This superb, absorbing and thought-provoking novel is a rich, heady hybrid of realism and speculative fiction. Set in a time not very different to ours, in a port city in a cold-region country that has been taken over by invaders who themselves are under periodic attack both from external State enemies and internal resistants, it tells the story both of the occupied and the occupiers. The story is seen through the eyes of Sylvie, a young woman whose brother is in the resistance but who falls in love with Will, an elite eneny soldier, after he rescues her from torture at a checkpoint. Their dangerous relationship is at the centre of the novel, and is skilfully and memorably depicted in all its ambiguities, pain, pleasure, and paradoxes, recalling similar historical experiences such as those of French women who fell in love with German soldiers under the occupation of France in World War 2. Watch Over Me unflinchingly yet never simplistically explores the complicated relations between men and women in wartime, and the way in which 'normal' gender relations are both upset by it and yet reinforced, and the vulnerable position of children is also poignantly explored. But this is not the only thing which makes this novel such a gripping and involving read; the depiction of Sylvie's world, her family, friends, neighbours is richly detailed, as is the tense atmosphere of a city under occupation and under attack, with echoes of both current and historical wars. The world of the novel mixes glancing mentions of real places-Paris, Finland, for instance-with the much more delineated fictional settings, jolting the reader out of assumptions, and contributing to the unsettling atmosphere of this magnificent novel. Highly recommended .