From the author of Come Back to Me comes a striking new novel about a young woman— desperately trying to protect her family from their violent father—who finds safety, and a passionate romance, with an ex-Marine.
Ever since Zoey was a kid she’s been caring for her mom and her little sister, defending them from her violent father. She’s been the strong one, the responsible one as she sacrificed her wants and dreams to keep her family together.
Now the life they’ve built for themselves in California is about to be upended. Her father, just released from prison, has discovered where they’re hiding and has come looking for them.
Enter Tristan. A former Marine and now member of the Coast Guard, Tristian promises his best friend, and Zoey’s Marine brother, that he will take care of Zoey and her family. Protect them, watch over them, and be the rock they need in their lives.
And as Tristan starts to help Zoey deal with the emotional fall out of her childhood, their relationship turns from protector to something more. The two grow closer as a romance blooms into a heart-pounding and powerful relationship that Zoey hopes will be strong enough to fight off the damage her father has done to her and her family.
But not everyone can be kept safe forever, and when Zoey’s father does show up, a confrontation ensues that will change Zoey’s world forever.
|Product dimensions:||5.80(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.20(d)|
|Age Range:||15 - 17 Years|
About the Author
Mila Gray is the pseudonym for Sarah Alderson. Having spent most of her life in London, Sarah quit her job in the nonprofit sector in 2009 and took off on an around the world trip with her husband and princess-obsessed daughter on a mission to find a new place to call home. They are currently located somewhere between India, London, Canada, and the US. Sarah is the author of several YA novels, including Out of Control, The Sound, Hunting Lila, and its sequel Losing Lila, plus the paranormal Fated trilogy.
Read an Excerpt
Chapter 1: The End: Zoey
The End ZOEY
I see the decision get made—the resolution crosses his face, and in the same instant I move in front of Tristan to shield him.
There’s a deafening bang, followed closely by a second bang, and I fly sideways and hit the ground. Tristan falls too.
Pain shoots through me like comets streaking across a black sky. My vision turns starry.
I look up and see the monstrous shape of my dad looming over us. He blinks, seemingly astonished. Maybe it’s shock at what he’s done. Maybe it isn’t. Light bursts around him in a dazzling halo. I can’t breathe—the pain is almost as bright as the light.
I’ve been shot, I realize. But what about Tristan? Is he okay? Thoughts dart like eels through my mind so fast and so slippery I can’t grasp on to them. The only thing I can hold on to, like a beacon in the darkness, is the thought of Tristan. Please let him be okay. I don’t care if I die. Just let him be okay.
My dad drops to his knees in front of me like a dark avenging angel. For a moment, I think he’s about to beg forgiveness for what he’s done. I stare up at him, but his expression shows no remorse, not an ounce of sorrow. He’s baring his teeth like an animal about to shred his prey.
My ears are ringing so loudly that all other sounds are dulled. Time has slowed to a near stop. My heart seems to be following suit.
Tristan is all I can think of as the light starts to fade. I led him here. This is all my fault. Where is he? I desperately want to see him. I can feel something behind me. Something heavy and unmoving. A body? His body? I want to roll over and reach for him, but I’m paralyzed.
I desperately need to know that he’s okay.
But what if he isn’t?
What if he’s dead?
What if I’m dying too?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Trigger warning: domestic violence, attempted murder. This suspenseful new adult romance starts with a bang and doesn’t let up on the tension until the end. Zoey is a teenager who had to grow up quickly after testifying against her abusive father, landing him in prison. She’s put her own dreams on hold in order to take care of her weak, dispirited mother and younger siblings since her older brother abandoned them for the military. When her car explodes, setting their house on fire, she learns that her father has been paroled and suspects he’s come after her. So, with help from her brother’s best friend Tristan who’s known the family for years, they relocate to CA and start over. It’s not too long before mutual attraction leads to love between them. Tristan is a warm, caring, handsome hero who has flaws he admits to, but his heart is in the right place. With his help, Zoey is able to take the first steps towards independence but at what cost? This is part of a series, but is a standalone. Recommended for older teens. I received a complimentary ARC of this book from Simon Pulse through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Opinions expressed are completely my own.
I have enjoyed Mila Gray's books in the past. They are phenomenal. I usually finish them in two days. This one was no different. I have searched high and low to find military romance for YA, which is how I found out about this series. My husband is former military and these books are somewhat nostalgic for me. Though they are not entirely identical, they do have parallels. This book is suspenseful and interesting, not so much forbidden love as some of her other books. Prepare for the emotions, this book will leave you on the edge of your seat until you finish. I would say that it does have some very strong, violent content, so readers be aware. Mila Gray does mention that within the book. I enjoy the two perspectives because the reader is given two points of view within the same story. It does have more risque parts than say a Dessen book, but overall a great read for the summer or whenever. I would recommend to my reader friends. It was so good, I wish there was more story or more books! I have reread her books at least twice because I can't get enough.
I received an e-ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review and this has is no way affected my review. TW// Domestic violence (Descriptions of name calling, physical abuse, stalking, gun violence) Watch Over Me is my fourth Mila Gray read and the sort of fourth book in the Come Back to Me series. The series isn't a series in terms of it being the same story over several books, but all the books share similar storylines (most being some sort of military romance) and a lot of characters show up in the other books, especially in this one. The first book I read of Mila's and in the series was Stay With Me and it remains my favorite to this day. These books got me interested in military romance (however I haven't found many YA military romances so if you have a recommendation please let me know!) and I became a Mila Gray fan while reading. I think I first noticed that we were getting a fourth book while casually browsing NetGalley and I was so pumped because even though I didn't enjoy some parts of the three books I read later, I still really liked Gray's writing and the romances she writes. I honestly was kind of shocked that I received an e-ARC from Simon Pulse via NetGalley because I don't see myself as a big blogger and I don't often get many requests approved from bigger publishers like Simon but it was such a pleasant surprise! Because life (midterm szn pt. 2) got in the way, it took me a little bit to get into this one but once things kind of calmed down and I had some reading days, things improved. Zoey Zoey is the main female MC in Watch Over Me. She's a really well written character and a really strong one as well. Zoey deals with a lot: her father and the domestic violence situation, her mother's depression, her siblings and her concern for them, and also just trying to keep herself and her family afloat. She struggles to be vulnerable and accept help because she's so used to doing things on her own, but she keeps it inside because of all that's going on. Seeing her have moments of happiness through all of that was :). Domestic Violence Storyline Immediately from the get go, we as the reader get the sense that this book will be darker than the others and that it will deal with violence, which we later learn is specifically domestic violence. I haven't read I don't think any books that have dealt with the subject before so I can't say for certain, but I really got the feeling that it was done really well and realistically. The Romance When I was planning this review, I wrote that something that really stood out to me was that the chemistry between the characters was very much there. The chemistry was really well written and it was very obvious that the two main characters fit very well with each other. Except for a few issues I had with their relationship, I think it was a good fit and an enjoyable one to read. Issue I had with the Romance My issue found with the romance is that male MC, Tristan admits that Zoey has a lot going on and a relationship may not be what is good for her right now but gets into one with her anyway. Despite the threat of her father looming overhead and the family reeling from their arson experience that is pretty recent and these thoughts in his head, he pursues a relationship. Once it started, I warmed up to it but it still bothered me that he had those reasonable thoughts in his mind and then ignored them.
This book was received as an ARC from Simon and Schuster Children's Publishing - Simon Pulse in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own. I love stories like these when Military men return from duty and find that there is a family in need and in this case it was Zoey's family raising everyone with what they had from the damage their father set for them and after spending years in jail, he finally gets out and starts looking for the rest of the family and Zoey is not longer in hiding. Then there is Tristan who is a former Marine whose best friend was Zoey's brother and after getting killed in combat, he devotes his time in protecting the family and being there for Zoey. After they spend time together, Zoey and Tristan grow more close with each other and fall in love. Now, Zoey has all she ever wants until the father finally finds her and confronts her with all that has been done and now Zoey's world has been turned upside down and Tristan to the rescue. I was in tears almost throughout the whole book and could not stop reading with the desire to know more. We will consider adding this title to our YFiction collection at our library. That is why we give this book 5 stars.
Zoey thought they had escaped her abusive father, but after a suspicious fire, her family was forced to up and move again, in hopes of evading him. Life in California seemed full of promise. A nice home, a good job, and her brother's best friend, Tristian, to watch over them. But, this was just the quiet before the storm. This story started with a BANG! Literally. And, once the action started, it never really slowed down. I was quite stressed out, but at least I had a white hot romance to ease my pain. I loved Zoey and Tristian together. Although both had some baggage to unpack, there was an undeniable attraction and a lot of depth to their relationship. I liked that Tristian was very invested in Zoey and her family, and that he encouraged her to go after things she wanted. A big part of Zoey's story was how all her decisions were not made with her best interest in mind. She was always choosing her family first, which was a beautiful thing to do, but it also caused her to constantly miss out. I may have actually applauded, when she finally chose herself. It may have been a small thing or a big thing, but she finally put herself first. I always go on about how much I love companion novels, as we get a fresh story, but also spy some familiar faces among the cast. Gray brings back our couples from the previous Come Back to Me books, and I was excited to catch up with them. It was wonderful to see them all in one place, and Gray really made them a part of this story. Overall: An emotional romantic suspense novel, that had my heart pounding due to the intense action sequences and the fiery romance. Intense, yes, but well worth it for such a wonderful HEA.