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The Other Me

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Two lives. The one you wanted. The one that wanted you. Her birthday should be like any other night. One minute Kelly’s a free-spirited artist in Chicago going to her best friend’s art show. The next, she opens a door and mysteriously emerges in her Michigan hometown. Suddenly her life is unrecognizable: She's got twelve years of the wrong memories in her head and she's mar Two lives. The one you wanted. The one that wanted you. Her birthday should be like any other night. One minute Kelly’s a free-spirited artist in Chicago going to her best friend’s art show. The next, she opens a door and mysteriously emerges in her Michigan hometown. Suddenly her life is unrecognizable: She's got twelve years of the wrong memories in her head and she's married to Eric, a man she barely knew in high school. Racing to get back to her old life, Kelly's search leads only to more questions. In this life, she loves Eric and wants to trust him, but everything she discovers about him—including a connection to a mysterious tech startup—tells her she shouldn't. And strange things keep happening. The tattoos she had when she was an artist briefly reappear on her skin, she remembers fights with Eric that he says never happened, and her relationships with loved ones both new and familiar seem to change without warning. But the closer Kelly gets to putting the pieces together, the more her reality seems to shift. And if she can't figure out what happened on her birthday, the next change could cost her everything...


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Two lives. The one you wanted. The one that wanted you. Her birthday should be like any other night. One minute Kelly’s a free-spirited artist in Chicago going to her best friend’s art show. The next, she opens a door and mysteriously emerges in her Michigan hometown. Suddenly her life is unrecognizable: She's got twelve years of the wrong memories in her head and she's mar Two lives. The one you wanted. The one that wanted you. Her birthday should be like any other night. One minute Kelly’s a free-spirited artist in Chicago going to her best friend’s art show. The next, she opens a door and mysteriously emerges in her Michigan hometown. Suddenly her life is unrecognizable: She's got twelve years of the wrong memories in her head and she's married to Eric, a man she barely knew in high school. Racing to get back to her old life, Kelly's search leads only to more questions. In this life, she loves Eric and wants to trust him, but everything she discovers about him—including a connection to a mysterious tech startup—tells her she shouldn't. And strange things keep happening. The tattoos she had when she was an artist briefly reappear on her skin, she remembers fights with Eric that he says never happened, and her relationships with loved ones both new and familiar seem to change without warning. But the closer Kelly gets to putting the pieces together, the more her reality seems to shift. And if she can't figure out what happened on her birthday, the next change could cost her everything...

30 review for The Other Me

  1. 5 out of 5

    MarilynW

    The Other Me by Sarah Zachrich Jeng Twenty nine year old Kelly's life is not perfect. She's a poor, struggling artist whose work doesn't sell, while her wealthy best friend's art career is thriving. Still, Kelly loves her life in Chicago, it's her life, built on her choices, and she'd not giving up on making it as an artist. She's at her best friend's art show, when she walks through a door and POOF! That life is gone. Now she is graphic artist Kelly, who never took that scholarship to art school, The Other Me by Sarah Zachrich Jeng Twenty nine year old Kelly's life is not perfect. She's a poor, struggling artist whose work doesn't sell, while her wealthy best friend's art career is thriving. Still, Kelly loves her life in Chicago, it's her life, built on her choices, and she'd not giving up on making it as an artist. She's at her best friend's art show, when she walks through a door and POOF! That life is gone. Now she is graphic artist Kelly, who never took that scholarship to art school, who never met her best friend, who's art supplies have been left untouched for years, who is married to Eric, a high school nerd she'd barely knew in her other life. Her tattoos are gone, she has conflicting memories of the exact same points of time, and Eric acts suspicious, distracted, nervous, and weird. She remembers nervous and weird Eric from her high school days but now she has memories of being attracted to him. Her memories of this life are there but they don't seem real, not as real as the life she thought she'd been living in Chicago. This life might be nice, Eric might be nice (although he makes her uncomfortable), but how can she tell anyone about this shocking change without them thinking she is crazy? As Kelly searches for answers, even this new reality starts changing. Can she "fix" this? She knows time is running out because the old life is feeling even farther away and that's the life she doesn't want to lose. What does Eric have to do with this, how did he become the center of her life? I was fascinated with this dilemma. We may not like everything about our lives but to have those lives erased for something "better", a better that someone else seems to choose for us, may not be what is best. I do think that the new life had way too many people cluttering up the story. We didn't need to meet so many of Eric's family members because they did nothing to move the story along. Publication date: August 10, 2021 Thank you to Berkley and NetGalley for this ARC.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Jayme

    Wholly original, IMMEDIATELY intriguing and captivating! Chicago Kelly is a single Artist in Chicago-living her life-long dream of becoming an Artist. She lives a Vegetarian lifestyle, has an arm full of tattoos, two roommates and a cat named Meeks.🐱 On the night of her 29th birthday, she attends her best friend’s art show, enters the bathroom and suddenly becomes... Michigan Kelly, a married woman who gave up her dreams of becoming an Artist, to marry Eric, a guy she barely knew in high school, w Wholly original, IMMEDIATELY intriguing and captivating! Chicago Kelly is a single Artist in Chicago-living her life-long dream of becoming an Artist. She lives a Vegetarian lifestyle, has an arm full of tattoos, two roommates and a cat named Meeks.🐱 On the night of her 29th birthday, she attends her best friend’s art show, enters the bathroom and suddenly becomes... Michigan Kelly, a married woman who gave up her dreams of becoming an Artist, to marry Eric, a guy she barely knew in high school, who now works for a start up tech company named GNNI, (Genie)-Your Wish Is Our Command. There isn’t a tattoo or a painting in sight-but they have a smart house with a fridge that tells her when her water filters need changing and her mustard has expired, and they enjoy huge grilled steaks on the weekend while their dog Bear, runs around the yard...🐶 Ahh!! Life is good!! According to Eric... But, Kelly remembers her Chicago life. And, sometimes sees a flash of her tattoos in the mirror... How did she get here? More importantly, how can she get back there?? This book reads like a CONTEMPORARY story of a couple who each wanted something different from life-Told over 12 DAYS and 12 YEARS. I wondered if Kelly was real or AI. Was this a parallel universe, time travel, or something else entirely? I kept flipping the pages-eager to find out!! In a year where I have struggled to find books to capture my attention from page one and hold it through the final reveals, I am thrilled that this book found its way to me-as it has definitely been one of my most enjoyable reads this year!! And no animals were harmed in the making of this book! 🐶🐱 I cannot wait to see what DEBUT AUTHOR Sarah Zachrich Jeng dreams up for us next! Thank You to Elisha at Berkley for sending me a widget for this book, which I probably would’ve missed out on if she hadn’t! I received a gifted copy through NetGalley and it was my pleasure to offer a candid review! NOW AVAILABLE!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Nilufer Ozmekik

    Another brain cell fryer, nerve bender, mind number Sliding Doors meets Fringe with Russian Doll vibes kind of sci-fi without science premise! Hell yeah! Bring it on! Imagine 29 years old self attending a gallery opening/ birthday party, you move to the bathroom to put a distance from the noisy crowd, you just push the door and ta ta da daaa! Nope, you didn’t catch somebody in the act! Actually you didn’t even reach to the restrooms! You open the door of another alternative universe! It’s freak Another brain cell fryer, nerve bender, mind number Sliding Doors meets Fringe with Russian Doll vibes kind of sci-fi without science premise! Hell yeah! Bring it on! Imagine 29 years old self attending a gallery opening/ birthday party, you move to the bathroom to put a distance from the noisy crowd, you just push the door and ta ta da daaa! Nope, you didn’t catch somebody in the act! Actually you didn’t even reach to the restrooms! You open the door of another alternative universe! It’s freaking crazy, right? This is how Kelly’s story starts. At least she didn’t find herself at the restroom like Russian Doll’s Nadia Vulvokov to live the same night over and over again. Instead of that she finds herself at another version of her life, married with a guy named Eric she barely knew from high school ( they became history project partners but that’s all! They never see each other after high school, at least that was the story for Kelly’s life who were pursuing her dreams to achieve something great in arts in Chicago ) But interestingly she has recorded memories about her new life which comes into her mind as she sees new versions of people in her inner circle. Actually both her old and new life memories start merging which makes things more complicated for her. The mystery of the book kept me reading and questioning, brain storming about what might be the big secret about new timeline of Kelly is living. The story’s progression was slow burn and till I reach to the half of the story, I lost my focus a little, found the development a little flat but thankfully things get changed after the second half. Surprising conclusion of the story was a little foreseeable. I was expecting something more original and it didn’t answer my entire questions but it was still okay. At least it didn’t give us something illogical and not satisfying enough to complete the entire puzzle. I liked the unique idea and the way of mystery’s execution. Kelly is also relatable character. I hate the guts of Eric as you may imagine, who earned his throne at my most dislikable and perfectly punchable human waste characters. At some parts I wished Kelly should have left his not so sorry a*s and moved on her life freely. Overall: I’m rounding up 3.5 stars to 4 mysterious, mind numbing, intriguing, hooking stars! I liked the promising storyline even though the final was a little mediocre! It was still one of the most interesting reads kept my attention intact and pushed me to finish it in one sit. Special thanks to NetGalley and Berkley Publishing Group for sharing this digital reviewer copy with me in exchange my honest opinions.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Chelsea Humphrey

    "And now I know why the prospect of being ordinary scared me so much: not because it's unpleasant, but because it's so easy." Have you ever wondered what your life would look like if you had made a different choice, even if just a small one? Would you still have the same people in your life, or would you have journeyed down a different path altogether? These are some of the questions addressed in Jeng's debut novel, The Other Me. Please note, this one does have an "other natural" explanation to i "And now I know why the prospect of being ordinary scared me so much: not because it's unpleasant, but because it's so easy." Have you ever wondered what your life would look like if you had made a different choice, even if just a small one? Would you still have the same people in your life, or would you have journeyed down a different path altogether? These are some of the questions addressed in Jeng's debut novel, The Other Me. Please note, this one does have an "other natural" explanation to it; I know it seems obvious from the synopsis, but I wouldn't want someone to get the wrong impression in thinking this would be a purely psychological gambit and have a realistic ending to resolve the plot. Kelly is living her best life by her 29th birthday. She's pursued her passion in becoming an artist, and is currently a single, childless (by choice) woman who is supported by loving friends, and escaped the small town she grew up in. So why is it that, when walking through the door of the bathroom at her best friend's gallery showing, she ends up walking into another life? One where she never left Michigan, married a man that she went to high school with, and settled for a career she isn't passionate about? As you can imagine, there's quite a bit of suspense surrounding many mysteries in this novel. Why and how did Kelly end up in this alternate life? How can she find her way back to her old life without alerting suspicion to her friends and family without them thinking she's mentally unstable? And why is her husband acting so strangely? I love how we get to learn things as the main character does, and how memories play a large role in this book. I don't want to say too much, but this was a unique mystery to puzzle out. I did see where it was going fairly early on, but this didn't dampen my enjoyment at all. Well written, engaging, and particularly thought provoking about technology that doesn't seem all that futuristic in today's age, do yourself a favor and pick this one up. *Many thanks to the publisher for providing our review copies.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Michael David

    A bit of a grower, but definitely not a shower. Kelly is a 29-year old artist living in Chicago. She’s at her best friend’s art show. During the night, she opens a door that turns into… Kelly is a 29-year old wife living in her hometown of Michigan. It’s her birthday, and while she remembers her Chicago life, it seems she is stuck in some sort of Sliding Doors-esque world where her other life might not have happened… ...or are both scenarios legitimate? Sounds super intriguing, right? I’ll be brief A bit of a grower, but definitely not a shower. Kelly is a 29-year old artist living in Chicago. She’s at her best friend’s art show. During the night, she opens a door that turns into… Kelly is a 29-year old wife living in her hometown of Michigan. It’s her birthday, and while she remembers her Chicago life, it seems she is stuck in some sort of Sliding Doors-esque world where her other life might not have happened… ...or are both scenarios legitimate? Sounds super intriguing, right? I’ll be brief so I don’t spoil anything. I almost DNF’d multiple times through 45%. I unexpectedly gained a bit of interest after that. I still didn’t like the direction it went in. Some (all?) of the characters were so unlikable, and I had a hard time caring about them. I had to let suspension of disbelief run rampant. I didn’t fully understand the logic of the story when all was said and done. I just didn’t love it, but... Great writing from a debut author. I see promise, and I will grab her next book as soon as I can. There have been some phenomenal ratings/reviews for this book, so please read those too. 2.5 stars I kindly thank Berkley for a widget of the ARC in exchange for an honest review. Expected Publication Date: 8/10/21. Review also posted at: https://bonkersforthebooks.wordpress.com

  6. 4 out of 5

    Lisa of Troy

    The Other Me is a book about two paths diverging. One day, Kelly is eking out a living in Chicago, living her dream of being an artist. Upon her birthday, Kelly feels a bit sick and walks into the bathroom only to come out of the bathroom into a surprise party in another state and another life. Who is this person? Who is this Kelly who never left her small town in Michigan? What is going on and what will unfold? Will Kelly want her old life back? Can she get her old life back? This is a really im The Other Me is a book about two paths diverging. One day, Kelly is eking out a living in Chicago, living her dream of being an artist. Upon her birthday, Kelly feels a bit sick and walks into the bathroom only to come out of the bathroom into a surprise party in another state and another life. Who is this person? Who is this Kelly who never left her small town in Michigan? What is going on and what will unfold? Will Kelly want her old life back? Can she get her old life back? This is a really impressive debut novel by Jeng, and my feelings for this book are all over the place. First, I am incredibly biased because I hail from Michigan and loved all of the references to the great Mitten State. The main character, Kelly, was relatable: She had two lives, one where she never left her small town and one where she moved to the big city. The plot itself was pretty unique especially toward the end. That being said, there were a few things that I just couldn't over look. This book was evenly paced, and it should be cut in about half. The second half of the book was the better part. There were also way too many characters, too many brothers and sisters and cousins. However, in my opinion, these last two points really boil down to how good of an editor the author has, if you can find an editor who isn't afraid to give out honest review notes. Overall, an extremely impressive debut novel by Jeng although it is unevenly paced. *Thanks, NetGalley, for a free copy of this book in exchange for my fair and honest opinion!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Holly B

    3.5 STARS A birthday party, a time lapse, a door opening into another life. One minute Kelly is partying in Chicago and the next she is in Michigan. She had only stepped from one room into another. Her head is pounding, her memories fuzzy, her emotions disconnected. She begins to question what is real. Her memories aren't matching up with reality. I would have enjoyed more of the Sci-Fi angle with more focus on the tech company (Genie) and some of its world building aspects. This part intrigued me. 3.5 STARS A birthday party, a time lapse, a door opening into another life. One minute Kelly is partying in Chicago and the next she is in Michigan. She had only stepped from one room into another. Her head is pounding, her memories fuzzy, her emotions disconnected. She begins to question what is real. Her memories aren't matching up with reality. I would have enjoyed more of the Sci-Fi angle with more focus on the tech company (Genie) and some of its world building aspects. This part intrigued me. It also could have filled in a few open plot holes. This was still an intriguing, slow-burn mystery. A house of mirrors. Speculative fiction with some sliding door vibes. Thanks to NG and the publisher for my review copy. OUT on 8-10-21

  8. 4 out of 5

    Melissa (LifeFullyBooked)

    Inventive story for sure, a little confusing in the middle but with a decent ending. This is a tale of Kelly, a single artist in Chicago attending her best friend's art exhibition. She begins to feel dizzy and when she walks through a door, she is entering a surprise birthday party in her Michigan hometown--complete with her husband Eric. She remembers her life in Chicago with intimate detail, but she also remembers her present life as a homemaker/freelance graphic designer in Michigan. What happ Inventive story for sure, a little confusing in the middle but with a decent ending. This is a tale of Kelly, a single artist in Chicago attending her best friend's art exhibition. She begins to feel dizzy and when she walks through a door, she is entering a surprise birthday party in her Michigan hometown--complete with her husband Eric. She remembers her life in Chicago with intimate detail, but she also remembers her present life as a homemaker/freelance graphic designer in Michigan. What happened to her? I loved the puzzle of this tale, and although I knew there was no way it had a logical explanation, I still went with it because it was so intriguing. When all is said and done, the big picture wasn't as great as I was hoping, but in the end I really liked how everything wrapped up. The beginning was a bit slow while Kelly was trying to figure out what was going on and it dragged for a while. Then it picked up and I got more interested again. The reason for her split time memories was kind of convoluted and even though I got the gist of the story, I felt like it could have been more focused. As it is, there are too many people manipulating the situation so I got a bit lost. Overall though, this is a very creative story that is worth reading. I love a unique premise and this one certainly delivers. I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book, all opinions are my own.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Carrie

    The Other Me by Sarah Zachrich Jeng is a science fiction thriller. This one brings to mind things like Tom Hank’s in Big or Freaky Friday where characters wake up in a different bodies but this thriller is a woman finding herself in a completely different reality. Kelly is celebrating her birthday at a friend’s art gallery opening when she begins to feel strange. Kelly heads to the ladies room at the gallery but as she passes through the doorway she finds she stepped into a restaurant in her home The Other Me by Sarah Zachrich Jeng is a science fiction thriller. This one brings to mind things like Tom Hank’s in Big or Freaky Friday where characters wake up in a different bodies but this thriller is a woman finding herself in a completely different reality. Kelly is celebrating her birthday at a friend’s art gallery opening when she begins to feel strange. Kelly heads to the ladies room at the gallery but as she passes through the doorway she finds she stepped into a restaurant in her hometown where her whole family is gathered to celebrate her birthday with her. Some of the people around Kelly she hasn’t seen in years seeing that Kelly had left for art school right after she graduated. Then there is Eric who now seems to think he is Kelly’s husband. Eric had been in high school with Kelly but they hadn’t been more than friends. As Kelly takes in her new surroundings she finds she now has memories of two different lives and can’t figure out how she landed in this new reality. So I admit I’m a sucker for this type of story where a protagonist finds their life completely turned upside down whether it’s a wish to be “big” or another occurrence like we find here. The fact that our protagonist here had no wish for her life to change kept me on the edge of my seat waiting to discover how and why it had happened and taking in all of the changes around her as she discovered them. The ending to this one was rather thought provoking too after spending time in Kelly’s shoes during the story. I was rather surprised to learn that this had been a debut novel for the author so I will definitely be on the look out for more from her in the future after completely enjoying this first. I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley. For more reviews please visit https://carriesbookreviews.com/

  10. 4 out of 5

    J (Midnight Book Blog)

    I think this will be a good book for others, but the "big twist" wasn't really what I was hoping for. Actual rating: 3.5/5 Plot: The mystery was done pretty well, and while some parts of it were predictable, there were other twists that genuinely took me by surprise. The desire to find out what happened was really what kept me turning pages. However, at the end I was still a little confused by how Kelly ended up living two lives. Characters: I really wanted to know about artist-in-Chicago Kelly mo I think this will be a good book for others, but the "big twist" wasn't really what I was hoping for. Actual rating: 3.5/5 Plot: The mystery was done pretty well, and while some parts of it were predictable, there were other twists that genuinely took me by surprise. The desire to find out what happened was really what kept me turning pages. However, at the end I was still a little confused by how Kelly ended up living two lives. Characters: I really wanted to know about artist-in-Chicago Kelly more than married-in-a-small-town-Kelly. I very much disliked Eric, and even at the beginning his relationship with Kelly was unhealthy. I think that was the point, though, so in that sense he was well written. Overall: The big reveal wasn't bad exactly, just not what I was looking for. I think this would be a good book if you are more about the journey than the destination. Content warnings:manipulation, toxic relationship, murder, inappropriate minor/adult relationship: there ends up being a relationship between a high schooler and, essentially, much older adult (you’ll understand why I say “essentially” after reading). I don’t think it was romanticized, but it still gave me the creeps, just as a heads-up to other readers. Click here for the full review on my blog!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Dennis

    THIS BOOK WAS SO MUCH FUN! Sarah Zachrich Jeng's debut novel, The Other Me is one of the most bingeworthy books of the year! Completely unputdownable and juicy, this book completely got me out of my rut of reading some meh books lately. Sarah Zachrich Jeng, you've created a fan in me! The Other Me initially takes place in Chicago, where a local artist, Kelly, is celebrating her birthday. Her friend Linnea is more successful than her, but the friendship between the two is strong. Kelly see THIS BOOK WAS SO MUCH FUN! Sarah Zachrich Jeng's debut novel, The Other Me is one of the most bingeworthy books of the year! Completely unputdownable and juicy, this book completely got me out of my rut of reading some meh books lately. Sarah Zachrich Jeng, you've created a fan in me! The Other Me initially takes place in Chicago, where a local artist, Kelly, is celebrating her birthday. Her friend Linnea is more successful than her, but the friendship between the two is strong. Kelly seeks to eventually get her art into a gallery someday, but right now, she is just focused on enjoying her 29th birthday. During her birthday, Kelly all of a sudden has reimagined her life. She's not a Chicago-based artist anymore, but a wife to Eric and a graphic designer by trade. She now lives in Michigan with her fellow high school classmate. What has exactly happened here? Why does she have two lives but now questions the validity of both of them? She can't seem to shake which reality is actually who she is. And when things start getting more bizarre, Kelly needs to get to the bottom of it. Again readers, don't read too much of the synopsis. I hate when publishers flood you with more information than you need. The Other Me had some of the most bingeable writing I've read this year, I SAID WHAT I SAID. Although there are some corrupt characters at play in this book, I ultimately loved everyone. Which is weird to say when it comes to mystery / thrillers, because you usually don't get that type of characterization with the plot. I legitimately finished this in under 24 hours and it will be chalked up to Sarah Zachrich Jeng's impeccable writing. FUN, FUN, FUN. I can't wait to see what she has up her sleeve next. If you like Ruth Ware and Blake Crouch, The Other Me is the right book for you!

  12. 4 out of 5

    L.A.

    Two lives. The one you wanted. The one that wanted you.” 3.5**** Chicago Kelly is an artist with interesting body art and eccentric artistic friends. She is single and loves her life! Celebrating her 29th birthday party with friends, she walks out of one door and BAM!!!! She is Michigan Kelly. Married to Eric, a mixture and loss of 12 years of her life. Her husband works for a mysterious tech company GNNI. Her boy art appears and fades…weirdly. The Other Me is satisfying enough to finish but did Two lives. The one you wanted. The one that wanted you.” 3.5**** Chicago Kelly is an artist with interesting body art and eccentric artistic friends. She is single and loves her life! Celebrating her 29th birthday party with friends, she walks out of one door and BAM!!!! She is Michigan Kelly. Married to Eric, a mixture and loss of 12 years of her life. Her husband works for a mysterious tech company GNNI. Her boy art appears and fades…weirdly. The Other Me is satisfying enough to finish but did not blow me away. An interesting slow-burn mystery that doesn’t take long to probe the guilty culprit. Sci-fi doesn't usually interest me, but this was perplexing. Well-written and this debut author Sarah Zachrich is to watch. Thank you NetGalley and Berkley Publishing Group for this Arc in exchange for my honest opinion!

  13. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Adlakha

    This book has it all: Fast pace, superb writing, well-developed characters, and fascinating plot. It is the definition of a page-turner. On Kelly's 29th birthday she walks into an alternate version of her life that is completely unrecognizable. All she wants is to return to her former life, but as she starts developing memories of this current life, she has to face the possibility that that may never happen. The author does a fantastic job of bringing the reader along with Kelly as she navigates This book has it all: Fast pace, superb writing, well-developed characters, and fascinating plot. It is the definition of a page-turner. On Kelly's 29th birthday she walks into an alternate version of her life that is completely unrecognizable. All she wants is to return to her former life, but as she starts developing memories of this current life, she has to face the possibility that that may never happen. The author does a fantastic job of bringing the reader along with Kelly as she navigates this "other" world, and keeps the pacing and tempo fast and even. This is a must read debut novel from an up and coming bright new author. *Thank you to the author, publisher, and Netgalley for the ARC.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Jeng

    I'm biased (obviously) but I think this book is pretty great. I hope you'll love it too. Thanks so much for reading and reviewing! I'm biased (obviously) but I think this book is pretty great. I hope you'll love it too. Thanks so much for reading and reviewing!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Lyn Liao

    What a clever, beautifully written suspense book! The whole premise of time travel and being able to remember your other lives really fascinated me. The book reads so well and kept me on the edge of my seat, waiting to see what happened to Kelly's life and why she is suddenly in a parallel life than the one she was living. The twists were unexpected and the whole concept so smart and unique. It really makes you think about what you would do if you had a chance to redo your life, and if you'd eve What a clever, beautifully written suspense book! The whole premise of time travel and being able to remember your other lives really fascinated me. The book reads so well and kept me on the edge of my seat, waiting to see what happened to Kelly's life and why she is suddenly in a parallel life than the one she was living. The twists were unexpected and the whole concept so smart and unique. It really makes you think about what you would do if you had a chance to redo your life, and if you'd even want to. Definitely recommend this book as a must read!

  16. 4 out of 5

    India Holton

    This book was utterly captivating. I found myself so absorbed, I literally could not put it down, and afterwards sat for a long time, just soaking in the excellence of the concept, the writing, and the storytelling. A friend had recently read it too and we exchanged excited superlatives about how much we both loved it. The story and its setting have a mesmerisingly eerie feel which winds tighter and tighter until it becomes outright frightening. And then there are the moments where it hits you h This book was utterly captivating. I found myself so absorbed, I literally could not put it down, and afterwards sat for a long time, just soaking in the excellence of the concept, the writing, and the storytelling. A friend had recently read it too and we exchanged excited superlatives about how much we both loved it. The story and its setting have a mesmerisingly eerie feel which winds tighter and tighter until it becomes outright frightening. And then there are the moments where it hits you hard below the heart, leaving you stunned and breathless and certainly not able to stop reading. I could also write for hours about the layers of imagery, the depth of the messaging, and the role the reader is compelled to take in observing the story. One of the things I loved best was that it didn't just focus on the main characters' relationship. The heroine's extended family was included, giving her situation a poignant depth and increasing the stakes of her choices. It's hard to believe The Other Me is a debut novel, it's so masterfully done. I wish I could give it more than five stars. It's going to linger in my imagination for a very long time.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Max

    Fun thriller with a sci-fi twist. The Other Me reminded me of a modernized Twilight Zone episode and the memorable concept kept me wondering how it would all play out. I like a lot of spice in my domestic thrillers because you usually know exactly what to expect when you read one. A lot of authors never dare to dabble in science fiction because it usually ends up being overcomplicated and difficult to plot an ending, so I appreciate the new take! The opening twist keeps the novel fresh and kept Fun thriller with a sci-fi twist. The Other Me reminded me of a modernized Twilight Zone episode and the memorable concept kept me wondering how it would all play out. I like a lot of spice in my domestic thrillers because you usually know exactly what to expect when you read one. A lot of authors never dare to dabble in science fiction because it usually ends up being overcomplicated and difficult to plot an ending, so I appreciate the new take! The opening twist keeps the novel fresh and kept me engaged, and while never getting to Blake Crouch levels of scifi, the ending was satisfying. The Other Me was an exciting new approach to thrillers that I read all night! Thank you Berkley and Netgalley

  18. 4 out of 5

    Chris C - A Midlife Wife

    Wow. One different and strange story. Hard to keep up towards the end. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ This book is a cunning little number. It’s one of those slow burning, subtle drips of information story that takes you from one direction into another. The story is strange. I will straight up admit it. But it’s also intriguing enough that you have to keep reading. Even when you think you know what’s coming as the layers start unfolding, it gets weirder. I found myself questioning what I just read. The Other Me Wow. One different and strange story. Hard to keep up towards the end. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ This book is a cunning little number. It’s one of those slow burning, subtle drips of information story that takes you from one direction into another. The story is strange. I will straight up admit it. But it’s also intriguing enough that you have to keep reading. Even when you think you know what’s coming as the layers start unfolding, it gets weirder. I found myself questioning what I just read. The Other Me is definitely a very unique story that is an extremely compelling read. You keep trying to unravel the knots and you just find yourself wound up even tighter. Sometimes it is hard to know what is today and what is yesterday; what is truth and what is fiction. I’m not going to spoil it by telling you what the story ultimately becomes, but let’s just say it could be a true story someday. You just never know! Jeng’s imagination is wild and crazy but yet quite intriguing! * copy received for review consideration * full review - https://amidlifewife.com/the-other-me...

  19. 4 out of 5

    Donna Weber

    A resounding 5 Stars! From the first page to the last, absolutely loved this unique, completely captivating book! Review to come.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Christina

    The Other Me is nightmare material for this feminist. I loved it! I’m not sure how to describe this book without accidentally spoiling it, so I won’t. This is a good one to go in blind. It’s worth it. The story is a total trip. A bit of women’s fiction mixed with science fiction and a whodunit mystery. Wonderfully creative and thought provoking, The Other Me is enjoyable from page one.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Ali Hazelwood

    I AM MIND BLOWN. This book was so so so good! The premise was fantastic and unique (girl walks through a door and finds herself in another person's life--or, how her life would have been if she'd done something different 12 years earlier), but what I really loved was the fact that at the end of the book something supposedly magical and impossible started making perfect sense to me. Kelly is trying to solve the mystery of how tf she ended up in this different reality and of the different sets of m I AM MIND BLOWN. This book was so so so good! The premise was fantastic and unique (girl walks through a door and finds herself in another person's life--or, how her life would have been if she'd done something different 12 years earlier), but what I really loved was the fact that at the end of the book something supposedly magical and impossible started making perfect sense to me. Kelly is trying to solve the mystery of how tf she ended up in this different reality and of the different sets of memory she has, and every little thing that she does gives you clues about what happened, and the cues build and build and you get super excited because you're starting to piece together all the different players and all the different element and hints, and when you're 3/4 of the way through you're like "HA, I KNOW WHAT IS GOING ON HERE, I KNOW WHAT'S HAPPENING, I HAVE SOLVED THIS MYSTER" but no friend, you have not solved sh*t. The ending is pretty mindblowing, in the best possible way! Also, inside the mystery there is this commentary about the different roles women play in their lives and the lives of their families, and about how often they're not give the possibility to choose. The prose is tight and engaging, I loved Linnea best, truly an excellent read, 13/10, will buy for my friends who love thrillers and mysteries!!

  22. 5 out of 5

    Cari

    THIS BOOK. I started it last weekend but had to put it down because life got in the way. I saved the remaining half for a stretch where I had several hours, because I knew I wouldn't be able to stop. Kelly Holter is an artist in Chicago, where she's supporting her friend Linnea at her first big gallery opening. It's Kelly's birthday, and she's a bit disappointed that she hasn't had the same success, but she's happy for her friend. But when a bizarre wave of dizziness flashes over Kelly, she sudd THIS BOOK. I started it last weekend but had to put it down because life got in the way. I saved the remaining half for a stretch where I had several hours, because I knew I wouldn't be able to stop. Kelly Holter is an artist in Chicago, where she's supporting her friend Linnea at her first big gallery opening. It's Kelly's birthday, and she's a bit disappointed that she hasn't had the same success, but she's happy for her friend. But when a bizarre wave of dizziness flashes over Kelly, she suddenly becomes someone else. She's at her birthday, but she's back in her home city of Davis City, Michigan, married to a man she barely remembers from high school. Everyone tells her this is her life now, but she still has memories of that life she loved, which she left in Chicago. How did this happen, and how will Kelly get back to her old self? This central mystery is key to the plot, which unfurls at a breakneck pace as Kelly tries to puzzle it out. The twist is spectacular, leaving room for the characters to change and grow in the most epic of ways. Like DARK MATTER, this book is going to live in my head for a long time. I can't wait till it comes out!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Lindsey Domokur

    Whattttttttttttttttt? This book blew my mind. I am going to keep this review very short because I don't want to spoil anything. I went in blind and I suggest that you do too. Kelly is celebrating her 29th birthday at her friend's art show in Chicago when she starts to feel faint. She heads to the bathroom and blinks and she's in an alternate universe. She's at her birthday party, in her hometown, with her husband. A husband she barely recognizes as a kid she went to high school with. Kelly has m Whattttttttttttttttt? This book blew my mind. I am going to keep this review very short because I don't want to spoil anything. I went in blind and I suggest that you do too. Kelly is celebrating her 29th birthday at her friend's art show in Chicago when she starts to feel faint. She heads to the bathroom and blinks and she's in an alternate universe. She's at her birthday party, in her hometown, with her husband. A husband she barely recognizes as a kid she went to high school with. Kelly has memories of both lives fighting each other for purchase in her brain and she is desparate to find out what happened to her and just wants to get back to her real life. But what is her real life? Will she be able to just leave her friends and husband behind when she figures out what happened? I enjoyed this book because one of my favorite and most watched movies is Sliding Doors. Kelly knows exactly where her life splits off too. She knows it is on her 17th birthday. It was where her course changed. She remembers Eric, her now husband, asking her out and in one life she says yes, and in the other one she brushes him off. I had no idea what was happening. Literally no idea what the explaination would be for this happening. The story had me captivated from the beginning and I needed to know what happened. Thank you to Sarah Zachrich Jeng, Netgalley and Berkley for an early copy!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Darla

    This sci-fi/thriller is a new take on the "do over." Kelly Holter steps into a restroom during a bout of nausea at her bestie's gallery show and finds herself at her own surprise birthday party in an Italian restaurant. It's like the last twelve years of her life have taken an entirely different track. She is a single Chicago artist in one life; a married part-time graphic designer living in Michigan in the other. What has happened? Why can she remember both timelines while no one else seems to? This sci-fi/thriller is a new take on the "do over." Kelly Holter steps into a restroom during a bout of nausea at her bestie's gallery show and finds herself at her own surprise birthday party in an Italian restaurant. It's like the last twelve years of her life have taken an entirely different track. She is a single Chicago artist in one life; a married part-time graphic designer living in Michigan in the other. What has happened? Why can she remember both timelines while no one else seems to? Why do glimpses of other timelines fade in and out? As Kelly investigates she discovers a tech company that is taking risks that affect people in unexpected ways. This reminded me a bit of the Blake Crouch book, Recursion. Both are quite the mindbenders. They make you think about your own past decisions and the trajectories your life has taken. If you could go back and change one thing, would you? After reading this book, I think you might think twice. Thank you to Berkley and Edelweiss+ for a DRC in exchange for an honest review.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Cary Morton

    I received a copy of this book directly from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review. Talk about a journey. The Other Me by Sarah Zachrich Jeng wasn't exactly what I envisioned when I picked it up. I remembered looking at the genre and expecting it to fall into a very specific box, but as I read, I discovered the story to be so much more than that. The plot unwound slowly, bit by bit as the main character, Kelly, navigated this new, familiar, but… off world she found herself in, and I received a copy of this book directly from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review. Talk about a journey. The Other Me by Sarah Zachrich Jeng wasn't exactly what I envisioned when I picked it up. I remembered looking at the genre and expecting it to fall into a very specific box, but as I read, I discovered the story to be so much more than that. The plot unwound slowly, bit by bit as the main character, Kelly, navigated this new, familiar, but… off world she found herself in, and I was totally engrossed in her journey. The characters, for the most part, had a real depth to them - they were complicated people and they weren't perfect by any sense of the word. There was always a sense of unease underlying everything they did - making you wonder if they knew what was going on. The story was masterfully crafted in this way. The only real drawback to the story for me was that the main character's voice often made her seem detached. Sometimes I found it even hard to like her because she didn't quite feel human. She used a lot of thesaurus-words that didn't fit her art-student background, and it kept reminding me that it was an author writing this story, not necessarily a character telling it. All that aside, if you enjoy thriller books with time-travel, science fiction, or alternate reality spin to them, I'd recommend you pick this up. Despite how I felt about the main character, the book was well written and I thoroughly enjoyed the complexities of the plot.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Eliza Brazier

    We all sometimes wonder what our life would be like if we made different choices, but THE OTHER ME asks, what if it wasn’t our choice? On her 29th birthday, Kelly steps through a door to another life, the life she didn’t choose. She swaps her big city dreams for the life of a home town wife. She must fight to get her real self back, before she loses control of her reality for good. Satisfyingly intricate and genuinely innovative. Five out of Five Elizas!!!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

    I received a copy of this title via NetGalley. It does not impact my review. I thought The Other Me had an intriguing premise and while it was an entertaining read, I didn’t feel it fully lived up to it’s potential. The story opens with Kelly going to her best friend’s art show, feeling a little disillusioned with her own lack of success. When she steps through a door to another room, she suddenly finds herself in a completely different setting. She’s inundated with memories of a life she didn’t l I received a copy of this title via NetGalley. It does not impact my review. I thought The Other Me had an intriguing premise and while it was an entertaining read, I didn’t feel it fully lived up to it’s potential. The story opens with Kelly going to her best friend’s art show, feeling a little disillusioned with her own lack of success. When she steps through a door to another room, she suddenly finds herself in a completely different setting. She’s inundated with memories of a life she didn’t live. And she just kind of goes with it. While I was really invested in wanting to figure out what was going on, I thought far too much of the book was made up of Kelly comparing her memories of this life to her “real” life and wanting to go back. Very little actual plot progression happened until the final chapters. I also wanted a little more explanation of the futuristic, sci-fi things going on. There’s not a whole lot I can say about it without spoiling it, but I would’ve liked more time spent on it than the few flashes we get before the villainous speech towards the end. After that, I thought the ending was pretty anticlimactic and all the big lessons Kelly’s extolling are undermined by the changes she was able to implement in her own life. Overall, The Other Me had an intriguing premise and some addictive writing, but I thought it was really repetitive and should have spent a little more effort on the sci-fi aspects of the story. I was also hoping for a more explosive ending. However, I did mostly enjoy my time reading this and will be on the look out for what Jeng writes next. Overall Rating (out of 5): 3 Stars

  28. 5 out of 5

    Margarita Montimore

    Breathtaking, inventive, and irresistible... Who hasn't wondered what alternate versions of their lives might look like? Sarah Zachrich Jeng's The Other Me is as relatable as it is suspenseful, cleverly exploring adulthood, identity, and shifting realities. A knockout debut. Breathtaking, inventive, and irresistible... Who hasn't wondered what alternate versions of their lives might look like? Sarah Zachrich Jeng's The Other Me is as relatable as it is suspenseful, cleverly exploring adulthood, identity, and shifting realities. A knockout debut.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Chandra Claypool (WhereTheReaderGrows)

    What would you do if you were a tattoed Artist living in Chicago one minute and then BOOM, now you're a glorified housewife in Michigan... WHO GOES ON RUNS?! 😮 I really, REALLY don't want to say too much about this one or it'll just give it all away so I'm going to keep this short and sweet. Around page 80-something, I (weirdly) put a finger up ☝ and said outloud in my "haha" voice, _______ DID THIS! To fill in the blank, you'll have to read this story... and I really think you should!! Turns ou What would you do if you were a tattoed Artist living in Chicago one minute and then BOOM, now you're a glorified housewife in Michigan... WHO GOES ON RUNS?! 😮 I really, REALLY don't want to say too much about this one or it'll just give it all away so I'm going to keep this short and sweet. Around page 80-something, I (weirdly) put a finger up ☝ and said outloud in my "haha" voice, _______ DID THIS! To fill in the blank, you'll have to read this story... and I really think you should!! Turns out I was right (no paparazzi please 🚫📸) and I was unreasonably happy that I was... and I really loved the intricacy of what was happening throughout the read. I will say that sometimes it could feel a bit repetitive and there are definitely some plot holes but I don't mind creating fillers in my head for these. I also felt if this story stopped after Chapter 42, I would've been satisfied.... however, I really did enjoy that last chapter, some bowties are meant to be tied. This is a fun, crackling type of read - if you love psychological thrillers with a bit of sci-fi then absolutely pick this one up. Hell, do it even if you don't. 😉

  30. 5 out of 5

    Whitney

    The Other Me was a quick, sometimes suspenseful read, that ultimately fell flat for me. On her 29th birthday, Kelly suddenly finds herself in a different version of her life. Rather than being an artist in Chicago, she lives in her Michigan hometown, married to a man, she barely knew in high school. Although Eric adores her, Kelly knows that this is not her life and is desperate to get back. Determined to get to the bottom of the unexpected switch, Kelly attempts to learn more about the mysterio The Other Me was a quick, sometimes suspenseful read, that ultimately fell flat for me. On her 29th birthday, Kelly suddenly finds herself in a different version of her life. Rather than being an artist in Chicago, she lives in her Michigan hometown, married to a man, she barely knew in high school. Although Eric adores her, Kelly knows that this is not her life and is desperate to get back. Determined to get to the bottom of the unexpected switch, Kelly attempts to learn more about the mysterious gnii, a tech startup where Eric's best friend Peter works, and to discover if any shred of her Chicago life remains. Jeng's premise is unique and a lot can be said for the exploration of free will, particularly how Kelly's has been taken away. But overall, the story seemed silly and repetitive. Kelly spends so much time in her head, wondering which of her memories she can trust and whether or not she can love Eric. The explanation of gnii's technology is dubious at best and ridiculous at worst (an AI that taught itself to build a wormhole AND invent time travel?!). Some elements were predictable and some seemed to come out of nowhere. Some readers will enjoy this thriller, but it was a miss for me.

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