Love and Monsters (Book Club Boys #1) Read Online Max Walker

Categories Genre: Contemporary, Crime, M-M Romance, Suspense, Thriller Tags Authors: Series: Book Club Boys Series by Max Walker
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Total pages in book: 82
Estimated words: 75720 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 379(@200wpm)___ 303(@250wpm)___ 252(@300wpm)
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Noah Barnes
A trip to the grocery store changed my life.
That’s where I bumped into my ‘straight’ co-worker and good friend, Jake Perez.
I decided to invite him to my book club night, not realizing the chain of events that invite would kick off.
Immediately our chemistry became too explosive to contain, making our friendship and work relationship complicated. That same night, a bloody package addressed to me lands on my doorstep.
Falling for Jake was never in the plans—then again neither was being targeted by a dangerous stalker.
This was going to be interesting.

Jake Perez
We were supposed to stay just friends—but how was that going to happen when all I wanted to do was kiss the guy?
Joining his book club sounded like a perfect way to spend more time with him. I wasn’t counting on liking him more and more with every passing second.
Then came the targeted threats, throwing a wrench in our budding ‘friendship’.
One thing was certain, though. Well, maybe two.
I was going to help Noah figure out who was behind making his life a living hell and I was going to do it while staying as just friends.
Friends who liked to hold hands and kiss and…
Yeah. This was going to be harder than I thought.

*************FULL BOOK START HERE*************

1

NOAH BARNES

He was wearing those khaki pants again.

The ones that hugged his bubble butt and bunched up between his legs when he sat. They were the pants that turned me absolutely feral. Like a cat in heat, yowling at anything close by that could potentially fuck me. A tree branch? Sure, yowling. A pair of muddy sneakers? Yowling.

A delicious-looking bulge offered up by my straight coworker and friend? Absolutely yowling. Loud enough to pop a couple of eardrums and break a few windows.

I adjusted myself in my seat, hiding just how excited those damn pants made me by rolling my chair further under my desk. Somehow, I managed to pry my gaze away, keeping my creeper tendencies in check while I tried to focus on the spreadsheet in front of me. Numbers swam, columns danced, rows rearranged themselves all into the shape of a thick pen—

“Hey, Noah, you have lunch yet?”

“Nope, not yet.”

So if you’d like to serve me some sausage, we can just get started.

Damn… I was thirsty. And not just for the half-drank Gatorade bottle on my desk (blue, because that was the superior flavor according to anyone with taste buds). It wasn’t exactly a new state of being for me. I’d been boy crazy ever since my hormones kicked into overdrive—likely the exact moment I witnessed the star quarterback of our high school’s football team changing in front of me, nearly causing an extremely embarrassing and traumatizing mess in my towel. Luckily, I held it together that day, but the boy-session never left. I embraced it in my senior year when I came out to two of my best friends in an empty Taco Bell parking lot after we had snuck a (minuscule) amount of vodka out of my parents’ fridge and got drunk at the playground nearby.

I remember being scared shitless. Eric and Tristan had been my best friends since elementary school. We’d been through some crappy times and some over-the-chart incredible times, always sticking together through it all. But this? Well, this was different. It wasn’t about who cheated in Super Smash or Tristan choosing to go on a date with Sarah Miller over their usual Saturday night hangout.

This threatened to shake the very core of our friendship. Being gay—especially back in the early 2000s—was something that many people still didn’t understand, and high school boys weren’t exactly revered for their ability to fully understand and empathize with the world around them. Not only that, but kids were mean as shit. My friends might have been okay with me being gay, but would they have been okay with being gay by association? It all stacked up on my shoulders and made the words a mission to get out, likely not helped by the slight slur I had from taking my sip of vodka and orange juice.

“I’m…well, I’m—”

“What? Scared of butterflies? We know that,” Tristan said, pushing his glasses up his nose and flashing that thousand-watt smile of his.

Eric took a bite of his taco, speaking through the crunches. “You’re going to be competing on the next season of Big Brother?”

“No, yeah, right, I wish. Imagine me on—” I shook my head, getting off track. I just had to let the words out. Two simple yet galaxy-sized words:

“I’m gay.”

There was no taking it back once I said it. The truest part of myself was laid bare, right there next to my half-eaten Crunchwrap Supreme. And, as I always should have known, there was no need to take it back. In fact, there wasn’t any need to be scared about coming out to Eric and Tristan either. Not when Eric spoke up and came out himself that same night, Tristan joining the rainbow mafia a month later.

Turned out that I’d been the first bedazzled domino to fall, but I wasn’t the last.

“Want to go for some Cuban?” Jake asked, drawing my attention up to his inhumanely blue eyes. Seriously, there should have been some law against having eyes that beautiful. Especially when you were straight. It was way too much power for one person to yield. Pretty privilege and straight privilege? It made me sick to my stomach.

Not sick enough to say no to a medianoche, though.

“Sure,” I answered, locking my computer and reaching for my wallet, still under the stacks of papers I had left it under. My office wasn’t exactly the picture of cleanliness and organization, but it worked for me. I’d only been in this position—accounts payable manager for a large construction company here in Atlanta—for about a month now, and in that time, I’d been way more focused on getting myself settled than on organizing my office.

Jake arched a skeptical bushy brow as I dug in a chaotic cabinet for my keys.

“What?” I asked. “I’ve got a system.”

He chuckled, which slightly annoyed me. Was he laughing at me? And why did his chuckle sound so damn cute? “Yeah? What system is that? Windows 95?”


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