We all muse on our actions and responses to events that could potentially happen to us in our lifetime. What would I do if I were to lose my job, my spouse, a family member? How would I react to a crime committed against me? Who would I thank if I ever won an Oscar? What if the safety bar on the roller-coaster isn’t locked in properly? It could go on forever. But we never really dig deep into these thoughts until forced to, by often unfortunate circumstances. In her newest novel, Me Before You, Jojo Moyes does a stellar job of making you think deeper. What if..
Will Traynor is an active man, in every sense of the word: an admirer of daring feats, frequent love-making, high-energy employment and overall, a fast lifestyle. When a motorcycle accident leaves him wheelchair-bound, a quadriplegic with no chance of rehabilitation, Will wonders if life truly is worth living. What makes a life, a life?
On the other side of town (meaning the other side of a historic, tourist-driving castle), Louisa Clark is content with her steady, long-term boyfriend, bustling family and her job at a local coffee shop. When the shop goes under, Lou is stuck searching for employment. Enter Will Traynor. Lou can’t understand why Will, who already has a constant caregiver, needs a companion; let alone someone as eccentric as her. But darker reasoning seeps into their relationship and you will not be able to tear your eyes from the page..
The storyline may seem typical for a “chicklit” book, but if only I could explain in better words just how this novel is so much more. For some context, let me provide a few examples:
1) I sat beside the Director of Fiction on the streetcar the whole way to work without realizing because I could NOT get my head out of this book.
2) I cried at three specific parts. One was 50 pages in…
3) I felt the need to run from my floor, to the floor my friend Kristi works on, to gush about this book. Every morning.
Where normal chicklit is often fluffy, this book is jam packed with heavy emotion, delivered in simplistic and relatable narration. Where chicklit has the traditional three characters: the pretty girl who doesn’t know she’s pretty, the mean boyfriend and the prince charming who steals her away, Me Before You defies convention to bring you a quirky young woman with an abundance of personality, a boyfriend who loves her, and a man whose life has fallen to pieces. These characters were a breath of fresh air and make for one unique, heart-wrenching tale.
I started and stopped this review three times, because I just couldn’t quite get it right. This is my best attempt, though I highly, HIGHLY encourage you to check out Kristi’s review on the Indigo Blog HERE. Since she is the woman who made me want to pick this up in the first place, maybe she will help you too! Enjoy!
Me Before You officially releases on January 1st, but a little bird has spotted it in a few stores across the GTA, so have a look!