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on 6 June 2014
Workaholic Charley Lambert finds herself facing her worst nightmare when she is forced to take time off work after breaking her leg, however will she cope with the boredom? In an attempt to keep herself busy she soon sets up her own online dating company, acting as a ghost writer for hapless online daters. When she starts corresponding for her latest client Shelley with an ENT surgeon called William, however, she is bowled over by his witty, sensitive and insightful e-mails. Soon she can't get William out of her mind, completely falling for this total stranger; however, should she pursue him for herself? Suffice to say it is a long road to that happy ending for Charley.

This makes for a fun, undemanding read, with a few interesting twists along the way. Charley as the heroine, is mostly an engaging character, undergoing a transformation during the course of the book from stressed workaholic to a more balanced individual capable of enjoying life; and it was interesting to watch her change her priorities and realise the things that really make her happy.

There's generally plenty going on in the story, from Charley's hot shot career as Communications Director for a high flying pharmaceutical company, romantic entanglements with her boss John, to her new enterprise of First Date Aid and of course her e-mail exchanges with William and the dilemma that throws up. Throw in her slightly eccentric family, crazy friend Hailey and adorable housemate Sam and there's all the ingredients for a winning chicklit.

Robinson's writing is trendy and modern compared with quite a lot in the genre; her style characterised by humour and a slight naughtiness. Parts of the story are perhaps rather stretched out, and at times you just wanted to shake Charley and tell her to pull herself together and sort things out. Whilst a perfectly enjoyable read, I might have liked to feel more emotionally invested in the characters and relationships; for some reason they felt like characters in a story as opposed to real people, perhaps the scenarios and situations not ringing true enough of real life.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 21 February 2015
Very entertaining book, about Charley, a high flying communications manager for a top pharmaceutical firm, who fills her days with work, and extra-curriculars. She gets excited about finalising a long awaited date, and then in rushing to tell her friends, trips and ends up in hospital, with injuries that will keep her off work for a few months.

For a person who is used being ridiculously busy, time off scares her, and so she sets up First Aid Date, a service to ghost write online dating encounters, as so many people are bad at written banter.

And then Charley, falls in love with William, the prospective date of one of her clients...

The progression of this love affair, is brilliant, if unexpected, and full of twists and turns.

Loved reading the initial emails between Charley and William, and seeing just how quick a connection can be made between 2 people.
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on 28 February 2015
I am SO disappointed! Having read 'The Unfinished Symphony ... ' which I enjoyed very much I bought this book, really looking forward to it, but was just so bored by it I only got half way through before I abandoned it - something I very rarely do. I just can't understand how it managed to get so many five star reviews - it must be me, not you, I suppose! Admittedly I wasn't keen on so many 'f' and 'c' words, but I could have coped with that if the story was half interesting. I knew from the beginning who Charley was going to end up with but getting there proved very tedious. I'm not sure if this was Lucy Robinson's first book. If so, hopefully her style is changing slightly because 'Unfinished Symphony' was so entertaining, and I'll give her new book a try when it comes out. Here's hoping!
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on 22 February 2013
I read a lot of romantic comedy. A lot. Probably too much. Some of it is good, some of it not so much. This was good. Really good. It reminded me of me, the Type A who cannot stop working no matter what happens, who has inappropriate crushes and is brilliant at organising everyone except herself.

Lucy writes beautifully, in that way that makes you never want to stop reading. Page after page just flows with laugh out loud moments, tear-jerking lines and a story that even though you have an idea how it might end you couldn't possibly guess how it will get there.

Thank you Lucy. Long live romantic comedy.
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on 1 April 2013
I loved this one as much as her first book. Lucy Robinson has a way of making you feel part of the characters' lives. These extraordinary people become your friends and you feel every single emotion as if it were all happening to you. It was one of those books you can't stop reading and you're racing through to get to the end, yet so sad when it does finish and have to say goodbye to the characters. It was fun, witty, warm and very romantic. I hope her next book comes out very soon.
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on 20 February 2013
So there's this bit in 'The Vow' where he asks her what her favourite book is, following it up with saying "You probably loaned it out to someone. You probably wish you were the person who hadn't read it yet so you could experience it all over again."

Well...that's how I feel about 'A Passionate Love Affair with a Total Stranger'. I finished it in 2 days, abandoned all forms of work/social events/responsibilities and LOVED EVERY PAGE.

I don't want to ruin any of the plot for you by telling you what it's about (plus you can just read the product description for that!), but I can tell you that you will laugh (or snort with comprehension as you realise you've been in nearly the EXACT same situation...oh.) and not want to put it down for ANYTHING. But that is what is so great about Robinson's books - you can relate. You don't feel it's all set in a fantasy land, it's realistic and you know perfectly well that you could be the one stuck in such a moronic situation at any given moment. Of course, there are moments when your brain finally clicks and puts a few things together. But rather than thinking "oh this is predictable", I enjoy the delicious frustration of wanting to see how the whole thing unfolds. Also, there are always a few shockers (that you didn't see coming) along the way!

If you liked 'The Greatest Love Story of All Time', then you need to buy this book. It is basically a really enjoyable read, and you will be distracted in all other areas of your life until you have finished it. And then you might want to start again.
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on 25 February 2013
After reading (and loving) Lucy's first book (The Greatest Love Story of all Time), I was really excited for the second - and I wasn't disappointed. In fact, I had also encouraged a friend to download it and we lay on sunloungers, next to each other, gaffawing and sharing our thoughts on the book throughout on the beach ("did you get to the bit about..?!").

Lucy's books appeal to both those who has been through the perils of dating in the modern age and also those who are glad they didn't have to. They are witty, intelligent and slightly self depracating which add a certain amount of realism and humility to them. I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know the cast of characters - I could see bits of myself in Charley and completely fell in love with Sam - and was sad when it came to an end. I'd thoroughly recommend this book to anyone.
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on 7 April 2013
I bought this book randomly in a search for something new to read on my kindle. So glad I did! It was funny and a bit obvious (as is the way with many books of this kind)...but actually I really believed in Charley and became quite attached to her journey...I like books that make me feel a roller coaster of emotions & this certainly did! Like my favourite escapist books, I finished with a warm fuzzy feeling about life! Off to download Lucy Robinson's other novel now!
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on 6 February 2013
Having read Lucy Robinson's brilliant debut, 'The Greatest Love Story of All Time' and roared with laughter throughout its entirety, I was almost nervous to read her second in case it didn't live up to the first.

However, I am very happy to report that 'A Passionate Love Affair With a Total Stranger' actually surpassed my very high expectations of young Robinson's work! I love her characters and just find the whole experience like spending time with a gang of your very best friends (if they were on REALLY good form, and looking their best!).

I am only disappointed that I have wolfed this book down so greedily, and I imagine I am now in for a pretty long wait before the next one. Hurry up, Lucy!!
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on 3 March 2013
Just finished Lucy Robinson's second book; I bought it having really enjoyed 'The Greatest Love Story of All Time'. She infuses a well worn genre with such brilliant, sharp writing, characters I could totally relate to and who felt really REAL, not the cliches you find in some romantic novels. I could not put it down and found I really cared about what happened to Charley; the plot does have you gripped until the end, you don't know how things are going to turn out but are gagging to know! Perfect for a holiday read or a great entertaining rib tickling laugh when you feel like a bit of escapism. I nearly fell off my chair laughing at several points. So much cleverer and punchier than many, many of the chicklit books I've read before. Can't wait for book 3.
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