‘After You’ is the much anticipated sequel to ‘Me Before You’ by Jo Jo Moyes. I was late to the JoJo Moyes party, only reading ‘Me Before You’ around 18 months ago. Any one familiar with Moye’s writing doesn’t need me to tell you what a skilled story teller she is. It is this skill which has enabled her to cleverly continue the story of Lou Clark.
In ‘After You’ we join Lou 18 months after the love of her life, Will Traynor has died. Just in case you haven’t read ‘Me Before You’, don’t worry I will say no more about the events surrounding his death. No spoilers here as they say. But, back to ‘After You’. In the time since Wills death, Lou has lived in Paris, travelled, and bought a flat, In fact she has tried to keep the promise she made to will to ‘live’. Weary and greiving, she finds herself working at a slightly dodgy bar, wearing an even dodgier ‘Irish’ costume at East City Airport. Lou is aware life has to change she just doesn’t know how……that is until she answers the door late one night to a girl she has never met before, and suddenly life won’t stop changing.
Throughout the book there are enough references to Will and previous events to make this enjoyable even if you didn’t read ‘Me Before You’, but I suspect it wouldn’t be nearly as enjoyable. Part of the pleasure of this for me, was getting reacquainted with characters. Moye’s has cleverly woven many of the old cast into the story, in such way that they don’t feel unnaturally placed. There are also a number of new and interesting characters, many of whom emerge from the bereavement group called ‘Moving on’ Lou has joined. This group is a clever tool used to explain Lou’s journey and ultimately give her what she particularly needs to move on. It ties up many loose ends and really does finish the story this time.
This book was good fun to read, not terribly taxing but as I said JoJo Moyes can certainly spin a yarn and I whizzed through it in a couple of days whilst on holiday last month. For fans of Jo Jo Moyes and particularly ‘Me Before You’, ‘After You’ is one you may not want to miss.
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