Cover Image: My Favorite Half-Night Stand

My Favorite Half-Night Stand

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It's crazy...less than a year ago, I had never heard of Christina Lauren or read any of their books. Last November I read Autoboyography and fell madly in love with it. Earlier this year I read Love and Other Words, just to see if my infatuation with them was a fluke. (Spoiler alert: it wasn't.)

About two weeks ago I read their latest book, Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating, and had visions of pacing myself until December, when their newest book was due to be released. But when I saw My Favorite Half-Night Stand available on NetGalley, you bet I pounced, and I was thrilled to be approved nearly instantaneously. And wouldn't you know it? Once again, the duo has struck gold, capturing my heart with another book...and I guess lengthening my wait for the next one. Damn.

The only woman in her group of best friends, Millie Morris is truly one of the guys. She and all of her friends are super-smart professors; her specialty just happens to be serial killers—female serial killers, in fact. Millie can drink her guy friends under the table, throw multiple double entendres into a sentence without blinking, and is more than happy to play video games and stuff her face alongside her friends any night of the week.

Of all of her guy friends, Millie is probably closest to neuroscientist Reid Campbell. They've always had that half-flirty, half-brother-and-sister thing down pat, and they both feel happiest in each other's company. So it's almost no surprise when a night of celebratory drinking ends up with the two of them in bed, enjoying a few hot rounds of sex before agreeing they're better off keeping their relationship platonic—and keeping their wild half-night stand a secret from the rest of the guys.

When a university event becomes a black-tie gala, all five of them are determined to find dates. Millie and the guys agree to try an online dating site, but as is typical with their friendship, Millie winds up creating all of her friends' profiles, yet draws a blank when she goes to write her own. Opening up has never been easy for her, so while her friends start to find potential matches, she mostly hears from creeps sending dick pics or inquiring about her bra size.

After getting ribbed by the guys for her failure, she decides to create a second profile, yet for this one she calls herself "Catherine." The very act of creating a fictional persona is freeing for Millie, she can suddenly be more playful, more emotionally open, more honest than she can be in real life. When she and Reid "match" online, she tries to provide enough clues so he will realize it's her, but at the same time, she encourages their online conversations until they grow deeper.

The more Millie (as Catherine) corresponds with Reid, the more interested he becomes, yet at the same time, Reid is trying to figure out what Millie wants from their real-life relationship. But for some reason, Millie can't open up and be vulnerable with Reid the way she can as Catherine. She wants Reid for real but she can't give him everything he wants, yet she knows there's only a matter of time before her dishonesty destroys their friendship for good.

"Does it matter if you do the wrong thing for the right reason?"

My Favorite Half-Night Stand is a fun, sexy, emotional, thought-provoking look at male-female friendships and how hard it can be to allow yourself to be totally vulnerable with someone you care about. I loved the way Lauren twisted the gender roles in this book, yet the characters' actions and emotions seemed totally true to who they are. I was totally invested in this story from start to finish, and I wished I could hang out with this group of friends, because they seemed like a lot of fun!

As with most of the other books of theirs I've read so far, there's nothing particularly surprising or earth-shattering in this book, but I loved it all the same. I wanted to know what was going to happen to these characters. I wanted to root for them and sometimes I wanted to shake some sense into them. There are some big issues at play here, as well as some genuinely loving friendships and some hot sex to boot.

The more I read of Lauren's books, the more I love them. They're just tremendously enjoyable reads that hit all of my emotions but don't manipulate them too badly. Pick one up and hopefully you'll become a fan, too! (Oh, and please don't make me wait too long for your next book?)

NetGalley and Gallery, Threshold, Pocket Books provided me an advance copy of the book in exchange for an unbiased review. Thanks for making this available!

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Another charming, engaging book from Christina Lauren! I breezed through this in a day or two. Mille and Reid just moved up into my top 5 favorite couples.

This book was great because it felt so real. I could picture this friend group, brought together by their life in academia, and how a relationship within that group felt so big that it could tear the whole thing apart. It was easy to see from the beginning that Millie and Reid were so much more than just buds. And I'm sure the rest of the group could see that too, they just needed a little time to catch up.

And what a way to do it. I loved the online dating scenario. As someone who's partaken in a buttload of online dating (yes, that is the technical term for it), I could very much relate. There's only so much of yourself you want to give away when all you get back for it is dick pics and not so clever opening lines soliciting sex. So I felt for Millie, and I felt for her hurt feelings and competitiveness as time went on. It's so easy to get lost in the easiness of writing to someone, and how open it can make you.

That's not to say I didn't feel Reid's betrayal as well. It's a sticky situation. And it made for a great read. So much so that I ignored my own boyfriend to read it...that's saying something.

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I loved this book! The author(s) has an awesome way with words. I love how the characters. I especially loved the concept of a "half-night stand" - it reminded me of the phrase "quarter-life crisis." One of the other things that I really enjoy about this author is their research. There were enough technical details in this book to make me think the author(s) knew everything about research in academia, and yet I know from their other books that they have focused on other professions just as deeply. The concept that Millie has only guy friends, which she got to keep after her breakup with her boss, is a little different as well. But when the reasons are explained as to why she shied away from female friends, it all adds up. Millie, Reid, and their friends are fun and interesting, and everyone is different enough to stand out as their own character. I look forward to reading more of Christina Lauren's books!

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I was so happy to receive an advanced copy of this via Netgalley after discovering Christina Lauren earlier this year.. I've devoured and loved Roomies and Love and Other Words, and Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating is on my TBR list. I loved diving into the delightful world of My Favorite Half-Night Stand, and while it wasn't my favorite Christina Lauren, reading it definitely solidified my belief that these two women's books will always be those type of reads that you just can't help but feel fondly toward.

Millie is the only woman in a friend group of five academics. Realizing that none of their dating lives are as great as they could be, they concoct the idea to try out online dating and all find dates for to the end-of-the-year commencement gala at which Obama is speaking. However, Millie and her best friend in the group, Reid, have hooked up, and things become even more complicated between them when Millie's fake dating profile catches Reid's attention. Posing as this other girl, she continues messaging him throughout the book as her actual relationship with Reid has other romantic and sexy turns.

The writing style and the strong, non-romantic relationships the narrators have are always my favorite elements of a Christina Lauren story. The writing in this book was fun and quick, but it steered away from some of the beauty and relatability I noticed in Roomies and LAOW. The book is also written with a dual perspective, which definitely helps the reader understand both Reid and Millie's sometimes frustrating and stubborn actions. Although I did love the scenes of all five friends together or texting in a group chat, I did have trouble believing that Millie's only friends were four other men, all of whom she worked with. Her reasoning was explained by the end of the book, but it still felt a little too contrived for me. Plus, while three of the men all seemed to have their own backstories and subplots throughout the book, the character of Alex didn't have much to do and just felt a little unnecessary. The fact that Millie and Reid were totally oblivious to their romantic connection before the story's events was also a little unrealistic. Ultimately, while I didn't love it as much as other Christina Lauren books, this read gets four stars from me because their worlds are always just a joy to be in.

*A link to a more condensed blog review will be added shortly.

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OMG, this book is hilarious!! Such a fun read. I couldn’t get enough!

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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I love Christina Lauren's book, my favorite being Love and Other Words. I had a harder time connecting with the story and the the main characters for this one. It just was a little underwhelming and although the premise was good, it just didn't work for me. I love how she goes out of the box with her books and I can really appreciate that in a world of predictable romance novels. I appreciate being given the opportunity to read this ARC from NetGalley and I look forward to reading another one of hers soon.

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Millie and her gang of friends Reid, Ed, Alex and Chris are all working as professors or research assistants at UCSB and being very dedicated to their work isn't conducive for their love lives. While Millie is able to create fun and interesting online dating profiles for her friends, she is not comfortable talking about herself, online or in real life. The death of her mother in her childhood and subsequent mourning by her father left her as an emotionally closed off person, who is very good at listening to others but keeps things very close to her chest. She knows so much about her close friends but their knowledge about her is quite superficial. Being a criminology professor with a fascination for female serial characters and very much in love with her work, leaves her with little time for dating and her aversion to being emotionally open lets her live in her bubble of work and friends.

I really loved the friend group. They are quite frank with each other, are very funny and I loved their interactions. Their group chats and texts are very entertaining and I was really looking forward to more of them. Reid and Millie are best friends and I really liked the comfort they shared in each other's company; it felt very realistic and natural. The emails that Reid shared with her online alter-ego Cat were very honest and heartwarming and just like Reid, I kept hoping that Millie could be that open in real life. It's also quite easy to relate to both Reid's loneliness and wanting more from a partner; and Millie's unwillingness to be more vulnerable and open herself up to a world of hurt if she loses her best friend in the process.

The humor in this book is on point, very similar to other Christina Lauren books. It was also very interesting to get to know about the modern online dating landscape, and how the reality is so different for women as compared to men - the guys get matched to girls who want to chat with them and get to know them better, Millie gets asked for full body shots or sent dick pics. I also liked that all the characters were in their late 20s, early 30s because it is possible that not everyone has their love life sorted just because they are settled in a career. I absolutely loved the fact that they were all in academia but none of their work, especially Millie's as a criminologist is developed upon, and that disappointed me. It would have been great to know more about their interactions at work or why they chose their respective fields. I also totally felt the amazing friendship between Reid and Millie and will completely believe that they make a great couple, but there was not much chemistry between them - atleast not the sexy swoon worthy kind; they are more respectful and understanding of each other. And despite this, she remains dishonest with him for a long part of the book and that angered me a little. It makes for a good conflict and angst in the story, but it didn't endear me to her. 

Overall, this book was fun and entertaining in Christina Lauren signature style. But it had it's problems and even though I loved the friendship dynamic and wanted to be a part of their group, the romance left me slightly unsatisfactory.

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I freaking loved this book. I've liked some of the earlier Christina Lauren books, but the more recent novels are way better. They dig into emotions and true to life scenarios and click with me way better than a billionaire romance story. In My Favorite Half-Nite stand, Millie and Reid are best friends who become friends with benefits, who get matched on a dating site and only one of them knows it, so there are all kinds of angsty scenarios that play out. I could relate to Millie's emotional stuntedness on so many levels and she tore at my heartstrings like so few characters can do. I found myself totally crying as Millie is crying and that kind of emotional connection doesn't happen with just any book. It only happens with the really good ones, and THIS book is a really good one.

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I received this ARC book from Netgalley for a honest review. This was my first Christina Lauren book and I was not disappointed. The has some great humor and some sad revaluations. Millie has a great circle of guy friends that all love her very much.As a friend. Almost. Reid is the best friend you always need even when you don't know you do. This book as some of that classic friends need to be more romance. A bunch of funny stuff and a few surprise. This book kept my up way past my bedtime. I will be reading more of Christina Lauren books soon.

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2018 has been a great year for Christina Lauren. They have graced readers with the emotionally gripping Love & Other Words and the hilariously entertaining Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating. Now they are releasing their third book of the year, My Favorite Half-Night Stand.

My Favorite Half-Night Stand had a lot to live up to after the two completely different and amazing books Christina Lauren released earlier this year. To be completely honest, it wasn't as good as Love & Other Words or Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating. I'm not saying that to drag My Favorite Half-Night Stand. It was still a great book. There were just some things that drove me a little batty at times.

The story starts off with the reader getting to know five friends and co-workers: Millie, Reid, Chris, Alex and Ed. Millie is the only girl in the group of guys, and she's never thought of having anything, but a platonic relationship with any of the guys...until that one night when suddenly she's noticing things about Reid she hasn't noticed before. Just when Millie is considering new feelings for Reid, the group decides to sign up together for online dating. As they create profiles and being receiving matches Millie, Millie decides to create an account with a fake name. She's immediately matched with Reid under her new persona. Unsure of how to proceed, not-Millie sends Reid a message and what follows could be a reality television show.

Let me start out with my favorite thing about My Favorite Half-Night Stand. I adored the friendships. They were so special. Millie and the guys had this amazing camaraderie and support system going. I loved how they played off each other. I honestly could read a separate book about each and every one of them. I was kind of sad that I only got Millie and Reid's story because I wanted to know more about all of them.

Another thing I loved about this book was that it was written in dual point of view. I loved being able to see what was going on in both Reid and Millie's heads at different times. I think if I only had Millie's perspective, I would have been angry a lot of the book.

Okay, I have to deviate from what I liked to what I didn't like after mentioning Millie's POV. Millie drove me batty. I couldn't believe for someone so smart she made such a horribly mean decision. She deserved what ended up happening to her relationship with Reid and her friends. I understand why she did what she did, but I didn't like it. I didn't really like her...until the end. Once she finally let all those bottled up emotions out and became real, I loved her. I wish I would have loved her the entire time.

Back to things I loved! REID! The guy was amazing. He had patience of a saint when it came to Millie. I was surprised given how emotionally in touch he was that he was okay taking what Millie would give him for as long as he did. I loved reading his thoughts and his online dating communications. He was the main star in this book for me -- quickly followed by all of his friends.

I want to keep gushing about the friendships in this book! Partly because I love them, party because without them this book might have tanked for me in the middle when Millie was being dumb. I'm really happy they helped carry that middle because I absolutely adored the end of My Favorite Half-Night Stand. It was so sweet and vulnerable. It pretty much made me forget how irritated I was with the decisions Millie made before it and made me like her. The ending brought the story full circle in the best way possible.

So while My Favorite Half-Night Stand wasn't a Love & Other Words or a Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating, it was a good romance with some of the best side characters I have read in a long time. It is worth reading simply for the friendship aspect.

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I had a hard time connecting with these characters. The premise of the story was intriguing, but it didn't hit the mark because Millie and Reid were not convincing as a couple to me. While Millie did show her struggle with the circumstance she placed Reid and herself in, Reid came across as almost unemotional? For the first almost 75% of the book he seemed completely okay with being just friends with Millie even if they occasionally slept together. He'd say things like "sex with Millie is great, but I also really enjoy chatting with another woman on the dating app, so I'll keep doing that." It just seemed so detached, which is ironic since the whole issue with Millie was that she was a closed book to her family and friends. I think if he would have shown a genuine struggle with liking Millie more and feeling bad about opening up to someone other than her (no matter that she refused to open up herself), it would have made a difference with his characterization. We finally get a more three dimensional look into Reid at the end when the truth comes out, but I felt like it was a bit too late by then. Overall, it was an entertaining story (I did enjoy the group interactions between the friends), but it wasn't very convincing when it came to the romance.

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I loved this story! It made me laugh and fall in love with all of the different characters. The writing style of including text conversations, emails, and chat messages really appealed to me. The authors never fail to write a story that grabs you and pulls you in from the beginning!

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I was so excited to get an arc of this from the publishers on Netgalley but unfortunately, I didn't love this book. I really enjoyed Roomies and Josh & Hazel's Guide to Not Dating (both of which I read early on Netgalley, also) but this book felt like a step backward for me.

Millie is an emotionally closed off woman with four best guy friends and when the way she views one of her male besties changes she realizes she has no idea how to handle the relationship that is forming. The thing is...that's just so unbelievable to me. She's also studying female serial killers, is a professor talking about serial killers, and right as Fall hits I wanted a bit of a spooky vibe but really, we never learn much about her obsession with serial killers or her career-which bummed me out.

The friend group is diverse, and I did like them, but the challenge to all find dates on a dating app together felt like American Pie in adult version and I didn't connect to it, at all. When you tell me a pretty woman is using a dating app I want to see tragic dates, except she never even goes on one. Not a single one.

The story felt a bit forced, rushed, surface, and underwhelming. It was still fun and it's still Christina Lauren so I mean, I didn't hate it, but I didn't love it, either. It was a fine read but a bit of a let down considering I expected a lot from it.

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Reid is Millie’s favorite half-night stand. Reid and Millie, along with the rest of their crazy cast of college professors have been good friends since Millie’s ex introduced her to them. One night after too much wine, Reid and Millie become friends with benefits. Millie lost her mother to cancer when she was very young and has repressed her emotions since then, so Reid doesn’t have a clue about how she feels about him. After a complete farce in which the all sign up for a dating service, Reid and Millie break up. After much soul searching, and some therapy for
Millie, they reunite. This book has the perfect mix of humor and heartbreak..

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I liked the 2 person perspective. Knowing how they were both reacting to situations was different and fun. Reid had a much happier upbringing than Millie so he was more open and got frustrated with Millie the deeper they got involved. Millie knew this so the Catherine persona helped her to be open like she really wanted to be, but just didn’t feel comfortable doing.

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This was my first time reading a book by Christian Lauren. It was comical and witty. I found myself rooting for the characters. Sometimes what you need is right there in front of you all along. I think I may read their other books.

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Thank you Simon and Schuster for the advanced review copy of My Favorite Half-Night Stand. A full review will be posted closer to release.

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Omg this story is everything, it was emotional and intense .I loved every minute of it and I just wish I had more!I felt so connected to these characters and especially to Millie and I felt like I was a part of the story.Millie,Reid,Ed,Chris and Alex have an amazing relationship.

The story line was fun and interesting.I laughed so much with their chat about the dating app, and their profiles!Like I said the concept of the dating app was brilliant!Millie is an interesting heroine, some may be frustrate with her behavior but for some reason I relate with her and I find myself feeling the same as her. Reid is sweet,sexy and smart!All of them have different and original personalities.

My Favorite Half-Night Stand is my new favorite book!It was captivating,quick,sweet,funny and steamy.Christina Lauren impressed me for one more time!

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Book Review: My Favortie Half-Night Stand by Christina Lauren

I got to read an ARC of this book months ahead of its release and it was so good. This is a quintessential Christina Lauren rom-com.

This book dives into the world of online dating.

Millie is best friends with 4 guys. However she is closest to Reid who she is also attracted. Here is the thing Millie keeps her cards closely and she keeps her relationship on the surface. Reid wants to break through the wall but he seems at a loss. One night after a few drinks, Reid and Mlllie hook up.

They decide that they would remain as friends and decide to dive into online dating as they are searching for dates to a black tie gala featuring President Obama.

Well as you know, online dating is a joy for woman with dick picks and sexual pick ups. So Millie sets up a secret profile which she is matched with Reid. Over a period of time, Millie and Reid connects at a deeper level. Milie opens up about her life, her struggles and what she wish it would be different. Here is the thing Reid doesn’t know he is talking to Millie. How it will unravel?

My feels: I really enjoy this book. The steamy factor was a bit tame in comparison to other Christina Lauren’s book. I love how they dive into the world of online dating where for men they can find quality matches with ease while it’s such a struggle for women. This was a fun read! You should pick it up when it releases in December.

A review will be posted closer to publication date on What to Read Next Blog.

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Christina Lauren has a way of taking my heart out of my body, stepping on it, and continuing on with their lives. This book did just that. I have never related to a character more than I did with Millie, from being closed off to being obsessed with serial killers. This book was an amazing feel good story with incredible chemistry between Millie and Reid. This was easily moved up to my five star reads list of the year, and maybe of all time!

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