Title: After You
Author: Jojo Moyes
Genre: Fiction/ Romance
My favourite quote; ‘Across the rooftops the sun had started to slide, its orange flow diffused by the lead-grey air of the City evening. ‘You know, Lily, perhaps some things just take longer than others. I think we’ll get there, though.’ She linked her arm through mine and let her head rest on my shoulder. We watched the sun’s gentle fall, and the lengthening shadows creeping towards us, and I thought about the New York skyline and that nobody was truly free. Perhaps all freedom – physical, personal – only came at the cost of somebody or something else.’
Me Before You was such an incredible book to me that of course I had to read her sequel to read more of Louisa’s story. I personally felt that this book didn’t have the same impact as her first one so I was slightly disappointed at first, but then again, I knew Will wasn’t going to exactly be a major part of it, since you know – spoiler alert – he’s gone, so what was I really expecting? It was only when I re-read parts of the book a second time that I felt it wasn’t just a sequel for Me Before You, it had something of it’s own.
After losing Will, Louisa travels around Europe to fulfill Wills wishes to discover something new in hopes that she’ll find something of herself. You don’t get to experience her travels, only the aftermath of her emotions when she feels it was just essentially a tick of a box for each place she visited. She finally settles down in London in a purchased flat, with help from Will, and gets a job at the airport as a waitress. She’s depressed, lonely and completely unsatisfied with her life without a purpose.
The story starts by Louisa coming home from work with a bottle of wine and ends up falling off her roof terrace. A wake up call for her when she is found lucky to be alive by ambulance man Sam and in need of a long recovery. She’s brought home to live with her family who are worried for her safety but with all the gossip of town going around about her, she can’t wait to get back to London. When she finally recovers, she promises her family she’ll get help for her depression so she’s able to get back to her lonely life in her flat, only to discover a visitor appearing on her doorstop who claims to be Will’s long lost daughter, Lily.
Lily is an angry, aggravated, resentful young woman who can’t stand her family and rebels in order to annoy her mother as much as possible. All she’s ever wanted is to feel a part of a real family who appreciates her for who she is which sends her off on a mission to find her father – which from all the articles relating to Will’s death – leads her directly to Louisa.
Louisa struggles to handle Lily’s challenging personality when she unwelcomely makes herself at home in the second bedroom of her flat with no desire to go back home. Louisa is not ready to talk about Will and becomes increasingly distressed when Lily asks her questions about him. She finds the courage to get in touch with Will’s parents to introduce Lily to her fathers family, which causes further problems than she would like to be involved in. When Louisa finds her having a small party with her friends in her flat and discovers her inherited jewellery missing, she finally loses her patience and sends Lily away.
Due to this, Lily ends up missing for several days, with little help for Lily’s own mother, Louisa with a help of Sam, go looking for her and Louisa finally feels she is ready to open up more about Will and hopes of moving on without him.
It’s a great book with an interesting story that you won’t want to put down.
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.