Watch Over Me

Listening Library. 2020. 537p. $45. ISBN 9780593288214.
Gr 9 Up–Mila has long been haunted by her past, both in memory and by the ghosts that follow her. When she ages out of foster care, Mila gains a placement as a teacher at an isolated farm in Northern California. Terry and Julia are known for taking in foster children with troubled pasts, but Mila doesn’t realize that it’s not only children who live at the farm, but ghosts claim the space as well. As she becomes more at home at the farm, the hauntings increase the memories she is desperately trying to escape, the things she’s done in her past that creep into her daily life. Mila struggles with being accepted and welcomed, conflicting with her own sense of worth and feelings of guilt and regret. The audiobook is read by Jorjeana Marie, and her gentle and melodic voice brings LaCour’s atmospheric story to life; she captures the feel of the isolation on the farm, the spooky but not scary presence of the ghosts, and the melancholy that aches in Mila. Her narration coupled with LaCour’s emotional text brings the story alive around the listener. It’s a moving tale of loneliness, regret, acceptance, and forgiveness.
VERDICT Fans of LaCour’s previous novels will not be disappointed by this hauntingly beautiful tale; the audiobook is a masterful performance of an artistically prolific work. LaCour’s latest novel is a cathartic masterpiece and will evoke strong emotions in listeners of this audiobook.

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