Today we're excited to chat with Nina LaCour author of
Watch Over Me.
Read on for more about Nina and her book, plus a giveaway!
Meet Nina LaCour!
Nina LaCour is the author of the widely acclaimed Hold Still, The Disenchantments, Everything Leads to You, and the Michael L. Printz Award-winner We Are Okay. She is also the coauthor, with David Levithan, of You Know Me Well. Formerly a bookseller and high school English teacher, she now writes and parents full time. A San Francisco Bay Area native, Nina lives with her family in San Francisco, California. www.ninalacour.com
Meet Watch Over Me!
Nina LaCour delivers another emotional knockout with Watch Over Me, the eagerly anticipated follow-up to the Printz Award-winning We Are Okay.
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.
Watch Over Me is another stunner from Printz Award-Winning author Nina LaCour, whose empathetic, lyrical prose is at the heart of this modern ghost story of resilience and rebirth.
~ Author Chat ~
YABC: What gave you the inspiration to write this book?
I'd wanted to write a novel with ghosts for a long time, but the right idea wasn't coming to me. I decided to see what would happen if I started with a classic--The Turn of the Screw by Henry James--but approached it from a different angle and was willing to let myself run with it. From that point on, I turned to other sources of inspiration, both from art and life, and the story took shape.
YABC: Who is your favorite character in the book?
Mila, the narrator, is who I'm most invested in. And I really adore her. She wants so badly to be seen as good, to be appreciated, and has to learn to accept herself as the story progresses. But Lee is a very close second! I had never written such a prominent child character into a novel before, and that's something I was really excited about. I felt such affection for Lee throughout the whole writing process and I'm so happy to hear from readers who are rooting for him, too.
YABC: Which came first, the title or the novel?
I'd only written a few scenes when the title came into focus for me. It's taken from the Gershwin song, "Someone to Watch Over Me," which is referenced in the novel quite a bit. I like how the title is a little frightening in the context of the hauntings, but is also deeply emotional in how it relates to Mila's need to be loved and taken care of.
YABC: Do you have a favorite writing snack?
I always need a beverage of some kind! Coffee or tea or even water. It helps me settle in.
YABC: Thinking way back to the beginning, what’s the most important thing you've learned as a writer from then to now?
It's incredibly important to recognize who you are as a writer--what your themes are, what your style is, what you're naturally good at--and lean into all of it. Start with your most authentic self and work and then allow it to deepen and expand.
YABC: What do you like most about the cover of the book?
I love everything about this cover. Her expression, the beautiful flat blue that feels like a foggy sky, her incredible hair, the flowers, the blanket, the transparent type--it's impossible to choose!
YABC: Which part of the writing process do you enjoy more: Drafting or Revising?
Revising. There is nothing like printing out a complete novel and sitting with that huge stack of pages, reading it over and imagining what it could become. Making something better, more complete, more satisfying--I love that process so much.
YABC: What would you say is your superpower?
Noticing small things--objects, subtle shifts of feeling, the whispers of possibility . . . It isn't a dramatic superpower, but it is very useful when it comes to writing fiction!
Watch Over Me
By: Nina Lacour
Publisher: Dutton, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers
Release Date: September 1th, 2020
One winner will receive a copy of Watch Over Me (Nina LaCour) ~ (US Only)
*Click the Rafflecopter link below to enter the giveaway*