Lou Clark knows lots of things. She knows how many footsteps there are between the bus stop and home. She knows she likes working in The Buttered Bun tea shop and she knows she might not love her boyfriend Patrick. What Lou doesn’t know is she’s about to lose her job or that knowing what’s coming is what keeps her sane. Will Traynor knows his motorcycle accident took away his desire to live. He knows everything feels very small and rather joyless now and he knows exactly how he’s going to put a stop to that. What Will doesn’t know is that Lou is about to burst into his world in a riot of colour. And neither of them knows they’re going to change the other for all time.
“You only get one life. It’s actually your duty to live it as fully as possible.”
It was simply beautiful. It’s one those stories that makes you wanna punch the author for making you a crying loser and for not giving you a happily ever after but at the same time you’re glad that she didn’t because you are way too frustrated and exhausted with those cheesy, cliche ones so you’re actually looking forward for a more realistic ending which she served in a silver platter. So, you may all expect that the ending is not a “got married, had babies” sort of an ending. No, no, no.
“Push yourself. Don’t Settle. Just live well. Just LIVE.”
Also, who expected the twist? I didn’t. There is no indication in the synopsis. I was really floored. That was just so unfair because I could’ve been more ready and have prevented the waterworks.
Anyway, from the very beginning I knew I’d love the characters. I just have this soft spot for love-hate relationships. I’ve always thought that those kind of relationships are just so cute because I know that at the end of the day, it will blossom into something amazing. I gotta give Moyes a thumbs up for giving us flawed characters. It made everything relatable (for some people) and realistic. I mean, it’s not everyday you get to meet or read characters that mirrors our personality, attitude and perception. Most of the time, characters are made perfectly with a not-so-convincing flaws. And this is the reason why it was so easy for me to like them and maybe, just maybe, love them a little too. They are not perfect, they have their moments like us that they are egocentrics and selfish which makes the whole story hooking.
“I will never, ever regret the things I’ve done. Because most days, all you have are places in your memory that you can go to.”
Lou is just a bottle of ecstasy for me. I felt positivity vibe and energy radiating from her. I admire strong and funny characters and she’s just one of ’em. She’s so quirky and I know that she’s the kind of person you wanna be friends with. And she has her moments where you will feel like she’s selfish and that’s totally fine. And another thing that is totally fine and did not make me hate her is her lack of passion to be someone and to go somewhere. I guess I can say that most people who judged or judges her for that are hypocrites because like everybody else we have those moments in our lives when we thought of going somewhere and be someone but at the same time, a little bit too afraid to move forward and would just stay in our comfort zones for a little while. We gotta give her a benefit of doubt here. Some may say, “but she’s old enough” and that sorta thing but again, we can’t have that kind of thinking because some people are way older but still can’t figure out what they really wanna be or what they want in their lives. Again, her flaw of being way too dull or her lack of dream is normal and explainable. I bet a hundred bucks that most of us here share the same feelings and fears as her so, let’s take it easy on her.
Will, on the other hand, may be described as a typical disabled person who used to have such tremendous lifestyle. Again, his attitude towards life after everything went downhill is normal. I can just imagine that pain he went through, physically and emotionally, everyday after his accident. So, I can’t blame that he would wanna kill himself. (Spoiler alert) This story taught me so much about life and love, and it’s something I could definitely use. Will, himself, is a lesson not just to Lou but to all the readers. He may be a painful lesson but he sure is the most effective one. He is a good example of a person that comes into our lives, not to stay but to teach us. He taught Lou so much about life in the story and I must say, the physical feature really doesn’t matter. It’s still what’s inside.
I am not a romantic type of a person but I do enjoy a few giggles here and there which this book gave me. The love between them is not unexpected. I’m pretty sure everyone expected that they’ll fall in love with each other being that this is a romance novel but you know what I mean. We have witnessed how feelings developed despite their differences in lifestyle and physically. There’s just this electricity between them. They contradict each other but at the same time, they compliment each other and I do believe that’s what makes a good relationship.
The whole plot is not hard to understand. The author was able to bring us a wonderful story without beating around the bush. It’s simple, well-written and it makes you understand what love is capable of and it’s not just between Lou and Will but between Will and his family. If you would try to delve further into it, you might say that it’s a bit dark. That it’s not just about romance and stuff like that, it’s so much more. We are able to witness a little bit of the hardships a person like Will goes through. I would’ve appreciated it even more if we are able to read Will’s POV in the story or if the story was written in his POV.
“All I can say is that you make me… you make me into someone I couldn’t even imagine. You make me happy, even when you’re awful. I would rather be with you – even the you that you seem to think is diminished – than with anyone else in the world.”
I cannot imagine how painful it is for his family and to Lou. I felt as if I was betrayed by Will because of his decision, his sister felt he’s selfish because of it but for me, looking at it in a bigger picture, his sister is the selfish one. But then again, I cannot talk for everyone of us here because I’ve never been in the position so hard and painful that I have to choose whether I should keep the person I love to make me happy or lose the person I love to put him in peace and I really pray I would never experience this because this is gonna take the life outta me.
I laughed. I cried. I sympathized. I fell in love. I got angry.
It was a roller coaster of emotion for me. The story didn’t need to try so hard to make me feel all sorts of emotion and that’s my basis of what a good story or book is or should be.
I applaud Moyes for a job well done and I am currently reading the second book which is After You, it’s all about Lou’s healing process and her journey through life without Will. I will definitely write something about it as soon as I finished it.
I definitely recommend this to everyone out there. I’m giving this a 5/5 rating.
And a little side note everyone, to those who still don’t know, this book is gonna be adapted into film and I really hope they do justice because I just really love this book. But as far as I can see, the trailers are great. In my opinion, the actors portraying the characters are well picked and I’m pretty sure fans of Game of Thrones will support this. I believe they will be able to live up to most of our expectations. And I just cannot wait to see the fruit soon. I cannot believe I’d be able to see the story come to life. It’s gonna be out this 3rd of June here in the Philippines and I’m ecstatic. I’d probably review the movie too.