Review duo: Me Before You and After You by JoJo Moyes

I had read “Me Before You” awhile ago when it had first come out due to all the hype and I remember liking it, but never had the urgency to read the sequel. However, when “Still Me” came out earlier this year and I saw the positive reviews, I decided to revisit the books. After all, they had been sitting on my bookshelf since December when I won them in a book swap. Might as well crack those spines.

Me before youMy rereading of “Me Before You” was even better than the first time around. I don’t know why, but it hit me a lot more. Maybe, because the hype was over and I didn’t feel like I HAD to enjoy it or felt as distracted. Or maybe I read it the first time so quickly just to get it over with that I completely lost the full emotion that this book could invoke.

I am not going to fill this post with the whole summaries of the books, since by now I think most people have either read the book, saw the movie or heard enough about both to know what they are about. However, I linked the summaries to the book covers for those who would like to refresh themselves.

I liked most of the essential characters in this book, except maybe Louisa’s boyfriend and After youWill’s parents. I give kudos to Louisa for taking the job to begin with. I am not sure that I would have been able to do it. It takes a special kind of person to take care of another person. So right there, I admire her. She seemed to go in gung ho. Of course, I will agree with Will and her sister, Louisa has a way of selling herself short, which absolutely frustrated me.

Then we meet Will and at first I just wanted to yell at him. I understand why he is in such a sour mood and all, but really?! And at the same time, my heart broke for him. This man who was so full of life got dealt a very bad hand. I kind of blame his parents for his attitude due to the way they tiptoed around him. Like that would make him feel better. Let’s remind him of his condition, like he doesn’t know his limitations as it is. Of course, as the book goes on, Will warms up and he and Louisa make the perfect pair. He tries to show her everything she is missing in life by just living day to day and she tries to show him how much life there still is in the world despite his condition.

Moyes definitely knew how to play with your emotions in this one. It was like a roller coaster with its ups and downs and bittersweet ending. Yes, I say bittersweet because despite what happens, we leave Louisa in another country with a whole new outlook on life and a mission to live up to what Will wanted her to. I had such high hopes.

However I can’t say the same for “After You”. I knew it was going to be about Louisa trying to live her life after what happens in the first book but I can’t help but feel that the majority of this book was completely unnecessary.

I just felt like it dragged on and on with no resolution. There were so many loose strings blowing in the wind, I wasn’t sure if Moyes had a point where she was going to tie them all together. Of course, she inevitably does but she took her sweet time about it.

I am not going to lie. The ending of the book did make me tear up. It’s not that I completely hated the book. The beginning was good and the ending was good. There was just a lot of the middle I could have done without. The sequel didn’t have the same flow as the first one and it was easy not to pick the book up after setting it aside. I just felt like some of it was a bit of a stretch and forced, just to make a story.

It didn’t help that while I was reading this book, I happened upon “Still Me” in the book store and decided to read the flap to see if it was worth even finishing the second one and reading the third. By doing this, I kind of got the answers to my questions about some of those loose ends. I think this is the reason why I thought half of the second book was unnecessary.

I don’t want to completely crucify this book. It had its good moments. While I was disappointed at the beginning upon learning Louisa didn’t stick to her end of the deal with Will, I liked watching her work it out. My heart broke for her as she tries to pick up where it left off. I also enjoyed the introduction of her new love interest and do want to know if it works out in the end. Sam just sounds like a hunk through and through. Also I want to know what happens with this job opportunity.

So I guess, what I’m trying to say, in my long-winded way, is that I will be reading “Still Me” after all.

Have you read this trilogy? What did you think? Let’s discuss!


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