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This Strange and Familiar Place

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THESE ARE THE THINGS of which Lydia is now certain: The Montauk Project has been experimenting with time travel for years. The Project's subjects are "recruits" from across time, recruits like Wes, Lydia's ally, friend, and love. The Project is now responsible for the disappearance of two members of her family... And they're coming for Lydia next. This thrilling sequel to So Cl THESE ARE THE THINGS of which Lydia is now certain: The Montauk Project has been experimenting with time travel for years. The Project's subjects are "recruits" from across time, recruits like Wes, Lydia's ally, friend, and love. The Project is now responsible for the disappearance of two members of her family... And they're coming for Lydia next. This thrilling sequel to So Close to You explores how far we'll go to save the people we love - and what happens after you change the future.


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THESE ARE THE THINGS of which Lydia is now certain: The Montauk Project has been experimenting with time travel for years. The Project's subjects are "recruits" from across time, recruits like Wes, Lydia's ally, friend, and love. The Project is now responsible for the disappearance of two members of her family... And they're coming for Lydia next. This thrilling sequel to So Cl THESE ARE THE THINGS of which Lydia is now certain: The Montauk Project has been experimenting with time travel for years. The Project's subjects are "recruits" from across time, recruits like Wes, Lydia's ally, friend, and love. The Project is now responsible for the disappearance of two members of her family... And they're coming for Lydia next. This thrilling sequel to So Close to You explores how far we'll go to save the people we love - and what happens after you change the future.

30 review for This Strange and Familiar Place

  1. 5 out of 5

    Ally

    Wow. It's been a long time since I am completely excited about a sequel. (Perhaps ever since I read Unravel Me and completed it?) This Strange and Familiar Place is an amazing book that enchanted me from the very beginning. I thought I was going to hate this book (because of my particular dislike for time traveling books and multiple timelines). Instead, This Strange and Familiar Place (what a mouthful of words and title) went back to So Close To You and did a short recap whenever necessary. Fur Wow. It's been a long time since I am completely excited about a sequel. (Perhaps ever since I read Unravel Me and completed it?) This Strange and Familiar Place is an amazing book that enchanted me from the very beginning. I thought I was going to hate this book (because of my particular dislike for time traveling books and multiple timelines). Instead, This Strange and Familiar Place (what a mouthful of words and title) went back to So Close To You and did a short recap whenever necessary. Furthermore, This Strange and Familiar Place rarely caused any confusion for me. (It's a nice change for once. To not be confused in a book). The plot is crazy. Insane like The Blessed. And it goes by a lot faster than The Blessed, which is written is a shocking three to four hundred pages. And this book is only written in about two hundred and fifty. It goes nuts and haywire. And I love how fast the plot went, yet also how perfectly paced it was. Perfectly paced enough for me to not get lost. The wording of This Strange and Familiar Place definitely helped me keep up. Names and titles and obvious references were a great help when it comes to time traveling. I tip my gray and worn hat to Rachel Carter, who did a much better job in this book than So Close to You (aka and, in case you didn't pick up the hint, the first book in this series). Good planning. The ending is beautiful. Beautiful. I loved it and I want to know... Oh, I just want to tell you all and reveal everything. Unfortunately, (if you haven't read this book) you are going to hate me. So much that you'll send me to coldest pits. Lydia is awesome in this book. I love how her character is starting to show the tougher side of herself. I love how her naiveness (is this even a word?) is starting to wear off. She's getting better and better with each book. And Wes...oh...I love this guy. I love this guy. I love this guy. And I'm not going to tell you why because...oh...too many spoilers. Rating: Five out of Five -ofpaperandwords.blogspot.com

  2. 4 out of 5

    angelina

    What the heck? This book sent me in a roller-coaster of emotions. Wes and Lydia did feel off in this book - not sure why I thought that, but I personally didn't enjoy watching their interactions as I did in the first book. It seemed like their relationship went one step forward and then two steps back over and over again, and the repetitiveness of that got a little frustrating. Nevertheless, I did enjoy the plot of the book and I'm still recovering from the ending. Like seriously, what just happ What the heck? This book sent me in a roller-coaster of emotions. Wes and Lydia did feel off in this book - not sure why I thought that, but I personally didn't enjoy watching their interactions as I did in the first book. It seemed like their relationship went one step forward and then two steps back over and over again, and the repetitiveness of that got a little frustrating. Nevertheless, I did enjoy the plot of the book and I'm still recovering from the ending. Like seriously, what just happened? I'm still super excited to read the final book of this series and I hope that the characters will get some more development!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Cari Beth

    That plot twist tho!!!!!!!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Whitney

    I personally think that this series is one of my favorite series of all time. I love Wes so much and the couple chapters at the end made me shed so many tears. This book was a little slow, but it was wonderful to hear the continuing story of Lydia and Wes.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Alida Arabelle

    I want to give a review but I am too hungover. All I can think of is next books please. It was tooo fascinating. Wes I hated you so much u made me cry myself to sleep. But I love you still. Lydia you are one of my most Fav YA characters. You are so bold when weak too tough yet soft. And you remind me so much of me. Thank u carter for the love confession scene it fixed me up yet to break me down all over again that twist OMG!!!! It was already excitin nd u went and made me go crazyyy. You are one u I want to give a review but I am too hungover. All I can think of is next books please. It was tooo fascinating. Wes I hated you so much u made me cry myself to sleep. But I love you still. Lydia you are one of my most Fav YA characters. You are so bold when weak too tough yet soft. And you remind me so much of me. Thank u carter for the love confession scene it fixed me up yet to break me down all over again that twist OMG!!!! It was already excitin nd u went and made me go crazyyy. You are one underrated author Too good dear. You just gave me another major hangover. Ok next book here Moi comezssz.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘

    I really have to reread this series to review it. When I see the ridiculous amount of reviews, I'm just - well, you know... Because passed the first half of So close to you? Pure awesomeness. Any volonteers to go with me? I really have to reread this series to review it. When I see the ridiculous amount of reviews, I'm just - well, you know... Because passed the first half of So close to you? Pure awesomeness. Any volonteers to go with me?

  7. 4 out of 5

    Megan

    Not even a synopsis yet?!? Can't wait to see what happens next! Not even a synopsis yet?!? Can't wait to see what happens next!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Lizzie Hutchings

    Definitely better the second time I read it. I love the realistic fantasy that Carter created with this trilogy. I perhaps do not favor this book because of the plot and the writing, but I am in LOVE with the characters and their development throughout this book. This one may not be as exciting as the following book in the series and the former one, it still had me encaptured enough to read it in a single day.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jenni

    I liked this book, but it wasn’t quite as good as the first book, although once I got a little past halfway it started to get really good. I definitely suggest reading this, it’s crucial to go along with the first book!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Alexandra Bayer

    Lydia is back in 2012, but it's not the same time she knows. She may still live in the same house with her parents and have the same friends, but all of her relationships with them are different. The Lydia whose life she is now living was different. So when Wes, the boy she fell in love with when they were in 1944, comes to check up on her, Lydia knows that she has to do something to try and make her time right again. Posing as one of the Montauk Project's recruits, she manages to sneak through Lydia is back in 2012, but it's not the same time she knows. She may still live in the same house with her parents and have the same friends, but all of her relationships with them are different. The Lydia whose life she is now living was different. So when Wes, the boy she fell in love with when they were in 1944, comes to check up on her, Lydia knows that she has to do something to try and make her time right again. Posing as one of the Montauk Project's recruits, she manages to sneak through the time machine on a mission with Wes, back to the 1980s. There she finds her grandfather, who is missing in the 2012 she'd returned to, as well as her great-grandfather, whom she hadn't seen since her visit to 1944. Except neither seem to remember her, which makes helping them return to their proper times difficult. Lydia must be careful, because the Montauk Project always has people watching - and these people will do anything to keep their timelines safe from tampering. I was very eagerly anticipating this novel after finishing So Close to You. Although this book was very good and did meet my standards set after its prequel, I can't say that I enjoyed it entirely as much as the first book. I think that part of this has to do with the setting, and resulting characters. So Close to You was based in 1944 in a more rural setting, and most of the characters were Lydia's family. This Strange and Familiar Place was set in the '80s, in dirty New York, and the characters were children who lived on the streets. Even though there was danger to Lydia in the first book, the setting was comfortable. This story took away all comfort, and since the time was closer to modern, there wasn't as much excitement in the time travel aspect. The setting contributes a lot to my enjoyment of a book, so I definitely think that this novel's setting is part of the reason I didn't like it quite as much as the first. This novel definitely amped up the intensity though. Not even just the danger, but the characters, and the seriousness of their situations. There was a lot more depth to the main characters (and it's not like they weren't already well-written in the first book). In my review of the previous book, I mentioned that Lydia and Wes's relationship seemed very real. That stayed true for this novel, although there wasn't as much romance. There were, however, more problems between them, and more secret-sharing. I found that as this novel grew more serious, my reactions grew more pronounced. I wouldn't say it's uncommon for me to gasp out loud while reading, but it certainly takes a big surprise. This book had everything necessary to keep me hooked and on high alert. I really enjoyed how the ending was written, in both books. In the first book, it seemed as though everything would be okay, until there was a plot twist. That was enough to make me read this novel, but it wasn't so much that I lay obsessing over it at night. The same sort of ending was written in this sequel. There was a HUGE plot twist, but then there was a small section at the end that laid the readers' minds to ease, just slightly. I still want to read the next book, perhaps even more than I wanted to read this one after finishing the first. Although there are plot twists, which I normally dislike, they aren't so big as to make me temporarily hate the author for making me wait to read the next book. Rather, I can appreciate the timing of Rachel Carter's major moments. Although I didn't love this book quite as much as I did the previous one, I still did very much like it. I'm definitely going to read the third and final book, and I hope that Carter can sufficiently wrap everything up, because right now there are still many things left hanging. I would give this book a rating of four stars. I tore through it, finishing it very quickly (although it wasn't a particularly long book). I'd recommend this story to readers who are seeking realistic characters, time travel, and government conspiracies.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Dianne

    *Also posted at Oops! I Read A Book Again* Thank you to HarperCollins International for the review copy! This in no way affected my views of the novel. HOLY GODS OF TIME TRAVEL, I THANK YOU FOR RACHEL CARTER. With how SO CLOSE TO YOU ended, Rachel Carter left readers demanding about WHAT HAPPENED and WHAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN in the sequel. So when I got my hands on THIS STRANGE AND FAMILIAR PLACE, I dived into it immediately. Because I needed to know. NEED. And boy did TSAFP deliver on all my questio *Also posted at Oops! I Read A Book Again* Thank you to HarperCollins International for the review copy! This in no way affected my views of the novel. HOLY GODS OF TIME TRAVEL, I THANK YOU FOR RACHEL CARTER. With how SO CLOSE TO YOU ended, Rachel Carter left readers demanding about WHAT HAPPENED and WHAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN in the sequel. So when I got my hands on THIS STRANGE AND FAMILIAR PLACE, I dived into it immediately. Because I needed to know. NEED. And boy did TSAFP deliver on all my questions. But as great sequels go, it only raised even more questions and made me hungrier for more answers. I'm greedy like that. Lydia and Wes travel back in time to 1989 in TSAFP. Wes is in a mission and Lydia tags along, to be with Wes and to plot together his freedom. I'll be partly mum about the plot because not knowing is part of the fun. But let's just say that it deals with the changes our main characters did back in 1944 and them trying to right the wrong they've inflicted in the past. At first, Lydia's wary of changing the timeline yet again but then it seems like they need to and it's inevitable. On the conspiracy front of the Montauk Project, Lydia and Wes learn more about the inner workings of the project, which puts their lives in even more danger. More danger, more action and more stakes equals a tightly plotted and thrilling novel in our hands. Moreover, being in 1989, makes it Wes's original timeline. Lydia has been an open book since the first book but even after SO CLOSE TO YOU ended, Wes still remained as that mysterious boy. We don't know much about him. We know close to none about him. Being in his supposed timeline lest he didn't became a recruit of the Montauk Project, we got to see who Wes was prior to the project. Layer by layer, we got to peel off and get to know more of Wes. We got to read his playful side, his smiling self, and we even meet his friends back then. He's not just the mysterious boy now. More importantly, we also see Lydia grow. As I mentioned in my SO CLOSE TO YOU review, although I admire Lydia for loving her grandfather so much enough to risk her life and the whole world, it was also a bit stupid and insane for me. In here, we see how the changes she brought into the present timeline changed her as well. She is now more wary of changing anything as she learned that the hard way. I was looking for that growth in her and now I got it and I love it. Similar to SO CLOSE TO YOU, Rachel Carter has written side characters so fun and enjoyable to read about. LJ! Tag! Nikki! I love them all and it was sad to part with them. I just had a blast reading THIS STRANGE AND FAMILIAR PLACE because it has the elements I need to keep me reading page after page: characters I'm invested in, romance I'm even more invested in (WES AND LYDIA KISSING. OH AND KISSING AGAIN. I'm a happy reader.), questions I can't wait to be answered, mysteries I want to be solved, missions, issues on morality, etc etc. This novel just had me from start to finish. That pre-ending though??? IT GUTTED ME. But thank you Rachel, thank you for the ACTUAL ending. Like Lydia, I feel hopeful. Curious what I'm talking about and spazzing about? You sure are! So go now and read THIS STRANGE AND FAMILIAR PLACE. Astounding sequel, with even deeper and complicated mysteries and the subsequent reveals, and more challenges and obstacles to face for Wes and Lydia to be together. Gah, love this sequel even more and HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE? All time travel romance lovers, get on this series STAT!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Ruth Ho

    4.5 for this. I am so hooked on to this series. I absolutely cannot wait to read the next installment in this series. Why is Wes acting so cold to Lydia? What is the whole connection with Lydia and the Montauk Project? What is so special about her that makes her the only one who can solve this whole mission that the Montauk project was solely built for? So many questions without answer. Can the next book just come out now so I can find out what happens next? Omg I can't waitttttt! (view spoiler)[ 4.5 for this. I am so hooked on to this series. I absolutely cannot wait to read the next installment in this series. Why is Wes acting so cold to Lydia? What is the whole connection with Lydia and the Montauk Project? What is so special about her that makes her the only one who can solve this whole mission that the Montauk project was solely built for? So many questions without answer. Can the next book just come out now so I can find out what happens next? Omg I can't waitttttt! (view spoiler)[Lydia never thought she would see Wes again. Until the night he climbs into her room window and sets off together into a different timeline in disguise of "recruit seventeen", for a mission. In that timeline, every person that she has found, changed a little. There she found Dean, who can't (or pretends not to) remember her and his son. Her own grandfather can't remember her and is stuck in a hospital with no memories and a little psychotic disorder, fearing that the Montauk Project will come and take him away. Then they met Wes old friends, Tag, Nikki and LJ. Nikki tells Lydia, never to give up on someone like Wes. Because Lydia is the soft part of where Wes is hard. She is the one good thing that will make Wes good too. Ever since Wes came back to Lydia, he changed. He is hiding something from her, something that changed him from the inside. But finding out just how much he changed, was a nightmare. He turned Lydia in, to the Montauk Project. Claimed that he has been lying to her this whole time, about loving and protecting her. Lydia found out that Wes has been following her since the beginning, to extract her from her timeline into the Montauk Project. At least that was what Lydia was told. But when Lydia stumbles upon her future self with her beloved Wes, she thought to herself, she just might have hope after all. Wes can't be lying about loving her. He just can't. Not after everything that they've been through. Or can he? I am as confused as Lydia was when she was just turned in to the Montauk Project. Book 3, pleaseeeee, come out now. :( (hide spoiler)]

  13. 5 out of 5

    Kim

    Are you effing kidding me? I've just finished this book and, okay, Rachel Carter. I'm giving this a 4 star rating because, if nothing else, that twist actually hit me like a punch in the gut. I find myself heartbroken by twists fairly often. But it's rare when I feel sucker punched by one. So great job on that alone if nothing else. I'm fairly certain if you enjoyed the first book there's nothing here that would keep you from enjoying this one. I actually enjoyed Book 2 more. 1989 NYC is far more Are you effing kidding me? I've just finished this book and, okay, Rachel Carter. I'm giving this a 4 star rating because, if nothing else, that twist actually hit me like a punch in the gut. I find myself heartbroken by twists fairly often. But it's rare when I feel sucker punched by one. So great job on that alone if nothing else. I'm fairly certain if you enjoyed the first book there's nothing here that would keep you from enjoying this one. I actually enjoyed Book 2 more. 1989 NYC is far more interesting to me than WWII Montauk and the secondary characters I found much more interesting. Getting to know and learn more about Wes and his past was great too. Lots of sweet little romantic moments and a gut punching, tear your heart out twist. Yup. Sounds like something I like. I'm looking forward to Book #3. I am very intrigued as to (view spoiler)[ how Wes ever proves himself/makes up for his betrayal of Lydia. (hide spoiler)]

  14. 4 out of 5

    Andrea

    Once again I'm really surprised that I found a time travel book so interesting. I couldn't put it down! Reading back over the review of the first book in the series, I didn't seem to like Wes much. I liked him much more this time around. I believed in his relationship with Lydia this time. It was interesting to see how everything was connected. And to see how one little event in time can affect future events. I liked the side characters of Tag, Nikki, and LJ. They each had their own little person Once again I'm really surprised that I found a time travel book so interesting. I couldn't put it down! Reading back over the review of the first book in the series, I didn't seem to like Wes much. I liked him much more this time around. I believed in his relationship with Lydia this time. It was interesting to see how everything was connected. And to see how one little event in time can affect future events. I liked the side characters of Tag, Nikki, and LJ. They each had their own little personalities and I grew to really like them. The end really threw me for a loop. I was ready to throw my book against a wall. Luckily everything was right-ed (is that even the correct way to use the word?) in the last 3 pages and I was okay with it. I'm dying to get my hands on the third book in the series!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Mel Raschke

    This thrilling sequel to So Close to You explores how far we'll go to save the people we love--and what happens after you change the future. These are the things of which Lydia is now certain: The Montauk Project has been experimenting with time travel for years. The Project's subjects are "recruits" from across time. Recruits like Wes: Lydia's ally, friend, and love. The Project is now responsible for the disappearance of two members of her family. . . . And they're coming for Lydia next. This thrilling sequel to So Close to You explores how far we'll go to save the people we love--and what happens after you change the future. These are the things of which Lydia is now certain: The Montauk Project has been experimenting with time travel for years. The Project's subjects are "recruits" from across time. Recruits like Wes: Lydia's ally, friend, and love. The Project is now responsible for the disappearance of two members of her family. . . . And they're coming for Lydia next.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Maia

    GAHHH!!! Can't wait!! I lovvveeed the first book! GAHHH!!! Can't wait!! I lovvveeed the first book!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Kyren

    I liked it and can't wait for the next one. It ends in such a bad spot! I liked it and can't wait for the next one. It ends in such a bad spot!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Selena Yukino (The Lioness: hear me roar)

    Rating before reread: 4 stars Rating after reread 4.5 stars 2/25/17: Reread. 2/25/17: Finished with reread.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Kelsey

    The twists and turns keep coming in this sequel to So Close To You. These books keep building up so that I can't wait to find out how it all turns out. On to book three! The twists and turns keep coming in this sequel to So Close To You. These books keep building up so that I can't wait to find out how it all turns out. On to book three!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Lauren

    The Montauk Project id responsible for the disappearance of two of Lydia's family members and now they are coming for her. It was interesting to me how Lydia could go back into her life even though it was not really the one she remembered it being. As I was reading the beginning I realized how depressing and heartbreaking it would have to be to live your life as if nothing had changed yet at the same time everything did. I liked how the readers got to see more of Wes' story when they traveled ba The Montauk Project id responsible for the disappearance of two of Lydia's family members and now they are coming for her. It was interesting to me how Lydia could go back into her life even though it was not really the one she remembered it being. As I was reading the beginning I realized how depressing and heartbreaking it would have to be to live your life as if nothing had changed yet at the same time everything did. I liked how the readers got to see more of Wes' story when they traveled back to the 1980s. I did not like the era as much as with the 1940s but it did help to move the plot along. I liked how we got to meet some of Wes' friends that he used to know and how they further 'humanized' him for me and Lydia. The ending was just stunning!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Sunny

    Why I decided to read this book? The reason I decided to read this book is because of how the blurb on the back of the book hooked me into reading it, it was the way that the hook inticed me with such a titillating introduction that lured me into dwelling into the world of this girl. Which category on the bingo board this book completes: You should comment on the category too – why was it interesting (or not)? This story genre would be related to the work that we studied in class about survival, the Why I decided to read this book? The reason I decided to read this book is because of how the blurb on the back of the book hooked me into reading it, it was the way that the hook inticed me with such a titillating introduction that lured me into dwelling into the world of this girl. Which category on the bingo board this book completes: You should comment on the category too – why was it interesting (or not)? This story genre would be related to the work that we studied in class about survival, the way that this theme of survival is portrayed is how she is trying to research and uncover a secret yet, she is running for her life so that the secret agency of savages that will not hesitate to terminate her with extreme prejudice. My favourite quote from this book (and why): My favourite quotation of this book is: "The Project is now responsible for the disappearance of two members of her family" the reason that I like to savour this sentence is how it is structured to mystify the reader about what happened to her family, they have a chance of being alive. Hence, are her family members actually alive or dead? Something new I learned from this book is: The book is not always based on the gender of the character it is more their characteristics that they delineate during the events of the book, what I am just trying to say is that I get more information out of the character's characteristics more than what he or she is portraying in physical form, because the author is mainly trying to use "Show Don't Tell" and you can delve deep into the character's feelings of doing something inside the book. A character or setting in this book that was interesting to me (and why): A setting that was interesting to me in this book was the character's mind and thoughts, it was just the way that she thought stood out most to me because of how well described her emotions are and how it aids you in visualising what it is like to be in the situation of this woman. It can really get to you inside books when you are hooked into a book that you do not realise how connected you are to the actual character's thoughts.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    God damn it, Rachel. I thought we were friends. Seriously though, you’re so good at so many things; I just wish messing my heart and leaving me on cliffhangers wasn’t one of them. It took me awhile to get into this one, but I think that was probably because it had been awhile since I’d read So Close to You and my brain needed some catching up. Rachel is excellent at plotting, and her pacing is phenomenal, even if it does break my heart.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Kennady Drennan

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I feel be-trade, but I hope the next book is just as good!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Dark Faerie Tales

    Review courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales Quick & Dirty: Wonderful sequel filled with mystery, suspense and romance. I love this series and would highly recommend it to all young adult sci-fi fans. Opening Sentence: My eyes open. The Review: I wanted to start off by saying that even though I tried to keep this as spoiler free as possible there are a few spoilers from the first book in this review. So I would suggest that you read the first book before reading this review. Lydia Bentley has returned to a l Review courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales Quick & Dirty: Wonderful sequel filled with mystery, suspense and romance. I love this series and would highly recommend it to all young adult sci-fi fans. Opening Sentence: My eyes open. The Review: I wanted to start off by saying that even though I tried to keep this as spoiler free as possible there are a few spoilers from the first book in this review. So I would suggest that you read the first book before reading this review. Lydia Bentley has returned to a life that’s not her own. When she traveled back into the year 1944 she changed something in time that has had a very negative rippling effect to her life. Her grandfather disappeared years ago, her relationship with her friends and family is totally different, and she is a stranger to the girl she is in this life. There is only one person that knows the real her and she hasn’t seen Wes since she returned to her own time. When Wes suddenly appears in her bedroom one night to say goodbye for good, Lydia makes the choice to not let that happen. She decides to convince him to let her follow him back to the year 1989 and help him with his mission. She also wants to try and figure out a way to get Wes out of the Montauk Project for good so they can finally be together. That is the year her grandfather disappeared and if fate is on her side, maybe she can fix her future as well as save Wes. But the Projects have their own plans and Lydia is a big part of them. I completely adore Lydia she is such a sweet girl that loves fiercely and will go to great lengths to save everyone she cares about. The life she returned to was so foreign to her and it was awkward to watch her try to stagger through her everyday life. Once she reconnects with Wes she gets back to being the same Lydia that I connected with in the first story. I admire her determination and strength to always try to do what she thought was right. She doesn’t always make the best decisions but her flaws make her easier to relate too. I think she is a great character and I can’t wait to see her grow even more in the next book. Wes is just totally dreamy. He has put up walls around his emotions because that is what he has been trained to do, but with Lydia he starts to let some of those walls crumble. I loved learning more about his background and where he came from, it made him feel more realistic. He is very protective of Lydia and I loved watching their relationship develop. He is a great love interest with the perfect amount of mystery and sexiness. This Strange and Familiar Place was a great sequel filled with romance, mystery, and adventure. It started off a little slow for me but once things picked up, I found that I couldn’t wait to finish it. There were some big plot twists that took me completely by surprise in a very good way. I adore the characters and felt that my connection with them just intensified more in this book. Carter’s writing is so captivating and full of suspense that it is easy to get lost in her stories. Also, I wanted to mention how perfect the title of this book fits the story perfectly, and I just really like it! This is the first time travel series I have read and I loved it so far. The ending is complete torture, but fortunately for me the last book comes out in a few months. I would highly recommend this series to anyone that is a time travel or sci-fi fan. Notable Scene: “We can’t let them win.” I push my hands forward, as though the idea is a physical thing I’m holding out to him.”You know that better than anyone, especially after what you saw tonight. I refuse to let this be our fate—apart no matter what we do. I don’t know how we’re going to find a way out of this, but we can do something right now. We can choose each other.” He shuts his eyes as if in pain. When he opens them, there’s a look I never seen in his gaze before—something bright and wild. He moves closer. “You might be giving up everything. Are you sure this is what you want?” “Yes.” No hesitation. I hold my breath, waiting for him to send me away again. But then he slips his hand into mine. “I want to be where you are, too.” FTC Advisory: HarperTeen provided me with a copy of This Strange and Familiar Place. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Kayla Beck Kalnasy

    Review originally posted on Bibliophilia, Please. I was a bit "meh" in my review of Rachel Carter's debut novel, So Close to You , but curiosity got the better of me. I requested This Strange and Familiar Place to see if the series would improve. Did it improve? Not really (in my opinion), but this installment in the trilogy was more enjoyable for me, and I may have come to an understanding with the books. I know what you're thinking - that I've lost my mind. No, I've always been a bit Review originally posted on Bibliophilia, Please. I was a bit "meh" in my review of Rachel Carter's debut novel, So Close to You , but curiosity got the better of me. I requested This Strange and Familiar Place to see if the series would improve. Did it improve? Not really (in my opinion), but this installment in the trilogy was more enjoyable for me, and I may have come to an understanding with the books. I know what you're thinking - that I've lost my mind. No, I've always been a bit quirky in my book tastes. Let me explain why I liked this book more. (If you want to read So Close to You , now is the time to walk away.) Instead of finding myself irritated with Lydia giving up everything she has - safety, friends and family - in order to chase after the guy, Wes, that she met while messing around with the Montauk Project, I started to understand how much this book may resound with teenagers. Lydia messed up when she tried to change her past in So Close to You, and it cost her her grandfather. Instead of settling for living in the life that was not entirely her own, she chose to try to fix it. I think all teenagers will feel alienated from their own lives, family, friends, etc. and that everything has changed over night. I know I've felt this way personally in high school, walking into the cafeteria and being shunned by those who were my best friends the day before. It sucks big time and is a valid feeling. Though I doubt most of us won't go back in time and screw up our family's past, we can all relate to the feeling of separation. Lydia earned major brownie points with me by not accepting the situation that was handed to her. Sadly, I didn't really care for Lydia in this book. I had trouble connecting with her because I felt like she was doing everything for the wrong reasons. Instead of wanting to save her grandfather, I think her motivations for EVERYTHING were Wes, her instalove from the first book. He is her End All Be All, no matter how off-putting he tries to be. It is awe-inspiring that she is able to put and keep on her blinders to Him and Only Him in this book. I didn't much care for him because he's of the "it's for your own good" mindset. Puke. Am I being catty? I don't want to be catty. I did like the book. I did like the side characters that came into This Strange and Familiar Place while Lydia and Wes were hanging out in the 1980s. Did I not mention that? They were in the eighties for the majority of the book. Through Tag, Nikki, and LJ and their lives on the street, we get to see more of who Wes was before he was recruited for Montauk. They also brought the story itself to another level because Lydia learns that Montauk may know more about her than she thinks. Believe me when I say that I would've lost interest in the story completely without what the street kids brought to the table. To wrap things up, This Strange and Familiar Place was somewhat of an improvement on the first book and consistent with what I've come to expect from the series. Yes, I had some issues with aspects of the story, but I've ridden the series out through two books and plan to read the third one. - 3/5 Stars - To satisfy FTC guidelines, I am disclosing that I received an advance copy of the book briefly for reviewing purposes through Around the World ARC Tours in exchange for an honest review. The book was likely provided to the tour by the publisher or author, which has in no way affected the outcome of my review. All opinions expressed are rambling, honest, and completely my own.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Heather (Heather Hearts Books) Kilpatrick

    5/5 HEARTS on www.heatherheartsbooks.com This Strange and Familiar Place is a book that I received from Rachel Carter at a book signing at BEA 2013. I was so intrigued by the story that I got the second book even though I didn't own the first. I bought and tore through the first amazing installment in this series in a very short amount of time and was very grateful to have the ARC copy waiting on my night stand so I could dive right back into the amazing world that Carter has created. The So Close 5/5 HEARTS on www.heatherheartsbooks.com This Strange and Familiar Place is a book that I received from Rachel Carter at a book signing at BEA 2013. I was so intrigued by the story that I got the second book even though I didn't own the first. I bought and tore through the first amazing installment in this series in a very short amount of time and was very grateful to have the ARC copy waiting on my night stand so I could dive right back into the amazing world that Carter has created. The So Close to You series revolved around Lydia and her grandfather, who was obsessed with the rumored Montauk Project. In the first book, Lydia discovers that all her grandfathers "facts" -- that she'd mostly taken with a grain of salt -- were not only real, but even bigger than he imagined. After she descended into the Montauk Project's headquarters and found herself taken back to 1944, she struggled with whether or not to help her family, so save her grandfather from a fatherless childhood or to leave the timeline intact. But when she reemerges from the Montauk Project and attempts to return to 2012, she realizes that the timeline had indeed been altered, and she finds herself in a life that is most certainly not her own. A life where her parents barely speak, where she is an emo and sullen teenager, with a boyfriend she would never have chosen in the life she once led. When Wes, a member of the Montauk Project, finds her after a gruesome separation back in the 1944 timeline, she decides to leave with him, pose as a member of the Montauk Project, and return to the 1980s to help pinpoint where the timeline changes. Once again, she comes up against family members who are hers ... yet, not hers. And once again, she and Wes find their relationship to pulled in all directions and challenged by the fate that Wes knows is coming -- death, as a result of too much time traveling. Carter's second installment is even more gripping than her first. I was unable to put the book down and it had to come with me wherever I went. In less than 48 hours, I'd devoured the whole thing ... and was left with a slight book hangover, because I'm dying for the third installment. Carter's writing and the research that goes into each of her novels floors me. Her carefully crafted world and even more carefully crafted conspiracy theory blow me away. Watching her characters run across decades past is fascinating and thrilling. And she concludes the book with the perfect cliffhanger, leaving readers hopeful and excited for the final book. The third book, Wes and Lydia's final chapter, cannot come soon enough.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Brad Sells

    This review is entirely spoiler free, even if you haven't read book one, So Close to You. This Strange and Familiar Place is a very nice sequel, however, I felt that it was lacking in progressing the story along in certain parts of the plot. Though I had this problem with this sequel, it was still entertaining. I'll start with what I did enjoy about This Strange and Familiar Place: more questions appear and the stakes are raised to a new notch. Book one set up the whole conspiracy theory, but b This review is entirely spoiler free, even if you haven't read book one, So Close to You. This Strange and Familiar Place is a very nice sequel, however, I felt that it was lacking in progressing the story along in certain parts of the plot. Though I had this problem with this sequel, it was still entertaining. I'll start with what I did enjoy about This Strange and Familiar Place: more questions appear and the stakes are raised to a new notch. Book one set up the whole conspiracy theory, but book two plays on it and evolves it into something so much bigger than what the reader - and Lydia, the protagonist - ever imagined it to be. When there's an action scene in This Strange and Familiar Place, you're in for a wild ride that will have you glued to the edge of your seat. But my problem with This Strange and Familiar Place was the parts that weren't action-filled, and unfortuantely, there's quite a lot of them. Even though the book clocks in at just a little over 250 pages, the story feels very dragged out over parts - and the middle of the book felt filler, in my opinion. Nothing evolved from the plot in the middle, and I didn't find anything that pushed the storyline further. I am happy, though, that the ending of This Strange and Familiar Place saved the book for me. It was fast-paced, and there were things that really made my jaw drop. I just wish that there were more scenes like that consistently throughout the sequel. The ending did set up a very nice overview to the conclusion of the series, so I will definitely be checking out book three, Find Me Where the Water Ends. My favorite part about This Strange and Familiar Place has to be Lydia's character development. In So Close to You, she was very naïve to everything around her, but in This Strange and Familiar Place, she knows what she needs to do to take charge, and I really appreciated her character development. Carter did an exceptional job at building up Lydia's character, and I adored how she wasn't afraid to break her down. While This Strange and Familiar Place was just okay for me, it still grabbed me like book one did. I can't wait to find out how everything wraps up! Overall, This Strange and Familiar Place is a pretty good sequel with a slow middle chunk but an ending that makes up for it.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Paige Bradish

    I received This Strange and Familiar Place by Rachel Carter from Around the World ARC Tours and this is my honest review. This Strange and Familiar Place is the sequel to Rachel’s first book So Close To You, about a girl named Lydia who is trying to figure out why certain family members keep disappearing and from there she discovers the crazy government under ground that time travels. So in the sequel it basically picks up where book one left off. Lydia is living at home but things are very diffe I received This Strange and Familiar Place by Rachel Carter from Around the World ARC Tours and this is my honest review. This Strange and Familiar Place is the sequel to Rachel’s first book So Close To You, about a girl named Lydia who is trying to figure out why certain family members keep disappearing and from there she discovers the crazy government under ground that time travels. So in the sequel it basically picks up where book one left off. Lydia is living at home but things are very different because when she went back in time she accidently changed the timeline of her life. As you all know I love the whole time travel thing it totally fascinates me so I was so excited to get my hands on this ARC! I really like where this book goes, it is not slow in any parts it is full of I guess you would call it action. Lydia and Wes are always on the move from the beginning trying to solve the problem which is why did Lydia’s great grandfather disappear back in 1944. In the first book we get little glimpses of Wes and Lydia together but their relationship goes farther in this book which I love because I really like the two of them as whole because Wes is so like dark and hard and Lydia is so light and soft! Lets talk about Wes’ character for a few minutes shall we? In this sequel we got to see a lot more of him which was great! But throughout the whole book he was very different. He was still dark and mysterious but he almost seemed to be like falling apart in the book. But I thought that was good almost because it gave Lydia the chance to jump up and be his rock. I think one of the reasons why I enjoyed this book so much was because we get to go back and see Wes’ past we get to see where he comes from which was great. Carter’s writing is to die for! There were so many great descriptions in the book, I’m not going to quote anything because it is an ARC but there was this one part where she was describing the children that the project has kidnapped, and that paragraph was freaking awesome, I even read it aloud a few times when I saw it because I liked it so much. This book gets a 4 out of 5 stars, because it was great in so many ways!

  29. 4 out of 5

    Princess Bookie

    My Thoughts: I really loved So Close To You, it sucked me right in, and I read it quickly. I did enjoy this one a lot, but not quite as much as the first book. We are back with Lydia and she is trying to adapt to her new life. Things have changed quite a bit, and she has to deal with them in any way she can. They have altered events a bit, and people seem to be different, even Lydia herself. And, Wes is nowhere to be found even though Lydia hopes he can’t be too far away from her. She misses him, My Thoughts: I really loved So Close To You, it sucked me right in, and I read it quickly. I did enjoy this one a lot, but not quite as much as the first book. We are back with Lydia and she is trying to adapt to her new life. Things have changed quite a bit, and she has to deal with them in any way she can. They have altered events a bit, and people seem to be different, even Lydia herself. And, Wes is nowhere to be found even though Lydia hopes he can’t be too far away from her. She misses him, she loves him, and she wants to be in his arms again. Lydia is also still confused by everything that has happened. She misses her grandpa and wants to help him. When Wes shows up one day and tells Lydia some information she tries to figure out a plan to fix everything. She decides to go on a mission with Wes and find answers. They end up going together, and things are even more hectic. Wes seems distant and Lydia wants to know why. She also runs into her grandpa, and her feelings are haywire. She meets a new friends along the way, and I liked them! And, the ending, oh man. I want the next book now! I still really like Wes, even though he wasn’t as engaging in this one. I felt like he wasn’t as likable or as charming, at least for me. Overall: I still like the characters, the plot, and everything. But, I felt like something was missing maybe. The chemistry wasn’t as strong and I felt like the plot wasn’t as fast paced. I still enjoyed it alot but I felt myself losing interest every once in awhile. During the first book, I was excited to flip the pages, and this one, not as much. I’m still excited for the next in the series though. Cover: Like it. I love her long shiny hair and the weather and buildings in the background. What I'd Give It: 4/5 Cupcakes ______ Taken From Princess Bookie www.princessbookie.com

  30. 5 out of 5

    Kailey (Luminous Libro)

    The action really picks up in this second book, and there's none of that lagging-middle-book syndrome so common in trilogies. I read this book all in one sitting; I was completely unable to put it down for a second! So many questions in this book that need to be answered, mysteries to be illuminated, bad guys to take down, and naturally, romance around every corner. This time the setting is the dirty streets of New York in the 1980s. Wes and Lydia fall in with some homeless kids who are stealing The action really picks up in this second book, and there's none of that lagging-middle-book syndrome so common in trilogies. I read this book all in one sitting; I was completely unable to put it down for a second! So many questions in this book that need to be answered, mysteries to be illuminated, bad guys to take down, and naturally, romance around every corner. This time the setting is the dirty streets of New York in the 1980s. Wes and Lydia fall in with some homeless kids who are stealing and partying, and of course, running from both cops and government agents alike. The Montauk Project is a formidable foe, and the characters have to use all their brains and resources to stay one step ahead. Lydia is a bit less innocent, a bit wiser, and definitely smarter in this book. She's tougher, but manages to keep her good heart, her kindness and compassion, and especially her fierce spirit. Her insatiable curiosity is tempered with some caution now, but she's also taking risks in other areas of her life, most notably in her relationship with Wes. Wes is still such an enigma. I love the depth of his character! He relies on Lydia's blazing hopefulness as the counterpoint to his own cynicism. It was wonderful seeing him finally allow himself to relax a little and feel something, instead of keeping himself so closed off all the time. But still... there's so much delicious mystery surrounding him! I adore him! I loved the new characters, LJ, Nikki, and Tag. They weren't just faceless homeless kids who filled a place in the plot; they were well-rounded personalities that leapt off the page and into my heart! Wonderful writing! The pacing is perfect, the writing gives Lydia her own voice, and the character development is fantastic! I'm going to dive into the third book immediately! Love love love this trilogy!

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