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Wild #1

The Simple Wild

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Goodreads Choice Award
Nominee for Best Romance (2018)
City girl Calla Fletcher attempts to reconnect with her estranged father, and unwittingly finds herself torn between her desire to return to the bustle of Toronto and a budding relationship with a rugged Alaskan pilot in this masterful new romance from acclaimed author K.A. Tucker.

Calla Fletcher was two when her mother took her and fled the Alaskan wild, unable to handle the isolation of the extreme, rural lifestyle, leaving behind Calla’s father, Wren Fletcher, in the process. Calla never looked back, and at twenty-six, a busy life in Toronto is all she knows. But when her father reaches out to inform her that his days are numbered, Calla knows that it’s time to make the long trip back to the remote frontier town where she was born.

She braves the roaming wildlife, the odd daylight hours, the exorbitant prices, and even the occasional—dear God—outhouse, all for the chance to connect with her father: a man who, despite his many faults, she can’t help but care for. While she struggles to adjust to this new subarctic environment, Jonah—the quiet, brooding, and proud Alaskan pilot who keeps her father’s charter plane company operational—can’t imagine calling anywhere else home. And he’s clearly waiting with one hand on the throttle to fly this city girl back to where she belongs, convinced that she’s too pampered to handle the wild.

Jonah is probably right, but Calla is determined to prove him wrong. As time passes, she unexpectedly finds herself forming a bond with the burly pilot. As his undercurrent of disapproval dwindles, it’s replaced by friendship—or perhaps something deeper? But Calla is not in Alaska to stay and Jonah will never leave. It would be foolish of her to kindle a romance, to take the same path her parents tried—and failed at—years ago.

It’s a simple truth that turns out to be not so simple after all.

400 pages, Paperback

First published August 7, 2018

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About the author

K.A. Tucker

60 books19.9k followers
K.A. Tucker writes captivating stories with an edge.

She is the internationally bestselling author of the Ten Tiny Breaths and Burying Water series, He Will Be My Ruin, Until It Fades, Keep Her Safe, The Simple Wild, Be the Girl, and Say You Still Love Me. Her books have been featured in national publications including USA Today, Globe & Mail, Suspense Magazine, Publisher's Weekly, Oprah Mag, and First for Women. She has been nominated for the Goodreads Choice Award for Best Romance 2013 for TEN TINY BREATHS and Best Romance 2018 for THE SIMPLE WILD. KEEP HER SAFE made Suspense Magazine's Best of 2018 list for Romantic Suspense.

K.A. Tucker currently resides in a quaint town outside of Toronto.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 13,413 reviews
Profile Image for Colleen Hoover.
Author 76 books678k followers
August 6, 2018
Do you ever read a book and absolutely love it and then reach out to the author and she's a total dick to you and then your hatred for the author seeps into how you feel about the book and then you realize you can never, ever read that book or recommend it again because the author pretended to be your friend, slept with your husband, stole your favorite shirt and had the audacity to wear the same wedding dress to her wedding where she married your husband two years after you read her book and she ruined your life and now you can't read at all?
Cuz that would suck.
Luckily, that didn't happen with me and KA Tucker's book, The Simple Wild. I read it and no drama followed. She didn't steal my husband or my shirt. Just my biblioheart.
She's consistent and dependable as an author. This book was my favorite of hers and I've read them all.
As a friend...hmmm. That will be in the review for the next book she writes.
Profile Image for Melanie.
1,172 reviews98.8k followers
August 7, 2018

ARC provided by Atria Books in exchange for an honest review.

Is it bad etiquette to start a review with a quote by another author? Because while reading this book, I couldn’t stop thinking about Tarryn Fisher’s quote in one of my favorite books of all-time, Mud Vein, “What’s the difference?” I asked him. “Between the love of your life, and your soulmate?” “One is a choice, and one is not.” And I know I haven’t been on this Earth for that long, but that quote is the one of the truest things I’ve ever read in literature. And it really encompasses the theme of The Simple Wild. And sometimes, when you’re lucky enough, and are able to do everything in your power, you are able to have them both.

Let me also start this review off by saying that I feel like this book was very catered to my personal tastes, and I’ll go into that more in the review, but The Simple Wild is currently my favorite romance of 2018. The writing, the setting, the messages, the romance? It was all perfect in my eyes. This was also my first KA Tucker book, but I promise that it won’t be my last.

“What hold does Alaska have on them? What makes this place worth giving everything else up?”

The Simple Wild centers around a twenty-six-year-old named Calla, who has lived twenty-four years in Toronto with her mother. And both Calla and her mother, Susan, have spent most of those years wishing that the man they left in a very remote part of Alaska would come back for them. Calla’s father took over his father’s aviation business, that delivers supplies, food, and medical treatment all over the native towns around this rural part of Alaska. But they’ve both moved on; Susan married an amazing new man, Simon, and Calla just gave up the hope that her father would ever be more than distant heartache. That is, until a woman calls Calla and urges her to finally meet her father, after all these years, before it’s too late and she is never given the chance again. Calla, with the help and support of a few amazing people, decides to fly out and stay for a while in the remote village in Alaska that her father has always chosen over her and her mother.

“I’d always ask him to fly out to visit me. I mean, he had all these planes to choose from, so why couldn’t he just hop in one of them and come?”

KA Tucker says that Bangor is a made-up place in Alaska, but oh my gosh did I fall in love with this fictional community. And Calla gets to meet the people who have been her father’s family for his entire life. And I’ll never make excuses for a parent not wanting to be a bigger part of their child’s life, but I actually felt so much empathy for Calla’s dad, Wren, too. After twenty-four year, he has never given up the love he has for Susan. And even though Calla’s romance is the focus of this book, Wren’s really got to me. Like, this book is easily the book that made me cry the most in 2018. Without question. Happy tears, sad tears, I never want this book to end tears.

And you all know this is a romance book, so obviously Wren had to take a hot, thirty-one-year-old, pilot under his wing. And Calla and him start out with such an enemies to lovers plotline as soon as he picks her up to fly her to her father. And he obviously lives next-door to her father. And their paths are forced to cross constantly throughout Calla’s visit while she gets to finally know her father. And you all, I was weak for it. Also, this has the “trapped in the cabin in the woods” trope and I was screaming with heart eyes.

“Just don’t make the same mistake I did and fall in love with one of those pilots.”

Good Lord, I can’t believe I’m going to say this, but Jonah is honestly the type of guy that I personally like and am attracted to. And I feel kind of gross saying it, because he’s very much a “manly man” but not in a toxic masculine way, but in a “let me chop wood and put it on the fire we have going so I can cook for you” type way. I don’t know. I’m such a hot mess over this book. But I’m just saying that I’ve read 110 books this year, and Jonah is the only fictional dude character that I would personally let get it. Goodbye.

But there is so much to love about Calla, too! Not only does she have empathy, and the courage to let a man who she has felt abandoned by her entire life in, but she’s also sure of herself and her worth. Also, she and her best friend run a lifestyle blog, and I loved every mention of it. From adding hyperlinks last minute, to finding deals every holiday season, to trying your hardest to take the perfect picture for Instagram. Like, it was all so relatable and it truly was the cherry on this already amazing sundae. And I feel like in general, I personally just had a lot of similarities to Calla. Also, just because I’m apparently an open book in this review, my dad is the same age as Wren. So, all the extra feels.

And the overall message of this book is so important and so beautiful. We have to let people live the life that they want to live. We don’t have to agree, but we can always be supportive and try to be empathetic. I try not to talk about my personal life too much, but a lot of you know that cancer is something that I’ve chosen to center my life around, and it’s so important to let the person that is diagnosed choose what is best for them. And, this book is just so heartbreakingly beautiful. Because that’s really all life is; choice after choice after choice. And each and every single one completely alters our life’s path. But controlling our feelings is something entirely different. And the connections we choose to make, too early or too late, is everything.

“You should have called him. He should have called you. Your mom should never have left. Wren should have left Alaska for you. Who the hell knows what’s right, and what it would have led to, but it doesn’t matter because you can’t change any of that.”

This book also shines a spotlight on found families and platonic love, too. This book really is just all about the different kinds of love in the world, really. The love between family, between friends, and between communities. I feel so sappy, but this book just really blew me and my expectations away.

And even though this book was close to perfect in my eyes, it did have two elements that I didn’t enjoy. The first being just the general talk about beauty and what it means to be society’s standard of beauty. Calla gets a lot of shit from Jonah about the way she looks, and that’s something that has happened to me my entire life. And I get it from both sides of the spectrum: From dudes quizzing me with basic biology 101 questions because they can’t believe the degree I have, to my ex giving me shit because I can’t just roll out of bed and feel comfortable going places around town with them. We want girls to look a certain way, but we also want to make them feel bad for putting the time into looking that way. I don’t know. I’m getting so off topic but basically, I’m saying people have treated me the way Jonah treated Calla’s beauty in this book, and I don’t like it. And good Lord, did I hate the nickname “Barbie” so much. But I was living for Jonah constantly being proven wrong on his assumptions and prejudices. Girls are beautiful with no makeup or with a full face of makeup, one doesn’t erase the other. The only thing that matters is what the girl feels comfortable with, and what makes them happy. Also, make up can be really expensive, so show some damn respect.

My only other complaint is Calla’s mother, Susan, and her treatment of Simon. Susan does a lot of hurtful things in this book. And Simon is like the best character in all of literature, so it feels extra bad. Like, who paints someone’s bookshelves when they aren’t home? Like, I don’t know. I really liked Wren, but I honestly disliked Susan, which I feel like will be an unpopular opinion, but it’s honestly how I felt. Also, Simon deserves the entire galaxy and all the stars within it!

Overall, I just loved this. The setting was absolutely perfect and so very atmospheric. I loved the romance more than any word combination I could come up with. I loved the message of living your life to the fullest, and the theme of found families always being better than family of origin. I just loved The Simple Wild and I believe with my whole heart that it will make my best of 2018 list come this December. And again, this book felt very personal to me, but I recommend it to everyone with my entire soul. And, friends, don’t waste your life on wishes; if you want something – go for it, always. Life is short, but it’s never too late to go after your dreams and fight for something you love. Love can be so messy and so complicated, but it’s always worth it.

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Trigger and content warnings for abandonment, terminal disease, talk of cancer, some weird comments about body and weight that made me a little uncomfortable, and loss of a loved one.

The quotes above were taken from an ARC and are subject to change upon publication.
Profile Image for Chelsea Humphrey.
1,481 reviews79k followers
March 7, 2023
"For the hundredth time, I wonder if I'm being the selfish one. If I should grit my teeth and bare the misery, the isolation of Alaska. After all, I made the bed I'm running from now."

My initial reaction to opening The Simple Wild when it arrived in the mail was pure excitement, yet this book turned out to be so much more than my expectations were initially prepared for. Of course its Kathleen's latest book and it's set mostly in Alaska and it's packaged with a breathtaking cover, all things that I love, but those reasons are secondary to the real draw in why you should pick this one up. This is technically a contemporary romance, but it featured a very different vibe than my past KA Tucker reading experiences. Part heart warming romance, part domestic reconciliation, I found The Simple Wild to be 100% what I've been searching for in NA fiction.

"But I don't feel like a twenty-six year old woman right now. Right now, I feel like an angry and hurt fourteen year old girl, brimming with insecurity and doubt, acknowledging that this man-the one not moving a muscle to close this last bit of distance-made a conscious decision to not be in my life."

This story was so easily devoured, and it's compulsive readability was conveniently balanced with a complex plot and an atmospheric setting. Even though this novel is technically a slow burn, I was never bored and battled between not being able to turn the pages fast enough and forcing myself to slow down and relish each delicious description. The townsfolk of Bangor, a fictional town that felt so real, were beautifully portrayed, and I loved the tidbits of history that the author included about the native Alaskan people and all of the hardships they go through just to acquire the everyday basics that you and I take for granted. Bangor was truly a village; when one person is hurting all the rest band together and do what needs to be done to get them through the rough patch, and it was a well needed reminder on how important relationships are in comparison to material things.

I'm torn between wanting to write a novel length exposition on this book and not saying anything else, because it was SO meaningful and I happened to pick it up and JUST the right time, but I also don't want to do other readers a disservice in spoiling a single moment of this beautiful narrative. I'll just end with this- The Simple Wild is a bittersweet love story that expands beyond the barriers of time and circumstance. I feel like this book will really touch the soul of those readers who enjoy their romance to contain an intimacy that is more than just sex-focused. Highly, HIGHLY recommended for those who enjoy reading books set in Alaska!

*I received a review copy via the publisher.
Profile Image for Samantha.
440 reviews16.8k followers
June 3, 2020
2.75 stars

tw: cancer; dying parent

I really wanted to enjoy this. It's a hate-to-love romance featuring a "city girl" who goes to Alaska after getting a call that her estranged father is ill, and she ends up falling for a bush pilot.

The main problem I ran into here was the hate-to-love aspect. I enjoy hate-to love-romances HOWEVER, I think contemporary fiction sometimes struggles with how to do this trope effectively without making me hate the love interest in the meantime. Jonah is an absolute asshole from the beginning. He judges Calla without knowing her, verbally belittles her, shames her for what she wears and wearing makeup as "fake", makes fun of her using soy milk (when she has a dairy allergy!), and lays a lot of the blame on her for the estranged relationship with her dad instead of, ya know, making the actual parent be accountable?? This all meant that by time they started warming up to each other, I could not root for him fully. His behavior is attempted to be explained away by his own family history, but it's no excuse. He's a grown man, not a child. Also, I found myself caring about and being emotional over her parent's failed relationship more than her situation with Jonah.

Also, Calla seems to morph into what Alaska and the people there want her to be very easily. This would make sense if the book set it up at the beginning that she was tired of the city or her life. Although she's hit some road bumps back home, the impression isn't given that she hates it there. But quickly into being in Alaska, she is giving up a lot of her identity.

Jonah isn't the only one who critiques Calla's love of makeup or fashion. The characters around her compliment her only when she's not wearing makeup and when she starts to change her style. Jonah also only compliments her when not wearing makeup -- which is supposed to be seen as cute but a real man would love her appearance regardless of what she is wearing, imo. The narrative very much paints female hobbies as "vain" and it irritated me.

A lot of the responsibility is also removed from Calla's dad in the situation. As soon as she gets there, he's depicted as just being "quiet" and "caring for his community", which is why he didn't fight for a relationship with her. By the end, they do come to an understanding about this but ultimately, more of the responsibility is placed on Calla, who was the CHILD, then her father, who was the PARENT, by all of the characters around her including herself and it was so frustrating to read.

This book was still easy to read and I didn't completely hate my experience, but I expected so much more.
Profile Image for Chelsea (chelseadolling reads).
1,479 reviews19.5k followers
January 12, 2019
WOW I’M EMO THIS WAS SO GREAT I JUST 😭😭😭 I’m rating this 5/5 from a purely emotional standpoint, but it’s probs more of a 4 or 4.5 bc I was really annoyed of the love interest pulling some “🥴 girls look better without make-up 🤪” bullshit but the rest of this was perfection and I’m crying in the club
Profile Image for Christy.
3,916 reviews33k followers
July 31, 2018
5 stars!!!

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The Simple Wild is KA Tucker at her best. I've read a lot of this authors work, most of her books, actually. And this book one is tied as my favorite of hers (Ten Tiny Breaths is hard to top). It had romance, adventure, and was a story about finding yourself. A perfect combination. I loved everything about it!

Calla Fletcher was born in the Alaskan wild, but was moved to Canada with her mother when she was only 2. She hasn't been back since. She's 26 now, living in Toronto and life is good. Until things start to fall apart. On top of that, she finds out that her father is unwell. Even though she hasn't seen or spoken to him in a while, she knows the right thing to do is to see him, so to Alaska she goes.

Calla can't begin to imagine what life is like in rural Alaska. She's heard stories from her mother, but it's nothing like living it. Calla's father, Wren, owns a line of airplanes that transports goods, people, etc around Alaska and has quite a few pilots that work for him. The one that picks Calla up is Jonah. Jonah and Calla seem like the most unlikely pair. And in a lot of ways, they are.

I love the way these two bicker and banter. Enemies to lovers story-lines really work for me. Jonah and Calla's relationship made me laugh, smile, and swoon. They are the epitome of opposites attract, because under all that bickering, there is some serious chemistry between them.But how could things work out when they're from opposite ends?
It can’t lead anywhere, so what’s the point? I’m going back to Toronto, where I belong, and he’s staying here in Alaska, where he belongs.

Jonah is a fantastic hero. He's rugged, alpha (but not in a jerky or over the top way) and an all around good guy. And I really loved Calla's character as well. The romance in this story was fantastic. I loved watching in build and watching things change and grow between the two of them, but this book isn't just a romance. It's SO MUCH MORE than a romance. This is a story about family ties. It's a story about growth, about learning who you are, and about discovering what life is really all about.

I am in love with this book. The writing is stunning, the story is character driven in the best way, and the plot was original and kept me captivated from the start. I loved so many of the characters, aside from Calla and Jonah. Simon and Wren were both especially fantastic. The Simple Wild goes beyond the surface. It's a profound story and one I will carry with me. It will definitely make my top favorites list of 2018 and it's a book I highly recommend!

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Profile Image for Gabby.
1,304 reviews27.9k followers
December 22, 2019
Just finished my reread of this book! It was just as great the second time around and I very much agree with my original review. Jonah still drove me nuts at the beginning of this book and I'm still not a fan of the 'barbie' nickname, but all the characters won me over in the end. I adore this book so much and it makes me want to visit Alaska so bad.

Holy fuck I loved this. So I went into this book with pretty low expectations. He Will be My Ruin is one of my all time favorite books, but then the next two or three books I read from K.A. Tucker really disappointed me and ended up on my worst of the year lists. But this book, oh my gosh this book. There's so much to love about it - I didn't want to it end. It was nearly 400 pages and I flew through it in two days and now I'm so sad that it's over.

This book follows a twenty-six year old girl named Calla who was born in Alaska but moved to Toronto with her Mom when she was two. Her Father Wren stayed in Alaska and runs a plane business called Wild. Calla gets an unexpected phone call saying her Dad has lung cancer, and she feels like if she doesn't go to Alaska now and meet him, she'll never have the chance. This story is a romance, but it's also so much more than that. This story is about a father/daughter relationship that is complicated. This story is about her parents romance and how they just couldn't get it right. This is a coming of age story for Calla, discovering who she is and what she's made of. This is a tribute to Alaska and their people and how strong they are. I have a wild fascination with Alaska and this book was absolutely atmospheric. I felt like I was there, the descriptions were so vivid. I loved it because of that.

Jonah is Calla's love interest and he's a hot-headed pilot who works for her Dad. At first I couldn't stand him,. not going to lie. he was driving me fucking nuts, but then he grew on me like a fungus. They both did really. Calla is the stereotypical city girl and Jonah is the stereotypical manly man but yet I felt so much for both of them. They have this amazing hate-to-love thing going on and their banter was so great. It had me grinning and giggling like an idiot throughout the whole book. AND this is a slow-as-hell slow burn romance, which I LOVED. There's nothing I can't stand more than when a couple gets together right away. Random side note: I also liked the fact that Calla still lived at home at twenty-six because it's so rare to see that in books and I think it's so relatable for me to see someone in their twenties still living at home and I just really enjoyed seeing that.

I love that at the center of this story, it's not really a romance. It's a gorgeous story about Calla's family and how Alaska is such a huge part of her Father's life and about the dangers of being a pilot and how Alaska is a completely different world. It's gorgeously written, it made me cry and it made me laugh.

I am SO GLAD I gave this book a chance. I just found a new favorite book of all time. These characters and Alaska will be on my mind for a very long time. This is definitely my favorite book from K.A. Tucker by far! I'll definitely check out whatever book she comes out with next!

Huge thank you to Atria Books for sending me a copy of this book!
Profile Image for HTL.
602 reviews39 followers
February 28, 2019
thank u, next.

I forced myself to finish this BECAUSE I AM A STUBBORN ASSHOLE. Prepare for my rambles and IDGAF if this spoils it for you.

I was immediately put off and on high alert as the book starts with some good ol casual racist stereotypes. "Raj and Adnan are nice enough....and can't accept a simple "Good Morning, how are you?" from me without their faces turning beet red. And then there's May, who sits one cubicle over...who eats fermented cabbage at her desk."

Why do people like this book? I honestly don't understand. Tucker's descriptions of Alaska aren't beautiful and didn't transport me there. And HELLO JONAH IS A FUCKING DICK. I hate the trope of the asshole with something to prove, but somehow the lady falls in lurrrrve with him anyway. WHY.

*He's mean to her from the beginning. Mean, rude, condescending.
*He tells her that "she doesn't need that crap (makeup) on her face" because she's attractive as is. OKAY I DIDN'T ASK FOR YOUR BEAUTY ADVICE JONAH. I hate that shit. Women don't need your dis/approval to wear make up or not.
*He essentially calls her a slut bag because of her "skimpy running clothes"
*He hides her luggage from her, looks down on her, calls her "Barbie", hides her toiletries/makeup/hair stuff

Oh, also, when she has good ideas about making a website for her dad's company he's surprised and was like "yeah i'm sorry i was mean, i didn't know you were actually smart" GUESS WHAT JONAH. WOMEN (PEOPLE) DON'T HAVE TO HAVE A CERTAIN INTELLIGENCE QUOTIENT TO BE TREATED LIKE A HUMAN BEING.

He fucking waxes poetic about how Wren (her dad) is suuuuch a great guy (lol he's been an absent father for 24 years) and how she'll REGRET IT SO MUCH if she doesn't reconcile with him (b/c jonah has his own daddy issues) and i'm just so over it. NOT EVERYONE HAS YOUR EXPERIENCE OR PERSPECTIVE JONAH. IT'S ALMOST LIKE PEOPLE ARE DIFFERENT AND HAVE DIFFERENT CIRCUMSTANCES TO CONSIDER.

I almost forgot! Calla cut Jonah's hair while he was asleep! Goddamn psycho.

Then of course they kiss and fuck non-stop and Calla is like omg i can't leave alaska b/c i'll miss jonah! GURL GO FIND A NEW DICK TO RIDE BC THIS ONE IS POISON.
Profile Image for EmBibliophile.
531 reviews1,353 followers
February 14, 2020
Re-read#2 (2/14/2020) rereading this because the anticipation is killing me! I need the sequel like yesterday! I freakin love this book and I’m both nervous and excited for the rest of Jonah and Calla’s story!

5 ‘Sky cowboys’ stars

What hold does Alaksa have on them? What makes this place worth giving everything else up?

A nice heartwarming story about love and forgiveness. This was my first K.A Tucker’s book, and I loved it.

Calla Fletcher was born in Alaska but she left with her mother when she was nearly two years old. She hasn’t been back since then. Now, at the age of 26, she got a call that her dad who she hasn’t seen since she was 2 is dying. Calla decided to go and visit him and maybe get the closure she wants. Being a city girl, she find it really hard to adapt in Alaska, and Jonah isn’t making it any easier.

"It’s not the same.”
“What’s not?”
“Alaska. You’ve ruined Alaska for me.”

I’m a sucker for enemies to lovers romance, and these two were so great. I loved the way they bicker and banter. Those two got me grinning like an idiot. Jonah is the best! He’s such a swoon worthy hero. He says what’s on his mind, doesn’t have a filter, and appear to be simply rude. But oh he is so good!!! Calla appear to be a spoiled city girl who kind of irritated me at first, but that was the point. I loved the wild setting, Calla and her father relation, how everyone in the book seem to be a part of a one big family, and the romance was so good. Also can I just say that Simon deserves better? He’s such a great person and I didn’t like that way Susan treated him. Overall, this was such a lovely heartwarming story.

"I’m saying that I might take risks, but they’re always worth it. Got it?”

Song recommendation:

Wildest dreams by Taylor Swift
Like I’m gonna lose you by Megan Trainor ft. John legend
Profile Image for KAS.
317 reviews3,127 followers
August 30, 2018
A Substantive, Scrumptious Slow Burn!!

This was my first read by Ms. Tucker, and glory days can the woman write!

Calla’s father is dying and wants to see her, although he has been mostly absent in her life. Her mother left him when she was only two years old. He lives thousands of miles away in the western wilds of Alaska and owns a small airline company.

As a warning before she leaves to visit her father, her mother tells her not to fall for one of the pilots, or in her words “sky cowboys.” Of course, she doesn’t take her advice.

And the delectable sky cowboy is ... Jonah! And, my oh my, did I ever fall for this guy. He is beyond fine, his sarcasm is priceless and devotion unmatched. Calla is in for one sweet, yet frustrating ride.

Let’s just say their relationship gets off to a rocky start. You see, whatever is on Jonah’s mind, he speaks it!

”Hell. Six other pilots available and I had to be the one to get you,” Jonah mutters to himself.

 ... " 'Don't worry, Calla.' 'It's no big deal, Calla.' That's what a decent person would say," I mumble.

 "I'm here to get your high-maintenance little a** to Bangor, not soothe your ego."

Oh! My! Gosh! What a laugh out loud time I had witnessing these two try to be civil with each other. She has Jonah pegged as a rude, cantankerous, bushy faced mountain man, and as far as he is concerned, Calla is a fake, spoiled, uppity Barbie doll. Talk about night and day!

But it is also an emotional read about forgiveness and second chances. Admittedly, I had to swipe away a few tears.

The whole opposites attract angle really works in this extremely well written, slow burn romance, which has a lot of depth to it. A very nice change of pace for me! No such thing as “fluff” in this one.

I will definitely be reading more by Ms. Tucker.
Profile Image for jessica.
2,555 reviews35.6k followers
January 11, 2019
its taken me awhile to figure out how to write this review because, as you can tell from the rating, i really enjoyed this! its been awhile since ive read a NA book that i liked this much. and its probably because the story reminded me a lot of colleen hoover and renee carlinos work - both are authors whom i absolute adore! but this story has a couple of big issues and im still kind of confused as to why they dont bother me.

the first problem is calla. as ive mentioned before in other reviews, there is a massive difference between a flawed character and an unlikable character and calla is unfortunately both. but i just dont care? and i actually really like her development. normally, i write off characters like her as unredeemable, but she steps up in my eyes by the end.

and the second little hiccup is the romance. for a romance novel, i wasnt really invested in the relationship. sure, jonah is fine. i dont have issues with him. but the whole chemistry between him and calla is just kind of meh. again, not sure why it doesnt bother me like it normally would.

so you would think that by having problems with both the main character and the romance i would be rating this lower. and i probably would if i didnt have such lingering positive feelings about this. i mean, the setting for this book is unbelievable. as much as i call myself a city girl, the alaskan wilderness is definitely calling to my soul. i LOVED learning about the wild side of the state and the industry of flying charter planes. it made my little wanderlust heart so happy. and callas father is character goals. he is such a sweetheart and has one of the most bittersweet storylines ive read in awhile. i was immediately attached to him and his down to earth personality makes him really easy to connect with. i think he and the alaskan wilderness are really what makes me love this story so much.

so although this story is far from perfect, its such a spirited and touching read. and its for sure going on my recommendation list for anyone looking for a new NA book!

4.5 stars
Profile Image for ❥ KAT ❥ Kitty Kats Crazy About Books.
2,225 reviews8,034 followers
January 1, 2022
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📚THE SIMPLE WILD:📚 Is the first full length romance book in the series 'WILD' by K.A Tucker. Spoken in 'Dual Perspectives.'

UPDATED 2022: This re-read was the perfect book to see the 'New Year' in with. I'm getting ready for the next book in the series to drop this month. And I can't tell you how excited I am for it!! Hopefully I can stay in this 'WILD' bubble for a bit longer before ARCS start dropping..
This book was everything, it was as special the second time around, I loved these two more than I can convey, I cried, I sighed, I giggled, I fell in love with Alaska and its occupants.

Calla Fletcher was born in the Alaskan wild, but her mother couldn't settle down in such a remote life style and they moved to Canada when Calla was a two year old toddler. Calla's not set foot on Alaskan soil since.

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Now we see her as a twenty six year old living in Toronto with her mother and step father, life is good, until things spiralled out of control all within a day as she's being laid off from her job as a risk analyst for a bank, then that same night she breaks up with her boyfriend then a phone call she got from an acquaintance of her fathers set her on a path she never thought she'd be going down, her father Wren is sick and it may be her last chance of getting to know the man who she hasn't seen for many years. So she knows it's in her best interest to see him, so off to Alaska she goes with a warning ringing in her ears from her mother 'Just don't make the same mistake I did and fall in love with one of those pilots.'

Wren Calla's father owns a fleet of airplanes which they use to transport goods to outposts in the surrounding Alaskan area and has a few workers that helps around the small airport, one in particular Jonah, an Alaskan bush pilot and bachelor, and is one of Wren's most trusted pilots is there that day to pick up Calla. These two butt heads as soon as they meet, he thinks he knows her kind, and she's the kind that will turn her nose up at their way of living and high tail it back to the big smoke.

This was one of my most highly anticipated books of August and I am so glad I could fit it in. This reminded me so much of a doco series my partner loves called ‘Yukon Men’ which was so similar to this.
I’ve not read anything quite like this before, and because of that rare uniqueness I also didn’t want it to end. I craved more, I wanted more, I needed more. I wanted to stay with these characters longer, never wanting their journey to end.
This had me giggling, swooning, an emotional sad journey, all the feels in the world!! So easy to get into, so hard to put down, there is absolutely nothing I would change about this book. This captivated me from the get go, sunk it's claws in so deep I fell in love with this as soon as I started reading..

Crazy loved this book. Highly recommend!! 👍🏻

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Profile Image for Samantha Young.
Author 101 books25.7k followers
November 6, 2018
My top read of 2018 so far!

This is my first K.A. Tucker book and it most certainly won't be my last. I was transported to the wilds of Alaska by Tucker's stunning writing. A poignant, authentic story about family and love. It touched me because it was so achingly real and I honestly can't remember the last book that made me cry this hard. It also made me laugh out loud a lot! The banter and chemistry between Calla and Jonah was just so on point. I was swept up in this story. It was quietly epic.
Everyone should bump this one right to the top of their tbr pile!
Profile Image for Kezia Duah.
392 reviews344 followers
August 29, 2022
To make myself feel better about this one, I will describe it as a heartfelt daughter and father reunion that happens to include a romance.

Wren and Calla’s relationship throughout the story was really good. Very awkward at first from what you would expect from a strained relationship, but Tucker does a great job with the events that occur by the end. At first, I was mad that it felt like the pressure to work on this relationship was mainly stressed on Calla, and not the PARENT. However, as we get to know more about Wren, we understand and learn that he is a man of many struggles, and opening up is one of them. I also enjoyed “The one that got away” vibe between Wren and Susan, Calla’s mother. You could tell their love story was something that would have made a great romance book.

Okay……let’s discuss romance. To sum it up, I would have preferred if it was just a fling. I might have given it a higher rating if they were realistic with themselves. If you’re going to have two characters fail to be together because neither of you wanted to sacrifice ( Susan and Wren), why write another love story that would probably end the same way, because for me I didn’t get any strong certainly that Calla and Jonah were so in love that one would sacrifice for the other in the long run. I see there are other books in the series, and some of you may be like “ read the other books,” but no. I saw the synopsis for that and I’m not going to struggle on several pages along with Calla even if it all works out.

Plus, Jonah was not that good for Calla. There’s nothing cute about telling a girl she would be better of without this and that, going so far as to call her vain. He obviously has views on what a woman is supposed to do, behave, and look like, and what I could see in this book is how he practically molded her into the woman he wants. And just when I thought that maybe there’s a tiny part of me that might not think he’s that bad, his selfishness is displayed at the end through his requests and his intentions behind them. Wow! Nevertheless, I’m still a sucker for enemies to lovers and banter with a slow burn element, so I enjoyed something out of it.

Profile Image for ♛ may.
806 reviews3,837 followers
August 29, 2018
im gonna move to alaska and find me a viking sky cowboy and live my best life even tho im terrified of heights on a good day and my sanity is highly dependent on my wifi speed but, we'll make it work

K. A. Tucker how effing dare you make me feel like a book is part of my soul to just end it and not continue it forever????!!!!

anyways, you should pick up this book bc its so fricken atmospheric and well developed in writing and characters and INTERESTING AND INCREDIBLE AND FUN


i am devastated that its over tbh
Profile Image for BernLuvsBooks .
833 reviews4,711 followers
April 14, 2020
4.5 Why, oh why did I wait so long to read this book stars!

I was hesitant and worried the hype wouldn’t be real. I had nothing to fear. I LOVED this book. And, in all honestly I was actually a bit surprised by how much. It’s a slow building romance and not very steamy. Yet, I was caught up in the lives of Calla and Jonah like I knew them. The Alaskan setting, the amazing side characters, the super sexy sky cowboy and all the snarky banter - I found all of it engrossing and completely irresistible. Trust me, you will not be able to resist Jonah any more than Calla did. 🥰⁣

𝐈𝐟 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐡𝐚𝐯𝐞𝐧’𝐭 𝐫𝐞𝐚𝐝 𝐭𝐡𝐢𝐬 𝐨𝐧𝐞 - 𝐝𝐨𝐧’𝐭 𝐤𝐞𝐞𝐩 𝐰𝐚𝐢𝐭𝐢𝐧𝐠! 𝐇𝐢𝐠𝐡𝐥𝐲 𝐫𝐞𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐦𝐞𝐧𝐝𝐞𝐝!!! Just be sure you already have book 2 handy. You’ll want to read it immediately. I’ll be sharing my thoughts on that one with you all tomorrow. 😉⁣
Profile Image for Larry H.
2,514 reviews29.4k followers
June 2, 2019
I'll admit, I have a straight-up obsession with Alaska. Of course, I'm far from the roughing-it type, so my appreciation of the "Last Frontier" comes from the pictures I've seen from those on Alaskan cruises, books like The Great Alone or The Smell of Other People's Houses , and movies.

I must say, that when a character in K.A. Tucker's book The Simple Wild said she loved Alaska because of what she saw in the movie "Into the Wild," I actually laughed out loud, because I felt seen.

Anyway, all this preamble is just to say that The Simple Wild already had a bit of a head-start with me because of its setting, but Tucker's story of romance, family dysfunction, forgiveness, and desperately trying not to make the same mistakes your parents did really blew me away. I've been on a bit of a roll with romance/rom-com novels lately, and this one was just as spectacular as everyone told me it was.

Calla Fletcher is a bit out of sorts—she's just lost her job and her relationship with her boyfriend seems to be going nowhere. Then she gets a phone call that her estranged father, Wren, has cancer. Calla hasn't seen her father since she was two years old, when she and her mother left their rural Alaska home because her mother could no longer handle the isolated lifestyle. And while she talked to her father periodically throughout her childhood, they haven't spoken in a number of years, and she essentially felt he chose his life in Alaska over her.

With nothing really going on in her life, and the opportunity to try and get to know her father before it's too late, Calla decides to head to the Alaskan wilderness, where he runs a charter plane company. She is utterly unprepared for how different life is in Bangor, Alaska from her life in Toronto—the spotty wi-fi, the constraints on water usage, how much everything costs—but she is captivated by the beauty of the place. But her father is very guarded, and she can't seem to understand why he keeps avoiding her. She's only in Alaska for a week—shouldn't he be taking the time to get to know her again? Or doesn't he care that she came all this way?

Little by little, Calla begins to understand why Wren could never uproot his life, even for her and her mother. She gets to know the people he's chosen to surround himself with, especially Jonah, the cocky pilot with the chip on his shoulder, and a host of incorrect assumptions about Calla. He's convinced she's too pampered to last in Bangor, and is ready to fly her home at the first sign of distress—if she can ever get her luggage in the first place. She doesn't understand why Jonah resents her so much, although he does encourage her to get to know her father.

Determined to prove Jonah wrong, and realizing that the time she has with her father is truly limited, Calla begins to settle in to Alaskan life, and starts to form a relationship with her father again. She learns more about his relationship with her mother, and how they never truly stopped loving each other, even though she has gotten remarried and built a new life. More and more, Calla's combative relationship with Jonah begins to soften into friendship, with hints at something more intense. But Jonah will never leave Alaska, and like her mother, Calla cannot fathom a life here. She's determined not to make the same mistakes her mother did, no matter how much her hunger for Jonah grows.

While nothing surprising happens in The Simple Wild , I was completely hooked from start to finish, and devoured the book in just a few hours. I was totally invested in these characters and their lives, and found myself getting emotionally invested right along with them. Granted, I have a lot of emotional vulnerability regarding my own father's death five years ago, but this book really touched me. I love books which celebrate both the families we choose along with those we're born into.

Far from just being poignant, however, this book is funny, ridiculously sexy, and a love letter to Alaska. Tucker is a great storyteller, but she painted such vivid pictures of the beautiful surroundings as well as the mundane parts of rural, small-town life. She also did a great job capturing the exhilaration and the danger associated with flying such small planes in unstable conditions. It really added another dimension to the story.

If you're looking for a book that is both a story of family relationships and a love story, pick up The Simple Wild . Hopefully you'll marvel at Tucker's storytelling and the absolute charm of this book as much as I did.

See all of my reviews at itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com.

Check out my list of the best books I read in 2018 at https://itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com/2019/01/the-best-books-i-read-in-2018.html.

You can follow me on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/the.bookishworld.of.yrralh/.
Profile Image for Jen.
1,655 reviews1,007 followers
August 12, 2018
**** 4.5 Stars!!!! ****

I loved this book! It would have been a five stars for me but the beginning was a bit slow... Once it got started though it was a book that was full of emotion and heart! I’m not a reader that cries very often, but this story challenged my tear ducts more than a few times!

I’ve always had a soft spot for stories that take place in Alaska, and this one was no exception! Calla has grown up in the city of Toronto but she’s always felt an emptiness regarding her father whom her Mother has left when Calla was a toddler. Wren’s heart has always been in Alaska and the skies, as he is a bush pilot. Her mom couldn’t stand the isolation that Alaska brought and so she left, hoping that Wren would follow... but he never did. When Calla gets a call saying she needs to come to Alaska as her dad has been diagnosed with cancer she is torn. She has a lot of resentments and feelings of abandonment when it comes to her Dad; but she decides she needs closure.

This is an emotional journey of a young woman getting to know her father and also learning a lot about herself. She ends up meeting one of her Dads head bush pilot, Jonah... and this is a slow burn romance between the two of them! Also, they don’t like each other at first, but let me tell you... their banter is hilarious as well as the pranks they play on each other!

This is a must read book! It is not only a heartwarming journey of self discovery; but also features all kinds of love between family and friends! I loved this read and hope this author chooses to revisit the Wild’s of Alaska again!
Profile Image for Berit Talks Books.
2,024 reviews15.7k followers
August 7, 2018
5 Simply Perfect Stars 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

K A Tucker is one of my absolute favorite authors, and this is now my absolute favorite book by her! Sorry “Ten Tiny Breaths “you still are fabulous... but this book has edged you out of that top spot! When you pick up a k a Tucker book you know you are going to go on an emotional journey, filled with fabulously complex characters, and a plot filled with twists and secrets that will keep you on your toes.... this book did all that and so much more... truly a beautiful story all about love set in the cold beauty of Alaska...

Calla is 26 and has not seen her dad since she was two years old when her mother and she left rugged Alaska for Toronto...Calla has been hurt by her father’s absence in her life, but fortunate for her she has the world’s greatest stepfather Simon... can I just take a minute to praise Simon’s character... this man was everything a parent should be, I was beyond impressed with him... and can I just say he truly deserved much more than Susan (Calla’s mom) gave him.... after receiving a phone call from a stranger in Alaska urging her to come see her father before it is too late and some wonderful advice from Saint Simon; Calla packs her many bags and heads to Alaska....

Met at the airport by Jonah a.k.a. “the yeti “ Calla’s alaskan journey begins.... for Jonah and Calla it is dislike at first sight... my favorite trope is enemies to lovers and I loved watching the relationship between these two develop... The banter between them was absolutely priceless and some of the things they did to one another were downright wrong... but so hilarious.....

I absolutely loved how Calla embraced small town Alaska... it took her a little while longer to fully embrace her father Wren.... and that is completely understandable after all where has he been for all these years? Not a phone call since she was 12, and he missed her eighth-grade graduation.... but Calla doesn’t know the entire story and as things are revealed to her and she gets to know her father better her heart starts to open up to him....

There is so much love in this book and it is beautiful and it is heartbreaking... The love these people have for the state of Alaska... the Love this community has for one another... The love of family, and not necessarily a biological family but a found family... and romantic love, both wonderful and new, and heartbreaking and lasting....

“The Simple Wild” is simple perfection... I absolutely recommend this book to everybody... it will make you smile, it will make you laugh, it will make you cry tears of joy and heartbreak... and it will make you want to go to Alaska!

*** many thanks to Atria for my copy of this beautiful book ***
Profile Image for Patty ~ Wrapped Up In Reading Book Blog.
1,260 reviews10k followers
August 12, 2018
*****FIVE STARS*****
{ARC Generously Provided by Publisher}

He’s not like any other guy I’ve dated or crushed on. And while he’s capable of making my blood boil like no one else, I feel a magnetic pull toward him that I can’t explain.

THE SIMPLE WILD is a story filled with so much heart and emotion. It’s one of those books that will leave a lasting impression on you long after you’ve finished it. K.A Tucker’s writing is brilliant. You feel as if you are in Alaska with how the author brings it to life within the pages of this book. This is going down as one of my top favorites written by Ms. Tucker. I feel as if nothing I can say will truly express how much I connected to this story. I empathized greatly with the Heroine.

Calla Fletcher has just been laid off from her job and also finds out that her boyfriend of the past six months, has been cheating on her. But that’s nothing compared to the shock she gets when she receives a phone call from a close friend of her father’s—a man she hasn’t seen since she was two, nearly twenty-four years ago. The friend asks Calla to come to visit her father in Alaska because he’s terminally ill and his days are numbered. Calla struggles at first, with the idea of going to see the man who never once came to visit her since her mother left him back in Alaska and who stopped calling when she was fourteen. She ends up going because she needs the closure and knows that it would be her biggest regret if she didn't go to see her father for one last time.

Calla’s dad owns a small airline in Alaska and it’s one of the major reasons he didn’t move to Toronto with her and her mother. One of his pilots, Jonah, flies Calla from Anchorage to the small town her father lives in. From the moment Jonah and Calla meet they are like oil and vinegar. Jonah sees Calla as a snobby city girl who is self-absorbed and won’t last a day without all of her creature comforts. She does have a bit of a hard time getting adjusted to the way of life there. The bickering between them was, at times, hilarious. There was no denying the chemistry between Jonah and Calla.

While we have this intense romance developing via a slow burn, there was also the relationship between Calla and her father, Wren, which was also very much the focal point of the story. It’s the part that brought forth so much emotion. I understood Calla’s hurt and anger. What I took from this story was that it’s wasted energy to dwell on past mistakes that you can never change

Jonah and Calla are at constant odds throughout most of the story, but things eventually heat up for them. Is history doomed to repeat itself? Her parents loved each other fiercely and yet they couldn't make it work between them because her father's life was in Alaska and her mother was miserable there. Calla's life is in Toronto, and Jonah loves flying planes for her dad's company in Alaska. Will their story end in heart break as well?

Here are my overall ratings

Hero: 5
Heroine: 5
Plot: 5
Angst: 4.5
Steam: 4
Chemistry Between Hero & Heroine: 5

THE SIMPLE WILD is currently available! I highly recommend it!

Amazon Paperback: https://amzn.to/2Kkaeqc
Amazon: https://amzn.to/2veonRb
B&N: https://bit.ly/2vdWWqq
Books-a-million: https://bit.ly/2AxZhl8
Indiebound: https://bit.ly/2OESvx6
iBooks: https://apple.co/2n49dJI
Blio: https://bit.ly/2n8ZzFK

Profile Image for Corina.
768 reviews2,185 followers
May 26, 2020
Re-reading this beauty for a buddy read, but decided to listen to the audiobook this time, and so far the narration is already a good one..... enjoying it a LOT! Jonah is already make me chuckle....

The audiobook was as emotional and captivating as the physical book. Love this sotyr, and can't wait to read Wild at Heart/.


4.5 stars

I knew, according to other reviews, that this book was something special. Since I never read anything by this author before, I didn't know how this book would affect me. Suffice to say it affected me a great deal.

And ultimately it was a great deal more than a romance.

It had everything from loss to love, regret and heartache, to forgiveness. The Simple Wild was an emotional and tender story that perfectly blended all of these emotions into a brilliantly written story.

Throughout the first third of the story, the author slowly introduced the reader to the characters, their relationships, and the reality that was Bangor, Alaska. The way the author described this at times desolate and for many people depressing place felt utterly authentic and real. Alaska is by no means an easy place to live in, but the author researched the area so well that the way of living came across as authentic and as true as possible, which was greatly appreciated.

While reading The Simple Wild, I fell in love with Calla, her parents at home in Toronto, with her biological dad in Alaska, and with the annoyingly but handsome bush pilot Jonah. Everyone of these characters was endearing, smart and genuinely likable. Each was fleshed out with personalities that were charming, relatable, and unique. 

The dialogues, which were funny, heartfelt, and genuine, literally jumped off the pages. Each character had a distinctive voice, and I must admit, one of my most favorite characters of all was Calla's stepdad Simon. Any child should be lucky to have a dad like him, and any woman blessed to call him hers. He was AMAZING!!! But that's beside the point.:D

Calla and Jonah's story was beautiful, touching but also a lot of fun. Enemies to lovers, their animosity was hilarious and their back and forth exceptionally well done. They didn't change just because they slept together, they kept true to themselves and I adored them even more because of it. There were some incredibly tender moments in this book that took my breath away, especially between Calla and Jonah. 

This book worked!!!

There was nothing I didn't like about this story. The story flowed, and made me smile, laugh and in the end tear up. The author took an idea and wove it beautifully into a story that carried a message that is important to all of us. Life is short!!  Don't wait too long. Love, forgive, appreciate family, and enjoy the short life we were given. 

Find more reviews and book recommendations on my blog.

Find me on Bookstagram.

Profile Image for Arini.
857 reviews1,766 followers
May 13, 2023
2nd Read, February 2020 — 4 Stars
1st Read, August 2018 — 3 Stars

#2 Wild at Heart — 2.5 Stars
#2.5 Forever Wild — 3 Stars

This went surprisingly well the 2nd time around. I’m not sure what exactly went wrong the 1st time bcs I didn’t write a review, but I think it had smth to do with how stuck up Calla was and what a judgy mean ass jerk Jonah was in the beginning of the book. I also think it didn’t work out bcs I typically didn’t like an angsty romance with a terminally sick character.

However, smhw I found myself devouring this and not really care much about those things. I think what truly got to me and made me enjoy this was the setting and wilderness aspect of the story. I LOVE BOOKS SET IN NATURE. This one was particularly unique to me bcs I’ve never been to Alaska and it was fascinating seeing the lifestyle of the people there and how drastically different it was from where I live.

Overall, this was a fun book to read despite the somber undertone that it carried. It was lighthearted while still managed to make you feel devastated and emotional. I think the romance was ill timed considering the circumstances and the open ended ending left me flabbergasted. But now that I know there’s a sequel, I’m excited to explore more of the characters’ love and have new adventures with them.
Profile Image for Emma.
122 reviews96 followers
April 7, 2019
The writing was great, I was sucked from the beginning. I didn't care that there was no romance in the first half. I was invested in the relationship between Calla and her father, and eager to know the reason that would make a father abandon his kid without visits or phone calls, when he was financially capable. To discover later, how simple the answer was, Wren was a terrible, terrible father, the worst actually.

To add insult to injury, the judgemental asshole hero blamed her for not calling and knowing him, and she felt guilty. For God's sake, she was a kid when he cut off all communication with her, so she can move on. She is your daughter asshole, you don't get to let her move on from you, just because you are an indifferent lazy ass who can't make an effort, or more like you don't care.

The romance wasn't any better. there was no tenderness or depth to the relationship. The love interest was too arrogant for my liking and kept insulting our heroine, and Calla was intimidated by him throughout the entire book, afraid he will find her lacking because of his judgmental behavior toward her from the beginning.

So, the happy ending, after her parents experience, all her fears and the differences between her and the male MC, wasn't convincing. Don't get me wrong, they might stay together, but only because he bullied her to stay. And she isn't smart nor strong enough to do what her mother did.
Profile Image for Warda.
1,208 reviews19.7k followers
September 28, 2018
Update: I did shed some tears. Not as many as I would've liked though.
I was about 40% in when I felt myself starting to like the book more and more. The characters absolutely irritated me at first. But that was the point. Calla wasn't used to the lifestyle in Alaska and being a city girl, that just wasn't working out for her.
Jonah is your classic, lovable dick.

For both Calla and Jonah, there is more than what meets the eye, and I really loved seeing their character develop.
There was just a nice balance of everything; of the characters, the familial relationship, the community vibes in Alaska which was beautifully brought to life, and the romance.

Overall, a nice and warm read and I can't wait to check out K.A. Tucker's other work.


I’m SO excited to read this book!
Please make me cry.

Buddy-reading this with the awesome Karima again! 😘
Profile Image for Michelle.
976 reviews13 followers
November 21, 2018
1.5 stars. I feel harsh rating this so low, but really just about everything to do with this book irritated me, and the more I read, the more I disliked it. And the fact that it's so highly rated by everyone else is utterly baffling to me and makes me like it even less. Which isn't entirely fair, but I never claimed to be fair.

First off, I didn't buy the romance or that Jonah and Calla were in love at the end. How long had they even been dating when she left Alaska? Like, a couple weeks? At most? And so that made it incredibly heard to believe that

I really never cared for Jonah, and I hated how he treated Calla when she showed up and that he barely apologized even after they got to know each other. Hiding all her makeup was gross, as was HIDING HER LUGGAGE FOR LIKE A WEEK and pretending it was LOST, as was the comment about how much better she looks without makeup (here's a hint to guys: DON'T GIVE UNSOLICITED ADVICE ON WOMEN'S MAKEUP!!! You don't get a say!!! Women can wear makeup if they want!!!!!!! The whole, "You're so much prettier without makeup!" thing is supposed to be sweet and romantic but it's actually condescending as hell. AND I SAY THIS AS SOMEONE WHO DOES NOT WEAR MAKEUP ROUGHLY 99.9% OF THE TIME!!!!!!!). The fact that he called her Barbie as an insult at first and then continued to call her it as a ~cute nickname even after they were getting along better was also super obnoxious.

I was hoping the family stuff would work for me even if the romance didn't, but it was also terrible. There was WAY too much of characters trying to "both sides" the situation and saying Calla should've called her dad sooner and all that. At one point, Jonah is literally even like, "You should have called him. He should have called you," like it was an equal failure, but, no??? He's the one who bailed on a 14 year old girl and then pulled away because that's what he thought would be easier for her and her mom or what they wanted or something. IT'S HIS FAULT FOR GHOSTING HIS OWN DAUGHTER. HE'S THE ADULT IN THE SITUATION. Even if she's upset about him missing her graduation, IT'S UP TO HIM TO MAKE IT UP TO HER. NOT ABANDON HER FOR OVER A DECADE. It wasn't Calla's fault for assuming her dad wanted nothing to do with her and being upset about it and never reaching out again because, again, SHE WAS THE CHILD, and her father broke her heart and NEVER GAVE HER A REASON TO BELIEVE HE ACTUALLY CARED ABOUT HER. And I can't for the life of me understand why he didn't explain the real reason he had to bail on the graduation! She'd be upset, but she'd get over it with an actual, legitimate reason for having to miss it rather than canceling saying it was just a work emergency but no other details and NEVER CONTACTING HER AGAIN. It also sounded like he didn't make much effort on their phone calls before that point, either. Basically, he was a shitty dad who bailed on her rather than make an effort with her and yet somehow EVERYONE was like "You really shouldn't have waited until he was dying to visit him again!" SHE OWED HIM NOTHING. And the fact that he was like, "After I canceled on the trip I decided it was probably time to finally bow out and let you both move on," um, no, you don't get to MOVE ON from your child!!! I pretty much hated him.

AND I JUST DON'T UNDERSTAND HOW THIS HAS 4.57 STARS (as of this review). Even the few negative reviews seem to be negative because they hate Calla (who I didn't LOVE, don't get me wrong, she just wasn't the MOST deserving of my hatred) but nothing about Jonah WHO WAS SO MUCH WORSE. He was so judgmental of her but I guess we're supposed to be okay with it because he's… "right," I guess? Like she deserves to be despised for the crime of not packing correctly for Alaska. And he was so terrible too about her not having come prior to that to see her father WHEN HER FATHER WAS THE ONE WHO WAS IN THE WRONG AND NEVER MADE ANY ATTEMPT TO SEE HER. Listen, like I said, I didn't love Calla, but I at least understood where she was coming from. Jonah calls her shallow, and like… why, because she likes Instagram and makeup? It's okay to like those things! And it's okay to want a soy latte! None of these things make her a terrible person deserving of scorn!!! BASICALLY THIS BOOK JUST REALLY ANNOYED ME, the end.
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832 reviews451 followers
February 21, 2022
I actually enjoyed this book a whole lot more than I thought I would! ❤️😍 It’s rated R (so… caution for my young and/or wholesome friends). It was funny and frustrating- steamy and flirty- but it had me crying too. 💔 Just a rollercoaster of emotions over here.
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