How do you move on after losing the person you loved? How do you build a life worth living?
Louisa Clark is no longer just an ordinary girl living an ordinary life. After the transformative six months spent with Will Traynor, she is struggling without him. When an extraordinary accident forces Lou to return home to her family, she can’t help but feel she’s right back where she started.
Her body heals, but Lou herself knows that she needs to be kick-started back to life. Which is how she ends up in a church basement with the members of the Moving On support group, who share insights, laughter, frustrations, and terrible cookies. They will also lead her to the strong, capable Sam Fielding—the paramedic, whose business is life and death, and the one man who might be able to understand her. Then a figure from Will’s past appears and hijacks all her plans, propelling her into a very different future. . . .
For Lou Clark, life after Will Traynor means learning to fall in love again, with all the risks that brings. But here Jojo Moyes gives us two families, as real as our own, whose joys and sorrows will touch you deeply, and where both changes and surprises await.
After You is quintessential Jojo Moyes—a novel that will make you laugh, cry, and rejoice at being back in the world she creates. Here she does what few novelists can do—revisits beloved characters and takes them to places neither they nor we ever expected.
When I first read Me Before You I couldn't stop thinking about it- it was that amazing and thought-provoking- check out my review here to know more about how I felt about it- and I badly wanted to know what Lou did with her life, how, and if, she moved on. So coming across the news that a sequel was on it's way was the best thing ever. I must admit I was a bit skeptical when I started reading After You- what if I don't like it? What if I don't want Lou to move on? What if I don't like what happens? What if the sequel spoils all what Me Before You made me love Lou and Will for? So many what ifs, and yet, despite all my doubts, I barged ahead with it because, yeah, my curiosity made me. And I can't tell you just how glad I am that I picked up this book. This book, guys, is everything. But of course, this book is nothing if you haven't read Me Before You yet- so go read that first!
That being said, let me also tell you that writing this review is probably not my best decision ever because I doubt I'll be able to get my point across to you while keeping myself from spoiling it for you, but I'll try my best. *deep breaths*
When I picked this book up first, I had no inkling of what was to happen (obviously). So when things started unfolding little by little, I was first apprehensive, then amused, nostalgic, and a whole lot of other stuff, and finally, satisfied. What bothers me, though, is the sheer amount of negative reviews I came across- I know, opinions differ and all that jazz, but my problem is that most of these people seemed to have expected something altogether different from this book. (Quite missed the point, haven't you?)
If you start reading After You without knowing the point of this book- the point being Lou moving on with life after losing Will- you are going to be sorely disappointed. Because she does just that- she learns to cope with it- and mind you, that's not a piece of cake- and she rebuilds her life little by little. That right there is the point of this book. What this book teaches you is that sh*t happens, but you gotta move on- and good for you if you can do it!
Perhaps this book wasn't as heart-wrenching as Me Before You had been, but this was as equally gripping, and made me fall in love with the characters just like it's prequel did- or even more so. There was a bevy of new characters in this book and everyone managed to impress me in some way or the other- not that everyone was likable, but this is the kind of book that makes you truly see life from the character's point of view and if that in itself isn't amazing, I don't know what is.
Just like Me Before You, I have a problem of labeling this book as chick-lit because it immediately gives one the idea of light, fluffy reads. Not that that's a problem, but these books deal with such a lot of serious subjects that methinks it would be better to refrain from classifying them under chick-lit. Here we see the many ways people learn to manage with grief, how they come to terms with whatever life throws at them, how they simple deal with life and learn to move on.
We get to see the characters we once loved in Me Before You again and how they are doing in life. We get to know new characters and sneak a peak at their lives. We ourselves begin to understand the process of losing someone we once loved and how to not let that one thing be the thing that decides the rest of our lives. Kudos to the author for managing to take us on this difficult journey, while giving us the occasional LOL moments, the silent smiles and the inevitable tears.
And now I'm wondering just what do you think you're doing sitting here reading my review- don't you have something better to be doing right now? Like reading this book? Please go already- chop, chop!
The story idea: 5/5
The realization of the story: 5/5
The characters: 5/5
The cover: 4/5
Enjoy factor: 5/5