Me Before You by Jojo Moyes – review

Me Before you by Jojo Moyes is now available at Liberty Books store and online.
Web link:

‘The novel offered a complex and intricately detailed plot which gives out so many characters’ stories’

As always now at the start of my reviews I’m finding that I am producing some confession or other and today is no exception. Christmas 2014 feels like two years ago even though it’s only a year and a couple of months, but this is I am ashamed to say when my friend sent me Me Before you as a Christmas present. I was so excited with this book after seeing how much my friend adored it, and months and months went by with this book constantly on my TBR piles each – yet every month for some reason I never quite got around to it. But this month, I am proud to say that I finally got around to reading this Jojo Moyes novel and I am so glad that I did!

The story follows Louisa Clark who is forced to take a job looking after a quadriplegic Will Traynor, as her family is desperate for the extra income. This intrigued me although I prayed it was not going to become some instant love romance. But I was happy since this wasn’t the case; yes the story itself has a degree of love and affection but I feel that it is more about life and death. Due to Wil’s condition he wishes to end his own life on his terms and for me this was the main theme of the novel. The novel offered a complex and intricately detailed plot which gives out so many characters’ stories but ties them together so beautifully that you didn’t become confused.

Euthanasia is a delicate subject, but Moyes handled it brilliantly within Me Before You, and I think this is why I enjoyed the book as much as I did. Louisa I feel wasn’t just trying to convince Will to live but rather giving him a reason to enjoy his life until he chooses to die. As a result of this, I realised that I hadn’t actually read a novel which involves euthanasia before which I found to be strange almost since I remember when I first ever came across the subject, during one of my GCSE RE classes… Weird almost that a subject which is taught widely has very few Young Adult novels which involve the subject and a minimal amount of fiction overall which includes it. Which is why I feel Me Before You is a great novel to read to look at the subject.

Overall, I enjoyed reading Me Before You and I feel that the subject of euthanasia within it was a valuable part of the novel. How we are able to learn about each and every character, even if they are in the novel for a page or two, is valuable. I enjoyed this book and will certainly be recommending this novel to young and old readers.

This book review is published in The Guardian.
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