Actor, writer and producer Robinne Lee has a life-long passion for creating stories and characters that affect people in profound ways. As the daughter of Jamaican parents of African, Chinese, British and Arawak Indian descent, Robinne grew up with an affinity for the arts. She graduated from Yale and from Columbia Law School and went on to write for magazines, run a music management company, and earn global fame as an actress in films including Hitch, Seven Pounds, and Fifty Shades Darker (Ros Bailey). In her acting career, her creative process requires an outward expression and collaboration to bring others’ creative visions to life. Now, she turns inward creatively, drawing on her experiences as a mother, artist, and someone who’s worked in the music industry for her marvelously engaging debut novel,
THE IDEA OF YOU
(St. Martin’s Griffin; June 13, 2017).
It’s a smart and steamy story of how a 39-year-old, divorced mother of a boy-band obsessed teenage girl and a much younger, charismatic boy band member meet by chance and against all odds, fall madly and inescapably in love. Inspired by the prevailing cultural stereotypes placed on women of a certain age, the book explores both the joys and consequences of this unconventional relationship that is even more complicated by massive fame and very little privacy.
Solène Marchand has her world figured out. She owns a successful art gallery in Los Angeles, is getting along with her ex-husband, and is making her relationship with her daughter, Isabelle, a top priority. When she takes Isabelle to a VIP meet and greet with August Moon, her daughter’s favorite boy band, she’s shocked that sparks are flying between herself and one of the band’s members. Hayes Campbell is breathtakingly handsome, charming, and sophisticated beyond his years, and the mutual attraction is undeniable--even though she’s determined to dismiss it as impossible—after all, he’s barely twenty years old. Despite her vehement protests, what begins as a series of clandestine trysts soon evolves into a passionate and authentic relationship between them. It is a love affair that spans continents, as Solène and Hayes navigate each other’s disparate worlds: from stadium tours to international art fairs to secluded hideaways in Paris and Miami. Inevitably, the news of their relationship goes viral, her daughter feels betrayed, and mother and daughter are both targeted by rabid fans and ravaged by the effects of an insatiable media cycle. Solène must come to terms with a grave truth--that her personal happiness has serious and irreparable consequences not only for herself, but for the lives of everyone who’s close to her.
Dramatic, sexy, and heart-rending, THE IDEA OF YOU is a textured and nuanced story of a woman who, in experiencing extraordinary, once-in-a-lifetime love, discovers her own true self again.
Solène Marchand never aspired to being just a simple housewife. She all she ever wanted was to put her Ivy League education to good use and give a voice to female artists from all over the world. And it was this desire that inevitably caused the breakup of her marriage.
Now she focuses on raising her young daughter and carving a niche for her art gallery. Until all of that is abruptly turned around after a concert on a sweltering Las Vegas night.
The second we were left alone Hayes turned to face me. “Look, I’m not going to ask you how old you are because it’s impolite, but I want you to know there’s very little you could say that’s going to deter me. And I really don’t give a damn what people like Max think. If I did, I wouldn’t have asked you here. So no, in case you’re wondering, I’m not turning back.”
Hayes Campbell is the twenty-year-old “swagger one” from the world famous British boy band - August Moon. He’s all dimples and heartbreaking sensuality.
His life is an endless cycle of recording and performing under the intense scrutiny of the tabloid press. But behind the scenes, he’s wise beyond his years and longs for a true connection to someone who can see beyond the rock star veneer.
What starts as only a brief affair soon becomes a passion that neither can control. In the harsh light of day, Solène must share him with the world and the world can be a very vicious place.
He turned when I opened the glass door, his eyes brightening. I’d removed everything. “Hiiii.”
The Idea of You is so much more than it first appears to be. On the surface, it’s a scorching hot romance where the chemistry between the characters is so tangible that you can actually reach out and touch it.
But if you look just a little deeper, you will discover that Robinne has also given us a harsh and yet poignant look into how the world perceives women as we age.
I was both empowered and broken by every nuance of this powerful debut novel and it’s now a book that I will measure others by for a long time to come.
Because a love as pure and true as this one can only make the world a more beautiful place…
Exclusive Excerpt ~
About The Author ~
Robinne Lee was born and raised in Westchester County, New York and currently lives in Los Angeles with her husband and two children. She has numerous acting credits in both television and film, most notably opposite Will Smith in both Hitch and Seven Pounds, Don Cheadle in Hotel for Dogs, and Jennifer Garner in 13 Going on 30. Her most recent role was Christian Grey’s trusted COO, Ros Bailey in Fifty Shades Darker and in next year’s Fifty Shades Freed. An inactive member of the New York Bar, Robinne has served as a producer on various independent films and regularly speaks on panels regarding the roles of women and actors of color in the industry.
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