Summary from Goodreads:
Driving a limo wasn’t Taylor Finn’s first career choice, but stunt driving wasn’t exactly paying the bills. When she finds herself chauffeuring a drunk guy harassing his date, she leaves him stranded and is sure she’s going to get fired.
Iris Fleming’s flight to Atlanta was a scene from a disaster movie, the scariest landing ever. She’d desperately wanted a part on a new sci-fi series, until the director made a pass at her. Now Iris doesn’t want the role and has no intention of getting back on a plane.
Making their escape from Atlanta, Iris and Finn end up at Hideaway Haven, in neighboring cabins. Iris isn’t sure what’s scarier, sexy Taylor Finn or woodland nighttime noises. But maybe they can help each other out. There are jobs for stunt drivers in L.A. and Iris needs a ride. Wrong turns, and roadside hijinks ensue as Iris and Finn set off on a road trip, chasing the sunset, and falling for each other along the way.
eARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Content warning: sex (semi to pretty explicit) including semi-public, alcohol use
This book was my first shot at an adult romance, so I definitely cannot speak on the genre or really know if this was good or bad, but I can speak on my thoughts and feelings about it so that is what I will do. This book follows Iris and Finn, both are in their late twenties to early thirties and both feel like they are at a dead end and overall just unhappy with their careers. The two meet and then agree to take a road trip together from Georgia to L.A. and they start to have feelings for each other.
I will be doing this review as a breakdown of what I did and didn’t like because I really don’t know how else I would break this down if I’m being honest.
#1: The Southern setting. As I have mentioned before, I love a good southern setting, so I was somewhat thrilled to discover that the first bit took place in the middle of Georgia. The characterization of the town and its people seemed very similar to where I live and it made the whole adjusting to this new genre thing somewhat easier because when all else failed, I could focus on the descriptions of rednecks and fried chicken (and fried everything, tbh). I think that is one of the strangest sentences I have ever written in my life, but it is true so there is that.
#2: The road trip. I think this could possibly be the first road trip book I have ever read, which seems weird, but it is probably true. I enjoyed reading about Iris and Finn traveling through random small southern towns on their trip. I feel like the atmosphere at each place wasn’t established well (probably because they just kept having sex), but that may have been too much to ask for. Either way, I did enjoy the road trip aspect.
#3: The discussion about how what you dreamed about for years may not be the right fit for you and that is okay. A key part of Finn’s whatever it was (I don’t want to call it a character arc because honestly, she didn’t change much at all, if at all) involved accepting that she wasn’t happy with where she was and then discovering that her dream didn’t work for her either. I am very glad that this book made a point of explaining that it was okay, but I do wish Finn had at least come up with some real career options other than just tossing a few around and not really doing anything with them.
#1: All of the sex. Okay, I will start off this section by saying that I am well aware this is just a me thing, both in the fact that I am ace spectrum and sex makes me uncomfortable and that I haven’t read an adult romance before so I don’t know how much sex is usually present in them. That being said, I feel like there was a lot of sex in this. It seemed like they were having sex every time they stopped for the night. They once did a semi public thing and I was so uncomfortable the whole time, I did not enjoy it. Basically, if you don’t like graphic or even just an abundance of sex in books, skip this one.
#2: The fact that I couldn’t differentiate between Iris and Finn’s narrative voices. I feel like this is something that normally doesn’t bother me, but the only way you can tell the difference between Iris and Finn is by how Iris talks about her ex and acting and Finn talks about cars and, well, cars. Finn mentions random southern things and Iris mentions L.A. health foods. Those are some of the only clear differences, and I can’t say that they were enough for me.
#3: The romance. For this to be a romance novel, it fell very flat for me. I didn’t really see how the characters connected, especially after their first meeting (where Iris just like, threw a cup of water on Finn for literally no reason). I didn’t really see a relationship developing at any point in the novel, it was kind of just them fighting, them spending the night together, them going on a road trip and getting uptight when one another then having sex. It just seemed very messy and underdeveloped to me.
Overall, this book was very much on the non-memorable three star read category. It bored me if I am being honest, it took me forever to get through just because I didn’t like the relationship or much about it really once we got to the L.A. portion of the road trip. However, this could just be a me thing because I honestly couldn’t get past all of the sex. If adult romance is more your vibe and that doesn’t bother you, I’d recommend you look into it because it may be something you enjoy.