Me Before You is a captivating and heart-wrenching novel written by Jojo Moyes. It delves into themes of love, hope, resilience, and the power of choice. Told from multiple perspectives, the story primarily follows the lives of two characters: Louisa Clark and Will Traynor. As these two individuals from different walks of life come together, their relationship evolves in more ways than they could ever imagine.
The novel was first published in 2012 and has received critical acclaim for its well-crafted storyline, unforgettable characters, and evocative language that draws readers completely into Louisa and Will’s world. In this blog post, we’ll provide an in-depth analysis of Me Before You, touching on plot summary, character descriptions, major themes, and much more.
Whether you’re a long-time fan of Jojo Moyes or simply interested in learning more about this powerful book, here’s everything you need to know about Me Before You – all in one place! Let’s dive right in!
The story begins with Louisa Clark, a quirky, compassionate, and unique young woman who finds herself out of a job when the café she works at closes down. Struggling to find a new employment opportunity, she eventually accepts a position as a caregiver for a quadriplegic man named Will Traynor. Their initial interaction is quite challenging as Will manifests his bitterness and anger over his disability, pushing Lou away.
Despite the difficulties, Lou is persistent and tries different approaches to connect with Will. Over time, their relationship dynamic shifts, and they develop a deep bond that transcends the standard caregiver-patient connection. However, Lou learns about Will’s intention of pursuing assisted suicide due to his declining medical condition, and she sets upon a mission to change his mind by presenting him with a life worth living.
In their journey together, Lou and Will indulge in various activities and adventures, revealing to each other the beauty of life despite facing adversities. Towards the end of the story, after an unforgettable trip together, Will still decides to pursue assisted suicide. Despite Lou’s best efforts, she realizes that sometimes love means letting go, and she ultimately supports Will’s decision, acknowledging his right to choose for himself.
In the novel, we see several pivotal moments involving our protagonists:
Louisa losing her job at the café and getting hired as Will’s caregiver
Will initially resisting Lou’s attempts to form a connection
Lou discovering Will’s plan to undergo assisted suicide and her resolve to make him reconsider
Lou’s research on quadriplegics leading to creative ideas for making Will’s life more enjoyable
A memorable trip to Mauritius shared by Lou and Will
Will’s unwavering decision to proceed with assisted suicide
Me Before You presents the readers with a variety of characters that enhance the story and provide depth to Lou and Will’s lives. Let’s take a deeper look into the central figures of the novel:
Louisa “Lou” Clark is a 26-year-old woman who has spent her entire life in her small town. Her unique fashion sense, kind-hearted nature, naïveté, and overall bubbly personality set her apart from the rest. When she becomes Will’s caregiver, her persistence and determination bring brightness to Will’s otherwise bleak existence. Throughout the novel, Lou learns about her untapped potential and eventually steps out of her comfort zone to embrace new opportunities and challenges.
Notable aspects about Louisa include:
Her affection for vintage and eccentric clothes, reflecting her individuality
Being a devoted family member who takes on the role of primary income earner
Her slow yet steady shift from simple caregiver to genuine life-changer
Lou’s willingness to learn and understand different aspects of Will’s life
An undeniable connection with Will that transcends their differences
Her ability to embrace change and chart a new path in life post-Will
Will Traynor, who comes from a wealthy family background, is an ambitious and adventure-seeking man whose life changed dramatically after a tragic accident leading to quadriplegia. He struggles with anger, resentment, and depression stemming from his debilitating condition. With Lou by his side, Will rediscovers a glimpse of happiness and forms a remarkable bond with her. Despite discovering love, he remains firm in his decision to end his life, teaching both Lou and the reader about the importance of choice and personal autonomy.
Key elements of Will’s character are:
An impressive career and high social status prior to the accident
A well-traveled adventurer with a thirst for adrenaline
Initially defensive towards Lou and resistant to her efforts
A sense of humor and sarcasm that becomes evident as their relationship blossoms
Will’s unwavering determination to exercise his personal right to choose
Influencing Lou to push her own boundaries and pursue a life she didn’t know was possible