Baxlala’s #CBR4 Review #28: Stranger With My Face by Lois Duncan
No lie, I picked this up after my research for one of my reviews led me to Lois Duncan which reminded me that I used to read the shit out of all of her books when I was a teenager. And yes, though it doesn’t seem like it, I do do (heh, do do) some research for all of my reviews, even if said research is done mostly on Wikipedia and Tumblr.
This contains spoilers, probably. I don’t know, I haven’t written it yet.
Anyway. The only thing I remembered about this book before my reread was that it involved astral projection and a kid with scars on half of his face. And a secret twin! With POWERS. Astral projection powers! Who wouldn’t want those?
Laurie Stratton is a beautiful young woman who lives on an island in New England. Her family is totally perfect but she looks nothing like them because SPOILER ALERT she was adopted, something she discovers one day after being visited by the astrally projected vision of her Native American twin sister YES THAT IS A SENTENCE I JUST WROTE. She’s pretty excited until she finds out that her twin sister might not have her best intentions at heart.
Laurie is also dating a total asshole named Gordon even though he’s completely not right for her, but he’s popular and handsome and she’s a teenage girl so DUH. But don’t worry, because Gordon is really just roadkill on the Laurie-Jeff Highway. Oh, Jeff. Beautiful, scarred, emotionally tormented Jeff. I shipped Jeff and Laurie before I even knew what shipping was, though I’d soon become more than familiar with shipping once I discovered The X-Files.
I remember reading this book and thinking, “oh, totally, astral projection, I’m going to do that,” because it was in this book, right, and in the book they read other books about how to project on the astral plane and shit, so it MUST be doable. I mean, IT’S IN A BOOK. And so I would spend hours (OK, minutes) lying in bed in the semi-dark with my eyes closed, wondering when I’d snap out of my body and be able to go roaming the world with my new powers but instead I’d fall asleep and wake up the next morning and have to go to school LIKE A CHUMP without ever having traveled to the moon or Area 51 or Jonathan Taylor Thomas’s house or wherever the fuck 12-year-olds wanted to go in 1994.
I seem to remember this book being way more complicated than it really is, which is somewhat comforting because that hopefully means my brain has matured since then, but it was still a fun enough read that I picked up a few other Lois Duncan books from my childhood. And though I don’t think any of them involve astral projection in any way, I’m pretty sure there are spooky elements to all of them. Bring it, Duncan!