The Watcher [NOOK Book]

Overview

A mysterious girl, dubbed The Watcher, spins tales of rescue from her lonely perch above the beach. She closely observes the actions of two people she has never met: a fourteen-year-old boy whose family seems perfect and a handsome eighteen-year-old lifeguard. Their lives become intertwined -- and their troubling truths are revealed.

As she sits watching a seemingly perfect family and a handsome lifeguard on the beach, a lonely, troubled girl projects herself into ...

See more details below
The Watcher

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 7.0
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 10.1
  • NOOK HD Tablet
  • NOOK HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK eReaders
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$7.99
BN.com price

Overview

A mysterious girl, dubbed The Watcher, spins tales of rescue from her lonely perch above the beach. She closely observes the actions of two people she has never met: a fourteen-year-old boy whose family seems perfect and a handsome eighteen-year-old lifeguard. Their lives become intertwined -- and their troubling truths are revealed.

As she sits watching a seemingly perfect family and a handsome lifeguard on the beach, a lonely, troubled girl projects herself into the fantasy lives she has created for them.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Cahners\\Publishers_Weekly
In this intense psychological drama, Howe (Bunnicula) delves into the minds of three troubled teens whose lives converge at a seaside resort. Twelve-year-old Evan and lifeguard Chris arrive at the beach loaded down with worries. Evan fears that his parents are on the brink of divorce, and Chris cannot shake the feeling he is living in the shadow of his older brother, who died before Chris was born. Then there is Margaret. Nicknamed Harriet the Spy by Evan's younger sister and described as a "broken shell" by his mother, the strange, silent girl sits at the edge of the sand inventing stories about the people she observes. Attracted to both Evan and Chris, the "watcher" incorporates them into a disturbing fantasy. Segments of her fairy tale about a captive princess are interleaved with scenes depicting the boys' individual struggles. The characters remain separated from one another until the book's riveting final chapter. In a startling turn of events, Evan and Chris become the "watchers" of Margaret, witnessing her torment and saving her from her abusive father. A blend of allegory and stark realism, this grim story offers a host of ironies for readers to explore. If the plot comes off as manufactured or melodramatic, the emotions of characters remain genuine and haunting.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The lives of three troubled teens converge at a seaside resort; PW called the work "a blend of allegory and stark realism [that] offers a host of ironies for readers to explore." Ages 12-up. Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In this intense psychological drama, Howe Bunnicula delves into the minds of three troubled teens whose lives converge at a seaside resort. Twelve-year-old Evan and lifeguard Chris arrive at the beach loaded down with worries. Evan fears that his parents are on the brink of divorce, and Chris cannot shake the feeling he is living in the shadow of his older brother, who died before Chris was born. Then there is Margaret. Nicknamed Harriet the Spy by Evan's younger sister and described as a "broken shell" by his mother, the strange, silent girl sits at the edge of the sand inventing stories about the people she observes. Attracted to both Evan and Chris, the "watcher" incorporates them into a disturbing fantasy. Segments of her fairy tale about a captive princess are interleaved with scenes depicting the boys' individual struggles. The characters remain separated from one another until the book's riveting final chapter. In a startling turn of events, Evan and Chris become the "watchers" of Margaret, witnessing her torment and saving her from her abusive father. A blend of allegory and stark realism, this grim story offers a host of ironies for readers to explore. If the plot comes off as manufactured or melodramatic, the emotions of characters remain genuine and haunting. Ages 12-up.
Children's Literature - Kathleen Karr
A young girl sits on the steps to the beach each day. She never goes down to the water. She never even touches the sand. She writes in her journal and watches the lifeguard and a cozy family group. Slowly she is noticed, and we are brought into the worlds of those being watched. Their lives are not as idyllic as the watcher fantasizes, but they're better than hers. The mood builds slowly to a to a traumatic, believable climax. This spare novel of an abused child, one stretched to the point of autism, is not what one would expect from the author of the humorous kiddie horror classic, Bunnicula, but it is very effective.
VOYA - Nancy Thackaberry
The three main characters in The Watcher are a far cry from Bunnicula and the Howliday Inn series, but they are equally as likely to capture a reader's attention and stay with them long after the book is finished. Margaret, thirteen years old, is the watcher whose only friend and sanctuary is her journal. Her estranged mother usually is locked in her bedroom listening to loud opera recordings, and her father is verbally and physically abusive. Each chapter begins with entries from her journal, in which she fantasizes about the people she sees around at the beach as a way of escaping her own abusive life. Chris, eighteen, is a lifeguard. He is at a crossroads in his life, torn over whether to try and please his father, whom he never can seem to please, or to continue on his own path. Evan, fourteen, struggles with parents who are distant from each other and from him. Callie, his eight-year-old sister, is convinced their parents are going to divorce, and Evan can't discourage her from thinking so because he believes it, too. Howe weaves the three characters' stories into a fine book that explores one's perceptions of other people. Margaret, Chris, and Evan all meet in a climactic ending that begins to solve their adolescent problems, but Howe craftily leaves the reader wanting to know more. Does Chris go to work with his father or does he go to college? What is the problem between Evan's parents? After Chris and Evan see Margaret's father forcing her head into a sink full of water, does Margaret go into foster care? I want to see the sequels already. Fans of Howe's middle-level books will not be shocked or disappointed by his realistic fiction. He handles these more mature topics in a way that bridges the younger reader to YA literature. VOYA Codes: 5Q 4P M J (Hard to imagine it being any better written, Broad general YA appeal, Middle School-defined as grades 6 to 8 and Junior High-defined as grades 7 to 9).
School Library Journal
Gr 7-9Not knowing her name, the other people on the beach call her the Watcher. She brings her notebook to the same spot each day, and she writes and she watches. She watches Chris, the lifeguard. She watches Evan, his sister Callie, and their parents. And she writes. Margaret weaves herself, and those she watches, into a fantasy in which an angel rescues a lonely girl from the clutches of a beast, and then returns the girl to her long-lost royal family. But Margaret's fairy tale is in reality a silent prayer for rescue from her real-life beast, a father who abuses her when she's "been bad." Her fairy-tale rescue becomes reality as Chris and Evan unwittingly witness the abuse and hear her painful, reluctant admission, "My father hurts me." Howe deftly alternates the story Margaret writes with chapters about Chris and Evan and his family in the same way that fantasy and reality intermingle in Margaret's life. As readers come to the frightening realization of what the fairy tale means, they are hurtled toward a gripping scene in which Margaret's father repeatedly holds her head under water. The Watcher is a novel so powerful that even after the last page is read, and Margaret is mercifully saved, her story may be reflected upon again and again.Leigh Ann Jones, Carroll Middle School, Southlake, TX
Kirkus Reviews
A sensitively written novel about families, abuse, and the power of words from Howe (Pinky and Rex and the Bully, 1996, etc.).

Chris is a golden young man: lifeguard at a beach on Long Island, just out of high school, and trying to determine what he should do next. Evan is a younger teen, caring for his little sister, Callie, and admiring Chris. Both boys notice that watching them is a silent girl, who sits on the steps looking out at the beach each day, and writing in her notebook. Her name is Margaret, and she is composing a fairy tale about her life, with Chris as her angel and Evan as her adoring brother, rescuing her from the Beast—her abusive father. Unfolding delicately, this summer-long dance also reveals the loss in Chris's family and the struggle of Evan's parents to stay together. Howe's portrayal gains strength through the goodness of the characters and the honesty of the details of their lives. Evan is deeply devoted to his little sister and his parents, even as he is tempted by a gang of "Gap-ad Huckleberry Finns"; Chris knows that to find himself, he needs to solve the riddle of his family's loss; and Margaret, who has survived through myth and isolation, rescues herself by finding the words to say what her father does to her. Emotionally compelling to a heart-stopping conclusion.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781439115787
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers
  • Publication date: 1/24/2012
  • Sold by: SIMON & SCHUSTER
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 602,583
  • Age range: 12 years
  • Lexile: 890L (what's this?)
  • File size: 793 KB

Meet the Author

James Howe is the author of more than ninety books for young readers, including the modern classic Bunnicula and its highly popular sequels. In 2001, Howe published The Misfits, the story of four outcast seventh-graders who try to end name-calling in their school. The Misfits is now widely read and studied in middle schools throughout the country, and was the inspiration for the national movement known as No Name-Calling Week (NoNameCallingWeek.org), an event observed by thousands of middle and elementary schools annually. There are three companion novels to The Misfits: Totally Joe (2005), Addie on the Inside (2011), and Also Known as Elvis (2014). Howe’s many other books for children from preschool through teens frequently deal with the acceptance of difference and being true to oneself. Visit him online at JamesHowe.com.
Read More Show Less

Introduction

Teaching Guide

About the book

A seemingly idyllic summer at the beach reveals the inner lives of four young people in James Howe's remarkably moving tale of a troubled teenage girl and the individuals her life touches.

The young girl, nicknamed the "watcher", silently observes the people on the beach and writes in her journal. Meanwhile, Evan plays with his beloved sister Callie and frets over the mysterious sadness that has come over his parents. And Chris, the lifeguard who seems heroic to Evan and the watcher, secretly nurses doubts about himself. Interwoven with these narratives is a fairy tale of a remarkable little girl imprisoned by a beast, a story written by the watcher that closely resembles her own life and that shows powerfully how storytelling can be used to confront the issues we face.

As the lazy days of summer reveal the characters' inner turmoil, the novel moves toward its stunning climax and the revelation of just who the mysterious girl is and what compels her. In The Watcher, James Howe has crafted a subtle and compelling tale of the power and importance of family. In the process, he has created a layered text that is easily accessible and also highly rewarding, making it perfect for readers of varying skill levels.

Questions on the text

LANGUAGE ARTS

Fairy tales like the watcher's narrative often use archetypes (the good princess, the evil beast) to create a universal message out of an individual story. Write your own fairy tale using aspects of your life. Try writing the same material as a short story or journal. Which proves to be more effective for this particular plot?

The characters in this novel are very clearly drawn,but some of the less central characters we see only fleetingly; characters like Callie's friend Sarah, the lifeguard Jenny, Shane, Chris's roommates, Evan's mother and father, and Margaret's mother and father. Pick one of these characters and try to imagine their inner lives. What are they thinking and doing during the period in which this novel takes place?

SOCIAL STUDIES

Parts of this book address people's misconceptions about those around them. Can you think of instances in which you might have misinterpreted the thoughts of someone else? Take one instance and imagine a number of possible interpretations of that person's thoughts. Discuss ways that we can better understand others and ways we can communicate more clearly.

The main characters in this novel are all confronting problems in their lives. Write a story about these people ten years in the future. Have they resolved the problems? Have they encountered new ones? What are their lives like?

  • How does the alternating viewpoint (the tales of the watcher, Chris, Evan, Callie, and the fairy tale) change the way you understand and react to the story? Why do you think the author chose this method of presenting the novel?
  • The watcher thinks "They would not have seen her." (p. 4) What does she mean by this?
  • The watcher is described as watching the families "most intently" (p. 5), and when Evan kisses Callie on the head the watcher "became so dizzy she was forced to drop her head to her knees and think of other things until the dizziness went away." (p. 7) Why is the watcher obsessed with families? And why does the incident between Evan and Callie affect her so much?
  • What role do angels play in the book? Do any of the characters resemble angels in any way? How is the angel imagery used throughout the book?
  • All the children have different names for the girl on the steps: the watcher (p. 35), Harriet the spy (p. 71), the flake (p. 47). Why do people's impressions differ so drastically? What does each nickname tell you about the person who uses it and his or her attitudes toward the girl on the steps?
  • Family looms large in The Watcher. What are the main characters' views of family? How are they similar and how do they differ? Many different family situations are portrayed, but each of the children has a unique relationship with their parents. How would you describe these relationships? How would you characterize the sibling relationship between Callie and Evan?
  • Evan repeats the quote "you can't always get what you want" to himself. Why? Why does this saying have meaning for him? Read the epigraph (or introductory quote) to the book. Why do you think the author chose this?
  • Why do you think Evan has such strong feelings about the character of Holden Caulfield? What do those feelings reveal about his feelings toward himself? What do you think the character represents to Evan? (See p. 61)
  • How does the watcher respond when Chris first tries to talk to her? (p. 90-91) Why do you think she responds in the way she does? Does this response seem like her normal behavior?
  • What does it mean to you when Chris imagines that "he wanted to dive into that water and pull his brother out and save his fathers life?" (p. 145). If he could really do this, what difference does he think it would have made in his own life?
  • Why do you think Evan tells his mother he is never going to get married? (p. 111) Does he seek to accomplish something with this line of discussion? What is your reaction to the mother's response? What do you think Evan's response is?
  • What is Evan's attitude toward the watcher? (p. 35) What is his mother's? (p. 117) How do they differ and why?
  • Callie tells her friend that her parents are getting a divorce (p. 67), which is not necessarily true. Why do you think Callie makes up this story?
  • Look at the various ways each of the characters sees the others. Why do you think their perceptions are so often at odds with the reality of the characters they're observing? What do their perceptions say about their own needs and desires?
  • We learn a great deal about these characters that is initially hidden, just as our thoughts are hidden in real life. How do these discoveries change your attitudes toward the characters? How do you think they change the characters' attitudes toward each other?
  • The watcher believes that her "head is the perfect place for words nobody else uses." (p. 121) What do you believe she means by this?
  • The watcher steals a number of things from Evan and Callie's family: a kite, a shawl, and Callie's picture. Why does the watcher steal from them and why does she pick the items she does?
  • In light of the ending, what does Margaret's fairy tale reveal about her life? What does the ending mean for Margaret? For Chris? And for Evan? Have they addressed the issues that face them?
  • James Howe once said, "one of the best reasons I know for being a writer is having the chance to rewrite reality." Do you think this may be reflected in The Watcher? Are there aspects of this book that could be considered wish fulfillment?

About the author

James Howe is the author of over fifty books for children, including the popular Bunnicula series. The Watcher is his first book for young adults. The author has spent parts of many summers on Fire Island, off the New York coast, which serves as the setting for this book.

Read More Show Less

Reading Group Guide

Teaching Guide

About the book

A seemingly idyllic summer at the beach reveals the inner lives of four young people in James Howe's remarkably moving tale of a troubled teenage girl and the individuals her life touches.

The young girl, nicknamed the "watcher", silently observes the people on the beach and writes in her journal. Meanwhile, Evan plays with his beloved sister Callie and frets over the mysterious sadness that has come over his parents. And Chris, the lifeguard who seems heroic to Evan and the watcher, secretly nurses doubts about himself. Interwoven with these narratives is a fairy tale of a remarkable little girl imprisoned by a beast, a story written by the watcher that closely resembles her own life and that shows powerfully how storytelling can be used to confront the issues we face.

As the lazy days of summer reveal the characters' inner turmoil, the novel moves toward its stunning climax and the revelation of just who the mysterious girl is and what compels her. In The Watcher, James Howe has crafted a subtle and compelling tale of the power and importance of family. In the process, he has created a layered text that is easily accessible and also highly rewarding, making it perfect for readers of varying skill levels.

Questions on the text

LANGUAGE ARTS

Fairy tales like the watcher's narrative often use archetypes (the good princess, the evil beast) to create a universal message out of an individual story. Write your own fairy tale using aspects of your life. Try writing the same material as a short story or journal. Which proves to be more effective for this particular plot?

The characters in this novel are very clearly drawn, but some of the less central characters we see only fleetingly; characters like Callie's friend Sarah, the lifeguard Jenny, Shane, Chris's roommates, Evan's mother and father, and Margaret's mother and father. Pick one of these characters and try to imagine their inner lives. What are they thinking and doing during the period in which this novel takes place?

SOCIAL STUDIES

Parts of this book address people's misconceptions about those around them. Can you think of instances in which you might have misinterpreted the thoughts of someone else? Take one instance and imagine a number of possible interpretations of that person's thoughts. Discuss ways that we can better understand others and ways we can communicate more clearly.

The main characters in this novel are all confronting problems in their lives. Write a story about these people ten years in the future. Have they resolved the problems? Have they encountered new ones? What are their lives like?

  • How does the alternating viewpoint (the tales of the watcher, Chris, Evan, Callie, and the fairy tale) change the way you understand and react to the story? Why do you think the author chose this method of presenting the novel?
  • The watcher thinks "They would not have seen her." (p. 4) What does she mean by this?
  • The watcher is described as watching the families "most intently" (p. 5), and when Evan kisses Callie on the head the watcher "became so dizzy she was forced to drop her head to her knees and think of other things until the dizziness went away." (p. 7) Why is the watcher obsessed with families? And why does the incident between Evan and Callie affect her so much?
  • What role do angels play in the book? Do any of the characters resemble angels in any way? How is the angel imagery used throughout the book?
  • All the children have different names for the girl on the steps: the watcher (p. 35), Harriet the spy (p. 71), the flake (p. 47). Why do people's impressions differ so drastically? What does each nickname tell you about the person who uses it and his or her attitudes toward the girl on the steps?
  • Family looms large in The Watcher. What are the main characters' views of family? How are they similar and how do they differ? Many different family situations are portrayed, but each of the children has a unique relationship with their parents. How would you describe these relationships? How would you characterize the sibling relationship between Callie and Evan?
  • Evan repeats the quote "you can't always get what you want" to himself. Why? Why does this saying have meaning for him? Read the epigraph (or introductory quote) to the book. Why do you think the author chose this?
  • Why do you think Evan has such strong feelings about the character of Holden Caulfield? What do those feelings reveal about his feelings toward himself? What do you think the character represents to Evan? (See p. 61)
  • How does the watcher respond when Chris first tries to talk to her? (p. 90-91) Why do you think she responds in the way she does? Does this response seem like her normal behavior?
  • What does it mean to you when Chris imagines that "he wanted to dive into that water and pull his brother out and save his fathers life?" (p. 145). If he could really do this, what difference does he think it would have made in his own life?
  • Why do you think Evan tells his mother he is never going to get married? (p. 111) Does he seek to accomplish something with this line of discussion? What is your reaction to the mother's response? What do you think Evan's response is?
  • What is Evan's attitude toward the watcher? (p. 35) What is his mother's? (p. 117) How do they differ and why?
  • Callie tells her friend that her parents are getting a divorce (p. 67), which is not necessarily true. Why do you think Callie makes up this story?
  • Look at the various ways each of the characters sees the others. Why do you think their perceptions are so often at odds with the reality of the characters they're observing? What do their perceptions say about their own needs and desires?
  • We learn a great deal about these characters that is initially hidden, just as our thoughts are hidden in real life. How do these discoveries change your attitudes toward the characters? How do you think they change the characters' attitudes toward each other?
  • The watcher believes that her "head is the perfect place for words nobody else uses." (p. 121) What do you believe she means by this?
  • The watcher steals a number of things from Evan and Callie's family: a kite, a shawl, and Callie's picture. Why does the watcher steal from them and why does she pick the items she does?
  • In light of the ending, what does Margaret's fairy tale reveal about her life? What does the ending mean for Margaret? For Chris? And for Evan? Have they addressed the issues that face them?
  • James Howe once said, "one of the best reasons I know for being a writer is having the chance to rewrite reality." Do you think this may be reflected in The Watcher? Are there aspects of this book that could be considered wish fulfillment?

About the author

James Howe is the author of over fifty books for children, including the popular Bunnicula series. The Watcher is his first book for young adults. The author has spent parts of many summers on Fire Island, off the New York coast, which serves as the setting for this book.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 41 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(26)

4 Star

(7)

3 Star

(3)

2 Star

(4)

1 Star

(1)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 41 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2011

    highly recommended- need to be read by you

    i loved the book i couldn't put it down untill i was finished with the book it was like one of thos movies where you have to keep tack on what happens. it was like you were in the book where you were the main character felling every feeling, making every move, thinking the same.*

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 10, 2014

    hkteujgfyuyrbvgtwqkjulhjgyuerwwkyujtr

    hkteujgfyuyrbvgtwqkjulhjgyuerwwkyujtr

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 1, 2013

    Midnight

    Ok goes there

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 1, 2013

    Farrah to nightclaw

    I found a black kit for you! His name is Midnightkit and hes at orphan second result!

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 1, 2013

    Nightclaw

    Yes. Im your new father. Come with me to the enclave result 3, please.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2012

    Horses

    Horses are cool. I liked this book

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 30, 2008

    The Watcher, American Lit. Assignment

    October 30, 2008<BR/>The Silent Spy The Watcher<BR/><BR/> By James Howe<BR/> 174 pgs. Simon and Schuster. $5.99<BR/>By Kelsey Fordham<BR/><BR/>This book shows the harsh reality <BR/>of life for some people. However, it <BR/>also shows a great deal of human love and compassion.<BR/><BR/>The Watcher is set in modern day times, and focuses mainly on thoughts of a lonely girl. It¿s about a teenage girl named Margaret, who sits all alone on the steps near the beach day after day. She observes people on the beach, and writes about them in their journal. However, her main focus is on two people¿Evan and Chris. The story is told through Margaret¿s eyes, and also through Chris and Evan¿s perspective in their daily lives.<BR/><BR/>The rise of the story unfolds when Evan has a visit at a very mysterious house that constantly plays loud music. Strange occurrences happen, and the police have to break up a fight.<BR/><BR/>To really understand this book, it¿s necessary to know the role of each main character (there are 4 of them). Chris is a boy who has had traumatic experiences as a child (now they¿re just torturous memories). His trouble is that he keeps all his feelings bottled up inside. Chris¿ worst fear is that when someone truly needs saving, that he will fail to help them (he¿s a lifeguard). One thing he said to reflect this was, ¿what is the point of wishing anyway? He then fell into the silence and got lost in it, thinking of everything that once was¿. Evan is a pretty nice guy. He¿s kind to his sister, Callie, but his problem is that he doesn¿t have many friends. An example of him with his sister is form the text ¿One time, he collected 3 buckets of seashells and instead of making scales by marking her sand fin with the bottom of the pail, Evan covered the entire sand mermaid body with tiny seashells. It had taken him almost an hour to do, and then after he was done, Callie sat without moving for another hour so that all the people could stop and look, because no one had ever seen such a beautiful mermaid¿. Callie is quite judgmental of others. She¿s also known to tell stories that she swears are true. She is the one who nicknamed the girl on the stairs ¿the watcher¿ One of her stories was this, ¿My parents are going to get a divorce¿. (They weren¿t getting a divorce). Margaret (A.K.A. the watcher) is a troubled teenager. She feels trapped within herself, and has dreamt of a love filled family for quite some time. <BR/><BR/>I truly believe this is a great book. The author made sure that the reader was always ¿into¿ the book at the turn of each page. The text was also very detailed without being dull. I would highly recommend everyone to read this book. It¿s full of suspense, danger, and mystery. It¿s truly perfect for any type of reader.

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 4, 2007

    a reviewer

    Chris, ¿the watcher¿ and Evan are three very different people¿or maybe not. Chris, the lifeguard at the local beach spends his time daydreaming why¿ll watching little kids play in the ocean out of the corner of his eye. Although on the outside all may look perfectly in place on the inside memories of the past are eating him alive. ¿The watcher¿ or ¿the flake¿ is a teenage girl who sits and watches the people on the beach as they go about their daily lives. She pictures herself as part of the picture perfect family¿s that come and sit on the beach every weekend. She¿s always writing in her notebook¿always watching. Evan is also by himself unless of course you count his little sister who is almost always with him. Although on the beach they may be the picture perfect family at home is a whole different story. The book ends with a dramatic conclusion with all three characters coming together. A life will be saved, a picture will be found, and the strange music from the house around the corner will stop.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 13, 2006

    It's okay

    This book is a deep book that has good details and pulls you in toward the middle and end. Toward the end it is a shocker. It deals with the real world.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 13, 2006

    This book is really wierd!!

    This book is really wierd, but it is really good. It deals with topics that are in the news today and with current issues. It is really deep and confusing at the beginning, but overall, it was a pretty good book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 13, 2006

    Reveiw for the Watcher

    The Watcher is about a girl who is abused and tries to become a part of the 'perfect family'. this book is okay because it dosent give much description and has a weird plot and story line. It wasnt what i thought it was.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 10, 2006

    It's Wierd But Deep!

    This book is great reading for a mature teen. It is very deep and confusing but it all comes together at it the end. I also thought personally it was very weird.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 28, 2006

    Fantastic Book

    Simply put, this is the best book I've ever read. It's the most moving story I've had the pleasure of reading. It deals with a very real problem that people tend to turn a blind eye to. I don't see how anyone could not love this book, unless they just aren't capable of understanding the importance of the obstacles faced by each character.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 6, 2006

    The first sentence caught my eye!

    This book was really interesting because it was awesome how James Howe had three totally different characters in the book. It is a great book, I didn't want it to end, but it's very sad to think somewhere it really could be happening.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 7, 2005

    I liked this book

    I liked this book. If you like books that deal with lifeguards and girls become watchers in life, then this book is for you.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 23, 2005

    A Boring Book

    Evan, a thirteen year old boy, and Callie, his younger sister do a lot together. They love going to their lake house and playing on the beach. Callie's favorite thing is when Evan puts sand all around her and shapes her into a mermaid. Evan wishes that he could become one of the 'cool kids' because sometimes hanging out with Callie, isn't always fun and games. Callie is afraid that her parents are getting a divorce. That¿s all she talks about to her friends. One night, Callie was telling Evan that she has noticed a girl, always watching them on the beach. 'You know what I think? I think she's a spy, Harriet the spy' said Callie. Evan tires not to listen to her, but then him, and the beach lifeguard, Chris Powell both notice the girl also, sitting on the steps everyday. All three of them become worried, all she does is watch, she doesn¿t swim, doesn¿t play in the sand, doesn¿t play with friends, she doesn¿t even move. One night, as Evan was coming home from a friends house, he passed by 'the spy's' house, he thought she washing her hair in the sink, with her dad, but didn¿t see any shampoo, and she was crying. What was really going on? I thought this book was just O.K. There were times when I just wanted to stop reading it. You didn¿t understand the real concept of the story, until the end, which was pretty boring. I wouldn¿t recommend this book, though it wasn¿t the worst book I've read. I thought the author could have done a better job of describing some of the characters. Some of the characters didn¿t really have any part in the story, they talked about them all the time, but barley talked to them.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 3, 2005

    AMAZING!!

    This book is so realistic. It deals with the different ways teenagers cope with pain, and it just pretty much sums up horrible experiences. This book is extremely well written, but a bit shorter than I would have liked.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2005

    GREAT!!!

    This was a very good book. It did have some language in it, but other than that it was very captivating! I recomend it to about 13 and up since it does have some heavy issues like divorce and abuse.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 4, 2004

    Awesome

    This book, in my opinion, was AWESOME!! It was so vivid to the mind, made me feel like i was really there. It showed how a girl hides herself and still wants to long. I recommend this book greatly. Please read it. From beginning to the last, saddest sentence of the book, you will love it. Please read it , and check it out yourself.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 24, 2004

    Awsome

    I loved this book. I couldn't put it down. I finished it in a day and I recomend it to anyone...

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 41 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)