The Accidental Dating Experiment (How to Date #4) Read Online Lauren Blakely

Categories Genre: Alpha Male, Chick Lit, Contemporary, Erotic Tags Authors: Series: How to Date Series by Lauren Blakely

Total pages in book: 80
Estimated words: 78108 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 391(@200wpm)___ 312(@250wpm)___ 260(@300wpm)

A dating experiment ignites a secret attraction in this steamy new rom-com from number one New York Times best-selling author Lauren Blakely!

I’ve spent the better part of eight years resisting my best friend’s little sister. What’s one more week? The hardest week ever when it includes a proposition to be her dating coach.

Eight years ago I fell into a secret summer fling with the bright, big-hearted Juliet before our lives went in different directions.

Now, I’m the grumpy to her sunshine on a popular dating podcast we host, and when a wealthy fan gives us a charming coastal cottage as the biggest thank you ever, we head to the town where I grew up to give it a makeover.

And find the house has only one bed.

Located under a mirrored ceiling.

To make matters even harder, the woman I’ve been pining for tells me she wants to try to find the one and would I please be her dating coach for the week?

Like hell I’ll let her date other men. I’ll coach her on three dates with me.

But the second I take her out, I don’t feel like her teacher. I feel like she’s mine, especially when the first night ends with us tangled up together in that bed.

Each night we grow closer, but this dating experiment forces me to face my greatest fear – whether a man like me is worthy of her love.

Even though I’m already head over heels for her.

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We don’t agree on when this thing started.

We never agreed on anything. Not when we were younger. Not when we worked together. Not even in bed most of the time, but that only made it more fun.

But I’m telling the story of our so-called dating experiment, and someone has to pick a starting point, so it looks like that’s me.

Maybe it began the day we walked into the house we were gifted. She’d disagree, of course, rolling those feisty green eyes and insisting it started with the suit I wore a few nights later.

You know. That suit, she’d say.

Well, I do look damn good in a three-piece.

But, with the advantage of hindsight, I’d say it began with the bet.

My intentions weren’t entirely friendly when I made that impulsive wager that afternoon in the studio. Not that I realized that at the time. For a smart guy, I didn’t know much at all.

It took a cheese date, all sorts of mirrors, a can of paint, and a whole lot of role-playing in a small town to show me what had been right in front of me the whole time.

I should never have let her get away.




A few months earlier…

He’s so wrong. Monroe thinks he can analyze my prospective date for tonight, but my co-host is wronger than wrong. He issues his prediction from his podcast throne, jaw set, blue eyes steely, expression a little unnerving.

“I’m calling it now. There won’t be a second date with this guy,” he declares into the mic.

“Yes, there will. And not just because I’m overdue for a second date.” I give it right back to the infuriating man across the sleek, metal table in the podcast studio. “Want to know why?”

“Enlighten me,” Monroe says with too much amusement. “Tell all the Heartbreakers and Matchmakers listeners how well you think this date will go with…Who’s the guy tonight? A gym bro? An art critic? A get-in-touch-with-your-chakras guru? A hot suit? You love the hot suits.”

“I am a sucker for a suit,” I admit. “But he’s not a suit.”

“A mysterious, inscrutable dark knight, then?”

I square my shoulders. “None of the above.”

Ha. Not even close.

“Is he a hot nerd? You love the hot nerds.” Monroe fake coughs as he mutters, “Slang for a tech bro bad boy.”

Narrowing my eyes, I grip the edge of the table for a second, but nope, I don’t give in. I let it go. I am calm. I am peaceful. I won’t let him wind me up, not even for the “Predict Juliet’s Date” segment of our podcast, where he always tries to push my buttons. Listeners love it when he does.

Besides, my recent string of bad dates is a relatable problem for single women. It’s part of modern dating in your thirties. When you first join an app, you’re a hot new release. But if you’re not paired up and happily ordering monogrammed hand towels with your new love interest a few weeks later, the algorithm drops you to the bottom of the sea of single despair.

That’s why I took extra time, did extra research before swiping in the lead-up to tonight’s match. It’s one I feel pretty good about, so I counter the know-it-all across from me with, “Tonight’s date is with an artist, and we’ve been having a great exchange on the app about⁠—”

“—poetry and wine?”

Grrr. “Song lyrics,” I grumble.

“So, poetry then.”

“But not wine.” Details matter, after all.

“Don’t worry. I’m sure he knows everything about every vintage. But the song lyrics? Yeah, that’s a sign.”

“Of what?” I ask, a little indignant.

“That you won’t be headed on a second date together.”

“Are you saying I’m undateable?” That irks me. It’s not my fault the algorithm is evil.

Monroe folds his arms across his chest. “I’m saying he is.”

Wait. What? How could Monroe say that? “You don’t even know him!”

He gives me a look like, Sweetheart, I know him. Then, with a thoughtful hum, he strokes his lightly stubbled jaw.

That’s a little distracting, because…stubble. Nice, golden-brown stubble, a little lighter than his thick brown hair. Also, the pose displays those tattoos on his left forearm. He lowers his hand, making life a little easier for me. “Actually,” he says, “You might even cut out early.”

Blasphemy. Utter blasphemy. “As if I’d do such a thing. I give all my dates a fair chance.”

“I know you’re not the problem. But why don’t we take a listener on Mister Song-lyrics-and-wine’s prospects for a second date?”

“Bring it on,” I say. I love hearing what listeners think. They’re always more hopeful than Monroe, but that’s what I’d expect for a relationship call-in advice show.

Monroe turns to our wunderkind producer at the other end of the table. Sadie’s in the studio with us for every episode, occasionally piping in with a sidekick comment but mostly running all the gadgets and doodads. “Sadie, want to work your magic?”