Watched - Marina Budhos

Staff Pick

Naeem was in middle school when he moved to New York from Bangladesh. Now 18 and in the final quarter of his senior year, his grades have slipped and, like many teenagers, he’s made more than a few mistakes. Threatened with arrest and presented with a choice by local police, Naeem believes he’s being provided an opportunity to switch from victim to hero—but in a time of uncertainty, deception, cultural differences, and constant surveillance, who is truly worthy of his trust? Marina Budhos has crafted a thrilling coming-of-age story that provides a glimpse into the complexities of perception versus reality. Raising more questions than answers, Watched (Wendy Lamb, $17.99) ultimately demands that the reader consider one last query: What would you do? Ages 14-18.