Louisa, the main character, needs a job. She accepts a position as a carer/companion to Will Traynor, a quadriplegic, who is from a very wealthy family. Before his accident Will had a very successful career. His life was fast-paced and very active. Now, faced with the reality of his situation Will wants to die. He is trapped inside his own body with a mind that’s moving just as fast as it ever did and he is frustrated and angry. Louisa is tasked by Will’s mother to change his mind. Louisa is kept in the dark about this aspect of her job at first and when she finds out, she is horrified but she resolves to try her hardest to convince Will to live.
Lou does manage to win Will round to an extent. He begins going out again, trying new things, engaging with people again. He begins to enjoy his time with Louisa. There is hope that he has changed his mind and that’s what makes the story all the more heartbreaking. You think she might just have convinced him but there is no big twist, just Will’s resolve to go through with it in spite of Louisa bringing some joy back into his life. But I think this makes the story all the more realistic. If he changed his mind and they lived happily ever after, it would seem cheesy. There is no sudden tragedy or big plot twist, just a personal choice made by taking a realistic look at life. There is also a subtle romance developing between Will and Louisa through the story but, again, it isn’t cheesy romance. It seems natural.
The character of Patrick, Louisa’ s boyfriend, is so annoying. He is so selfish and self-obsessed. He doesn’t even try to understand Louisa or anything she is doing and instead of appreciating how Will is helping Louisa be a happier and more confident personand improve herself and her life and confront her past, he gets jealous.
The lesson in this story is about finding a purpose to your life, about following your passions and never wasting a single moment. It is a moving story without being overly emotional. It is a story, not about loss, but about life.
Me Before You is a moving novel that reminds us all that you never know what is around the corner so we should live our lives to our fullest potential and never waste a second. I look forward to reading the sequel and finding out about how Louisa copes with life after Will and whether she takes his advice on board.