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My Favorite Half-Night Stand

Author/Writer of Book/Novel:

Christina Lauren

1501197401 (ISBN13: 9781501197406)
Book Information:

By the New York Times bestselling author who “hilariously depicts modern dating” (Us Weekly), My Favorite Half-Night Stand is a laugh-out-loud romp through online dating and its many, many fails.

Millie Morris has always been one of the guys. A UC Santa Barbara professor, she’s a female-serial-killer expert who’s quick with a deflection joke and terrible at getting personal. And she, just like her four best guy friends and fellow professors, is perma-single.

So when a routine university function turns into a black tie gala, Mille and her circle make a pact that they’ll join an online dating service to find plus-ones for the event. There’s only one hitch: after making the pact, Millie and one of the guys, Reid Campbell, secretly spend the sexiest half-night of their lives together, but mutually decide the friendship would be better off strictly platonic.

But online dating isn’t for the faint of heart. While the guys are inundated with quality matches and potential dates, Millie’s first profile attempt garners nothing but dick pics and creepers. Enter “Catherine”—Millie’s fictional profile persona, in whose make-believe shoes she can be more vulnerable than she’s ever been in person. Soon “Catherine” and Reid strike up a digital pen-pal-ship…but Millie can’t resist temptation in real life, either. Soon, Millie will have to face her worst fear—intimacy—or risk losing her best friend, forever.

Perfect for fans of Roxanne and She’s the Man, Christina Lauren’s latest romantic comedy is full of mistaken identities, hijinks, and a classic love story with a modern twist. Funny and fresh, you’ll want to swipe right on My Favorite Half-Night Stand.

Books by Author:

Christina Lauren Books

chapter one


When I was in grade school, my best friend, Alison Kim, was obsessed with horses. She was the horse girl—you know the one. She took lessons, came to school in cowboy boots, and always smelled faintly of barn. Not necessarily a bad thing, but certainly unique among the student body at Middleton Elementary. Her room was covered in pictures of horses; her clothes were all horse-themed. She had trading cards and figurines. This girl was invested and could be called upon at any given moment to answer a horsey question or rattle off an equestrian fact.

Did you know horses can run a mere six hours after birth? Nope.

What about their teeth—were you aware a horse’s teeth take up more space in their head than their brain? Didn’t know that, either.

Most little girls are obsessed with something at one point, and for the most part it never gets a second thought. Puppies: standard. Princesses are also frequently idolized. An obsession with boy bands is to be expected. Begging your parents for a pony or unicorn is normal.

I don’t think I’ve ever been normal. Me? I was obsessed with serial killers.

More specifically, I was obsessed with the idea of female serial killers. Hear the phrase serial killer, and most of us probably picture a man. It’s not surprising—let’s be real, men are responsible for at least ninety-two percent of the evil in the world. For centuries, women have been socially programmed to be the nurturers, after all—the protectors, the emotional bridges—so when we hear of a woman who takes life instead of creating it, it’s instinctively shocking.

My particular fascination started around the time I played Lizzie Borden in my seventh-grade theater class. It was an original musical—the brainchild of our eccentric-would-be-an-understatement teacher—and I landed the lead role. Before then, the concept of murder was still loose and shapeless in my head. But, ever studious as a child, I gobbled up everything I could about Lizzie Borden, the gruesome hatchet murders, the dramatic trial, the acquittal. The fact that, to this day, the murders remain unsolved was enough to get the wheels in my mind spinning: What is it about the male brain that makes it not just more aggressive in general but more prone to serial violence—and what trips that same switch in a woman? It’s why I read every book on the subject I could find as a teen, watched every crime drama and mystery, and why I now teach criminology at UC Santa Barbara, and am working on my own book about the very women who so fascinated me as a child.

It’s probably also why I’m drinking it up with four of my strictly platonic best guy friends, instead of out enjoying myself on an actual date.

No man wants to hear “I wrote my thesis on gender differences in serial murderers” during the Tell me about yourself portion of an initial rendezvous.



My attention first snags on Ed’s voice, and then focuses on Reid’s. “Yeah?”

Reid Campbell—one of the aforementioned strictly platonic best guy friends, the reason we’re here celebrating tonight, and a man whose genetics never got the memo that it’s unfair to be both brilliant and beautiful—grins at me from across the table.

“Are you going to pick your game piece or stare slack-jawed at the wall all night?” He’s still waiting, still smiling. It’s only now that I notice the game board on the table, and the pastel money he begins distributing.

Apparently while zoning out, I inadvertently agreed to play Monopoly. “Ugh. Guys. Again?”

Reid, who for some reason is always the banker, looks back up at me with faux-wounded blue eyes. “Come on. Don’t even pretend you don’t love it. Getting a monopoly on Park Place and Boardwalk gives you an obscene amount of joy.”

“I loved it when I was ten. I still mostly liked it two years ago,” I say. “But why do we keep playing it when it always ends the same?”

“What do you mean it always ends the same?” Ed—or Stephen Edward D’Onofrio! if you’re his mother—pulls out the chair to my left. Ed’s hair is this wild mop of reddish-brown curls that always looks like he either just got up or should really go to bed.

“For starters,” I begin, “Reid is always the top hat, you’re the car, Alex is the ship, Chris is the shoe, and I’m the dog. You’ll go to the bathroom twelve times right before it’s your turn so we all have to wait. Chris will hoard his money and then get mad when he keeps landing on Alex’s hotels. Reid will only buy the utilities and somehow still manage to clean the floor with all of us, and I’ll get bored and quit six hours into a never-ending game.”

“That’s not true,” Ed says. “I quit last time, and Chris bought up all the orange properties to get back at Alex for the rooster-shaped birthday cake.”