Watch Me: A Gripping Psychological Thriller

Watch Me: A Gripping Psychological Thriller

by Jody Gehrman

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Overview

"Riveting, chilling, and page-turning. Be prepared to stay up all night." — New York Times bestselling author Lisa Scottoline

For fans of dark and twisty psychological thrillers, Watch Me is a riveting novel of suspense about how far obsession can go.

Kate Youngblood is disappearing. Muddling through her late 30s as a creative writing professor at Blackwood college, she’s dangerously close to never being noticed again. The follow-up novel to her successful debut tanked. Her husband left her for a woman ten years younger. She’s always been bright, beautiful, independent and a little wild, but now her glow is starting to vanish. She’s heading into an age where her eyes are less blue, her charm worn out, and soon no one will ever truly look at her, want to know her, again.

Except one.

Sam Grist is Kate’s most promising student. An unflinching writer with razor-sharp clarity who gravitates towards dark themes and twisted plots, his raw talent is something Kate wants to nurture into literary success. But he’s not there solely to be the best writer. He’s been watching her. Wanting her. Working his way to her for years.

As Sam slowly makes his way into Kate’s life, they enter a deadly web of dangerous lies and forbidden desire. But how far will his fixation go? And how far will she allow it?

A gripping novel exploring intense obsession and illicit attraction, Jody Gehrman introduces a world where what you desire most may be the most dangerous thing of all.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780594840121
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication date: 01/23/2018
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 70,817
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Jody Gehrman has authored several novels and numerous plays for stage and screen. Her young-adult novel, Babe in Boyland, won the International Reading Association’s Teen Choice Award and was optioned by the Disney Channel. Jody’s plays have been produced or had staged readings in Ashland, New York, San Francisco, Chicago and L.A. Her full-length, Tribal Life in America, won the Ebell Playwrights Prize and received a staged reading at the historic Ebell Theater in Los Angeles. She and her partner David Wolf won the New Generation Playwrights Award for their one-act, Jake Savage, Jungle P.I. She holds a Masters Degree in Professional Writing from the University of Southern California and is a professor of Communications at Mendocino College in Northern California.

Read an Excerpt

CHAPTER 1

SAM

After five years waiting for this moment, watching you for the first time still catches me off guard. I recognize you from your book jacket, but the reality of you — a three-dimensional object moving through space, flesh and blood and golden hair — makes my pulse race. You don't know me — not yet — but nothing spikes my pulse. I am ice. I ooze cool, unruffled detachment. It's the thing people find unnerving about me, the thing I try to hide. I know how to smile and raise my eyebrows and frown in all the right places, just to show I'm human, to communicate to the other hairless apes that I'm part of the tribe. If I don't control my face, it defaults to blank detachment, and that gives people the creeps. Watching you, though, I don't have to fake it. I can feel my lips stretching into an amazed smile of their own accord, the smile explorers must have worn when they first stumbled on the New World.

You're walking across campus framed by two rows of flame-red maples. Your boots kick bright mounds of leaves strewn across your path. I can see from the slight bounce in your gait you're enjoying the flurry of each step. Though you're bundled against the cold, a bright green scarf wrapped around your throat, it takes no effort at all to imagine you in bed, the long sinewy lines of your body a feast of light and shadow as you stretch, catlike, back arching.

God, you're perfect.

I've never allowed myself to consider what I'd do if you turned out to be ordinary. If I started school at Blackwood, the place I've worked and schemed to enter, only to discover you're not the woman I thought you were. I didn't allow myself to consider the possibility because I knew, deep down, it would kill me. By the time I'd read the first page of your book, you were in my blood, in my bones. To live without you was unthinkable.

Of course, you write fiction, and you're private, so the number of facts I've managed to scrape together about your life could fit on a postcard. I love that about you — your mystery. In a world packed with blogs and Facebook updates and tweets and Instagrams, a world crowded with so much white noise from self-absorbed assholes who share every bowel movement in tedious detail, you are enigmatic. Like Shakespeare, it is much easier to find theory and speculation about your life than solid facts.

You are an onion I intend to peel, layer by layer. I will love every second of it. Your mystery will yield to me, your dark cocoon penetrated by my patient, steady hands.

Though I have little solid evidence about who you are and how you fill your hours, I still feel close to you. I watch your jaunty green scarf flutter in the breeze, your hair trailing behind you in a golden swirl. We are connected. It's undeniable. And it's not just the tie that binds a fan to his idol. Yes, it's impossible to read a great writer's work and not experience their essence. I don't see you the way I see Nabokov, though, or the Brontës, or Melville. I see you for what you are: the only person on earth who will ever understand me.

You stop to examine a woodpecker. From my position on a nearby bench, I have a perfect view of your motionless body. Your throat is white and exposed as you tilt your face to study the industrious little fucker. He pecks harder than ever at the trunk of a tall, elegant birch, as if urged on by his audience. I see you smile.

Without trying, I smile, too.

CHAPTER 2

KATE

Sam Grist sits across from me, staring. His eyes are so piercing that for a moment I'm paralyzed.

I'm not oblivious. I've noticed him watching me in class. I've observed the way his gaze follows me, tracing the lines of my body like he's committing them to memory. Sometimes he wears a vaguely drunk expression, like someone two martinis into the evening watching you from across the bar — when you know you're caught in a glimmering vodka filter that makes everything luminous.

This is the first time I've been alone with him. The air in my small office feels thick, dense. His eyes lock on mine with such unapologetic intensity, for a second I can't remember how to breathe. When one of my students uses the term "piercing" to describe someone's bright blue eyes, I usually scribble "cliché" in the margin. Now, I'm forced to acknowledge just how apt the phrase can be. His stare pins me to my seat.

With effort, I look away. That's hardly better. My eyes sink as low as his throat. The skin there is that delicate peach color only youth can manage. So dewy. So tender. If I put my lips there — goddamn it. Stop, Kate. Just stop.

"Nabokov's my favorite. Lolita. What a fucking beautiful book — sorry." He blushes, his pale cheeks turning pink.

"It's okay." I adjust my glasses. "I'm a professor, not a preacher. I'm more offended by comma splices than 'fuck.'" The word lingers in the air between us. It's there, like the traces a sparkler leaves behind, glimmering in the muted light of my office.

I glance at the floor lamp behind him. Its pale linen shade casts a soft glow. When I bought the lamp last week I told myself I needed it so I could kill the fluorescents in my tiny office; they were giving me a headache. I've never liked the cold, clinical mood they radiate. Now, though, I wonder if the vibe is too 'candlelit lounge.' It's something I do way too often, swing from one extreme to another — in this case, from morgue to topless bar.

His smile is slow and knowing as he watches me. Now his eyes dip to my cleavage, and I worry I've gone too far. Low lights, "fuck," Lolita. This is not the professorial persona my tenure team needs to see.

I clear my throat, and his smile vanishes.

"So, you have a question about class?"

He leans back. The glow from the lamp catches in his dark black hair. I try to look at him coolly. I try to channel all the bloodless, sexless professors I've ever had. The incredibly well-shaped muscles beneath his black T-shirt beckon from my peripheral vision, but I refuse to give in. It's the divorce, I tell myself. You're hungry for distraction. Go easy on yourself.

"I do." He nods. "Is it a good time?"

"Shoot." I glance quickly at my computer, then back at him. We don't have all day, but I can carve out some time from my frantic online shoe shopping to deal with his needs. It's important to prioritize.

"It's about the workshop." He rests his arms on my desk, waiting for me to meet his gaze directly before he goes on. "There's some really god-awful shit in there, you know?"

I watch him as he catches himself swearing again, see him decide against apologizing. He's young, but not as young as some of my students. Twenty, maybe? Twenty-one? It's nearly impossible to guess at age anymore. I've given up, especially during that breathless time between eighteen and twenty-five, seven years that feel like they'll last forever, when you wear the face and body of an adult but still have the blank, unmarked dewiness of a child.

"It's Sam, right?" I take off my glasses and clean them with the hem of my sweater.

"Yeah. Sam." There's a subtle reproach in his voice, like he's disappointed I had to ask.

I didn't have to. I just need him to know I don't think about him. I haven't singled him out. The fact that this is a lie makes it even more important.

"Are you asking if I think my students' work is shit?"

"I know you think it's shit." He tilts his head to the side. He's peering past my façade, into me. "I'm asking why you don't call them on it."

I pull my cardigan tighter and put my glasses back on. "'Shit' is a relative term."

"Either it sucks or it doesn't."

"Nabokov had a hell of a time getting published," I point out.

"Not because publishers thought his work was shit. Because he terrified them."

I nod, conceding his point, and change tack. "Workshop is all about getting better. New writers need to experiment."

"You and I both know those spoiled brats are never going to write a single word worth reading." His cynical smile makes me uneasy.

I've got no idea why Sam affects me the way he does. It's not like he's the first smug, talented student ever to sit in that seat lobbing overly confident truisms about workshop at me. And yet ... and yet ... there's something about this one. The way his eyes probe my face, the restless motion of his body. He keeps leaning back, like an actor trying to telegraph "relaxed." Within seconds, though, his sculpted torso tips forward again, his naked forearms on my desk, his body straining toward me.

"I don't know that." I can hear the crispness in my tone, the prim, professorial inflection. "Nobody knows what anyone else is capable of."

"Now that I believe." He points at me, like he's the teacher and I'm the student finally stumbling on the right answer.

I kind of hate him. I kind of want him.

His big, beautiful hands land on my desk again; for just a second, his palms lie face-up between us. I see the jagged scars carved into his wrists, red, angry lightning bolts zigzagging his blue veins. My gaze flies to his face. He knows I've noticed. His eyes hold mine. In that moment, I'm certain he wanted me to see. But then he pulls his hands back, presses them against his thighs, and stands.

"I won't take up any more of your valuable time." His gaze flicks to my computer screen. I must have accidentally jiggled the mouse because Zappos is now perfectly visible.

It's my turn to blush. Goddamn him.

"Don't be so harsh on your fellow writers." I try to sound sage, like someone who lives profoundly, someone who has actual wisdom to pass on. "If you're right, and they're all hacks, that's good news, right? Less competition."

He raises an eyebrow. I've always wanted to master that move but could never seem to manage it. When I try, it comes off strained and frightened. He pulls it off so naturally, like he came out of his mother's womb and fixed her with that sardonic stare.

"I'm not worried about competition." He twists the doorknob.

My eyes dart to his wrist, seeking out the pink, puckered wound. I force myself to dismiss him with a nod, like someone who knows what the hell she's doing.

CHAPTER 3

SAM

I watch your gaze slide around the room. You've just asked us a question, no doubt something probing and insightful, but I haven't heard a word. I can't stop staring at the place where your delicate gold chain disappears into your white blouse. I see myself fishing it out, tugging you toward me with one firm yank. The look of surprise on your face just before our mouths collide. The way you'll taste — lipstick and cinnamon. The texture of your silk blouse under my fingers as I tear —

Your gaze lands on me, wrenching me back to the present. For two seconds, I am whole.

When you move on, I feel a chill.

"What do we know about first-person POV?"

This time I hear the question, loud and clear. In a desperate plea to feel your eyes on me again, I blurt out the first thing that comes to mind. "It's intimate."

Your gaze locks on me. "That's right. Tell us more."

"It's getting inside the mind of the character," I say, gaining volume as I speak. "You're in them, inhabiting their psyche. The advantage is the reader feels close to the narrator."

"And the disadvantage?" Your graceful neck tilts forward half an inch.

"The reader feels close to the narrator."

This gets a chuckle; I look around, surprised. I never try to make people laugh. As a result, they're amused by half of what I say. I've learned not to take offense. Making people laugh is a good thing, though I've never figured out why.

"That's right. It's a double-edged sword." You reward me with the faintest of grins. There it is again. That look. Shrewd. Knowing. It's not a toothy, game-show-hostess affirmation. It doesn't say, You're good. It says, We'll see about you. I passed the very first pop quiz, and I'm allowed to stick around until further notice.

You're mercurial. You've been known to drop a student for consulting a cell phone in class. Your standards are so high you're legendary. Some people hate you for it. Even those who call you names, though, want into your workshop. We had to submit a portfolio and be interviewed by your TAs just to be considered.

"Now," you say, letting your gaze slide around the room again, "what about omniscient POV? What are the advantages of seeing everything?"

Nothing, I think. Who wants to see into every mind? Because let's face it, most people's thoughts are limp and useless. God, if I could see into the brain of that anemic girl in the corner with the facial piercings and the Raggedy Ann hair, I'd kill myself. Or the twitchy guy across from me who seems to be fighting a bad case of Tourette's? The girl at the head of the table who keeps flipping her highlighted hair in my direction? I don't want inside those psyches.

A guy with Justin Bieber bangs launches into an explanation of omniscient POV. You cut him off after three sentences.

"Let me hear from someone else."

Bieber-head wilts like a deflated balloon.

The girl with the cleavage and the highlights gives it a try.

You listen with a bored expression. "Not exactly. Anyone else?"

God, I love you. I have never been as happy as I am right now, watching you shoot these pretentious fucktards down with your laser-like intelligence, your uncompromising standards. So far, I'm the only one who's said anything of value. Of course I'm keeping score. How can I not?

"Omniscient POV is powerful when you want the big picture." I turn and notice, for the first time, the older guy with the shaved head sitting near the wall. He's in his thirties, looks like a vet. The tattoo peeking from the collar of his white T-shirt gives him an air of danger. It looks like an octopus, though it could be a squid or even a kraken. Hell, for all I know it's a clump of seaweed.

"Go on," you prompt.

"It's like film. You can move freely from one mind to another, unbound by time and space. It's the closest you can get to playing God."

Your smile is slow and sly. "Precisely why it's always freaked me out."

I hate Tattoo Man. He's lounging in your gaze, drinking in the smile you denied me, the look that says, You're okay, kid.

I scribble in my notebook, PLAYING GOD. Then I draw a line through it, pressing so hard my pen tears the page.

* * *

Here's the thing about Highlights and Cleavage: She has no idea how much I loathe her.

It's nothing personal. She probably has brothers and sisters, a prom anecdote, a story about her parents' divorce that will break your heart. She's struggled with bulimia, and once, in total despair, she carved an S into the tender flesh of her inner thigh just to make sure she could still feel something. She has a friend who died in a drunk-driving accident or overdosed on OxyContin. She has another who left everyone to become a model in Milan. She might even have an ex-boyfriend who got injured in Iraq.

Whatever. Looking at her, it's clear she's got a story.

I'm just not interested.

I know this isn't normal. She's wearing a push-up bra and low-slung skinny jeans that reveal the neon-pink of her thong. The blond highlights in her caramel hair are expensive and understated. She is money and sex, all the things I'm supposed to want. Yet, looking at her, I feel nothing except an arctic wind blowing through my chest cavity.

She sidles over, pushing a strand of hair behind her ear. "I'm Jess. In case you didn't catch that."

It's the second week of class. She is marking her turf. Her blinding smile makes me wince.

"Nice to meet you." I'm polite, distant.

"So formal." She laughs, her cleavage jiggling. How does her mother sleep at night, knowing her eighteen-year-old daughter's wearing a push-up bra and a visible thong, spending the family's hard-earned money getting an "education"? They must know she's reading more pregnancy tests than books, consuming more alcohol than ideas. I shudder. I'm only a few years older, but I feel a paternal concern for old Cleavage.

"You an English major?" I ask.

"Communications." She nods. "I want to go into PR."

"So why take a fiction workshop?"

"I might write a book." She shrugs, like writing a book is something you may or may not squeeze into your spare time, akin to yoga or French cooking.

"Nice to meet you." I turn away and head for the door.

"Hold on!" She says it with an air of authority that surprises me, her tone going from sugar to steel. "Come have a drink with us."

I look around. "Who's us?"

"I'm meeting a couple friends at McCallahan's."

McCallahan's is a pub a block from campus, a stale, seedy place where the smell of vomit's always at war with the sharp perfume of bleach. Its chief attraction is their willingness to take fake IDs without a second glance. I went there once. They won't welcome me back. Anyway, I'd rather carve my own eyeballs out with a rusty spoon than drink tepid beer with Cleavage and her circle of thong-flashing friends.

"Can't," I say. "Maybe next time."

"Who knows if I'll ask you next time?"

"I'll try to live with the suspense," I deadpan.

Across the room, you gather a stack of manuscripts and shove them into your oversized leather tote. Jess follows my gaze. When she swivels toward me again, there's a new expression there. Her jaw's tight, and her eyes glint with suspicion.

"Sad, really." She dangles the words before me.

(Continues…)



Excerpted from "Watch Me"
by .
Copyright © 2018 Jody Gehrman.
Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Title Page,
Copyright Notice,
Dedication,
Acknowledgments,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
Sam,
Kate,
About the Author,
Copyright,

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Watch Me: A Gripping Psychological Thriller 3.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
readers_retreat More than 1 year ago
Watch Me is a stunning psychological thriller that centres around obsession and what can occur when it becomes out of control. It is my first novel written by the author, Jody Gehrman, and ideal for fans of dark and twisty fiction. Kate Youngblood is disappearing. Muddling through her late 30s as a creative writing professor at Blackwood college, she’s dangerously close to never being noticed again. The follow-up novel to her successful debut tanked. Her husband left her for a woman ten years younger. She’s always been bright, beautiful, independent and a little wild, but now her glow is starting to vanish. She’s heading into an age where her eyes are less blue, her charm worn out, and soon no one will ever truly look at her, want to know her, again. Except one. Sam Grist is Kate’s most promising student. An unflinching writer with razor-sharp clarity who gravitates towards dark themes and twisted plots, his raw talent is something Kate wants to nurture into literary success. But he’s not there solely to be the best writer. He’s been watching her. Wanting her. Working his way to her for years. As Sam slowly makes his way into Kate’s life, they enter a deadly web of dangerous lies and forbidden desire. But how far will his fixation go? And how far will she allow it? A gripping novel exploring intense obsession and illicit attraction, Jody Gehrman introduces a world where what you desire most may be the most dangerous thing of all. The story is told from a dual standpoint - alternating chapters from the POV of either Kate or Sam. I enjoyed both of these characters as they were both as developed as they needed to be to tell a convincing tale. I found myself particularly liking Sam due to his darker, more troubled life. As most of my book buddies know, I am a huge fan of creepy books - the darker and more disturbing the better (usually) and would've definitely welcomed a further heightening of atmospherics throughout. Having read a load of thrillers with a number of them featuring the topic of obsession, I feel a valid way to differentiate this from the others would've been to make everything decidedly dark, dark, dark and much stranger with these things being blamed on the underlying obsession and the obsession blamed on insanity! There also could have been more of a backstory focused in on Kate's character and further utilisation of the situation to create more drama. That said, I found it an exhilarating and well-paced read and I would recommend it as a stand-alone psychological thriller. I would like to say a big thank you to Jody Gehrman, St. Martin's Press and NetGalley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest, impartial review.
Candace-LoveyDoveyBooks More than 1 year ago
Jody Gehrman walks readers through a story of obsession and desire. Watch Me follows young, brilliant writing student Sam Grist as he shares his observations of his teacher, Kate Youngblood. Kate is oblivious of Sam's obsessive stalking so when he shows up randomly and focuses all his attention on her, she's caught between doing the right thing or giving into temptation. It's interesting how the story not only reflects both Kate and Sam's point of views, but Sam's point of view is written as though he's speaking to Kate instead of readers. It gives the story that much more of a creepy, thrilling sensation. I though the story was just fine. While everything is falling away from Kate, she kind of let it shatter around her. I didn't think she was a compelling or redeeming character. I can't recall one thing she did to help herself. In fact, the weird guy following her around was much more interesting because I wanted to know what motivated him and what took him over the edge. I enjoyed reading Watch Me, but by the end I was just ready to move on to the next read. *ARC provided in consideration for review*
Deb-Krenzer More than 1 year ago
This is really a decent book. However, I was 40% into the book before something finally started happening. The suspense factor is there, but I am so over Sam by that time that there were parts of me that just didn't care to go on. It's like I was in his head for so long. I get it, he's psycho, but his ramblings on and on, a little much. I like the stories with Eva which told us his past and what he is. There was just too much of Sam's thoughts and ramblings. It was making me psycho. Thanks to St. Martin's Press and Net Galley for providing me with a free e-galley in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.
LauraMHartman More than 1 year ago
Professor Kate Youngblood is afraid she was a flash in the pan author. Her debut book was a rousing success that took her places she could have only dreamt about. But after a lackluster follow-up she doubts her ability to ever get that magic back. The most she can hope for is to keep plugging away on her recent manuscript while teaching uninterested students how to master the craft of writing that she once owned. None of them really show much promise until Sam Grist comes along. In him, Kate envisions a diamond in the rough that she can help polish to a brilliance that will reflect on her. She needs this to boost her self-esteem as well as give her job security. Without the worry of keeping her job, she can free her mind to recapture the magic she once had as a best-selling author with a dazzling new manuscript. Sam’s writing is gritting and often violent. He plots more than novels, and if his story turns out the way he envisions it, Kate will play a starring role. Unbeknownst to her, he has been obsessed with her since he read her first novel. How far will he go to make his dreams come true? Gehrman’s novel is written in alternating first person between Kate and Sam. This brilliant novel allows the reader to step instead each of the characters to experience their thoughts, needs and desires. It is easy to see how Kate becomes entangled with Sam as the lines between teacher and student blur. When Sam steps over the line, will Kate go with him willingly? Will she have a choice? Watch Me is the most intense, complex, unforgettable psychological thriller I have read in ages. Gehrman expertly draws the reader in like a moth to the flame with the complexity of characters and page turning suspense. I literally read this book in less than 48 hours because I could not put it down. DISCLOSURE OF MATERIAL CONNECTION: I have a material connection because I received a review copy that I can keep for consideration in preparing to write this content. I was not expected to return this item after my review. Copyright © 2018 Laura Hartman
LiteraryLitter More than 1 year ago
Because this book is told from the perspective of our two main characters, Sam and Kate, it gives us an in-depth look into their minds. The real value here is that we get to watch Sam grapple with his motivations. Not merely grapple, but make distinctions as well. The problem wasn't that they had sex. The problem was that he wasn't any good at it. Those distinctions make a difference in defining the character. For me, this study of humanity was absolutely fascinating. The main characters are both aspiring writers, so it was really fun to see Gehrman throw in parts of the real writing/publishing world. There's a scene where Kate is teaching about using different points of view and the purpose of each. At the same time, you really connect with the reason Gehrman uses the point of view she does in the book. There are lots of interesting correlations like that in the book. As a thriller, it was pretty solid. There isn't a lot of gore, but there's plenty of drama. The psychological aspect is really the key ingredient here. If you're a fan of suspense, you'll enjoy this one. However, if you've been traumatized by a stalker in your life, you may want to pass this one up for PTSD reasons.
Jolie More than 1 year ago
I wanted to like Watch Me. But this book fell way short of the expectations that I had for it. I could not connect with the main characters. The plot, while fast-moving, failed to engage me. I had so many unanswered questions, it wasn’t even funny. Watch Me is a story about stalking. Sam has fixated on Kate for years. Everything he did from the age of 19 was to get close to Kate. The closer to Kate he gets, the more unhinged he becomes. His fixation becomes deadly. Will Kate wise up or will she become Sam’s victim? I did not like Kate. She was a witch with a b right off the bat. Normally I would have liked that. I like strong women who don’t care what people think about her. But Kate, she came across as a jealous, bitter woman. I couldn’t connect with her. Even more so after she started to get close to Sam. She knew there was something off about him but she ignored it. Also, she did the stupidest things. Like keeping her passwords in a journal in her desk at school. Where it can be found. Who in the world does that these days? She was also unaware of her surroundings. So, yeah, it is safe to say that I didn’t like her. Sam started off with my pity. He had grown up under less than ideal circumstances. His childhood did effect him and it wasn’t for the better. I liked how the author didn’t bother to hide Sam’s stalking of Kate. Instead, I was given a ringside seat on how a stalker’s mind works. My pity of Sam did turn to disinterest towards the middle of the book. Sam became boring. Very boring. His character did perk up a bit towards the end. But it wasn’t enough. The romance part of the book creeped me out. Kate was actually having feelings for Sam. Even though she had a feeling that there was something off about him. I felt dirty after reading those scenes. The end of the book did creep me out. While events in the book did amp itself up in that direction, I didn’t expect them to happen. It also left a bad taste in my mouth because Sam did so much harm. I would give Watch Me an Adult rating. There are sexual situations, language, and violence. The stalking scenes could trigger some people. The end of the book definitely would trigger someone. I would not allow anyone under the age of 21 to read this book. I would not reread this book and I would not recommend to family and friends. **I chose to leave this review after reading an advance reader copy**
Always_Reading20 More than 1 year ago
This was just an ok read for me. The storyline was promising but much of the "action" was going on in Sam's head, and that was just not a place I wanted to be. I don't mind novels that are written from multiple points of view, but I found Sam's narration in secondary present first person to be a distraction. Maybe it's just me, and others will enjoy this story more than I did. There really wasn't much of anything "dark and twisty" as promised in the description. I mean yes a psycho stalker is dark, but as far as twisty goes you could pretty much see the path the story was taking, which was slow and straight ahead. I received an advance copy for review
Monnie777 More than 1 year ago
So I find stalker books fascinating. It's like watching a car accident, you know you shouldn't stare but you can't look away. I would never wish this on anyone in real life but in a book it's always interesting to read. I liked this book for it had both points of view in it. There were points when I wish the two main characters would get together but I think it was more of what Kate was feeling then what really should happen. I did enjoy this book from start to finish, like any book there are parts I could have done without but overall it was a good book. *Thank you NetGalley for allowing me to read this for my honest opinion*
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The best way to describe this book is this: picture yourself as a mouse being chased by a cat that never gets tired. Like a real cat and mouse pursuit. A professor and her obsessed and erratic student. What could be more delicious? The pages turn as you wonder what is going to happen. The plot develops over time and believe me, it is well worth the read. The teacher, Kate is recently divorced and perhaps looking for love. What she finds instead is not really love but obsession and a willingness to do whatever it takes to get what you want. Sam, her new love may not be all that he seems. Obsessed for many years with Kate, he finally sees his chance when he is accepted to the university where Kate teaches. What happens after that? I will never tell. Buy and read this immediately..
CrazyCat_Alex More than 1 year ago
If you like creepy stories with obsessive characters, like I do, this is the one for you. The story is told in dual POV and this gives a lot more insight to the mind of Sam and how obsessive he is about Kate. I chose to read this book and all opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased. Thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin's Press!
357800 More than 1 year ago
2.5 Stars. WATCH ME did not quite work for me, but there is a mystery to solve and I thought the writing good. In a sleepy college town in Ohio, we have SAM, a dangerous student with secrets, a stalker with an evil mind and an obsession with both his English teacher KATE and her murder mystery novel. The prose alternates between SAM and KATE throughout the entire novel with a dual person POV as each protagonist narrates their own story and feelings toward each other and their lives....which was ok. After a somewhat slow start, all was going along well until KATE makes SOME incredibly inane choices....choices that were difficult to swallow for an educated 38 year old college professor....choices she continued to make even after becoming aware of her privacy invasion. No matter how lonely or enamored she was with her handsome 22 year old undergrad student, the author lost me here. 2 Stars for plot....3 Stars for writing.
PennieM More than 1 year ago
Twisted, disturbed, obsession, stalker...all of these describe what is going on in this book and more. Kate is a little known author but Sam sees her picture on the back of her book and is captivated by her. This sets him on his quest to have her. Sit back and hang on, the crazy is about to be unleashed! **Received this ARC from the publisher via NetGalley**
Fredreeca2001 More than 1 year ago
Kate is a novelist struggling to come up with her next number one. To make ends meet, she is a professor at a small college hoping to receive tenure soon. Sam is just a regular student with a good bit of talent. Kate wants to show him the ropes of the literary life. Little does she know, Sam has been watching her for years. Kate starts out as a pretty strong, smart woman. However, I was a little shocked at how she allowed Sam to weave himself into her life. I expected a little more from her character. That being said, Sam….now Sam is a excellent stalker, which is why Kate allowed him to get so close, so very close. He does have a certain magnetism which attracts Kate and the reader! This is your standard stalking novel. It has many twists and turns that keep the reader glued to the story. Standard is the operative word here. It is fast-paced and intriguing, but nothing new. I received this novel from Netgalley for a honest review.
13835877 More than 1 year ago
3.5 Stars Watch Me is the first book of Jody Gehrman's I've read and I am left with mixed feeling's about it. The story was interesting and told in a very unique way. It rotated between Kate's first person point of view and Sam's second person point of view. The yous and yours of Sam's sections really helped pull me into the story. Kate was a character I couldn't connect with and the main reason I didn't rate this book higher. I really wanted to like Kate, but the majority of the time I felt she was rather annoying. Being able to connect or at least enjoy the main character is very important to me and a large influence on how much I enjoy a book. The plot itself was great and I enjoyed the writing style. If I'd been able to connect better with the heroine, I would have definitely given this book more stars. I voluntarily received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.
mamalovestoread22 More than 1 year ago
Sam Grist has met his "one," in his mind anyway, and has been planning their future for close to five years now, he is completely consumed with thoughts of her and starting a life with her... now he just has to work up the nerve to actually talk to her and formally meet her. College professor Kate Youngblood has hit an all time low, first her husband leaves her for another woman, a younger version at that, and now her second novel has tanked. She is lonely, heartbroken about her husband replacing her, and craves a little attention... little does she know she has drawn the attention of one of her students, and he has plans for her! When you settle down with this one prepared to have your mind toyed with and your boundaries pushed... Watch Me is quite an intense thriller!! It is certain to captivate your attention from the very first page, and with each page that follows the more addicted you will become, it had me teetering on the edge of my seat the whole way through. This was my first experience with this authors work, and I have to say I was quite impressed with what I found, her well crafted tale kept me completely enthralled from start to finish! Highly recommend this one, it's sure to take you on a thrilling literary escape!!
onemused More than 1 year ago
"Watch Me" is a thriller that follows a 38 year old professor (Kate) and her 22 year old student (Sam) in alternating first person points of view. Sam has been obsessed with Kate since he he stumbled upon her best selling thriller and has come to her college just to take her class. His obsession is intense and focuses every one of his sections. Kate is desperately lonely, having gone through a recent divorce and losing her best friend to an infant after an unexpected pregnancy. Kate is struggling to write her next book while fighting for tenure. She begins to like the attention from her student too much and slowly begins to notice something more sinister involved. This is a solid thriller, but it didn't have the oomph I was expecting at the end, perhaps because relationships were so complicated in this book. Sam's point of view was very creepy and extremely well done, but Kate's didn't feel as polished to me (maybe because she wasn't as put-together as a person). She began to grow towards the end, but early on, she seemed very innocent and naive, more so than I would expect for someone with her experiences (but this may just be me). The book has spans of great intensity and then breaks where it gets much slower and led me to put it down- it wasn't as fast paced as I expected. Overall, it was a solid thriller built around the premise of forbidden lust. I'm not sure I'd read again as it didn't really catch me, but I know it'll have a good audience elsewhere. Please note that I received an ARC from the publisher through netgalley. All opinions are my own.