2400 miles. Four friends. One big secret.
Angus Reid is pretty sure he's being catfished.
After spending the last half of junior year talking online to the guy of his dreams, Angus wants to meet. In person. So when Scotty brushes it off with excuses of not being ready, red flags go up.
Determined to either catch Scotty out, or take a shot at real love, Angus embarks on a summer road trip with his adorkable roommate, Tyler. But as summer stretches on, and mixed messages fly between them, Angus finds his heart torn.
His potential catfisher?
Or his straight best friend?
And while their road trip takes them across the country, Angus is headed for one destination.
Either a happily ever after ... or a broken heart.
All books in the #lovehim series are stand alones. The series number is recommended reading order.
The author does a fantastic job of incorporating a lot of elements into this tale. Catfishing, homophobia, mental health, suicide, bullying and assault are all addressed in a realistic and honest manner.
To Be Honest is a great coming of age story. SM James has created a charming, fun and romantic tale. At it's heart, it's a complicated story of young love riddled with fear. I enjoyed every second of it, and I need to go back and read the first book in the series now.
I pull out of the parking lot and Tyler directs me to the campsite. The ground is rough as anything, and it’s lucky it’s summer, because I can just imagine that in winter we would be driving on ice.
“Just here,” Tyler points to a space ahead, confirming it on the map the campsite admin handed us.
It’s reasonably busy and we’ve had to drive a bit further down. There’s forest pushing in all around us and I can only spot two other tents. Not that those monstrous things could be called tents.
“Just do you know,” I say as I put the car in park and follow Tyler out. “If I get killed, I’ll hold you personally responsible.”
“If you get killed, I promise I’ll make it up to you.”
“I’ve got to tell you though, I’m not planning on dying a virgin.”
He throws a smirk at me over the roof. “Don’t worry, neither am I.”
I open the trunk and start shifting some of our stuff into the front while Tyler lays down the back seats. When I climb in, a thrum of electricity passes over my skin and I have to remind myself to cool it. We’re just friends. Tyler slides in after me.
“Here.” He hands me some blankets and we set to work making it comfortable before lying back, heads rested at the opening.
It’s so peaceful. The night is still and quiet, holding the warmth of the day, and the stars stretch out above us endlessly, smudges of silver blurring them together. I fold my hands behind my head as Tyler takes off his glasses and tosses them in the front.
“And that right there,” Tyler says in a nasally voice, pointing through the back windshield of the open trunk. “Is the ubulla majorious.”
I give him the side eye, not sure if he’s joking or not. “Oh yeah, and what’s that?” I point to another cluster.
“The fibrosious enema.”
I snort, rolling onto my side to look at him. “You are so full of shit.”
“I swear.” He lays a hand over his heart. “See? There’s Angusius’s Titianus.”
He finally gets a laugh out of me and I shove his shoulder a little. “I think your brain’s broken.”
“Nope. It remembers everything, remember, Angus?”
“I do remember. Which is why I wouldn’t be surprised if you knew all the actual names of the constellations and were just goofing around.”
He tries to hold back a guilty smile.
We lapse into a comfortable silence, him staring up at the stars, and me staring at everything but him.
I hesitate. “Thanks for not bailing on me.”
“Are you kidding? It was a choice between this and going home. Trust me, it was a no brainer.”
“I’m honored.” I roll my eyes.
He chuckles softly and pokes me in the bicep. Two fingers. Just like the first day we met. “You should be. You’re always my first choice.”
My cheeks heat and my stomach twists painfully. I’m well aware of his teasing tone but somehow my body completely misses it. “I mean, I wouldn’t say you’re my first choice. At least second or third, though.”
“Ho-oh!” He hangs his head back, showing off his long neck. “You’ve wounded me.”
“Need mouth to mouth?”
He cracks up. “I’d probably enjoy it too much.”
He’s teasing. Teasing. But damn it, if I don’t get this flirting under control it’s only a matter of when not if our friendship implodes.
I’m dying to trace my lips over that long, smooth stretch of skin just below his ear.
He rests his head to the side, looking at me, and a chunk of hair flops down in his eyes. “Have you heard from Scotty yet?”
The lust dries up as worry kicks in. “No, actually. I’m trying not to think about it.”
“I’m sure he’s fine.”
“If he’s done something—”
“No. He wouldn’t have. From what you’ve told me it was his choice, you can’t think like that.”
I scrub a hand over my face. “I basically forced it on him though.”
“Hey.” Tyler’s fingers circle my wrist and he tugs my hand away. “Nope. We’re not doing this. You don’t control other people’s choices. Not today, not tomorrow, just don’t.”
“If only it was that simple.” I sigh.
“It is.” He’s so certain I almost believe him. Instead I reach out and pull the back door closed.
“I’m tired,” I say, tucking up my legs. And if my legs are too long for the space, Tyler’s definitely will be.
With the door closed the outside world is cut off. Tyler turns back to the window, looking up at the sky, and for the thousandth time this year, I wish I had someone to share my feelings with. It sounds lame as hell but I could really use a hug. I just want somebody to be my somebody.
And with Scotty gone, I’m further from that than ever.