4,5 “slow burn romance” stars
When my friend Nikki Sex mailed me with “You NEED to read this book” and chatted after at how she found it so great, it picked my attention. And well yes, I promised her that I would read it by the end of the year. When some days later Sarah and Tracey showed interest in reading the book with me, it was the proverbial kick in the behind that I so needed to finally take action!
Verdict? We all three had a blast!
And our group chat was so interesting and motivating that you’ll find some of its spirit in this review!
What’s this book about in a tiny nutshell?
It’s about city girl Calla going to wild Alaska as her estranged dad got cancer. I am oversimplifying here but let’s say that to get there she’ll go on an itsy-bitsy plane (no bikini, that’s Alaska!) whose pilot, Jonah, just wants to charter her back!
Life in Alaska proves a total change and real challenge for Calla and all the book is about her adapting, reconnecting with her father, dealing with Jonah and making new friends.
There is darkness with Wren’s cancer but there also is light and a lot of fun with Calla and Jonah’s banter!
Now let’s get into some specifics and why you should read this book.
First if Tracey, the most outdoorsy and tomboy of our bunch had difficulties connecting with “prissy” Calla in the beginning, I had no such difficulties.
Sure the girl was wearing high heels and tiny shorts on her first days in Alaska BUT she had been raised by a very high maintenance mom, lived in the city all her life and not in the bush. You can’t expect her to be a clone of Alaskans! Calla being a lifestyle blogger and talking about her blogger life made it even easier for me to connect with her.
Fear not though, as we all agreed, Calla will adapt, evolve, leave her “prissiness” behind. KA Tucker transitioned Calla perfectly, smoothly and I could not describe it better than what Tracey did: “Calla’s change was perfectly done. Kinda like when you are ill and then all of a sudden realize you feel better. I all of a sudden realized that she no longer annoyed me.”
I think Tracey’s words are spot on here!
It was a real pleasure not only to witness Calla’s growth but above all else, to enjoy her banter with Jonah!
I love a good enemies to lovers and again, we all agreed that this trope was extremely well done!
Jonah was an instant favorite! What’s not to like in a big and muscled Alaskan pilot, determined to help everyone in the community and delivering medicine or much needed necessities to the remotest places in extremely difficult conditions sometimes. Alaska and planes were his life! Let’s also add that under his very bushy beard he was extremely handsome!
Jonah gives as good as he gets and if he played some pranks on Calla she had her revenge! I was giggling so many times at their antics! My favorite moment when she decided that “Yetis is NOT a style” and decided to take things in her own hands when Jonah was unaware. I am not giving more details here as I don’t want to spoil your fun but if you have read that story, you’ll know what I mean!
All this gave the story a lightness so needed when faced with Wren, Calla’s dad, cancer!
Calla and Wren’s relationship had its challenges and was also done with talent!
When Calla arrived, she wanted to reconnect with him. Yet she was also angry with Wren! For being absent all these years, for missing key moments of her life. And seeing it through Calla’s eyes I was mad too.
Wren as Sarah said was “the character who lived his way but had regrets.”
Recreating their bond was not easy as Wren is someone so closed off. Yet he loved Calla so much! When I learned about his reasons, I forgave him just as Calla did.
Witnessing his illness and some of his choices was difficult for me as I have lots my dad to cancer just one year ago. Despite this, we were spared any unnecessary drama and that’s also something we all really valued in this story! No overload of angst. Just what was needed to make us feel and believe in this story.
What I also really liked in this story is that KA Tucker made the land into a character. You can’t help but feel and breathe Alaska. From its courageous and wise inhabitants to its wild harsh beauty that land played a determining role in the plot.
Calla learned to understand and love that savage country. She got why her father, why Jonah could not live elsewhere.
Last note here: reading about all the work and extend these pilots went to deliver their goods made me think about my own behavior when I order online. I would love for you to ponder on what Calla said:
“It was a long and tiring day of teeth-gritting landings on bumpy airstrips that are nothing more than dirt roads, isolated by thousands or miles of mostly inhabited land in every direction. Almost every trip today was to meet villagers to hand off essential supplies that had been ordered weeks before. They’d thank Jonah for coming, even though most of them had been waiting by those airstrips for hours. (..)
And all I kept thinking about as I smiled at that guy was how many times I’ve ordered makeup or clothes online, only to feel utterly disappointed when I arrive from work and find it not delivered.”
That’s it guys! Sorry for the long review so let’s conclude with: JUST READ IT!
Have you read it already? Do you like slow burn romances?
Thanks for reading!