Me Before You by Jojo Mojes
Publication Date: January 5th, 2012
Pamela Dorman Books/Viking
Format: Hardcover, 369 pages
Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars
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.
Once in a while we meet a certain someone
A friend or a foe, they will leave their impression.
They create a world that we begin to know,
changing its landscape as we watch it grow.
A wise man said “no man is an island”
but it changes in a blink, and will leave us in section.
All of a sudden we are angry and alone
We push, we hurt and rage till they’re all gone.
Either by choice or by sheer conviction,
The wheel of life turns on its axle and rotation.
On our feet, we are forced to keep moving,
Even if all we ever wanted is to sit still, not progressing.
We’re taught that life is all about choices
What we want, what we desire expunged through our voices.
We’re architects, designers and creators of our fates
success and failure we carry like freight.
But what if there is nothing else to look forward to?
No love, no feelings, and the promise of hope that we knew?
Or what if the life we once led lay dormant and in shatters?
the heart – once active – even refused to flutter?
If you were given a choice to die and be at peace
Or to live stagnant, only remembering bliss.
Would you watch life pass you by in a chair?
Or would you move on to the after life
That the preacher once shared?
– Cripple by Yours Truly.
Another book that left me completely gutted.
This was reviewed by Chelsey
on her blog
and she’s done such a tremendous job pimping it that I did not hesitate picking it up right away. It still took me at least a couple of weeks before I got to it, though. I came across it again when I got a notification via email that my book club
on Goodreads will be reading it. I figured I might as well.
Let me tell you, I’m completely awestruck. There are novels that you read for entertainment value; and novels that would make you think. It forces you to examine a position that you never knew you were at. It’s difficult to review this book without alluding to the delicacy of its subject matter but I’m going to try my best. All I can tell you is that it will force you to a corner and examine how precious you value life. How wonderful it is to find that person that literally becomes that one reason you get up in the morning.
This book was funny, heartfelt, heart rending. At its core, a story about a man who had lost everything that makes him, HIM. How do you just accept life for what it had become? It’s so easy to say, be thankful that you’re alive. But really, would you call it a blessing when you’re not even a shadow of what you were before? When you’re confined to a chair and in the mercy of those people around you for menial tasks such as, brushing your teeth? Dressing? It’s so hard to put into words how desperate Will had become. What drove him to a choice that’s incomprehensible to me? to most? I can’t imagine how his parents feel. I think it’s unfair. It breaks my heart to think that Will is selfish but it is what it is. How could you? How could you put them through that?
If you’ve ever heard of the expression, I laughed until I cried, I think they had this book in mind when they coined it. Most of the time, it’s a bitter laugh; heavy with sadness that grips your heart. Louisa tried. God, did she ever. The thing is, toward the end I could see him changing. I could see the bitterness melt away and it gave me hope. So much hope.