It took me a long time to find the courage to review this book. Me Before You was a very intense read for me. I picked it up and couldn't let go. I was glued to the pages till 5 AM in the morning and some more after to digest what I just read- or well to stop crying. It is a tearjerker like I never read one before. For all those romance lovers hereI want to make one thing clear: this is not a romance novel in my definition and I'm sure most of you will agree. I knew it wouldn't be before I started but still this book caught me off guard.
Meet Lou, she lives at her parents place has a job she loves in a coffee shop and well she is happy with her life for the most time. When out of nowhere she loses her job,she has to find something new to help her family. The jobcenter suggest a caring job for a local young man and Lou isn't sure she can do it. It is a temporary assignment which would only last 6 months so she takes the risk and takes it. When she meets Will and realizes what her real job is aka giving him back his will to life her determination to do just that is spiked and she gives her best.
Will is a quadriplegic and his life is ruled by his body's condition. He's dependant on outside help and he hates every second of it. His life before the accident was a very active one- he was always looking for the next adrenaline high. A life full of adventures and risks. Now he has lost all of this including his will to live and he actually only waits for his suffering to end. He knows what he wants- his plan is to visit a hospiz in Switzerland to do what he wouldn't be allowed to do in his home-country.
There are so many things I adored in this book. I loved to see how realistically the relationship between Lou and Will developed. The slow building up of their connection eases you into the story- you take this whole journey into a foreign world together with Lou. Ms Mojes seems to have researched Quadriplegia intensively and the background information we get piece by piece was eye opening for me. I also loved that actually not the things Lou plotted out to get Will back to enjoy life worked but that actually her character did. Her spirit and while demeanor is the key.She is not afraid to tell him the truth- bluntly and honest without hesitating of fear to hurt his feelings. I also liked how the side cast and their stories were seamlessy woven into the story but never stole the spotlight from the main theme.
My biggest problem with the book is actually a bit of a spoilery topic. So skip this if you plan to read this book and want to be unbiased while doing so.
When I got the chance to receive this book I read a bit about it and I thought it would be an optimistic book. About finding the pleasure of life again, finding new hope and all. For me a 'romantic' read isn't this sad and the end seriously killed the book for me. I read for hours in the whee hours of the morning and then the end hit me so hard I couldn't take it. I was devasted and well here this book succeded- it really touched me deep inside and made me cry for hours. But sadly it also ruined the whole reading experience for me. Now when I think of Me Before You I remember the end and well not much of the rest. Perhaps it's just me being a pampered romance reader but I couldn't shake off the emotional intensity Ms Moyes build over the whole book so easily.
Me Before You will grab you and wrench every last tear out of your body. It didn't only make me cry though- there are also some very funny and sweet moments in this book. I really enjoyed the book but the romance reader in me is wishing that I would have never read the end. If you love the sweetness and happiness of romance novels this one might not be for you but if you love the emotional intensity no matter if good or bad grab this one- it is a wonderfully crafted emotional roller-coaster ride.