So we’ve got Lou, and she never left her small English town probably. She’s happy with her life, her boyfriend, her job. Until of course she loses her job and, when she gets a new one, a crabby quadriplegic tells her that she is doing her life wrong, and that she needs to get out more, while simultaneously refusing to get out himself.
The Good Bits.
Lou is a quirky character, ad maybe we’ve had enough of manic pixie dream girl characters, but I did love her cheerful attitude despite everything that goes on around her.
Even if it didn’t end so nice, I guess it’s good that there are stories being told with quadriplegic main characters. Although how it ended is another thing entirely.
A lot of people have said that it’s ablist – despite Will – because “wheelchair bound people can’t possible live a meaningful life right?” I honestly don’t think I can properly weigh in on this issue as I haven’t been affected by anything like this in my life. I am going to be further influenced by what the people who are affected by it have said however.
As A PCW, I can weigh in on the fact that somehow Will is paralysed and can be manoeuvred – legally – by one smallish person. We have people at the home that I work at that can walk and still require two people to move them around. I call Bull on that aspect.
Suicide is not an issue to be taken lightly and in some ways this book opens up a discussion about it, however I do believe that there are better ways to do it than have a quadriplegic person kill themselves. If you are feeling suicidal at all, please talk to someone. You are valuable, be you able bodied or not.
Thoughts from the Back Cover | Travelling doesn’t make you a better person.
One thing I noticed in this book is Will constantly pushing Lou to step out of her comfort zone and travel. Well heads up people, Going to another country doesn’t make you better than anyone else. The experiences you have could improve your character, but the actual act of traveling does zip for you ranking over everyone else.
A lot of people can’t afford to travel and they are in now way inferior to people who can travel. And, if you live in Australia (for example) it costs a whole lot more to fly to anywhere that isn’t Australia. There isn’t a whole lot around to take a quick weekend trip to. Even if we can spare the dough, we may not be able to spare the time, because one week in Japan just isn’t worth it when it’s going to cost $800 just to get there and back with two of those days eaten up by travel. If you’ve caught then bug and can afford it, then great, but don’t flaunt it, not everyone is you.
Get Reading. Get Travelling.