Review: The Simple Wild by KA Tucker


Title: The Simple Wild
Author: KA Tucker
Release Date: August 7, 2018
Goodreads  | Amazon

Calla Fletcher wasn’t even 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 Calla learns that Wren’s days may be numbered, she 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 rugged environment, Jonah—the unkempt, obnoxious, and proud Alaskan pilot who helps keep 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. Soon, she finds herself forming an unexpected 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.

After I started this blog, the first thing I really wanted to make sure of is that my first review posted would be a book I love. It doesn’t matter if the book was released a decade ago, or released yesterday – what’s important to me is that this book is something that I would recommend to anyone regardless of the genre they read, and that this book kind of reflects what I look for in reading, and what I want my experience in reading to be like. The decision of what review to post was relatively easy to make – without a shadow of doubt, my first review in this new blog has to be The Simple Wild by KA Tucker.

I still remember the day I read The Simple Wild. I was home early for work, and I randomly saw that KA Tucker had a new book out. Since I adored Until It Fades and I had all the time in the world, I started reading. I wasn’t really expecting anything, but when I finished reading, I was sobbing. FULL ON SOBBING. This book is a gem, and I just knew that I’ve found a book that I will adore for years to come! (Spoiler alert: The Simple Wild was released more than two years ago and I still cannot stop thinking about it)

The Simple Wild opens with our heroine, Calla, getting a call from her father’s neighbor, Mabel, and is told that her father has cancer. We also learn that Calla is estranged from her father – she hasn’t seen him since she was in her early teens, and they haven’t been in contact since then either. Mabel encourages Calla to come visit and stay with her father for a few weeks, and Calla is initially hesitant. Simon, Calla’s stepfather, convinces her to go, and thus Calla sets off for Alaska, where most of the book takes place.

The Simple Wild at its very core is a story about growth and relationships. Calla and her father, Wren, learn about each other after more than a decade apart, and they start building a relationship. It’s awkward at first, but it was heartwarming to read about Calla and Wren deciding what kind of father and daughter they will be to each other this time around. Calla learns just how much Wren loves his airline company, Alaska Wild, and Calla learns more about her father through the people of The Wild. We learn about his regrets about his family, and how time stood still for him when it comes to how he feels about Susan, Calla’s mother. Reading about Wren and Susan is heart-wrenching!

While spending time with Wren and the people close to him, Calla learns more about herself, and challenges herself through helping out at The Wild. She befriends Agnes and Mabel, Agnes’ daughter, and Calla and Mabel’s relationship is especially interesting – Wren is the father to Mabel he never was to Calla. She starts off unsure what to think of Mabel, and this wariness turns to jealousy when she realizes that Mabel has what she never had. I loved reading about how Calla learned to push this jealousy aside, and how she established her own relationship with Mabel.

Now, speaking of relationships, Calla has a rocky one with Jonah, one of Wren’s pilots. They kind of have a mini enemies-to-lovers thing going on. They play pranks on each other in one hand, and start to like each other gradually on the other hand. As you read about Calla and Jonah’s relationship, it feels like deja vu – it feels like Wren and Susan’s relationship. It feels like it’s doomed from the very start. Calla is set on this stay in Alaska being a short visit, and Jonah is set on never leaving Alaska. They were content to take things in stride at the beginning, but that starts to change as the story progressed – will history repeat itself?

To be honest, I can’t find the words to describe just how much I loved The Simple Wild – it has everything I want in a book – the plot, the pacing, the characters… I can’t recommend this book enough. I loved the full circle moments, all the growth, all the meaningful relationships, and the unflinching look at how regret can follow you your whole life. I’m not going to lie though – you will probably cry when you read this, but trust me, it’s so worth it!

Rating: 5 out of 5.

19 thoughts on “Review: The Simple Wild by KA Tucker

  1. I finally read The Simple Wild and Wild at Heart this year, and it was nice to know the hype was well-deserved. I loved it, too! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m glad you loved this book. It was such a great read. One of her best. I also liked Wild at Heart. I can’t wait to see what the upcoming novella is about. Also, have you read her Ten Tiny Breaths series? I love that one!

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