Watch Over Me by Nina LaCour
emotional, hopeful, mysterious, reflective, sad, medium-paced
Plot- or character-driven? Character
Strong character development? Yes
Loveable characters? N/A
Diverse cast of characters? Yes
Flaws of characters a main focus? It’s complicated
The way the title turns from referencing a biological mother/familial relationship to referencing a chosen family 👌 Deeply love this movement and journey.
The relationship between Mila, Liz, and Billy was rendered so well. It doesn’t feel entirely platonic but neither does it feel entirely driven by desire — it feels driven by love, and that’s as simply as I can put it. As unnamable as it, this was probably my favorite aspect of the book. I love how the three of them lean into comfort and connection without ever entirely putting a boundary around their relationship.
My pop culture trope osmosis had me expecting the big secret to be about a sinister ghost and for this book to go in a dark, cult-y direction, and I was pleasantly surprised how the book used my own expectations and anxieties against me. It ended up being really cathartic.
This is entirely my preference as a reader, but I think that ending would’ve hit me harder if it had not switched between reality and fantasy so rapidly in the final few pages.
Read more of this review on my StoryGraph.