“Fiction”. Probably the best creation by humanity. A source of infinite joy for billions of people in this treacherous world. Sometimes it is used as a means of showing you the harsh realities of life and most times it is something that steals you away from your worldly worries, lets you step-in a world created by someone else’s imagination and allows you to view life in a different light. An affirmative, shining, bright light. Why couldn’t you have done that Jojo? Why did you have to put me through such…. misery? The title of the book fooled me. I thought this was supposed to be a love story. A love story that’ll take me away and let me be a part of someone’s happy ending.
What is it about?
Excerpt taken from Goodreads:
“Lou Clark knows lots of things. She knows how many footsteps there are between the bus stop and home. She knows she likes working in The Buttered Bun tea shop and she knows she might not love her boyfriend Patrick.
What Lou doesn’t know is she’s about to lose her job or that knowing what’s coming is what keeps her sane.
Will Traynor knows his motorcycle accident took away his desire to live. He knows everything feels very small and rather joyless now and he knows exactly how he’s going to put a stop to that.
What Will doesn’t know is that Lou is about to burst into his world in a riot of colour. And neither of them knows they’re going to change the other for all time.”
My Thoughts on this Book:
[Caution: Contains Spoilers]
The synopsis of this book is also gravely misleading! This is NOT a love story. Me Before You is based on a very sensitive subject matter. One’s right to die. *cue dramatic music*
If I had to write the synopsis of the book it would be something like this…
“Lou Clarke, an immature uneducated unambitious goof, loses her job at a dead-end cafe and is hired (based on no qualifications) by a wealthy family to care for their depressed quadriplegic son Will Traynor on a contract of 6 months.
Will Traynor, an egocentric and depressed quadriplegic billionaire, who before his accident led an adventurous, athletic and astounding life, has now no will to live.
What Will doesn’t know is that Lou is going to burst into his life, annoy him for 6 months, and make no difference whatsoever in his decision to end his life through assisted-suicide by the help of Dignitas.”
Yeah it is quite spoilery, but at least the reader will then know what they’re getting themselves into.
I’m going to be honest and say that I wouldn’t have probably read this book if I hadn’t found out that it’s gonna be adapted for a motion picture this year, with the lead actors played by Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones) and Sam Claflin (Catching Fire). By the way, the Mother of Dragons is NOT a good choice for playing Lou.
Okay so this book gives the readers two ultimate messages.
Message # 1. Disabled life is not worth living.
If you’re in a wheelchair you should just go kill yourself even though you are a billionaire with an extremely loving family, under the constant care of the best doctors, and the love of an affectionate partner. Ah yes, a round of applause for such an optimistic mentality. I stuck with this book to the end just because I had a tiny little ray of hope that maybe, just maybe, Will will (weird) change his mind and not commit assisted suicide. But nope, if you’re paralyzed and can’t have sex anymore, or go on vacations to do bungee-jumping and sky-diving, then it’s better to just die and let your family and loved ones wallow in psychological pain for the rest of their lives. This must be the worst possible ending of a book I’ve ever read. Yes, I know it’s not just being stuck to a wheelchair. There are a dozen other problems quadriplegics have to face like painful infections and physical ailments. But that doesn’t mean that you should just quit. I am a highly religious person, and I believe that whatever pain God puts you through in this life is just a test of your patience and faith. You can’t stop believing in miracles. When you have a tough exam, you don’t go into the exam hall to just look at the paper, grab it, throw it into the air and say “To Hell with this shizz, I’m outta here.”
Message # 2: Live your life as fully as possible.
Yeah, I know! Two very contradictory messages. But this aspect at least (to some extent) provided some redeeming value. Louisa led a very unambitious life because of an incident which scarred her for life. If I was in her shoes I would’ve probably left that town way before she did and tried to create a new life for me just to show the world that I’m not going to let my past dictate my future. At least this issue was properly dealt with and it presented a positive message.
“Live boldly. Push yourself. Don’t Settle. Just LIVE.”
This book could’ve turned out to be way better only if this message was utilized properly in both scenarios. You are given one life, it is your duty to live it to the fullest. Even if you are in a wheelchair. Even if the world seems bleak. Even if you can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. You can still lead a full life with the help of your loved ones. God gave us family and friends because they are the biggest source of strength in this world. This book was a work of fiction Jojo. A happy ending wouldn’t have hurt.