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Stranger with My Face

3.90  ·  Rating details ·  8,632 ratings  ·  551 reviews
Laurie was at home, but her boyfriend swears he saw her on the beach with another guy. Her family insists they see her coming and going when she's been out of the house for hours. Who--or what--is taking over Laurie's life?
Paperback, 235 pages
Published September 1990 by Laurel Leaf Books (first published 1981)
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Popular Answered Questions
Man With No Name Depends on how young, I;m 18 and I find it more suspenseful than scary, but not knowing it's really scary.
Man With No Name I think that the real theme of the story is that some things are better to leave behind.

Community Reviews

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Average rating 3.90  · 
Rating details
 ·  8,632 ratings  ·  551 reviews


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Amber
Jun 15, 2008 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: margie
I read every one of these books I could find in the library in elementary school and junior high. Trashy yet enthralling. I associate them with the period of time I was convinced I could have superpowers if only I tried hard enough. I really really wanted paranormal powers-- particularly telekinesis. If it could happen to the girls in these books.. why not me?
Ken
Aug 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As ‘Teen Creeps Podcast’ are covering this book, I wanted to read it before the latest episode was released.
This is my first Lois Duncan novel, though I know they covered some of her other books. I’m slowly working through the back catalogue!

Laurie’s friends and family keep telling her that they have seen her in places where she can’t have been, as Laurie was ill in bed. So how is this mysterious stranger?
I really liked the set up to the story, it’s a great mystery that instantly hooked me in.
I
...more
Imogen
Aug 19, 2010 rated it it was ok
OH MAN it crushes my poor cold heart to sand to have to tell you this, because I used to borrow this book from the library over and over and over when I was in fifth grade and it's one of the things that really made me like books so goddam much, but it's just all about like "Native American people are mysterious and magical," which is not an okay theme. So sad! I was so stoked when I found it in a little used bookstore in Kokomo Indiana, because when I was little I think I just thought Laurie St ...more
Bren
“Life continues, and we all of us keep changing and building, toward what we cannot know.”
― Lois Duncan, Stranger with My Face


My 2nd favorite of hers second only to Daughters of Eve.

This book is genuinely scary and has remained so. Did a reread recently and I thin k it got scarier!

SPOILERS:

Can you imagine looking into the mirror..and your mirror image is not smiling while you are? Man..now THAT is the kind of scare I like. No blood. No gore. Just creepy scary.

Plus it is just an awesome story w
...more
Janie Johnson
This was a pretty good tale, and the first time for me to read anything from Lois Duncan. I have become intrigued with this Authors talent, and plan on reading more of her works in the future.

No the book did not blow me away, but it was still very well written. The story was very fluid and easy to read and follow. I was a bit confused at the ending and felt like I was left hanging a bit, like it seemed to be left open for a sequel, but I would have liked a little more closure though.

Our main ch
...more
HeavyReader
Dec 20, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: scary, young-adult
I read this book years and years ago. In fact, I wasn't sure I had actually read it until I saw the summary of it in Bitch magazine.

It's a really creepy premise. A teenage girl is doing astral projection and while she's out of her body, the sister she didn't know she had slips her spirit into the vacated body. Well, something like that happens. I may have the details wrong about who the girl who slips into the body is. In any case, the protagonist is floating around in spirit, watching some othe
...more
Paula
Feb 06, 2008 rated it liked it
I haven't read this book in a very long time. But I first discovered it when I was probably 10-years-old and I just kept taking it out of the library! I knew exactly where it was, what shelf it was on and it was ALWAYS there waiting for me. The librarians used to look at me and say, "Well there you go again Paula." This was my first introduction to science fiction (at least in book form) and it was awesome! What if your friends suddenly started acting strange and told you you did things that you ...more
Amanda
This wasn't my first Lois Duncan but it will probably be my last. Duncan's writing is dated and simplistic by today's YA standards. It just doesn't seem to cut it for more reasons than one.

The story was published in 1981 and it was very clear exactly where the author added updates. Not many teens would call a boyfriend's cell and then try calling the boyfriend's dad (many people no longer have landlines nor know the number of a friend's parent). Calling a parent Mother or younger siblings The Ch
...more
Lena
Apr 19, 2011 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: suspense readers and writers
I didn't know what to expect when I got this book from the library. I had heard of the author, but I'd never read anything by her.

Duncan does an amazing job creating suspense. It was SO HARD to put this book down every time I had to stop reading. It caught me and never let go--the pace is relentless. This should be required reading for suspense writers, because so many get it wrong. Duncan is a master.

That said, I didn't really care for the main character. I tried hard to like her, and succeed
...more
Michelle
Jun 17, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Here's another Lois Duncan book I read several times as a youngster. I remembered a few things from it and realized this book formed my love and desire to live:
On a sweet little island where I need to take a ferry every day to go to school and whatnot
With my house perilously perched on a cliff to take in the best sea views
Where I would write all day as a job on my typewriter, click-clacking away.

Sometimes I wonder what books are going to seriously shape my own kids' lives. (I guess you could say
...more
JenniferJ
Sep 10, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In one word - Freaky! I stayed up way past my bedtime to finish this story! It was really scary in a neat way. I totally freaked when she was sitting in front of the mirror and her image smiled at her and she realized that she herself was NOT smiling! Ohhhh I love it when things like that happens in movies and it sent a chill over me while reading it here as well!

I despised Laurie's so called friends and boyfriend. I'm like all they had to do if they cared at all was ask her family if she had be
...more
Kat Williams
Feb 12, 2015 rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf
I'm not going to waste my time reading this dated, often racist and size-ist, and altogether ludicrous teen novel. I bought it bored on a cold, empty winter day. We do crazy things when holed up in an ice cave for months on end. The purchase of this book is high on my list of wintry follies. Suffice to say I will never finish this. And now that spring is here I have no desire to have this sitting among my things, creating added clutter. Be off with you Stranger! I don't care about you nor your e ...more
Ludwig Reads
Apr 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
4.25 stars.

”Are you the one with my face?” I whispered.
“I came first.” She answered with a little laugh. “It’s you who has my face.”


I can see why this book was such a big hit back in the early 90’s. It’s original, scary at times, and just so wicked! This is a suspense thriller that follows 17-year-old Laurie Stratton whose world is rocked by the arrival of this new mysterious stranger in her life. I enjoyed the stunningly-executed paranormal scenes and also the setting of the story - a house pe
...more
Midnyte Reader
Lois Duncan is a huge name in the literary world, who has written many, (many, many) books and received many (manymanymany) awards. I Know What You Did Last Summer may be her most recognizable. However, I can't remember reading any of her books growing up, but I recognized her name when I picked up this audio book in the library. My other reasons for checking this out were 1) We don't have a huge selection in our library and 2) It was earmarked as Supernatural. I'm not sure I would really recomm ...more
Nykia Burdine
I haven't read this book since I was eleven or twelve years, and like most of the other people in these reviews, it was my absolute favorite book of my childhood. I'm pretty sure I read it about seven or eight times when I was in seventh grade. I was just so amazed by astral projection and Laurie's story in general. By the way, the Lifetime movie adaption was absolute crap, just like everything else on Lifetime. It did no justice to this beautiful book whatsoever. Just saying. Don't waste your t ...more
Andrew
Feb 13, 2017 rated it liked it
I really enjoyed the premise of the novel. It has some elements that will certainly hold a reader's interest: astral projection, evil twins, disfigured boyfriends, and the like. It's a fun little read, if you're looking for a short book to pass the time.
Nicole Collins
Oct 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
I read this in eighth grade over 20 years ago and loved it then just realized the author died last year rip your books were everything to me as a teen and helps remind me of why ive always loved reading!!
N.N. Light
Jun 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
I read this years ago and loved the suspense. I just re-read it again and in the exact same places, I shivered. A tad predictable and the story drags a bit. A gripping mystery that'll keep you guessing until the very end.

My Rating: 4 stars
Ashely Nicole
Nov 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-absolute-favs
Once again, Lois Duncan gave me a book I could not put down. I loved it! Can't wait to read more like it :)
Cara's Craftsations
3.5 The parents in this book are just horrible.
Knobby
Mar 18, 2019 added it
Another Lois Duncan from my past...

Like The Third Eye, Stranger With My Face was one of those books I read as a teen. It's suspenseful without thrill, and scary without gore — perfect for me! Laurie lives on Brighton Island in New England with her family, and has a generally normal life. When her boyfriend claims he sees Laurie standing on the beach when she was actually at home with the stomach flu, Laurie is perplexed. More and more of her classmates see "Laurie," and even her little sister M
...more
Laura
Jul 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Read this as a kid and think about it all the time. I could never remember the name but decided to google it today for some reason, lol!
Sophia
Nov 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sophia-s-shelf
I loved this book so intensely, it's so compelling and engaging. The suspense and pressure had me yelling out loud at several points. It's been a while since I've made a habit of reading for fun, and this was the perfect book to get back into it.
Gabrielle
The book was very interesting. It was very suspenseful and had several plot twists.
Rachel
Feb 16, 2018 added it
Rachel Wargo
2/16/18
AP Lang
Mrs. Smeenk
Book Review

Stranger With My Face is an amazing novel that i would surely recommend for many of my friends. This is a typical mystery novel that is exactly what the title is. This girl, Laurie has her life all put together. She has her siblings, and her great parents. She has her group of friends and the popular guy finally has a crush on her. As she goes through her daily life she doesn’t think anything could go wrong, until another her began to appear.
...more
Eileen Dierner
May 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
i absolutely want to read more books by the author in the future, but not in the near future-top many books, to little time
Anna
Oct 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Anna by: Emma Williams
While discussing the state of popular YA fiction, I was recommended this book by Emma C. Williams, author of 'World Enough and Time'. I pretty much straight away reserved a copy at my local library and after waiting several weeks for it to be ordered in, brought it home and started straight away. I read this in what probably amounts to a 24 hour period. I started it in the evening and finished it the following afternoon. I was just that hooked on it.

Laurie Stratton is just your everyday sixteen
...more
Pamela
Apr 10, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I read this book because it was chosen by the BookStore podcast and it was short enough to finish before their discussion. The podcast hosts chose it because they had read her books back when they were teens and wanted to reread one of Duncan's books to see how well it held up. Since I am older than they are I hadn't heard of Duncan but have since found out she was a very prolific and popular author among young readers. I enjoyed this book for what it was, an enjoyable suspense/paranormal novel ...more
Heather Conway
Oct 18, 2019 rated it liked it
WOW I never realised when I'd read it before in my teens, just how dated this book is LOL.
I mean you can tell Lois Duncan was old. I assume the way it's written is much like how she would talk... old fashioned midwest USA. My mother in law is American, grown and raised in Indiana, she talks the same way this was written 'I go with him' 'write me' 'now listen here' etc LOL
I almost expected to read an 'oh boy!' and 'hot diggidy dog!' like my husband's Grandma would say lol.
Anyway, other than the s
...more
Elaine
Jan 22, 2017 rated it it was ok
This book is young adult so I must keep that in mind with my review. I read it as a teenager and remembered it being one of my absolute favorites. Its kind of suspenseful and mysterious. But rereading as an adult I was thoroughly disappointed. I had considered giving it to my teenage niece since I remembered loving it so but I definitely won't now. Maybe its a product of the 80's but there is way too much teenage shallowness and focus on body image and judging - not a positive influence for a te ...more
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1,575 followers
Lois Duncan (born Lois Duncan Steinmetz) was an American writer and novelist, known primarily for her books for children and young adults, in particular (and some times controversially considering her young readership) crime thrillers. Duncan's parents were the noted magazine photographers Lois Steinmetz and Joseph Janney Steinmetz. She was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, but grew up in Saraso ...more

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Contemporary young adult literature has often led the way in depicting the real-life issues facing teens from all backgrounds. To delve into ho...
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“Life continues, and we all of us keep changing and building, toward what we cannot know.” 18 likes
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