Rated Reads

After You

by Jojo Moyes

Rated: High

In After You, readers get to find out what happened to Louisa Clark after what she experienced in Me Before You. After six months of being caretaker to wheelchair-bound Will, she lost the love she found with him and his way of pushing her to get out of her pretty narrow comfort zone.

As this novel opens, Louisa has spent months traveling and has bought an apartment in London, thanks to money Will left to her. But she has a dead-end job at an airport pub and doesn’t have much of a social circle. Her life isn’t that much different than it was before when she lived in her family’s small town, except that now she’s grieving and feels guilty for having an apartment that she feels she doesn’t deserve.

After an accident forces her to return to her family for a while, she knows she has to do something with her life. She reluctantly begins attending a grief-support group and ends up on some dates with a man she really likes. The real change, however, is the sudden appearance of someone from Will’s past, and she feels a sense of being needed.

It takes Louisa months to navigate her new life, to process her grief, to figure out how to move on. Her journey is sweet and sometimes frustrating for readers because Louisa can seem so slow to get the message of how to really live. The story isn’t at all the one I would have expected, but it’s nice to be back in the pages of Lou’s life.

Rated: High, for a couple dozen uses of strong language, some milder language, and some sexual content. There is sex but hardly any details; the most disturbing are lightly detailed references to what a teen girl is forced to go through. There are also some scenes of violence and danger.

— Reviewed by Cathy Carmode Lim

Cathy Carmode Lim has been reviewing books for newspapers for about 20 years, two of which she was a book page editor. She founded Rated Reads in January 2008.

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