BOOK REVIEW: After You – by Jojo Moyes

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Title: After You
(Me Before You #2)
Author: Jojo Moyes
Genre: Fiction, Romance, Contemporary
First published: September 23rd 2015
Publisher: Pamela Dorman Books
Finished reading: December 29th 2016
Pages: 353
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“Sometimes I look at the lives of the people around me and I wonder if we aren’t all destined to leave a trail of damage.”

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I know, I know, I should have known not to read the sequel after I discovered that Me Before You didn’t really live up to my expectations last year. It’s not the first time I end up disappointed by hyped books, although I’m not saying the first book is a bad read either… After You however seemed to be a totally unnecessary sequel to what should have been a perfectly good and closed ending. I can understand why fans of the first book would be devastated to have its magic broken by such a mediocre and uninspiring follow-up. I picked up After You mostly because I already had a copy of it and it would mean one less series on my still-to-finish list. But to be honest, I kind of would have preferred not reading it at all. Unlike the first book, the plot in After You is rather weak, cliche and felt forced. Sure, it’s a fast read and the prose is easy to read, but I just felt something was missing… The fact that Lily is a completely obnoxious and highly annoying character doesn’t really help either. In short, would I suggest reading this sequel? I don’t think so, because I’ve heard a lot of actual fans feeling really disappointed by this sequel as well. Read at your own risk!

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WARNING: Possible spoilers! Please don’t read this summary if you haven’t read the first book yet. I’ll keep the summary super short but it’s impossible to keep it completely spoiler-free…

After the most recent events, Louisa Clark is no longer just an ordinary girl living an ordinary life. Her time with Will Traynor has transformed her, and she is struggling to continue her life without him. After she has a very serious accident in her new home in London, she is forced to return home to her family. There she is confronted again with her past and she feels she’s right back where she started… Louisa knows she needs to find a way to start living again, but that’s easier said than done. Will she be able to move on and create a new future for herself?

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I’ve heard a lot of complaints about the After You sequel in the past, and now I’ve read it I can join the crowd. I personally wasn’t blown away by Me Before You, but I can’t deny it was still a solid read and I understand why so many people love it. I have no such feelings for the sequel though. It felt the story was more build around the success of the first book rather than a proper plot, and the whole thing  simply felt unnecessary and forced. I can see why so many fans felt cheated by After You

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18 thoughts on “BOOK REVIEW: After You – by Jojo Moyes

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  5. Well that’s the final nail in the coffin!
    I had pretty much decided never to read the sequel because I really liked where the first book ended, and I like to imagine Lou is forever in sunny Paris enjoying herself. I don’t want to know what happens when she gets home.
    Maybe one day I would have picked it up at the library… but not now! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • My thoughts exactly. Unfortunately the sequel was just a lot of mediocre commercial blah. I’m kind of glad I didn’t LOVE love the first book now, or I would have been devastated.

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  6. Well I loved Me Before You (just saw the movie too and tears there too) but it’s so obvious that After You was a book deal that she didn’t want to refuse. The story was finished and she shouldn’t have tried to make a sequel just for the sake of it. I’ve read it but it doesn’t show the same brilliance so I totally agree with you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Me Before You would have been a lot stronger as a stand-alone… I understand the author couldn’t say no to such a book deal, but for me it was a total dud. After You might have worked better as a complete separate story with unknown characters doing the same things. (Although Lily still would have been intolerable.)

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