March 2, 2019
After You by Jojo Moyes
2015 Pamela Dorman Books
Finished on February 23, 2019
Rating: 4.5/5 (Very Good)
A NOTE FROM JOJO MOYES ABOUT HER EXCITING NEW NOVEL, AFTER YOU:
I wasn't going to write a sequel to Me Before You. But for years, readers kept asking and I kept wondering what Lou did with her life. In the end the idea came, as they sometimes do, at 5:30 in the morning, leaving me sitting bolt upright in my bed and scrambling for my pen.
It has been such a pleasure revisiting Lou and her family, and the Traynors, and confronting them with a whole new set of issues. As ever, they have made me laugh, and cry. I hope readers feel the same way at meeting them—especially Lou—again. And I'm hoping that those who love Will will find plenty to enjoy.
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.
The first book I read of Jojo Moyes' was her smash hit, Me Before You. I loved everything about that novel and once I finished, I was eager to try more of her works, so I read The Girl You Left Behind and The Last Letter From Your Lover, neither of which were anywhere near as good. So, when I saw that she had written a follow-up to Me Before You, I may have cringed just ever so slightly. I honestly didn't think a sequel could be half as good as the first book, so why waste my time. Until book club. One of my "reading twins" told me she did read both After You and Still Me and said they were both as entertaining as Me Before You. That's all it took to convince me. (We all have those friends who love the same books as we do and never steer us wrong. Gotta trust them!) And, yes, she was right. I loved the book! I devoured it in a few short days, reading late into the night, but saving the final chapters to be savored without interruption. I laughed, but also had my heartstrings tugged, as I read of Louisa's journey through grief and the new friendships and challenges that came her way. Moyes' novel is not a romance, but it speaks about love and how we are able to find joy and happiness when we least expect it. It's also not a fluff story, but rather a satisfying, comfort read with an uplifting conclusion. I can hardly wait to read Still Me, which is the final installment in this trilogy.