Book Review: Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

Me Before YouMe Before You
Jojo Moyes
Penguin Books, April 2016
ISBN 978-0-14-310946-4
Trade Paperback

Well.  Now I know what all the buzz is about.

Some people may not like a book that defends suicide.  “Defend” is maybe not the most accurate word.  Perhaps it’s better said that Will’s story illustrates a different perspective.

People consider and commit suicide for essentially one actual reason: the pain of living, for that person, is unbearable.   Whether the pain is physical, mental or emotional it is indeed very real and incurable.  It overshadows everything, impacts every facet of life and if not constant, it is consistent.

Ms. Moyes presents two remarkably different sides of an age-old argument thoughtfully, beautifully and boldly.  Me Before You  is not an easy read, no matter which side of the argument the reader supports.  It is captivating and compelling.  I stayed up way too late last night because I had to finish.  And consider.  And cry.  To me, that’s precisely what makes a damn good book.

That’s why I’m writing this pseudo-review.  Not because Ms. Lelia is patiently waiting to post it; but because this topic is so important to me and it’s rare that it is written about in such a thought-provoking, considerate manner.   I wish I could carry copies with me at all times so whenever I hear someone ask “why?”, I can hand it over and say, “maybe this can help you understand”.  I wish that each and every person who has grown weary of trying to articulate his pain could have just as many copies to share for the same reason.  As the adorable and admirable Louisa Clark says, “knowledge is power”.

Reviewed by jv poore, June 2016.