Pamela Dorman Books|January 1, 2013|Hardcover|ISBN: 978-0-670-02660-9
They had nothing in common until love gave them everything to lose. Louisa Clark is an ordinary girl living an exceedingly ordinary life – steady boyfriend, close family who has never been farther afield than their tiny village. She takes a badly needed job working for ex-Master of the Universe, Will Traynor, who is wheelchair bound after an accident. Will has always lived a huge life, big deals, extreme sports, worldwide travel, and now he’s pretty sure he cannot live the way he is.
Will is acerbic, moody, bossy – but Lou refuses to treat him with kid gloves, and soon his happiness means more to her than she expected. When she learns that Will has shocking plans of his own, she sets out to show him that life is still worth living.
A love story for this generation, Me Before You, brings to life two people who couldn’t have less in common – a heartbreakingly romantic novel that asks, What do you do when making the person you love happy also means breaking your own heart?
Louisa Clark loses her waitress job and her family is desperate for money. Her father was also laid off from his job and her sister, Treena has returned to university so she isn’t contributing any income to the family at all. Plus her Mom is at home taking care of her grandfather.
Lou visits the local job seeking agency and takes on a couple of low paying mundane jobs that only last a few days at a time. Just as she has exhausted the list the agency has for her, a new job comes through that pays more than the minimum wage. Someone is needed to care for a quadriplegic man on a daily basis but Louisa doesn’t want to take on a job where she has to clean up bodily fluids and help someone to the toilet. The agency checks and finds out that none of that will be required of her as they have a male nurse who comes two or three times per day to perform those dreaded tasks. All Louisa has to do is keep Will Traynor company, never leave him alone for longer than 15 minutes at a time, and do some light housekeeping and makes Will his meals. She takes the job.
The first day she meets, Wil,l she can’t stand the man. He is rude, arrogant, offensive, and belligerent. No matter what Lou does it doesn’t seem to make Will happy. He makes fun of her clothing, her shoes, what she says and even what she doesn’t say. Will finds something to complain about or to get his “poor me” message out there into the world.
As time passes, things begin to change and Louisa begins to understand what it’s like for, Will to be trapped in the wheelchair 24 hours per day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. She thinks about never being able to scratch her own nose again, to never being able to pick up a pen and write down a quick phone number, or to just get up and take a quick stroll around the garden.
Will is very unhappy and doesn’t want to live but Louisa decides before her six-month contract is up that she is going to change his mind and prove to him that life really is still worth living for. However, she didn’t expect that they’d fall in love which would ultimately ruin her longstanding seven-year relationship with her boyfriend, Patrick.
Louisa begins to search the internet for activities that quads can do. She’s willing to even take him overseas on a trip if she has too just to prove to Will that he CAN still do the a lot of the things he used to, just in a different way.
However, when Louisa finds out exactly why her contract to care for Will is only six-months, she completely cracks under the pressure and is totally, totally devastated. She immediately tenures her resignation and returns home. Camilla Traynor, Will’s mother, comes to Louisa’s home and begs her to reconsider and to come back because she’s the only person they’ve ever had that has been able to change Will. He has actually been happy and pleasant and quite lovely to be around. Louisa agrees to return and with a vengeance she once again restarts her search for places to take Will.
In the end, will her love for Will be enough to make him really understand and realize that although he is trapped in a wheelchair that he can still have a fulfilling life and that he still has a lot to give to this world? Or, will she give up knowing that somehow she is going to be hurt too deeply?
I didn’t expect the ending of this book at all, it was quite a shock to me to be quite honest and I cried for about ten minutes. The author has done a fantastic job at penning this novel and you won’t be able to put it down once you’ve started and I was sorry to see it end. I’ll definitely be recommending it to family and friends.