Open Lanes

Author: Mary Morano

Published: July 1, 2021

HEA: Yes

Cheating: No

Wet Panty Meter: You will need 2 changes of panties while reading this book.

Review: I’m a shitty street team member. For those of you that have no idea what that is, a street team is a group of readers, reviewers and bloggers that promote and read an advanced copy of the book. We then go out to Goodreads and Amazon (day of release) and leave reviews all while flooding our social media pages with fun edits of this book.

I suck at it. Seriously. I was on this book’s street team. I didn’t get to the ARC because I got sucked down a rabbit hole of writing my own book (more on that to come.) I was so busy, I couldn’t even remember if I signed up for just promotion or the ARC read. Then, I was too embarrassed a few days before release day to be the idiot going, “Uh. Did I sign up to read this?” I was also trying to finish up the school year and get ready for a vacation that ended up being canceled. Needless to say, June sucked, and there are no Hallmark cards for “I didn’t read your book like I was supposed to.”

I’m hoping that I can make it up to Mary Morano. I did read this book. I just read it July 1st as soon as it hit Kindle Unlimited. KU pays authors per page read, so I figured that the least I could do for sucking at street team club was to go out and grab it off of KU so she gets her half a penny per page or whatever it is this month.

Anywho, I was not disappointed when I read it.

First, it’s an easy read. It’s short and the words flow well off of the page. You know how I like easy reads with romance books. It’s supposed to be a fun genre, so if it’s choppy or has a lexile close to a college history textbook, I’m not going to like it. Not a problem here. This is a great, relaxing read.

We have Brayden. He’s a star hockey player at a college in Maine, and he’s in love with Nicole. At least, I think he’s in love with her. He honestly treated her like shit all of middle school and high school before trying kindness again in college. To be honest, that’s the only part of the book I didn’t like. I don’t think it’s a great idea to glorify men treating women like shit as “He just likes you.” I know Morano must have been thinking that too, because there’s even a paragraph dedicated to that.

But that shit treatment because he “liked her” is still there. Sure, he apologized, but come on. Guys, if you like women and care about them, you treat them nicely. Period.

To be honest, I couldn’t get over it in the story, but let me move on to the good stuff for this book. There is a LOT of good stuff here.

The romance is hella sweet. There’s a bit of tension, because she really doesn’t like him. But there’s some fun moments too. The premise of the book is that Nicole’s recent ex-boyfriend left her at the side of the road on her way home to the airport to go home for the summer, and Brayden swoops in. She falls asleep in the car and he just keeps driving by the airport, which soundds a little kidnapperish and like he’s treating her like a child, but I moved along. He had his reasons and they were explained in the book. I feel like the author was very in tune with how he sounded.

Commence fun road trip shennanigans while driving from Maine to Florida. As a former travel buff, I loved hearing about the fun stops. I say former because I’ve been a lot of places…Italy, Scotland, Belize, Australia, Cuba, New Zealand, all over the US, several islands in the Carribean…you get my point. I’m just getting to the point where I’m content to sit at home in my favorite chair and read a book. In fact, I’ve reached the age where my travel rules involve only going somewhere Southwest Airlines goes on a direct flight.

But I digress again.

It was nice to see a lot of fun road trip destinations out east and hear about them. In fact, this book makes me want to check out Salem, MA.

The sex scene is a slow burn happening at close to the end of the book. So be prepared for that. Honestly, it wasn’t a problem for me because the story was strong, the sexual tension of will they/won’t they was good, and I respected the storyline in this one. I thought the author had great pacing to set up the tension and love scenes.

All in all, a great fun read for a summer road trip.

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