This really isn’t my kind of novel. The only way this could not be my type of book more is if it included zombies and bloodshed. I despise soppy romantic comedies, and the clichés that some people seem to take pleasure in.
Believe it or not, this is more than a soppy romantic story.
“I am not thick. I’d just like to get that out of the way at this point.” The third chapter of this story starts with this sentence. Despite that very straightforward statement, one does question Louisa’s -the main character’s- proficiency in “the Department of Brain Cells”, as she puts it, due to her numerous slips, the most serious of which put Will’s health at risk. (Will is Louisa’s disabled charge). I think even someone of very average intelligence would think twice before getting drunk with a disabled person in their care. She didn’t.
In addition, she appears to be something of a human potato. She’s perfectly content with her rudderless existence in the middle of nowhere. She allows Will to patronize her, calling herself the Eliza Doolittle to his all-knowing Professor Higgins. Sometimes one wonders whether she is six years old, instead of twenty-six.
This is actually what makes her transition into a person so appealing. Towards the end of this deplorably short novel, she actually becomes someone you can care about. A potato with feelings, if you will. Throughout the book, she’s unapologetically unique- an admirable quality.
The book is as much a story between two people, as a well-thought debate on the morality of euthanasia. It allows you to see multiple perspectives on the subject. The opinion of the patient, those who are close to the patient, and even those who are close to those close to the patient.
WARNING: Major spoilers ahead, in the next two paragraphs.
As much as I craved a happy ending for both of them -God knows they deserved it- I respected the author’s decision to let Will die. It seems sad, and a little bit selfish, for him to tell Louisa that her loving him wasn’t enough and he wanted to die anyway. Ultimately, though, it’s his choice, and when he tells her it’s the only thing he’s felt like he has control over since his accident, one doesn’t feel as ill-disposed to him as before.
To be truly honest, Will was the making of Louisa. Though knowing him caused her unbearable grief, it gave her life a purpose: To make Will change his mind. After Will died, she decided to take charge of her existence, and study at a university. While that’s not compensation for his death, at least it gives one something to hold on to.
There is one unanswered question, however: Whatever became of Ritchie, who arranged to meet Louisa through a quadriplegic chat forum?
While I can’t gurantee that everyone will enjoy it, I’d certainly recommend this one, especially to Wattpad readers. There’s something eternally satisfying about a love story is actually realistic, where feelings are not exaggerated.
Image source: The new book cover of Me Before You, as seen on http://www.bustle.com