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.
I have heard nothing but praise for this book. I did not find myself disappointed. I really enjoyed The Simple Wild.
We’re following Calla as she finds out that her father, Wren, who she hasn’t spoken to since she was a child, has cancer. She has to opportunity to go to Alaska to see him and spend time with him before it’s too late. I really liked this aspect of the book. It brought up interesting ideas of what Calla owes to her father (who was not much of a father to her) and what she owes to herself. I really liked that she wasn’t guilted to coerced into visiting Alaska, she made the choice to go. I really loved how Calla’s family supported her. She has her mother and her step-father, Simon, back in Toronto. Simon is a therapist and I really liked how he helped Calla work through her thoughts and emotions when she was struggling with them. He always knew exactly how to help her. I loved the way that by the end of the story, Calla had three parents.
Now, the romance. Jonah was a big jerk when he first met Calla. He loved Wren and he didn’t know Calla at all, but he judged her unfairly. I really loved following him as he learned how wrong he was. I loved the pranks they pulled on one another and Calla’s anxiety when she thought she may have gone too far. I really enjoyed how Jonah pushed her to do things she was afraid of and to spend more quality time with her father.
Overall, I really enjoyed this book. There were great family dynamics and even though there were some sad parts, I really loved them. The romance was wonderful. They were snarky and full of the banter that is my favorite. I’m very excited to read the second book.
Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.