Movie Mondays: On the occasional Monday, I will review a book series or novel that has been made into a movie. I will then answer the question that everyone asks: which is better, the movie or the book? Here is this edition’s offering:
Book: Me Before You by Jojo Moyes (2012) | Movie: Me Before You (2016)
Which did I read/see first? the BOOK
Book Cover | Movie Poster
Series: Me Before You
Author: Jojo Moyes
Genre: Adult, Contemporary, Chick Lit, Romance
Point of View: First Person, Single
Source & Format: Public Library–eBook
Truth be told, I really hummed and hawed over whether or not to read this book. I knew I was most definitely going to be watching the movie. Sam Claflin has a special place in my heart after watching Love, Rosie so I wasn’t going to miss my chance to see him on the screen again. But I really wasn’t sure if I wanted to read the book first or watch the movie first. I also read a bit of a spoiler on a blog and that diminished my enthusiasm to read it. In the end, I decided I would probably never read the book if I watched the movie first and it seems like one of those books that you just have to read at some point.
I almost didn’t finish the book though when I started to read it. It was really just a timing thing–I had a lot going on and I was in a bit of a reading slump–but then I got sucked into this book and I had a hard time putting it down.
Truth be told, it was Louisa’s character that sucked me in.
She was quirky in a way I found endearing and she had me laughing at times. Her situation tugged on my heartstrings a bit and it was so easy to want to root for her. And the same can be said for Will as well. It was amazing how attached to these characters I got.
After seeing the movie trailer, I figured this book was going to be a full blown romance and that really isn’t the case. Yes, romance does play a part in it but it isn’t the main theme of the book. The main theme is really about life and what it means to the people who live it. Its a good philosophy question that will never get answered because it really is a subjective topic.
And yes, I cried. I really didn’t think I would but I totally did.
Nothing like a book that makes you cry (because you love the characters too much) to officially end your reading slump ??
— Lauren (@SERIESousBooks) September 9, 2016
I really enjoyed this book! It was a great story about life, love and friendship. I laughed and I cried. However, I don’t plan on reading the sequel. I’m really happy with how things ended and I’m not really interested in what happens next.
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Were My Expectations Met?
YES! This movie was so sweet and funny. I thought I might cry but I was able to keep back the tears. I think it helped that I pictured Sam and Emilia as the leads while I read this so I was prepared to see them in the movie.
How Close is it to the Book?
Very close actually. I was impressed by how much of the dialogue was word for word from the book. Of course, it helps when the author writes the screenplay.
All the major moments are shown so it was great to see those on the screen. A few things were omitted–like Lousia’s tension with her sister; or her research–but the heart of the novel is still there and it shows.
Did I Like the Cast?
Yes! Emilia was fantastic as Louisa! She had me laughing throughout just like in the novel. I don’t know who else you would get for that role.
Sam was also great as Will. His facial expressions to Louisa’s actions were exactly what I pictured when I read the novel. He was perfect.
I connected a lot more with the characters in the book. I liked the focus the novel had on life and friendship more so than the movie. It just went that little bit deeper for me. But I thought the movie was great and a solid adaptation of the novel.
Do you agree? Leave a comment below!
Synopsis for Me Before You (from Goodreads):
Lou Clark knows lots of things. She knows how many footsteps there are between the bus stop and home. She knows she likes working in The Buttered Bun tea shop and she knows she might not love her boyfriend Patrick.
What Lou doesn’t know is she’s about to lose her job or that knowing what’s coming is what keeps her sane.
Will Traynor knows his motorcycle accident took away his desire to live. He knows everything feels very small and rather joyless now and he knows exactly how he’s going to put a stop to that.
What Will doesn’t know is that Lou is about to burst into his world in a riot of colour. And neither of them knows they’re going to change the other for all time.
I feel so behind – I have neither seen or read Me Before You. I’ve heard about the ending (hard to avoid spoilers when it’s discussed so much), but I’m still curious to read about how the relationship is depicted. It’s good to hear that you enjoyed both though, and I might give the book a shot first before I watch the movie. Though Emilia Clarke looks really adorable in the movie!
It’s definitely a great read so I highly recommend the novel. It does take a while to get into. Even though I knew what it dealt with and had a pretty good idea of how it was going to end, the novel was still enjoyable.
Emilia was great! I’ve really only seen her as Daeneyrs on Game of Thrones so it was neat to see her in a completely different role!
Fantastic reviews, Lauren! I had a pretty similar experience as you did in that I knew I wanted to see the movie so I kind of forced myself to read the book before seeing the film in theaters.
“And yes, I cried. I really didn’t think I would but I totally did.” This pretty much sums up my reaction to the book as well. XD
Anyway, I’m glad that you enjoyed both. I almost liked the movie equally to the book as well. The cast was probably what made the film so likable for me.
Thank you Summer!
I really didn’t think I was that attached to the characters until “that” scene showed up–wrecked me!
I thought the casting was superb! They really did a great job of bringing the story and the feelings to life!
AHHHHH I abso-freaking-lutely loved both the book AND the movie, but yes, the book scores just a bit higher than the movie because of how much I connected to the characters and just how terrific the writing was. I couldn’t get over that ending for days! The movie, on the other hand didn’t make me bawl my eyes out quite as much, but Sam Claflin and Emilia Clarke just killed it. Despite the problematic theme, I just love, love, love Me Before You. I read the sequel as well and liked it enough, but it didn’t quite match up to the awesomeness of the first book. You wouldn’t really miss much if you pass it 🙂
Thanks for stopping by @ The Regal Critiques!
My mom read the sequel and said the same thing. She enjoyed it but not in the same way; so I’m happy I made the decision to pass on it.