Jojo Moyes is an award winning novelist, but until this book I had not read any of her work. ‘Me Before You’ was turned into a film, which was released June 2016, now I have read the book, it’s one I would be keen to watch!
I liked the characters in this book, and how it bravely took on a pretty sensitive subject of disability and the impact on family. In this case it was not disability from birth, but through a horrific accident. I like how it was a massive contrast between Will’s active and thrill seeking ‘previous life’ and his reliance and isolation of his ‘current life’. It would be easy to make this a character you pity and to become the sole focus of the book, but actually I felt Jojo handled it beautifully – he was just a character with baggage, like many in the book. His initial abrupt and rude behaviour towards Louisa makes him difficult to warm to at first, but as she breaks through his walls, we do to and this strong, intelligent character shines through.
The relationship between Will and Louisa builds up and you end up totally routing for them. He helps her overcome her past and issues which held her back. You think that he’s the character who has obstacles to overcome, but in fact it is Lou and his family. Unknown to us at first, Will has made a decision to end his life. The book is looking at how the people around him handle his accident, his life limiting disability and ultimately his decision to end his life. Will himself seems to have come to terms with all of this and helps guide others. It’s an amazing take on the situation and really has you questioning yourself. I found myself wondering what I would do in his situation, but also of all the characters around him. I found putting myself in his mother’s position particularly challenging, it’s incredibly hard to imagine.
Jojo has managed to create an incredibly thought provoking book, it’s not hard to see why it was turned into a film. I would definitely be interested in reading more of her work!
What did you think of the book? Could you relate to the characters? Would you have made the same decision as Will? Would you recommend any more of her books?