When I found out there would be a sequel to Me Before You, I was so excited. I loved that story (though the ending caught we so far off guard the first time I read it), and love everything that Jojo Moyes writes. I planned to read it ages ago, even putting it on one of my reading lists back in 2015, but only got to it last month. (Note: if you are reading this review, I’m assuming you have read or watched Me Before You, or know the ending, so I may spoil a few things about it in this post).
After You follows Louisa Clark’s life after the events of Me Before You, and how she deals with the consequences of Will’s death. I expected it to be a lot like the epilogue of Me Before You, with Lou traveling, maybe starting a new career in fashion design and of course falling in love with someone new. However, that was not what I got.
At first, when I started reading After You, I was thrown by how different it was from my expectations. I think a lot of people who have read it (or begun reading it) had the same experience, and that may have caused some to stop reading it, or take their time with it (I know I did). Once I got through 5 or so chapters, I came to terms with the more somber feeling of the novel, and began to enjoy it for what is was.
Though I was hoping for a happier tune to the novel, I appreciated that Louisa didn’t immediately get over Will’s death and start a new life. I thought it was more realistic, and made a lot of sense in terms of how grief works that she had to struggle to figure out what she wanted and who she wanted to be after experiencing such a tragedy. I wasn’t a huge fan of the twist (if you’ve read it, you understand), but I came to terms with that as well, and liked how it shaped Louisa’s journey.
If you’ve started to read After You, and are feeling a little lost because it wasn’t what you expected, I would encourage you to keep reading, and not expect it to have the same tone or flow as Me Before You. And if you haven’t read it yet, but loved Me Before You (or at least want to see what happens next), I would highly recommend you read it.
Have you read After You? What did you think?