Me Before You; Jojo Moyes
Penguin Audio - 2013
Initially I thought that, Me Before You, was probably not my kind of book as it's been called a romance by some, but after so many positive reviews, I decided to give it a try. I'm happy to say that the audio version was wonderful and I was quickly sucked in by the story.
It' an unconventional British girl meets boy story. The girl is 27 year old Louisa (Lou) Clark. Lou still lives at home in tight quarters with her working class parents and a sister and her young son. The family counts on Lou to bring home a paycheck to help pay the bills. Having lost her job at a coffee shop she agrees to take a (6) month position caring for a wheelchair bound, wealthy 30-something young man named Will Traynor. It isn't later until she learns the reason she was hired for just a (6) month assignment. She immediately hates the job and wants to quit.
Will's family is extremely wealthy, and Will once had a powerful job in the banking industry and the life many could only dream of, until a motorcycle accident ended his life "as he knew it". He is now a quadriplegic. Things get off to a rocky start for Lou and Will, but they eventually find some common ground and begin to understand each other and even look forward to seeing each other. Lou has some emotionally painful baggage she has been dealing with as well.
I don't want to say too much more, because this is just one of those stories you MUST experience for yourself. The writing style is amazing and there is some controversial subject matter which is just so well done. The writing tone is at times serious, other times witty or laugh out loud funny, you may even find yourself tearing up a bit. I loved the characters, Louisa is both quirky and so sympathetic and found myself cheering for her all the way. Will takes some time to warm up to, he's resentful of his situation and often angry at life and all he has been robbed of. He is a good listener though and has a big heart as well.
This is one of those stories that is not to be missed. Read it -- you'll be so glad that you did.