G. Bianco, 2019
After the success of her novel We Are Okay, Nina LaCour returns to the YA world with her newest title, Watch Over Me. Set to be released September 15th, this haunting modern ghost story becomes an emotional and poignant read.
Mila is used to being alone. Maybe that’s why she said yes to the opportunity: living in this remote place, among the flowers and the fog and the crash of waves far below. But she hadn’t known about the ghosts. Newly graduated from high school, Mila has aged out of the foster care system. So when she’s offered a job and a place to stay at a farm on an isolated part of the Northern California Coast, she immediately accepts. Maybe she will finally find a new home, a real home. The farm is a refuge, but also haunted by the past traumas its young residents have come to escape. And Mila’s own terrible memories are starting to rise to the surface.
This novel is beautifully written and so deeply evoking of what it means to deal with the things that haunt you. The ghosts in the book seem to represent the physical embodiments of Mila’s past and bit by bit the truth of what happened to Mila and why she is at the farm come to light. This book takes the notion of a ghost story and then puts on its head. Instead of ghosts needing something from humans, the humans need something from the ghosts in this book. It’s not a horror story; just a supernatural one with mentions of PTSD and dealing with the foster care system.
The way LaCour parallels past and present is fantastical and beautiful and showcases how it might be to feel truly alone in this world. The way Mila builds new relationships with the people on the farm shows how even the loneliest of people with the darkest of pasts can still find comfort in others. She is resilient in her wanting to help others and be a part of something, but Mila soon learns that she must first learn to help herself.
One could easily finish this book in one sitting (as I did!) and feel a deep sense of peace after concluding the book. Metaphoric and ethereal, Watch Over Me is a truly remarkable book that is both unique and easy to fall in love with.
*I received an ARC from Penguin Teen in exchange for my honest opinion.
Hi! My name is Elisa and my bookshelf is quite literally overflowing! Join me in my journey of reading as many books as humanly possible!