Book du jour: After You by Jojo Moyes

Push yourself.  Don’t settle.  Just live well.  Just live.

But after the person you love the most in the world dies, how do you go on?

I’m guessing this is the question that Jojo Moyes attempts to answer in her beautiful sequel to the amazing book Me Before You.

I nearly fell off my chair (well, okay, that’s an overstatement as I was sitting on my couch when I found out Jojo Moyes had written the sequel of the heartbreaking novel Me Before You.).  If you haven’t read it, DO!  But be warned that the story will clutch at your heart and leave you reaching for tissues, more than once!  It is a story about a girl who cares for a paraplegic who is determined to end his life.  I won’t really say too much as I always think spoilers are what they are; they spoil stories for people.  I am not too bothered about finding out a story’s ending because even if I know how the story ends, I love finding out how you get to the end (I remember while in school in Chemistry, or Physics, or Maths, or Algebra, or Geometry or Trigonometry or Calculus I always enjoyed working my way back – I enjoyed knowing what the end was and learning how to work my way back to find out how you got to the answer.  Weird, I know!).  But there will be people who mind knowing how the story ends.  It was at times a difficult read, but in true Jojo Moyes fashion, she writes out these poignant scenes that are at the same time sad and funny.  You can’t help but cry, sniffle and chuckle at the same time.

I couldn’t help but buy the (Kindle) book when I found out that the sequel to Me Before You was out.  While the story broke my heart, I loved Lou (Louisa) and I wanted to find out what happened to her after Me Before You ended.  Jojo Moyes did not disappoint.  She has written a lovely story that while intrinsically connected to Me Before You, you can very definitely read this book independently.  This book was one of the reasons why I was happy to go to work and why I was so eager to get on that train home.

I finished reading the book this evening, just as the train pulled into Harwich International.  And while I was feeling a bit weepy, there are benefits to reading in a public place.  You rein in your emotions but you’re more aware of how emotional the book makes you because when you struggle to keep your emotions in check, you’re more aware of how emotional you are!

Even if you haven’t read Me Before You, read After You.  It stands on its own merit and it is, as all Jojo Moyes books are, beautifully written and the insights into people’s emotions are amazing.  It is a must read BUT you must remember two things when you start reading this book: you will, at some point, need a box of kleenex and the book is unputdownable!

After You

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