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Here's Looking at You

3.82  ·  Rating details ·  7,874 ratings  ·  730 reviews
In essence it's an ugly duckling tale. Our heroine Aureliana returns to school after fifteen years for a reunion. School doesn't hold happy memories for her, as being a roly poly Italian (known as the Italian Galleon), and always armed with a Tupperware full of pungent Mediterranean food, she was bullied incessantly throughout her years there. Now in her 30s, Aureliana wan ...more
Paperback, 432 pages
Published December 5th 2013 by AVON, a division of HarperCollins Publishers Ltd
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3.82  · 
Rating details
 ·  7,874 ratings  ·  730 reviews

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Nissa | Of Pens and Pages Book Blog
Crazy how one bad experience can reverberate down the years like that, isn't it?"

A Goodreads friend recommended this to me saying it's a bit of a Pride and Prejudice story, and when I read it, she was right! So, I'm reviewing this book as a Pride and Prejudice retelling. Thanks for recommending this, Olivia!

Anna Alessi is a beautiful, sexy history expert in her thirties who hasn't been successful in finding the one. Online dating isn't going swimmingly, with only polyamorous sexual deviants
Dec 02, 2013 rated it did not like it
What a disappointment.

While I enjoyed the author's previous book, "You had me at hello", this one made me mad enough to throw the book at the wall (if I was reading a physical copy of it, anyway). Positively RIDDEN with clichés!

- Fat girl bullied at high-school? Check.
- Bullies are super-skinny and popular girls with brains smaller than that of an ostrich? Check.
- Girl has a crush on the most popular boy in school? Check.
- Popular boy doesn't giver her time of the day and makes fun of her becaus
Chelsea (chelseadolling reads)
Jan 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Omgggggg. I devoured this. I loved how light and fluffy and hilarious this was while still having just the right amount of seriousness sprinkled in. While there were a few crude jokes in here that made me feel a little iffy, I still wholeheartedly adored this. I am SO GLAD I BOUGHT ALL OF MHAIRI MCFARLANE’S BOOKS.
Marguerite Kaye
Dec 16, 2013 rated it liked it
Note - this is a revised review and not the original.

I wrote my first review of this after finishing it in a rage at the way Mills&Boon books were used in the story, and decided not to grade the book because I knew that my view was extremely coloured as a result. Calm reflection and the urging of several fellow M&B authors made me get in touch with the author directly to express my concerns. I have to say, she not only took my concerns seriously, but took the time to express her own rea
Apr 05, 2017 rated it liked it
Hmmm this was more a tale of coming to terms with who you are and refusing to let your past influence your future.

This was witty and clever but the romance was lacking for me. They worked as friends but not as anything more I don't think. Not my favourite from this author.
Jul 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I picked this one right after Ive read How to Find Love in a Bookshop and I didnt regret it for a single moment.
Mhairi McFarlane has a great writing style and I enjoyed not only her characters and the setting, but most importantly the plot. Sometimes, or often, one of those doesnt match the others this one had them all. She even managed to write an ending that even I couldnt complain about. Definitely worth reading.
I never heard of this writer, apparently thats something I should be ashame
Dec 10, 2016 added it
I can't really express my views on this book in a rating, so I'll try for a review instead.

(some spoilers ahead)

This is the second book I've read by Mhairi McFarlane, and I only kept reading, because I liked the first one so much. This author really knows how to create rich characters and how to develop them. This can mean that I struggle with the beginning of the book, because the characters haven't gone through that development yet and aren't yet that likeable. They fuck up. A lot. And since
Feb 16, 2014 rated it it was ok
Yeah, whatever.

Dec 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
When Mhairi McFarlane‘s debut novel You Had Me At Hello was released, I remember thinking “that sounds great! I must read that immediately!”… and then I got swept up in my never-ending pile of books to read, and never quite got round to it. So when I saw it was time for her second book, I got straight on the case. After hearing so many positive things about McFarlane, I would not be missing another one!

Here’s Looking at You is told from two viewpoints: Anna Alessi, a history lecturer who was vic
Camilla Isley
I officially have a book hangover. I only recently discovered this author and went on to read everything she's ever written and now that I've consumed her entire backlist I feel sad... (I want more)

On to this particular book. I loved everything about it, well except Laurence maybe. It was a story with so many layers some humorous, some lighthearted, some romantic, and some though.
As you read the book Anna and James become your friends and by the end you feel part of a book family.
Nov 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: romance, audiobook
This was such a fun read. Anna was a compelling main character – I especially loved her passion for her job and the exploration of her relationships with her family. The romance was pretty irresistible – all the nods to Pride and Prejudice made me grin. I listened to this on audiobook, and the performance by Cassandra Harwood was great!
Nov 09, 2013 rated it liked it
Here's Looking at You actually really surprised me. I got what I was expecting: a romantic adult chick-flick, however there was an extra bonus of some genuinely funny humour and a reasonably good storyline thrown in. I haven't had much experience with the genre, so I'm not too sure how original it is, but I definitely enjoyed it enough to finish it, and it was a nice change from my usual genre.

Anna had a hard time in school, like most of us do. Bullied for her talents, mocked for her looks and h
Dec 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Some facts you might find helpful in contextualising this review:
- I finished this at 4:14 in the morning.
- Out of the last five books I've read, three have been murder mysteries.
- I am British.

This review is definitely going to be rambling, pseudointellectual and analytical, so if you hate either of those things, feel free to leave me my first hate comment.

Alright! Let's start with the negatives, before I move onto the gushing.
- It makes no sense that James has only got one friend, and a cra
Mar 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
‘Here’s Looking at You’ was Mhairi McFarlane’s 2013 romance novel – now having read, I have thus completed my pillaging of her backlist … and am now sitting with the rest of the bandwagon, waiting for information on her little-known planned February 2019 release. *le sigh*

So I didn’t LOVE my last Mhairi read, before this one, as much as I’d hoped to – ‘Who’s That Girl’ certainly didn’t leave a bad taste in my mouth (um. It’s Mhairi McFarlane, I think it’s impossible for her to write a bad book?)
Dec 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Read more reviews at What Danielle Did Next

While I adore YA and NA (most of the time) sometimes it's nice to change things up and enjoy a contemporary adult romance and remind myself why I adore the British and Irish female writers that dominate the genre. Mhairi McFarlane was a new to me author when her latest release HERE'S LOOKING AT YOU popped through the letterbox but now I can honestly say I'm an affirmed fan and can't wait to read more from her.

HERE'S LOOKING AT YOU is told from two POV
Jan 02, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Wrongfully I had a lot of expectations about this book as I enjoyed Mhairi's first one 'You Had Me At Hello' so much, however Here's Looking At You seemed to fall short of it's mark.

The story has been done before plenty of times but I was hoping there would be something unique in her take on it. It follows Aureliana who during her High Schools years was horrendously bullied and ridiculed by her fellow classmates on a daily basis, with the worst moment coming when she was tricked into going on st
Skye Kilaen
Jan 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 0-genre-romance
Romantic comedy/drama isn't really my genre, but I enjoyed Mhairi McFarlane's You Had Me At Hello quite a bit, so I checked this out next from the library. So glad I did. Anna, the heroine, had a fairly predictable story, but I was enthralled by McFarlane's portrayal of Jack. He's (probably) not an asshole at heart, but he certainly acts like one in many ways. Trash-talking people behind their backs, for one, including Anna's sister - and his defense of "I'm entitled to my opinion" is one I've h ...more
Jun 07, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: dnf
dnf at 15%

Man, oh man, did this book anger me. I couldn't even get through the first 100 pages without wanting to hurl. Well, I guess I could have forced myself; the writing is funny & clever and the main character is not unbearable.


all that was squandered on a "from fat to beautiful" rom-com. Yes, against all odds, this story is based on the protagonist losing a lot of weight to discover she's worthy of romance. Of course, per custom, even though she's incredibly hot now, she's stil
Jan 03, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2019
Super catchy and so much fun (I had to put it down on the plane because there were literal lols!). This would mean at least 4 stars but I don't know if I can give that. This is after all the story about a woman falling in love with the man who bullied her in high school now that she's not fat anymore. On the other hand, I was surprised by how well that was handled (YMMV a lot here of course). Really, it's not a typical makeover story and the severity of the bullying isn't glossed over. But on th ...more
Jan 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Very funny and at times very emotional. I think Mhairi McFarlane is a new favourite.
Fernanda Granzotto
Sep 18, 2018 rated it it was ok
This book is not bad, just very slow 😪
All the interesting parts of the book took forever to happen.
Is not a bad book just very slow and boring to read for the most part.
Dec 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Anna Alessi seems to have it all. She's beautiful, she has gorgeous hair, she has a great job and good friends. Yes, she'd like to find 'the one', but she's having fun trying to find him.

Anna Alessi used to be known as Aureliana. Aureliana was fat, she was bullied, she had no friends, she was unhappy. Aureliana suffered a humiliating 'Carrie' moment (as in the Stephen King story!) during 'Mock Rock' - a musical performance on the last day of school. So humiliating that she has never forgotten th
Oct 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing
'Here's Looking at You' is a wonderful, wonderful book. It is about Aureliana Alessi (she calls herself Anna now, though). When she was still in school, she has been bullied without a stop.
Now, sixteen years later and a few kilos lighter, she goes to a school reunion to show everyone her transformation and that they didn't get her down back then. There, she sees one of the bullies (and most popular boy in school, who she also had a massive crush on) again. His name is James Fraser and he doesn'
Nov 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: adult, favourite
Another Mhairi McFarlane that I absolutely adore.
Feb 03, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018, e-book

This book was a sort of a "Pride and Prejudice" retelling aka my favorite book of all time (and movie!!). It was fun for the most part but I wasn't a fan of the love interest.

Anna was bullied at school, she was the "fat", "ugly" and "weird" girl, unfortunately she had a crush on one of her bullies - James Fraser. He humiliated her in front of the whole school. Many years later she loses weight and becomes hulla attractive. She goes on many dates that end tragically. Then she has an opportunit
Oct 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: english, chick-lit
Fat 16 yo Aureliana is bullied relentlessly at school by everyone. In her early 20s she has a total make-over, loses all her weight, becomes beautiful, changes her first name to Anna. In her early 30s she meets one of her tormentors from school who she used to adore but now hates. He doesn't recognise her when they have to work together.

I bought this book at the train station from a clearance bin because I had forgotten to take a book with me on a longer train journey. I expected a cliché-ridde
*The Angry Reader*
Jan 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019
I thought this one clanged a bit at first. Maybe it felt a little self-indulgent in the beginning? I think i felt it would have the same vibe as You Had Me At Hello, and it didn't. James - our hero - went a little past being an idiot. He was more in the realm of hopeless wanker. But about halfway that became part of the fun. And yes - it is similar to YHMAH - McFarlane clearly has a writing style. But it remained different enough to keep me interested in what was going to happen next.
I'm curious
Rosie Read
Yes, ok, so the plot is a little clichéd but how many romance novels are entirely original these days? McFarlane manages to elevate the simple plot line into a throughly enjoyable and well developed novel. Anna is much more than the shy recovering fat girl, she's funny, witty and self assured. Sure she might undersell herself to the opposite sex but she's smart and quick witted - she is most definitely not a shell of a character. James, too, is a more complex character than you would expect; he ...more
Rea Cobb
Dec 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
You Had Me At Hello was an amazingly good debut for author Mhairi Mcfarlane I have been long awaiting her next release to see if she can match such a great book.

Here’s Looking at You is about the lovable Anna, she was a big target for bullying at school, as the tormenting grew worse there was one little shining light which was the school heart throb, James Fraser, has asked her to perform on stage with him but Anna soon finds out in a cruel way that James is like all the others and has just put
Oct 20, 2016 rated it really liked it
4.5 / 5 stars: this book was so much fun to read! i wanted a lighter book to read after missoula and this one was the perfect choice. "chick lit" is my go-to genre, especially when i'm in need of a pick me up. lately, things have been crazy busy so i found a lot of comfort in this book - when my life got too overwhelming, it was so nice to be able to live in anna's very different world for a bit.

i'd previously read mhairi mcfarlane's "it's not me, it's you" which i really enjoyed. i think i prob
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What's the Name o...: Chick-Lit book about a curvy woman [s] 5 66 Apr 28, 2014 03:36AM  

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Mhairi was born in Scotland in 1976 and her unnecessarily confusing name is pronounced Vah-Ree.

After some efforts at journalism, she started writing novels. It’s Not Me, It’s You is her third book. She lives in Nottingham, with a man and a cat.
“London was one of the worst places to have a bad day and one of the best places to have a good day” 9 likes
“an utter walkover with a man who can pen a pretty email” 2 likes
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