He was not a boss-eyed sailor. Or a rapist. He was a legend....and that folks, is where I cried. There is something about a story where the truth comes out of hiding that really does something to me. While I didn't quite make it to Jellicoe Road snot-inducing tears, there were still plenty of buried hormones which bubbled up to the surface - enough to produce a steady stream of tears to run down my face for a couple of minutes.I was about due for a book to stir up some emotions in me. Sometimes the apathy can actually get tiring! Experiencing Before I Met You felt like a jump-start to my soul. I needed these feels! The words were so pretty! I kid you not, I was lying on a screwdriver in my bed and was vaguely aware of something poking me, yet I kept on reading because I was completely enraptured by an extremely beautiful scene.The story is set in motion when an aging woman named Arlette dies, leaving behind an inheritance to a mysterious woman named Clara Pickle. Arlette's step-granddaughter Betty is due the money should Clara not be found within a suitable amount of time. Instead of Betty waiting out the time and collecting her inheritance, she decides to go on an adventure to find the recipient of the will. She was here.She was here.Her life had finally begun.Now we're at the point where I'd normally say : adventures ensue. In the case of Before I Met You, I might have to word things differently. For the best adventure is not focused around Betty, even though it is her mystery to solve. All of the excitement comes from finding out about Arlette's past. The reader is hurled back in time to the 1920's as we get the pieces of Arlette's life which were unknown to the people who knew her best at the time of her death.In the case of many books told from two viewpoints in two different time periods, there's always one viewpoint which seems to stand out as stronger than the other. At first, I would have sworn that Betty's tale would be far more fascinating. She was on her own in a new city, she had a handsome and mysterious market man take an interest in her, and she had also become a nanny for a big name musician. And while that was all well and good, Betty's story was merely the catalyst for us to find out about all things Arlette. I never really warmed up to Betty or her cares. Betty's potential musician love interest was meh. I only liked Betty's part of the story when John was in it because he was quite yummy.Arlette stole the show. Her story captivated me. I could imagine the vividly painted picture of 1920's London, with the music and the frolicking (yes, dammit, people frolicked!) and the dancing. This was not a prohibition tale, for the atmosphere was more open in London during the time period than it was in the states. I fell in love with Godfrey, the charming musician who Arlette couldn't stay away from. This was a time where inter-racial romance was not widely accepted, except for in the clubs and dance halls, where it was all about living life to the fullest. Arlette found herself wondering if she should buck the rules in order to follow her heart, or if she should stick with the man who would be easier to have a life with.Here she was, torn between the man who kept her safe and the man who made her feel mad with wanting.So how does Arlette's story tie in to the unknown Clara Pickle? Well now, I can't tell you that. The book is about following Betty on her journey to find out who Clara is. By the time we get there, I felt like I'd been put through the ringer. My little heart was palpitating like crazy when the pieces finally started to come together.This was my first book by Lisa Jewell but it will certainly not be my last. This woman can write passages which make me want to reach into the pages of the book and see the images for myself, which is so wonderful to experience. If you've read and loved Jojo Moyes ([b:Me Before You|12649718|Me Before You|Jojo Moyes|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1359617637s/12649718.jpg|17763198], [b:The Girl You Left Behind|13637360|The Girl You Left Behind|Jojo Moyes|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1339865124s/13637360.jpg|19249629], etc.) and like books which bring together the past and present, this is going to be one you won't want to miss.