(Website, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads)Published by Penguin UK on January 2nd 2012
Genres: Contemporary Women, Fiction, General
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.
There’s something purely magnetic about a book that makes you think. Even more so when that book makes you laugh and sigh and gasp and even want to cry (I’ll admit, I don’t think I have a heart because I did not cry, no matter how many times I convinced myself that I should be bawling). Me Before You does that. I had my chocolate ready—the fact of Valentine’s being just around the corner when I finally found a copy didn’t help—and my heart prematurely ready for combustion. I’m one of those people who loves love but has probably never actually been in real, honest-to-goodness love herself and lives vicariously through the pages of books.
You have a portentously boring main character that never had to face all the difficult decisions that make living so beautifully catastrophic and purely worth it. Louisa Clark was funny and real. At twenty-six, she still didn’t have her life together—in fact, she was kind of a mess. A steady boyfriend did not equate to a good boyfriend. Just because the job center had a job available, did not mean she wanted it. Then fate arrives in the form of a thirty-five year old disabled man with a sardonic sense of humor.
Lou had a wonderful character arc. She went from being the shy, demurred girl, hidden behind vivacious, outlandish outfits to a girl with spunk, not afraid to speak her mind—she did keep the outfits, though. I was laughing from the first page and laughed until the end. Even during the sad bits, Louisa, as well as Will, managed to make me smile. Their love was complicated and unconventional, yes, but it had some serious appeal.
I know a lot of Wills (it’s kind of strange how many, actually), and this new Will had to grow on me. I’ve seen the movie trailer an unhealthy number of times since it went live—it’s the reason I knew I had to get the book, even though I hate to admit that I was one of those people for the briefest second in time. Sam Clalfin is not a face to complain about, let’s be honest, and neither were the descriptions of this Will. He had so much complexity, though, that his looks were not the focus of the romance. The most romantic scene, in my opinion, is not their first kiss, those almost kisses, or the things in between, but when she shaves his face. It was one of the most sensual, romantic, and barrier-breaking instances I’ve ever read.
I couldn’t put it down. I didn’t want to put it down. It took a lot to find this book, and I was terrified that if I let it out of my sight for even a split second a book-stealing fairy, or even an actual person, would take it away. Four bookstores and an out of stock Amazon later, and when I went to find the sequel this weekend, they had five copies of Me Before You. Five. Either way, this book was worth the hunt. Everyone should read it, not because it’s a love story, but because it goes so much deeper than that.