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About the Author: Jojo Moyes

Jojo Moyes is a British novelist.

Moyes studied at Royal Holloway, University of London. She won a bursary financed by The Independent newspaper to study journalism at City University and subsequently worked for The Independent for 10 years. In 2001 she became a full time novelist.

Moyes' novel Foreign Fruit won the Romantic Novelists' Association (RNA) Romantic Novel of the Year in 2004.

She is married to journalist Charles Arthur and has three children.


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Find the best price forMe Before You

Goodreads rating: 4.29

Paperback, Published in Jan 2012 by Michael Joseph (UK)

ISBN10: 0718157834 | ISBN13: 9780718157838

Page count: 481

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.

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SocialBookCo User Reviews

Doreth Groot Wesseldijk on 07 Oct 2016
“Will had a big life; great job, a lot of money and a girlfriend who looked like a supermodel on her off days. Lou had never done anything in life other than work at the Buttered Bun and was satisfied with her little life in her little town.

Will doesn't want to live anymore, having felt what it feels like to live life to the fullest and after two years stuck in a chair he gives his parents an ultimatum; he promises not to commit suicide for the next six months if they take him to a clinic after those months to end his life.

Lou is happy to have gotten a job anywhere after her former boss closed the dining establishment. No, she doesn't know anything about helping out a disabled person. Nor does she know about Will's ultimatum. When she finds out Lou is determined to change his mind. Will Lou 'win'?

There is so much about this book that I liked, from the detailed main characters to Lou's expressive way of dressing. I got pulled in by the prologue and stayed glued until way after I read the last page. I loved how rude Will is, how sophisticated and opinionated he came across. But I also really appreciate how Lou is basically his complete opposite; unopinionated, unschooled and fine with that. It really shows Moyes' talent in composing characters. It also allows us readers to get informed about Will's medical situation without it getting boring or mainly containing medical jargon. I fell in love with Lou's way of thinking and was pleasantly surprised when multiple family members' Points Of View could be found in the book as well. What also really surprised me was the depth behind Louisa's character that you find about half way through the book, how certain moments in life, certain memories shaped her. But what I loved even more than that was how Will seemed to help her really turn into the person she wanted to be but kept locked away. I found myself laughing out loud on the train about some of the banter between the two. In between classes and on while I was on the bus and the train I would find myself reaching for the book with that kind of desperation only book lovers understand, the need to find out what happens next. I didn't want this book to end, I can honestly say this book has, quickly, become one of my favourites. I don't think you can understand my enthusiasm for this book if you haven't read it.

Dislikes:

I wasn't particularly charmed by Patrick, Lou's boyfriend, from the start. But it became quite clear early on in the book that that was intentional. The running man, as Will called him, didn't seem to have any character to him, which made really hard to relate to him. But even that made the book better for me.

I also really didn't like Lou's sister, Katrina for most of the book. I disliked her from the start as she was described by her sister. Then, when things got better between the sisters, I started liking her more, but then, when she had a chapter from her point of view, she managed to make me feel impartial towards her again. I can't say she's not a reasonable enough character with a sensible head on top of her shoulders, but she's just so self-centred all through the book, that it makes it hard to really care for her, the ease in which she expects people to hand her whatever she wants or asks for really got on my nerve. I can't tell whether Moyes did this on purpose or not. To be honest, thinking back to it, it makes me feel like Louisa when Will is testing her about one of his books or the news items.

Characters:

Louisa: I loved Lou, she made the book easy access for those without a medical degree, she added so much fire and spirit to the book that she easily became my favourite character. In later chapters you find out some shocking things about her history that -to me at least- came quite unexpected, but it just made me love her more. She has fierce determination, a great sense of humour. If anything, the worse thing about her is her boyfriend.

Will: There is nothing I can say about Will that doesn't make me smile. He is rude, arrogant, brilliant and pushy in the best ways. once you start to get to know him you feel what I imagined Lou must have felt for him, you fall in love with him. His banter makes you love and his rudeness makes you smirk, he is sensible and his character is portrayed in the best way imaginable. I couldn't have wished for a better character to read about, really.

Katrina: As I mentioned earlier, I am not a big fan of Katrina or Treen as she get's called by her family. I questioned myself multiple times after reading the book if Jojo wanted her readers to feel like this as, to me, it does add to the sisterly bond, the bickering and fighting and Katrina being as selfish as she is, makes her very real to the reader.

Bernard Clark: Bernard, Lou's dad, is rude at the beginning of the book. Which annoys me since Lou helps out quite a lot around the house and money-wise. But as she grows a backbone and as you continue to read you -or I at least- start to like him. He comes across exactly like you'd expect from a working father, husband and grandfather. He is closed of at first, even with his family, but you get glimpses of his true character and in the end, it's hard not to appreciate him.

Camilla Traynor: Camilla, Will's mum, first comes off as a rigid and aristocratic woman. To put it plainly, when first meeting Lou, the former seemed stuck up and rigid. But as you get to know her and the situation she's in you sympathise with her and relate more towards her character.

Steven Traynor: Will's dad comes across as a jackass, I'm sorry to say I can't think of a redeeming quality of the guy other than that he seems to live his son. His timing when it comes towards his affair as well as the train of thought in his chapter (:from his point of view) make you dislike his character greatly -or at least, that was my experience.

Josephine Clark: It's hard to read about Josephine, Lou's mother, and not already sigh in exhaustion. The woman does not sit down, which quite aptly directly explains their financial welfare as well as their living arrangements for you; constant work. But if there's someone who'll do it without fuss, with a big smile on her face even, it's Josie.

Thomas and granddad: I can't really explain these characters as they weren't actually that present in the book for obvious reasons.

Nathan: Nathan, Will's primary caretaker is, at first very professional and distant, but as the story progresses you get more of his input in it and he has his own chapter. He is a good friend to Will, which seems like an astonishing achievement, as the latter is (understandably) very dark and moody at the beginning of the story.

Final thoughts:

Final thoughts, it sounds so bleak, the ending. I've said it before and I'll say it again, I really didn't want this book to end. It feels like a stone is lodged in my stomach, it's bittersweet, my love for the book against my despair towards it having ended. But I am very much looking forward to reading the second book in the series soon, I'll let you guys know what I thought. As for this book, I can honestly say that there is not a reason in the world why I wouldn't give it five stars if not for Katrina. I didn't even mind Lou's inability to dream big dreams, or Will's father (read the book to understand). I guess what I'm trying to say is, have you not read it? Go read it. You will both thank me for it.”

Tiffany Tatum on 04 Sep 2016
“The main character in this book is Lou Clark, she feels the pressure from her parents and sister after losing her job as they rely on her for their income. She finds a job as a carer for Will Traynor. Will was a normal boy who you could say lived life to its fullest . He was injured in a motorbike accident and was left in quadriplegic state. Will hates being stuck in his wheelchair and hates his quality of life and thats when Lou overhears Wills mother talking to his sister about him asking her to help him in 6 months time. Lou speaks to her sister and she tries to show will that life is worth living no matter what state you are in, there are still things you can do, you don't have to sit indoors all day. I must say the humour in this book is amazing. There was quite a few times where I would sit and giggle to myself after reading the book.

This book was beautifully written, I imagined every detail and felt every emotion, I was really into this book. As soon as I had got to the last page i just couldn't hold my emotions in, i really didn't want it to end. I really got into the characters of Lou and Will and I don't think I have ever been so into a book before. Jojo Moyes is so talented and I am so glad to have had the chance to read this book. I do not want to say too much as I do not really want to give away the whole story because it is worth the read and I would not want to spoil it for anyone. I was really affected by this book and when I had finished it i just didn't know how to react it was just a huge hard impacting book to me. I was to re-read the book all over again because It was just amazing.”

Natalie Buhler on 10 Nov 2016
“This was a very touching story that kept my tears flowing freely. So much so that I had to put the book down at the last chapter over last weekend as I was at my expo and I dared not take it with me as I was sure I would be sitting in my stand with red, puffy eyes!

In my teen years I was a big Chick Lit fan, but as I grew older I tended to
choose to read historical fiction instead, so it was a nice to be able to just sit down and enjoy some great light reading for a change.

This title revolves around a set of very likable characters, who each drew me into their world from the start. I found that I could relate to each characters state of mind and position which they played in the story-line.

The two main characters are Lou and Will.

(Spoiler Alert)

Lou Clark loses her job at the Buttered Bun Cafe as it closes down. She doesn't have many other options open to her as she isn't qualified for much and after trying out a couple of odd jobs, she takes on the opportunity to become Will's carer.

Will has been in a freak accident that has left him as a quadriplegic. Before his accident he led an active lifestyle and now he is stuck in a life that requires constant care and help for the smallest mundane tasks.
He refuses to live this way and chooses to be euthanized in Switzerland after he has given his mother 6 months more of his life.

Lou overhears of Will's plans in Switzerland and is determined to change his mind, ultimately falling in love with him and unfortunately having to come to terms with the fact that Will plans to go ahead with his original plan.

Lou as a character was believable to a point, there were times where she could have been portrayed in a different way. Considering that she was more or less the bread winner for her family, it didn't seem to phase her as much as it would have bothered me to have the burden of getting 5 adults and 1 child through day-to-day life. As much as this aspect of her life was included in the title, I didn't find that it was necessary to the story-line on the whole.

Most adults upon losing their employment tend to have a certain urgency to find another job, so I did find her family situation to be superfluous, and a bit irritating if I am being totally honest.

Of all her family members, I think her sister annoyed me the most.

I found the idea of her sister, having a child, and then still living off her parents and sister, without having the slightest inclination to help out financially, starting to grate my nerves. There are such things as "Learning on the Job", "Night School", and "Correspondence studies" whilst earning an income.

Will's character did get me thinking....

How would I react to losing the use of all of my limbs?
Would I move forward or be stuck in the past?

Overall, the story touched on a sensitive subject and it was good to mull over my feelings on the topic of Euthanasia and to understand why it could be a choice for people in dire life situations; if that would be something I could come to terms with if I had to be faced with it as a choice, or someone I loved chose it for themselves.

Moyes' writing ability had me gripped.....to the story line and the characters.

Throughout the book I found myself holding on to the hope that it would have a happy end.

If you are looking for an easy, moving title to read, then I would warmly recommend this book.”

Jessi Thorpe on 04 Sep 2016
“Louisa Clark lives a fairly simple life, and she is happy with it. She is 26, lives with her parents, sister and nephew in a small town, and works at the local cafe where she has been for the last six years. When her boss closes the cafe and she finds herself out of work, she has to start looking for a way to help support her struggling family. Eventually she settles at a new job as the secondary carer of Will Traynor, a 35 year old man who needs constant care after a motorcycle accident leaves him with a severe spinal injury. The two personalities clash, with happy, upbeat and chatty Lou not knowing how to really fit in with sullen, bitter and depressed Will, who has struggled with the adjustment from a happy, adventurous and active life to one where he faces daily challenges and pain as a quadriplegic.

Over time the pair fall into a routine and friendship, which eventually turns into a love that has many challenges to face. Although I found the book a little slow to get into when beginning, a few chapters in I found the main characters were easy to connect with which made the book super easy to finish reading and I finished the entire book of 497 pages in less than a week.

There were things I both loved and disliked about this book - overall the story is lovely and I felt that the main character grew in lots of ways. Lou was able to open herself to new opportunities in life and see her own potential, as well as mature through the book. I did find Lou's personality a little immature for 26 at the beginning, despite the fact that she held the responsibility of the main provider for her family. I also felt in a way that she much preferred to stick with what she knew even if it didn't particularly make her happy - such as her relationship with her boyfriend Patrick. By the end of the book I liked even if she still felt a little lost and didn't have strong ambitions, she had grown as a person and knew she had to experience life differently to how she had previously.

Although Will had good qualities, I disliked that he appeared as such a shallow character. It seemed that he could only view himself as a burden, and that his life wasn't worth living because of his accident as it would never compare to his life as an able bodied person. He makes so much effort to throw Lou out of her comfort zone and open her eyes to her own potential, but has a different view for himself due to his disability. I would have loved to see a really strong character with a disability, as I felt in many places throughout the book his character sent the message that it would be better to not live than to live life with a physically disabled. In the end I feel his decision was both based on the uncertainty of his quality of life, and also that he felt he was holding people back. He knew his parent's weren't living the life they would be if his accident hadn't occurred, and I think he also felt he would be holding Lou back from the things he wanted her to experience in life.

I did find it was a really great point that multiple times throughout the book it described the struggles a physical disability can bring, such as pain and sickness, harsh or unkind words and reactions from general public, and even just how difficult an outing to a public place can be. I did feel that there was also so much missing or that could have been represented also that could have maybe shared a different view of living with a disability but loved that it perhaps opened some people's eyes even a little who haven't had to experience those sorts of struggles.

I found the ending of this book to be quite predictable and could guess what was going to happen chapters before the end, but it was an ending that opened many peoples eyes to a controversial issue that they maybe hadn't considered before. I think its always great when a book or movie makes people consider a different point of view on a topic they might not have paid much attention to before and reminded me a lot of the moral dilemma from My Sister's Keeper.

Overall I enjoyed the story and would be interested to read the second book to follow Lou's character, and see if she continues to grow and stay on a new path with her life like I hope that she will. I'm also really interested to watch the movie now, and see how the characters are portrayed and how it compares to the book as I think it will be a really lovely (and heartbreaking) movie.”

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Compare book prices with SocialBookco. Get Me Before You by Jojo Moyes at the best price. This book is for ISBN 9780718157838 which is a Paperback copy Published in Jan 2012 by Michael Joseph (UK).