Watch over Me

Written by Eileen Charbonneau
Review by Juliet Waldron

It’s the summer of 1942 in New York City. Kitty is a war widow, a handsome woman from an ethnic neighborhood who works as a receptionist. Today, she imagines she’s again been tasked with showing a salesman around the Big City for her boss. However, this handsome young man with the black hair and brown skin is Luke Kayenta: a Navaho Code Talker, a man with many secrets—not the least of which is that he was with Kitty’s husband when he died—while they were both fighting Fascism in Spain. Luke has been captured and tortured, but he’s never cracked. His superiors at the US Office of Strategic services don’t entirely believe him. As a result, some of his own are after him. Alongside them are Nazis as well as a gang of Pro-Nazi isolationists. City Girl Kitty is now on the run beside Luke, a guy she’s attracted to.

This is a cross-genre novel, with dollops of romance, suspense, and World War II Historical—sometimes uneasily—side by side. Still, there’s snappy ´40s dialogue and a series of clever vignettes around town, from the Lower East Side all the way up to the Savoy Ballroom. There’s good research here, and it is smoothly integrated. Luke’s First American point of view, feelingly brought to life, makes him not only the hero, but also the book’s most memorable character.