Being a nonfiction addict where I like a beginning and end and finite conclusions to anything I read I do tend to steer clear of love stories and people oriented prose and text, they are not my thing; I approached this script with some trepidation but a friend of mine who is infinitely better at quantifying light literature said I should really try this one and I did. It was on many best seller lists too which spurred my interest.
What a gratifying experience it has been. I had heard much about this author and her humanizing of characters which had made most people able to relate to them in some way.
This story kindles an obsession early on that has to be heard. A lower class young girl (England of course!) is hired as a companion to a quadtapregic upper class gentleman. She has a garish fashion sense and there are many funny quips bantered between them about this. He is depressed and she being a whimsical natterer makes for some very amusing exchanges between the two which is quite hysterical in parts. The humour was light and a breath of fresh air in the abysmal atmosphere surrounding a former athletic individual who is now a quadriplegic. The developing relationship and love between the two totally opposite characters is subtle and tender.
The characters were darkly funny and deeply touching in their individual nuances, such natural occurrences in all the repartee to and forth makes this rather sad tale one can absorb and think about.
The story touches on the very topical subject of a choice to end one’s own life, so much reflection here.
Much adulation to this author who has encompassed what could happen to any family at any given time. I have now read the sequel ‘After You’ and was not disappointed, another conventional story that could happen in anyone’s life, but full of humour, pathos and ultimately the acceptance that life goes on and we all have to do our best and deal with it. Uplifting and evocative in that we can cope with what is thrown at us if we have the right attitude, and the fortitude to persevere against all odds.