyes did an excellent job on this one and I HIGHLY recommend everyone read it. Keep in mind that it's more than just a love story. There is romance involved, but there is a bigger picture than that in the book.




SO. Can we talk about the ending? I already knew what was going to happen because I read the summary for After You on Goodreads, but I didn't expect it to be that emotional. I was a wreck. I was so attached to Will's character, probably even more than Lou was. To see him choose death makes me tear up writing this review. I keep reading the last couple of chapters over and over and every time I have fresh tears. I know there's a lot of controversy on Will's decision at the end. Personally, as much as I would've wished for him to live, I don't think I would have enjoyed the book as much if he did. As far as ethics goes, I don't think I'm in a position to say if it was right or wrong. I mean, I don't think any of us can even come close to imagining what we do if we were in Will's shoes, literally. I really did wish to have a chapter with Will's POV, but his letter at the end was lovely.

Lou was a strong female lead and I hope others who read this can see this as well. She wasn't personalized by her looks, but rather who she was on the inside. I felt like I could relate and connect to her on all levels. I felt as if her emotions towards Will were realistic and not forced. I enjoyed everything about her.

Patrick was my least favorite character. He was like that fly that keeps pesting around. I thought he was really full of himself and was not a good match for Louisa. I was thrilled when they broke up in the end. At first, I didn't like Camilla, Will's mom, but after reading a chapter in her POV and seeing how dependent she was on Lou to give her only son a reason to live, I empathized for her. You could really tell how much she cared for her son and would do almost anything to keep him alive. I also enjoyed Treena and Nathan. Will's dad was kind of strange, but I enjoyed his part in the book as well.

This book gave me a new perspective on life and people living with disabilities. People treated Will as if he were somewhat apart from them, like he wasn't human. They made conversations awkward or looked down on him as if he were less because he was in a wheelchair. Disabled people are people. They are just like the rest of us. They have feelings, passions, likes, and dislikes. This book has opened my eyes to this issue and has made me look for what's on the inside when I confront all kinds of people, rather than what their physical appearance might be. Another great thing I learned about this book is to live life to the fullest. I know that's so cliche, but it holds some truth. A lot of us are too afraid to get out of our comfort zones and explore what the world really has to offer. There's so many places I want to travel, people I want to meet, and goals I want to accomplish. Me Before You has  helped me reveal these qualities in myself and act on them.

I do plan on reading this book again, in Paris, while I drink a cafe and eat a croissant. It's now on my bucket list. I can't wait for the movie to be released. I hope they will portrayal the book with accuracy and keep me emotionally driven. One more thing, I will not be reading the sequel After You. I think Me Before You is a great stand alone by itself and the emotion at the end is a great finish. Plus I don't think I can read it without Will's character present (I'm that attached). A second book just feels unnecessary to me.

I rated this book a 5 stars on goodreads.

If you've read Me Before You, thoughts on it? Thank you so much for reading!

xo, kathlyn

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