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Here's Looking at You

Narrated by: Cassandra Harwood
Length: 10 hrs and 55 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (45 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The new novel from the bestselling author of You Had Me At Hello.

Anna Alessi - history expert, possessor of a lot of hair and an occasionally filthy mouth - seeks nice man for intelligent conversation and Mills & Boon moments.

Despite the oddballs that keep turning up on her dates, Anna couldn't be happier. As a 30-something with a job she loves, life has turned out better than she dared dream.

However, things weren't always this way, and her years spent as the ‘Italian Galleon' of an East London comprehensive are ones she'd rather forget. So when James Fraser - the architect of Anna's final humiliation at school - walks back into her life, her world is turned upside down.

But James seems a changed man. Polite. Mature. Funny, even. People can change, right? So why does Anna feel like she's a fool to trust him?

Hilarious and poignant, Here's Looking At You will have you laughing one minute and crying the next. The new must-read novel from #1 bestseller Mhairi McFarlane.

©2013 Mhairi McFarlane (P)2013 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic Reviews

"Very very witty and funny. Left me in awe…a total gem." (Marian Keyes)
"The funniest, most romantic book I've read since One Day." (Lisa Jewell)
"I loved this book. It made me laugh and reminded me that anything's possible in love - and in everything else for that matter." (Minnie Driver)
"I loved this: an original, genuinely funny, genuinely moving, modern love story." (Katy Regan)
"Mhairi is darkly funny and quite, quite rude… You Had Me at Hello is a breath of tart, Northern air." (Sarra Manning)
"Bitingly sharp and achingly funny…guaranteed to have you bent double. I absolutely loved it!" (Claudia Carroll)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Painfully uneventful

3 stars due to the occasional LOL this book provides. I listened all the way to end the end in anticipation of this book’s redemption. It did not come.
I bought this right after finishing Mhairi McFarlane’s Don’t You Forget About Me- the best audiobook I have ever listened to!! So perhaps my expectations were set much too high.

2 people found this helpful

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Modern pride and prejudice

I had no idea when I started listening but early on I thought there were similarities to the Jane Austen Classic and the further I listened the more and more it became apparent. I am not sure why it is never mentioned in reviews or the details. It’s an excellent modern adaptation to the classic story.

1 person found this helpful

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Another lovely ready by Mhairi McFarlane

Lovely, easy read with very good narration. Well worth a listen. I’m a sucker for second chances.

1 person found this helpful

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Predictable

A very predictable story line. Found it hard to like to the main male character so was profoundly put off from the start. Definitely not Mhairi McFarlnes best.

1 person found this helpful

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Another glorioud romance from Mhairi

I struggled listening to this romance told in the third person. The narrator paused after each speaking part before saying Anna said, or James said, etc. I couldn't tell who was speaking sometimes as the voices weren't terribly different. Horrible accents. BUT I COULD'T STOP LISTENING AS THE STORY WAS SO ENJOYABLE. I'm so glad I stayed with it, I got used to the narration by the end, and enjoyed the romance.

The life affirmations are part of Mhairi's stories, and its good to hear myself, my voice, in her. I've always been THAT person from whom people sought advice, and then commented "you should write a book". I don't need to, I can share Mhairi's books for them to enjoy!

1 person found this helpful

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Disappointing

This isn't Mhairi McFarlane's best work. I struggled to connect with the characters so didn't feel too invested in the outcome. There was one powerful scene where Anna spells out the impact of the school bullying she endured, but apart from that, nothing really memorable happens. I got to the end of the book feeling a bit disappointed. I didn't mind Cassandra Harwood's performance.

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Perfect Read

What great chick lit .. it ticks all of the boxes .. this author is now my new 'must follow' .. and I will.

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  • Sharey
  • 24-05-2016

It Grows On You

It took me a little bit to appreciate this book because my initial impression was that it was just fluff. Maybe it was fluff, but it was also a sweet, endearing story written with the verbal wit of Nick Spalding that's a lot of lighthearted fun. I'm still thinking he actually wrote this under a pen name. The style and tone are identical.

While the narrator is excellent, her strong accent, while adding to the humor in places, also caused me to consistently not understand some words here and there.

What began as 2 stars grew to 5. A cute, clever, little feel-good respite from the stresses of daily life.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Aimee
  • 24-07-2014

Here's looking at you

Any additional comments?

It was ok. I was really looking forward to listening to this book because the synopsis read really well. I struggled to stay focused when listening to the book and I didn't spark with the characters. It was a similar story line to my all time favourite book "you don't have to say you love me" by Sarra Manning. Maybe if I had listened to this book before my favourite one I might have enjoyed it more. I think I spent a lot of time comparing the 2 books.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Wren Recommends
  • 20-04-2016

Bridget Jones Fans - This Doesn't Disappoint

Would you listen to Here's Looking at You again? Why?

I've listened to the ending twice. The book was laugh out loud funny and heartwarming with characters you root for. I'd listen again just for the humour.

What did you like best about this story?

Sharp, witty dialogue, well-written and let's face it, how many history professors are the subject of romance novels. Loved that!

What does Cassandra Harwood bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Perfect with the accents that helped me imagine how the characters were actually speaking. She did a great job.

Who was the most memorable character of Here's Looking at You and why?

Honestly, they all were, though I particularly liked Anna and James.

Any additional comments?

I would prefer to write my own review instead of guided questions which make me feel like I'm in Junior High.

4 people found this helpful

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  • LoCFo22
  • 18-03-2017

Made me laugh out loud so much!

Many priceless quotes in this book! I'm going to have to re-read to find all the things I want to repeat! I really enjoyed it after it got going! It wasn't slow, but really became excellent 1/3 of the way into it. The characters are all likeable! Narrator is fantastic! I never review, but I was surprised that I loved this one.

2 people found this helpful

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  • MHR
  • 14-03-2016

Fun but predictable read

Fun (although predictable) story if you are a fan of British chick lit. Great performance by Cassandra Harwood--terrific job with the British accents.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Catherine
  • 07-02-2020

Well written, good read

Anna’s self image is scarred by being bullied during her school years. The feelings she expresses and choices she makes in coping with the situations confronting her ring true and take this romcom to a deeper level.

The dialogue is clever and the characters are very likable. Characters learn to take responsibility for the consequences of their words and actions, and they grow as human beings over the course of the story. All in all, it is a hopeful story about witty, endearing people.

I felt like a notable percentage of the witticisms went over my head though because the pop culture references were clearly written for Brits under age 40. Along with not catching all the cultural references, the narrator is very British with a thick accent. It took a little time to get tuned into her pronunciation so I could focus on what she was saying rather than how she said it.

I recommend this book.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 24-01-2020

make a movie of it PLEASE!!!!<br />

This is, by far, my favorite book I have listened to. There was enough depth to the plot that it didn't feel predictable. There are some hilariously funny things throughout the book....the quick witted comments had me laughing HARD!!! If they made a movie from this book I would watch the calendar for the release date!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Kate
  • 19-04-2020

Similar to the author’s other book—could be triggering for some

I have also listened to “Don’t You Forget About Me” by McFarlane. They have the same configuration in terms of characters. The main character has similar hang ups about high school, same family structure, same friend group. This is a decently entertaining listen, but not recommended to do back to back with her other books due to resemblance. And “Don’t You...” is better.

This author seems to use traumatic events from the past as a key element to galvanize the relationships. It’s not a good topic to trade on, so I hope she comes up with something else moving forward.
Trigger warning: suicide is discussed.

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  • Lizabeth
  • 07-03-2020

Mhairi McFarlane did it again. This was my second book by her and I enjoyed it a lot.

With the state of the world in such a mess it’s good to have an escape that makes you laugh and forget about politics and pandemics. A very enjoyable listen, and a bravo to the narrator, Cassandra Harwood.

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  • Shannon
  • 03-03-2020

Cute. Slightly predictable, but cute nonetheless.

I enjoyed this book more than I thought I would upon first getting into it. I was a bit nervous about the direction it was going, but the author made a believable journey from beginning to end. It was occasionally a bit trite and the metaphors a little overboard at times, but all in all, worth the listen.

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  • Martina
  • 23-03-2014

Funny and very touching

Where does Here's Looking at You rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

I had never read anything written by Ms. McFarlene before bumping in this one by chance and deciding to give it a try. I must say that this author was a complete revelation! She is very similar to Sophie Kinsella and Jill Mansell as regards the ability to put a very funny twis in the storyline, but this book is also about deeper feelings and very touching confessions.

What did you like best about this story?

The heroine is particularly endearing. As an ex-obese turned beautiful woman by sheer will-power and dedication, this books differs from the classical ugly-duckling-becomes-beautiful-swan plots because it does not overlook the deep psycological side-effects of low self-esteem. The hero is a well-rounder character as well, and the interaction H/h fills the book with very funny scenes.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

Throw in a cat which is probably plotting the death of the entire humanity but ends up only risking to get himself killed and you'll find yourself grinning throughout the listening. The narrator is very good at playing roles and she has a very clear way of speaking (I'm a non-native).

Any additional comments?

Book definetely advised! Looking forward other books from the same author

4 people found this helpful

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  • jane
  • 04-02-2014

Not instantly likable as 'you had me at hello'

Would you listen to Here's Looking at You again? Why?

Probably not. So many books, so little time.

What other book might you compare Here's Looking at You to, and why?

Her last book 'you had me at hello'

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

Yes

Any additional comments?

Enjoyed the book, the main character was a little annoying as well as the narrators cockney accent but enjoyed the book.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Janice
  • 20-04-2015

MY MISTAKE

Oh dear, this was a big mistake. I've read one of Mhairi McFarlane's before and quite enjoyed the quick repartee and humour but this one was really not my scene. For a start, the narrator read at the speed of light, so I presume she was a bored as I was and just wanted to get finished as quickly as possible. The story had potential - poor fat, bullied Anna meets handsome nemesis from her school days and, we hope, takes him down. Unfortunately, not nearly quickly enough for me. There was too much laboured dialogue explaining how the two enemies could become great lifelong mates, and the story dribbled to a conclusion that was so trite that even a soap opera like East Enders would be embarrassed.
My mistake. I wont make it again with either the author or the narrator.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Ms Readalot
  • 04-02-2015

Here's at reading Mhairi McFarlane!

I very much enjoyed listening to 'Here's at looking at you', an incredibly pleasant listen that left me with a never-ending craving for more.

The plot is straight forward, a love story that started with a school hate story! In my opinion, the book's simplicity adds to its appeal, as it makes the whole book more "real". Also, I have a lot of respect for books that although light-hearted and romantic at core, they are not scared of touching on serious and important subjects, in this case the catastrophic effects of being bullied at school.

The characters are great. Anna is a witty, sophisticated and sexy whose difficult experiences at school have stripped her of all confidence. James on the other hand has had a pretty "easy" life journey and is full of confidence. He's the kind of guy everyone would have fancied at school or "have a thing for" at the office. I really enjoyed the easy-going interactions between them and made me pine for them to get together from early on. I absolutely ADORED Michelle, Anna's best friend, who I really wanted to adopt as my own mate! All characters are very well built.

The narration is also great. I must admit, when I listened to the sample, I wasn't quite convinced by the narrator but I was completely won over! Cassandra Harwood is a great match to the main characters of the story, the tone of her voice and her pace are perfect for this book.

I have very quickly become a HUGE fun of Mhairi McFarlane and can't wait to listen to more of her books (have already listened to 'You had me at hello'). If you're looking for a feel-good, clever and witty love story you have come to the best place. Press "Play" now!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Elaine
  • 17-05-2020

Very disappointed!!

I bought this because I loved ‘It’s not you, it’s me’ and I thought I’d come across an author who was a hidden gem. Unfortunately this novel was very disappointing and I wish I’d delved more into the reviews.

An unbelievable story. I would question anyone who gave the ‘love interest’ the time of day.

Tried to persevere but gave up after 3 hours or so. A complete waste of a credit!!

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  • Dorthe F.
  • 01-05-2020

Funny enough, BUT

(Minor spoiler below)

I can not stress this enough: a victim of childhood bullying would never (!!) fall for her bully later in life.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 18-04-2020

Loved it

Lovely story. Had me laughing and crying.
At first I wasn't sure on the narrator but it wasn't long till I forgot about that and started enjoying the characters. I thought she was very good at the accents throughout.

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  • Natasha
  • 15-03-2020

Couldn’t even finish it.

The story and characters were so shallow and simplistic I couldn’t even finish this. It was like a poor caricature with no personality or depth. Perhaps the second half would pick up, but I won’t be sticking with it to find out.

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  • rebecca
  • 06-02-2020

funny, entertaining and a perfect romance.

will keep you wanting to listen for the next part as the story unfolds. very relatable.

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  • Carolin K.
  • 12-08-2019

Exceptionally funny ...

and enjoyable listen: endearing characters, remarkable wit and a disarmingly authentic capture of modern friendships, dating and, of course, romance and love.