Friday, February 9, 2018
Still Me (Me Before You #3) by Jojo Moyes
From the #1 New York Times bestselling author Jojo Moyes, a new book featuring her iconic heroine of Me Before You and After You, Louisa Clark
Louisa Clark arrives in New York ready to start a new life, confident that she can embrace this new adventure and keep her relationship with Ambulance Sam alive across several thousand miles. She steps into the world of the superrich, working for Leonard Gopnik and his much younger second wife, Agnes. Lou is determined to get the most out of the experience and throws herself into her new job and New York life.
As she begins to mix in New York high society, Lou meets Joshua Ryan, a man who brings with him a whisper of her past. Before long, Lou finds herself torn between Fifth Avenue where she works and the treasure-filled vintage clothing store where she actually feels at home. And when matters come to a head, she has to ask herself: Who is Louisa Clark? And how do you reconcile a heart that lives in two places?
Funny, romantic, and poignant, Still Me follows Lou as she navigates how to stay true to herself, while pushing to live boldly in her brave new world.
Source: advance copy received in exchange for an honest review
It becomes an extra special experience to crack open a book and revisit characters you've come to love. Something about them has grabbed onto you and made a little bit of space for themselves in your heart and that's exactly how I feel about Louisa Clark. Lou, the chirpy, looks-on-the-bright side kind of girl in Me Before You who filled the last few months of Will's life with joy that he hadn't experienced in years. Lou, whose grief stricken soul was so lost before finding love again in After You. But you knew that we weren't quite done joining her on her adventures. In Still Me, our Lou is as colourful and lively as ever as she makes her way to America.
Lou is now an assistant to the very young wife of a very rich older man and she has a front row seat to the peculiarities of the New York upper crust. The thing I adore about Lou is that she doesn't seem to be too flummoxed by awkward situations. She takes those moments in stride and uses her humour to deflect any possible discomfort. The several new characters introduced vary from welcoming to kooky. Seriously, would we expect any less from Lou's interactions? They all add flavour to her New York adventure and ensure that there's not one moment of boredom.
Everything about Still Me feels authentically Lou from her concerns for her family, her friends, her erratic employer and even the curmudgeonly neighbour because it's Lou, and Lou cares about everyone. As she settles in New York she still has ties that bring her back to her past, meaning Will. His loss doesn't hurt as badly but I was impressed by how Moyes demonstrates how grief can strike out of nowhere and catch you off guard. There'll always be a twinge of sadness for Will that'll stay with Lou. He'll just always be a part of her, his voice echoing in the background and I like that he isn't forgotten.
Me Before You devastated me. After You had me in anguish for most of it but calm by the end knowing that Lou was rebounding. Still Me is a mixture of both its predecessors, this time with a rosier outlook at its finish. I absolutely loved this story that was a sweet balance of pain and humour. This is Lou growing up and growing up in hard. Now at a crossroads in her life, she has to finally answer the question she hasn't yet contemplated: who is Lou?