Get a comprehensive summary and honest reviews of the book "After You" by Jojo Moyes, the sequel to the bestselling novel "Me Before You." Discover the heartwarming story of Lou Clark as she tries to move on from the loss of Will Traynor and finds unexpected love and hope.
How do you move on after losing the person you loved? How do you build a life worth living?
Louisa Clark is no longer just an ordinary girl living an ordinary life. After the transformative six months spent with Will Traynor, she is struggling without him. When an extraordinary accident forces Lou to return home to her family, she can't help but feel she's right back where she started.
Her body heals, but Lou herself knows that she needs to be kick-started back to life. This is how she ends up in a church basement with the members of the Moving On support group, who share insights, laughter, frustrations, and terrible cookies. They will also lead her to the strong, capable Sam Fielding—the paramedic, whose business is life and death, and the one man who might be able to understand her. Then a figure from Will's past appears and hijacks all her plans, propelling her into a very different future. . . .
For Lou Clark, life after Will Traynor means learning to fall in love again, with all the risks that brings. But here Jojo Moyes gives us two families, as real as our own, whose joys and sorrows will touch you deeply, and where both changes and surprises await.
After You is quintessential Jojo Moyes—a novel that will make you laugh, cry, and rejoice at being back in the world she creates. Here she does what few novelists can do—revisits beloved characters and takes them to places neither they nor we ever expected.
About the Author: Jojo Moyes
Born in 1969, British novelist and journalist. So far, 13 novels have been published, translated into nearly 50 languages, and sold more than 30 million copies worldwide.
He worked as a reporter for the British "Independent" (Independent) for ten years and is now a full-time writer. He has written many popular urban novels, such as "Before I Met You", "Foreign Fruit", "The Last Letter from Your Lover" and so on. Now she lives in Closter, UK with her husband and three children.
Book: After You by Jojo Moyes
After You is a romance novel written by Jojo Moyes. It is a sequel to Me Before You. The book was first published on 29 September 2015 in the United Kingdom. A third novel in the series, Still Me, was published in January 2018. --- Wikipedia
- Originally published: September 23, 2015
- Author: Jojo Moyes
- Followed by: Still Me
- Preceded by: Me Before You
- Genres: Novel, Romance novel, Romance, Domestic Fiction
- Pages: 448
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Book Summary: After You by Jojo Moyes
I once saw a question on Zhihu: Since when did you start to accept that you are just an ordinary person? I thought for a long time before I came up with my own answer:
When I was in junior high school, I was overjoyed because I got 190 in Chinese plus mathematics. When I signed up, I found out that there were many people who got full marks on the test;
I participated in many club activities when I was in college, but I have always been the most inconspicuous one in the crowd;
After graduation, I dreamed of achieving a career, but ended up just becoming an ordinary member of the nine-to-five army;
Faced with the departure of their loved ones, they are always helpless, no matter how devout their prayers they can't reverse the sad ending...
When I realized that there are countless helpless things in my life, and when I tried my best and couldn't meet the expectations of others, I finally admitted that I was just an ordinary person.
Because of this, I always have a special preference for ordinary people in literature. They always take into account the feelings of others and live cautiously. I have been hiding the dream of adventure in my heart, but I dare not act because I am afraid of breaking the balance of my current life. I can always see my shadow in the people in the book.
In the previous work "Me Before You", the heroine Louisa Clark is an ordinary town girl. She is lively and cheerful, likes to wear colorful clothes, and leads a confused and embarrassed life. The leading actor, Will Trainor, was originally a young talent with a bright future, but due to an accident, he was paralyzed in all limbs and fell to the bottom of his life. By chance, Louisa became Will's personal nurse. They broke into each other's world and changed each other's life trajectories. Regrettably, Louisa tried her best but failed to change Will's idea of wanting to end his life.
"After You Turned" is the sequel to "Me Before You", which tells the story of Louisa's experience of starting a new life in London after Will left. At the beginning of the story, Louisa's life is still in a mess, and it is not as exciting as Will hoped, which makes people feel distressed and gratified. Distressed because Louisa may not get out of the shadow of Will's departure for the rest of her life. It is gratifying because only in this way can the story be more real. If Louisa's life is smooth sailing from now on, the whole story can only be regarded as a bowl of chicken soup.
The author Jojo Moyes is a popular writer in the British novel Circle. She was a reporter for The Independent for 10 years before becoming a full-time novelist. This unique experience has enabled her to better understand the multi-faceted human nature, and the characters in her works have become richer and more vivid. Jojo Moyes' writing is delicate and gentle but full of strength, which always makes readers feel courageous to move forward while being sad and happy.
In the first story, with the help of Will, Louisa re-realizes her potential and completes her inner awakening. But in the second story, Louisa truly realized self-reconciliation and understood what she wanted most in life. She taught me a truth: Don't be bound by other people's expectations, real life depends on your own choices, attempts, and creations.
1. Sometimes, the expectations of others are just a sweet burden
Most of us grew up carrying the expectations of others. Parents expect us to get good grades in exams and find a good job; bosses expect us to work hard and contribute more to the company; partners expect us to be on call and be more understanding...
But we forget that stress and expectations often grow together. We sometimes mistake expectations for our own code of conduct. Every time you do something, you have to reflect on whether you meet the expectations of others but ignore your real needs.
After Will left, he left Louisa a fortune and a letter, hoping she could "Push yourself. Don't settle. Just live." Taking this as his life creed, he vowed to live a wonderful life and never disappoint Will's expectations. But the reality is cruel, and the difficulty of starting a new life is beyond imagination. Luisa worked hard for a long time but just became an ordinary waiter in the airport coffee shop. She felt that she was sorry for Will and couldn't sleep all night. Later, when she decided not to think too much and concentrate on doing what she thought was right, everything got better instead.
So are we. After working hard for a long time but failing to become what others expected, we always feel sorry, embarrassed, like a big mistake. But in fact, we don't need to live for the expectations of others.
The expectation is just a good blessing from others, and it should not be regarded as the goal of life. The only thing we have to do is to work hard to realize our expectations.
2. Real maturity is to make a choice that is loyal to the heart and bear all the consequences
In the novel, Louisa once faced a difficult decision. On the one hand, her old friend Nathan introduced her to a job with a high salary and good treatment, and she needed to leave for New York immediately. On the other hand, her new friend, Will's daughter Lily, suddenly disappeared and her whereabouts are unknown.
Everyone persuaded Luisa to accept a job in New York, because the opportunity is rare, and Lily is a troubled girl, it is common to stay out at night, so don't worry too much. She struggled for a long time and felt that ensuring Lily's safety was the most important thing. So she emailed the employer, declined the job in New York, and then ran all over the city's bars to find Lily's whereabouts.
The greatest maturity of a person is to be able to make a choice that is loyal to the heart, and bravely bear all the consequences arising therefrom.
In our life, we will face countless choices. You can't have your cake and eat it at the same time. Every time we make a decision, we will lose something while gaining something. How to get the most benefit with the least cost is a compulsory course in life.
For example, when many people are looking for a job, they will face this kind of distress: Should I go to a big city or stay in a small city? Big cities have broad vision and many opportunities, but high housing prices and great pressure; small cities have less pressure to live in, but fewer opportunities for development. There has never been a standard answer to this question for reference, and everyone can only make a choice according to their own situation.
Another thing to keep in mind is that no matter what your choices are, don't be a flashy person. If you choose to stay in a big city, face all pressures and challenges positively, and don't envy the comfort of a small city all day long. If you choose to stay in a small city, work and live in a down-to-earth manner and don't always complain that your ambition is not rewarded. Everyone must learn to be responsible for their own choices, and they cannot always look at the other side.
3. Actions must be taken. A better life cannot be based on imagination alone
There is also an interesting sub-story in the book "After You Turn Around"-the mother's awakening. Louisa's mother used to be a typical housewife, who revolved around the family all day and took care of the housework contentedly. When she accidentally took a few feminist courses, her inner self-awareness was awakened and she decided to live a different life. So, she refused to cook, refused to shave her legs, began to read all kinds of books, and even ran to Louisa's residence in London alone, completing a walk-and-go trip.
When Louisa's mother reached middle age, she suddenly decided to live for herself, and she carried it out so resolutely, which is really admirable. She told Louisa with practical actions:
What you want, you must take action, you can't just stay where you are. It is better to take even a small step toward a goal than to sit there and do nothing.
Many people have a vision of a better life in their hearts, but they are still afraid to try because they are afraid of failure. Whenever we encounter difficulties, our imagination is always extraordinarily active, allowing us to foresee all kinds of bad consequences that may arise. Then, we can only complain about the unfairness of fate while envious of other people's lives.
However, a good life will not come because of your imagination, what you want must be fought for with practical actions. If you want to have a good figure, you should keep exercising every day; if you want to get a good job, you should constantly improve your professional skills; Take a break from yourself and see what can be gained.
"After You Turn Around" by Jojo Moyes is a novel about how to reflect on the past and how to start a new life. Although the background of the story is in the UK, from the various characters, I saw myself and many people around me.
We are all ordinary people, but we all have the right to pursue a unique life.
Putting aside the expectations of others, sticking to our own choices, and taking action bravely, our lives will eventually be magnificent.
After You's Book Review
As for the definition of kitsch, here are mainly "kitsch" and "artificial".
For all the sequels of best-selling books or movies, I have a natural sense of vigilance and disgust and uncontrollable curiosity: there are too many examples of dog-tailed sequels, and the imaginary white yarn must be twisted into a tablecloth, making people wonder why the first Is Ben's preference insane? But as long as I know that there is a sequel, I feel so uncomfortable. After reading Auntie Yoyo's "After You", I won't abandon the book and curse, but this kind of housewives YY pastime novel is really a waste of life. It's not because of the halo of "MeBeforeYou", plus a lot of clever plot design and small highlights of the writing, I really don't want to give it 6 points beyond the passing line.
The novel does need to rely on coincidences to stimulate readers' boring lives, but the plot arrangement of this book is written for the sake of writing, even Qiong Yao is willing to bow down. A group of widows needs a person who fell from the sky to untangle their hearts. If this is not a miracle, what the fuck is it! The progress of the interlocking plot is based on the staggering "God's arrangement". Is this to make readers believe in religion and pray that God will open his eyes and guide our life path?
Let's talk about the character set first. Will has an unknown daughter Lily to solve the core problem of "let go and continue". How talented is the author? From Lily's appearance, revealing her life experience little by little, there is no fk to speak of. But this kind of thing does exist in reality. I barely accept the author's setting, but the whole book has been reduced to the level of kitchen reading.
And when she spoke, her eyes were both fierce and searching. 'His name is Will Traynor.'
There was some documentary on television about assisted suicide and they mentioned his name Mum totally freaked out for no reason and ran to the bathroom and Fuckface went after her so obviously I listened outside. And she was in total shock because she hadn't even known that he'd ended up in a wheelchair. I heard the whole thing. I mean, it's not like I didn't know Fuckface wasn't my real dad. It's just that my mum only ever said my real dad was an asshole who didn't want to know me.'
'So, basically, one day Martin was my dad – I mean, I called him Daddy right up until the day he left – and the next he wasn't. He used to take me to nursery and primary school and everything – and then she decides she's had enough of him, and I get home and he's just … gone. It's her house, so he's gone. Just like that. And I'm not allowed to see him and I'm not even allowed to talk about him because I'm just dredging things up and being difficult. And obviously, she is in so much pain and emotional distress.'
And when you turn up at someone's house and they have a baby and, like, a proper family of their own, you realize you're not part of his family anymore. You're a leftover.'
'You can tell, you know when someone's just putting up with you. Even if you're little. He never wanted me, only my mother. I can sort of understand it – who wants another man's kid hanging around? So when she had the twins they sent me away to boarding school. Bang. Job done.'
However, Lily's mother's stereotyped setting flushes the whole book directly to the level of toilet reading, making people have to doubt the author's narrow life experience and dry imagination. A clown who lacks humanity cannot be a good green leaf. Auntie Yoyo has written so many best-selling books. There is no reason why she can’t understand this. She can only understand that Mimeng caters to the tastes of the target audience and writes for money.
The woman stiffened with rage. She was thin, the kind of thing that comes with faddy diets or compulsive exercise; her hair was expensively cut and colored so that it looked neither, and she was wearing what I assumed were designer jeans. But her face, tanned as it was, betrayed her: she looked exhausted.
So I decided to go ahead and have Lily. But –' here she lifted her chin again as if braced to defend herself – 'there was no point in telling him. Not after everything he'd said and done.' My coffee had gone cold. 'No point in telling him?' 'He'd as good as said he didn't want anything to do with me. He would have acted as if I'd done it delicately, to trap him or something.'
'Will didn't deserve to know her.' The words settled in the air between us. 'He was an arsehole. Okay? Will Traynor be a selfish arsehole?' She pushed a strand of hair back from her face. 'Obviously, I didn't know what had happened to him. That came as a complete shock. But I can't honestly say it would have made a difference.'
The hero, the ambulanceman Sam, came on the stage as a hero to save the beauty. He took the heroine to his dreamland soon after he met, but was rejected but pursued relentlessly, and finally the climax of the shooting in the slums, especially the farce of rescuing Lily. What the hell! Is the heroine a descendant of a celestial being, or does she know how to play Gu, why? Just because they are also fallen people in the world? Qiong Yao dare not write like this (well, it seems that she really has a similar plot). While reading, I felt that my IQ was insulted, but the four curses of "reading everything" have been brainwashing, so I still frowned and flipped through the book quickly.
Sam began to walk down the field. 'There. That's the foundation. Took me the best part of three months to get those down.' 'You live here?' 'Yup.' I stared at the concrete slabs. When I looked at him, something in his expression made me bite back what I was going to say.
'I get the feeling, Louisa Clark, that when you're talking to me there's a whole other conversation going on somewhere else.'
I was going to step forward and hold him then, to put my arms around him, rest my face against his. But something held me back: a sudden, unbidden image of Will, turning his face away from me, unreachable in his unhappiness. I faltered, then a second too late reached out a hand instead and touched Sam's arm. He glanced down at it, frowning slightly, and I had the slightly disappointing sensation that he knew something of what had just passed through my head.
'Last night. When I was bleeding out. I heard you.' Our eyes locked. And in that moment everything shifted. I saw what I had really done. I saw that I could be somebody's center, their reason for staying. I saw that I could be enough.
We locked eyes, and he lifted a hand, his palm open, and I lifted mine slowly in return. I fixed that image of him in my imagination – the way he tilted forward, the light on his hair, the steady way he always looked at me – somewhere where I could draw it up on lonely days. Because there would be lonely days. And bad days. And days when I wondered what the hell I had just agreed to be part of. Because that was all part of the adventure too.
The routine of the character set is the weakness of Aunt Yoyo, so what is the "concept" that makes "MeBeforeYou" a masterpiece?
It's a pity that in this sequel, the weight of death is so frivolous and pretentious that it can't be used as a stable weight on the other side of the scale. Auntie Yoyo also realizes this, so she keeps adding weight to youth and feminism—no one piece of pressure stone is big and powerful, a pile of pebbles or even fine sand piles up disorderly, the ambition is too big and the ability is insufficient, and it can even be said to be extreme. kitsch up.
The stupid, impulsive, and fragile youth represented by Lily, the author's idea of putting it on the edge of the cliff of death is an old bottle of old wine, without impact points, and the so-called struggle is less nutritious than chicken soup under a deliberate plot, and it is easy to forget.
She fidgeted constantly, smoked endless cigarettes, then sat in silence so loaded I could almost feel the weight of her thoughts.
Teenagers are basically toddlers with hormones – old enough to want to do stuff without having any common sense.
The young are terrifying, I thought. They are without boundaries. They fear nothing.
'These youngsters should be feeling great about life, but instead, they're just knocking themselves out with every spare pound they earn. Every bloody week.'
Too many people follow their own happiness without a thought for the damage they leave in their wake. You wouldn't believe the kids I pick up at the weekends, drunk, drugged, off their heads, whatever. The parents are wrapped up in their own stuff or have disappeared completely, so they exist in a vacuum, and they make bad choices.
As for the heroine’s mother’s awakening of women’s rights, I personally feel that it’s superfluous and distracts the focus, especially since the whole description and promotion are as light as a feather, and the routine is embarrassing. ending. Want to pull a thousand cities? At most, I can only let housewife readers YY, it is better not to write.
'YOU Know Your Sister Has Been Reading the Female Eunuch? And some old shite calls the situation or something. She Says your mother is a classic Examp. le To tell her I should be doing the cooking and cleaning and making out I'm some fecking caveman.
We sat there for a good part of the afternoon, avoiding Dad's increasingly cross texts demanding to know what we were doing. I had never sat with my mother and sister, like normal people, grown-ups, having conversations that didn't involve putting anything away or somebody being so annoying. We found ourselves surprisingly interested in each other's lives and opinions as if we had suddenly realized each of us might have roles beyond the brainy one, the chaotic one, and the one who does all the housework. It was an odd sensation, having to view my family as human beings.
I swallowed. 'Mum, you're not going to get divorced, are you?' Her eyes shot open. 'Divorced? I'm a good Catholic girl, Louisa. We don't divorce. We just make our men suffer for all eternity!'
He finally turned to face me. 'What if she decides that I'm the one with no life? What if all this new stuff turns her head and …' He gulped. 'What if she leaves me behind?'
'Oh, love, I've missed the bones of you.' My mother put her arms around my father's neck and kissed him. The relief on his face was almost palpable. He buried his head in her shoulder and then he kissed her again, her ear, her hair, holding her hands, like a small boy.
With so much criticism, is there really nothing to praise? Well, it falls into a cliché, but it can still be posted, that is, the point of "life must go on life must continue".
The passage of Will's mother from collapse, self-imposed exile to collecting debris to stand up again deserves a separate record: this is a truly inspiring role model! This is not feminism, this is human fragility and strength!
There followed a painfully labored half-hour of conversation. Mrs. Traynor, a woman infused with the instinctive upper-middle-class skill of being all over any social situation, had apparently lost the ability to communicate. spoke. She asked a question, then asked it again ten minutes later, as if she had failed to register the answer. I wondered about the use of anti-depressants.
Mrs. Traynor appeared to be swallowed by it. There was almost nothing left of the brisk, proud woman I had known.
the cottage was brutally impersonal. I thought of my own flat, my utter failure to personalize it or allow myself to turn it into any kind of a home. And I felt suddenly leaden, and desperately sad. What have you done to us all, Will?
'Lily, I lost my son – your father – and in truth, I probably lost him sometime before he died. His death took away everything my life was built on: my role as a mother, my family, my career, and even my faith. I have felt, frankly, as if I descended into a dark hole. But to discover that he had a daughter – that I have a granddaughter – has made me think all might not be lost.' She swallowed. 'I'm not going to say that you've returned part of him to me because that wouldn't be fair on you. You are, as I've already grasped, very much your own person. You've brought me a whole new person to care about. I hope you'll give me a second chance, Lily. Because I would very much like – no, dammit – I would love for us to spend time together.
'I'm so very glad to know you. You've changed everything so much simply by existing.
'I know we can never make up for your father not being here, and I know I'm not – well, I'm still climbing out of things rather – but … do you think … perhaps …. you could find some room for a rather difficult grandmother?'
Although the widow's mutual aid association is indeed old-fashioned, it uses the characters and tone of different people to describe all kinds of grief and letting go of the loss of loved ones, and also tells readers that we can always come out. Auntie Yoyo's psychological description is accurate, and although the human traces are strong, it will not be embarrassing. Unfortunately, all of this is based on the bloody plot, which greatly weakens the healing effect.
'You didn't give me a bloody life, did you? Not really. You just smashed up my old one. Smashed it into little pieces. What am I meant to do with what's left? When is it going to feel –' I stretch out my arms, feeling the cool night air against my skin, and realize I am crying again. 'Fuck you, Will,' I whisper. 'Fuck you for leaving me.'
And when it came down to it, what was the point in re-examining your sadness all the time anyway? It was like picking at a wound and refusing to let it heal. I knew what I had been part of. I knew what my role was. What was the point in going over and over it?
'But that's just a fairy tale ending, isn't it? Man dies, everyone learns something, moves on, creates something wonderful out of his death.' I was speaking without thinking now. I've basically just failed at all of it.'
You learn to live with it, with them. Because they do stay with you, even if they're not living, breathing people anymore. It's not the same crushing grief you felt at first, the kind that swamps you, and makes you want to cry in the wrong places and get irrationally angry with all the idiots who are still alive when the person you love is dead. It's just something you learn to accommodate. Like adapting around a hole. I don't know. It's like you become … a doughnut instead of a bun.' There was such sadness on his face that I felt suddenly guilty.
For the first time, I was recalling Will without sadness.
Sometimes I felt as if we were all wading around in grief, reluctant to admit to others how far we were waving or drowning. I wondered fleetingly whether Sam's reluctance to talk about his wife mirrored my own, the knowledge that the moment you opened the box, and let out even a whisper of your sadness, it would mushroom into a cloud that overwhelmed all other conversation.
'And you managed to not think about Bill too much?' 'Not enough to stop me … I just felt I wanted to do something that …' I shrugged '… I just wanted to feel alive.' There was a murmur of agreement at that word. It was what we all wanted, ultimately, to be freed from our grief. To be released from this underground of the dead, half our hearts lost underground or trapped in little porcelain urns.
Some days, he said, it felt like a virus: you had to scrub the melancholy from your skin along with the scent of antiseptic.
'I feel like I've turned myself off for the past two years. I wouldn't let anyone get close to me because of what happened. I mean, what's the point of getting close to someone if you're only going to lose them? But the other day I started thinking about what I actually want out of life and I realized it was someone to love. Because you got to move on, right? You got to see some kind of future.'
It is important not to turn the dead into saints. Nobody can walk in the shadow of a saint.
nobody was truly free. Perhaps all freedom – physical, personal – only came at the cost of somebody or something else.
'I think people get bored of grief,' said Natasha. 'It's like you're allowed some unspoken allotted time – six months, maybe – and then they get vaguely irritated that you're not “better”. being self-indulgent hanging on to your unhappiness.'
That's life. We don't know what will happen. Which is why we have to take our chances while we can.
none of us moves on without a backward look. We move on always carrying with us those we have lost. What we aim to do in our little group is ensure that carrying them is not a burden that feels impossible to bear, a weight keeping us stuck in the same place. We want their presence to feel like a gift. 'And what we learn through sharing our memories and our sadnesses and our little victories with each other is that it's okay to feel sad. Or lost. Or angry. It's okay to feel a whole host of things that other people might not understand, and often for a long time. Everyone has his or her own journey. We don't judge.
Since the whole book is so deliberate, I ended up quoting from Will's book very kitsch.
You're going to feel uncomfortable in your new world for a bit. It always does feel strange to be knocked out of your comfort zone … There is a hunger in you, Clark. A fearlessness. You just buried it, like most people do. Just live well. Just live.
Life always has to go on, but please remember that no one will fall from the sky to solve your problems, you still have to rely on yourself, come out and live!
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