SPOILER FREE GUSH REVIEW: THE SIMPLE WILD BY K.A.TUCKER

Title: The Simple Wild

Author: K.A. Tucker

Pub. Date: August 7th. 2018

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Publisher: Atria Books

Pages: 388

🖤 ARC provided by author in exchange for an honest review 🖤

GOODREADS | BARNES & NOBLE | AMAZON

    

Whenever K.A. tucker writes a book I stop whatever I’m doing to read said book & gahhhh! I’m always left with a book hangover but it can’t be helped. I LOVED The Simple Wild & felt the relationships that formed all throughout the very depths of my soul. This is the story of Calla Fletcher who we meet in the process of losing her 9 to 5 office job. She lives at home with her mom and supportive Stepdad Simon while also running a lifestyle blog on the side with her best friend. One day she gets a call from a woman asking her to fly to Alaska to see her dad who is terminally ill. Calla feels so many things at once for the man who stayed behind when she was just 2 years old & her mother decided she wasn’t cut out for Alaskan life. Feelings of abandonment, detachment, and also a need to have her questions answered.  Calla doesn’t know very much about Alaska other than the stories & descriptions her mother has shared, none have been very pleasant. She isn’t prepared for the change in lifestyle or the people who will become like a second family to her while she gets to know her estranged father.

“Life up here may be simple but it’s not easy, and it’s not for everyone. Water runs out; pipes freeze; engines won’t start; it’s dark for eighteen, nineteen hours a day, for months. Even longer in the far north. Up here it’s about having enough food to eat, and enough heat to stay alive through the winter. It’s about survival, and enjoying the company of the people that surround us. It’s not about whose house is the biggest, or who has the nicest clothes, or the most money. We support each other because we’re all in this together.”

We follow Calla as she settles into her dad Wren’s home, they’re strangers sharing a house for the bit of time she is visiting. I loved that Wren wasn’t written to be the type of dad who right off the bat wanted to justify his decision to stay behind while she was raised without him. He’s a quiet man full of regrets but he also understands that Calla flying to Alaska to see him is a big move on her behalf. While navigating the awkwardness around seeing her dad for the very first time, Calla also has to deal with the tall, rugged, unshaven yet handsome, proud Alaskan neighbor. Jonah has been her dad’s right hand man in a small yet profitable charter plane business. He loves everything about life in Alaska and in many ways is a younger version of Wren. Calla is a trendy city girl who has had a moderately easy life back home. Jonah sees Calla as attractive but he also has a ton of reasons (mostly Calla in his opinion being high maintenance) for which he’d never act on anything. This is definitely hate to love & I LIVED for every moment of this romance! 💓

*Content Warning: Death, Cancer, abandonment, grief 

Calla, I feel was dealt a hard hand. Not only does she have to face her dad with all her feelings of abandonement but she’s also uprooted and very far from home in a state that isn’t accommodating to city lovers. She then meets Jonah who although she’s sexually attracted to, finds that he can’t stop giving her a hard time. Calla loves to dress in the latest fashion and trying out new hair/makeup products. I saw nothing wrong with trying to maintain some level of norm while being in a place that demands you shed your past life. I loved that Calla was the complete opposite of her mother, she didn’t allow her mother’s experience to taint her view of Alaska. She’s open minded & willing to put in the work. At her very core, I felt Calla had Alaska running through her blood 🖤

Jonah as rugged as they come, but he’s honestly all bark and no roar 😂 Jonah has a huge heart & he’s very vulnerable when it comes to those he loves. Wren is someone he views as a father figure and just wants to make sure he’s well taken care of. Jonah loves piloting planes and is the very definition of a space cowboy. He isn’t without purpose though, life isn Alaska is all about community & he loves to help out whenever/wherever he can. I was bothered a bit by how hard he got on Calla over her wanting to do her makeup/hair, it just shouldn’t have mattered & I’m glad that ultimately it didn’t. Besides that, it’s safe to say I swooned hard for this guy 💓

Wren aka Calla’s Dad a man of very few words who fell in love with Calla’s mother but knew deep down she’d never be happy living in Alaska. Respectful and regretful all at the same time, Wren knows he could’ve been a better dad. Seeing the subtle way he showed Calla that he was happy to have her there warmed my heart. Ultimately my heart went out to Wren who although it may appear he continued living after Calla’s mom left, really has just been holding onto them both from afar.

Calla’s Mom Perhaps my least favorite of all the characters. I can understand making mistakes in life & doing what’s in your best interest. I get it. When Calla’s mom decided life in Alaska wasn’t for her & she had to get back to life in Toronto, she got to take Calla with her. My biggest issue with Calla’s mom is that she continously harps on how miserable she was during her time there. This happened up until the very last minute of Calla packing to go to Alaska. Then she persistently called Calla in what felt like she was hoping Calla would feel the same way & hate it there too. Lastly, although I know this happens, I am never comfortable with it. Calla is clearly still emotionally attached to Wren & there’s mention of years past where she very much could’ve left Simon her current husband, for Wren. I feel this was emotional cheating 101 & Simon just didn’t deserve it.

Simon aka Stepdad SUPER SUPPORTIVE! is very well aware of the feelings that still linger between his wife & Calla’s dad yet that never changes how good of a stepdad he is to Calla. Simon is a Psychiatrist & listening to Calla comes as second nature. He is by all definition a real dad to her, Simon definitely deserved a better love than Calla’s mom but that’s just my opinion 🤷🏻‍♀️

K.A. Tucker’s characters always manage to linger in my thoughts way past the last page. It’s not just the MC & their love interest, it’s the way she brings in side characters you begin to think of as family. I LOVED all of the characters Calla met in Alaska and often wonder about their lives only to have to remind myself that they are fictional characters. Alaska really did come to life on the page and it just seems like Tucker really did her homework on the way of life all throughout the state. I enjoyed seeing the trips Jonah took on his small aircraft into the more rural parts of Alaska where medical help & supplies are needed. The Simple Wild will transport you into it’s cold atmospheric setting but I guarantee you won’t want to leave once you meet the hard-working & neighborly people who will treat you like family…


Happy Sunday Bookworms! by the time you’re reading this i’ll probably be on my 2nd cup of coffee 🖤 but I’d love any RECOMMENDATIONS for contemporary romance books with atmospheric settings…


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Review: Surving Ice (Burying Water #4) by K.A.Tucker

Surviving Ice (Burying Water #4) by K.A. Tucker

Published by: Atria Books

Date of Publication: October 27th 2015

Genres: New Adult

Pages: 352

Format: e-book

Rating: ★★★★

 

Goodreads Synopsis:

Ivy, a talented tattoo artist who spent the early part of her twenties on the move, is finally looking for a place to call home. She thinks she might have found it in San Francisco, but all that changes when she witnesses a terrible crime. She’s ready to pack up her things yet again, when a random encounter with a stranger keeps her in the city, giving her reason to stay after all.

That is, until Ivy discovers that their encounter wasn’t random. Not at all…

When I first was recommended this series, I fell in love with all of the covers and knew that I could NOT wait until I reached this last book in the series. Surviving Ice screams edgy! & our female protagonist is just that and so much more. Ivy: a half Asian-half Spaniard tattoo artist with a sharp tongue, wanderlust spirit, and a no effs given attitude—can now go into my vault of FAVORITE female characters! there aren’t many & she made the cut. Although this is the 4th book in the Burying Water Series, and there are some Easter eggs from the previous books, the plot itself reads like a stand-alone. We get some of our beloved characters pop into this story but Ivy & Sebastian’s story is their own.
Ivy’s character was refreshing to read about, she has very tall walls built around her and not many people in her circle. She prefers to live life on the edge with nothing holding her back from getting up and moving to another country. I loved that Ivy had no inhibitions holding her back, she is confident in her tattoo artist skills as well as her body. When we meet her, she has just returned from Ireland (setting of book 3) & was once again working at her uncle Ned’s tattoo parlor the Black Rabbit. Uncle Ned who idolized Willie Nelson & therefore embodied his style, became an instant favorite. Ned fully accepted Ivy (unlike her parents) & together they ran the most sought out tattoo parlor. Ivy however, did not know that Uncle Ned had found himself in a bit of a bind due to gambling. The events that take place lead to Ivy meeting Sebastian who has been given a target & an assignment…Ivy.

When we meet Sebastian, we get a bit of his backstory in the Navy Seals & how he came to work for an independent government contractor. Sebastian deals with some PTSD and tends to be a loner who has no care for commitment, instead he pays for easy sex. When his military friend/contractor calls his burner phone, it’s always for a new assignment. Sebastian is the best as what he does, eliminating threats to our government by any means necessary. When he receives the file on Ivy, he is fully prepared to undertake this task….

The only reason I docked a star is because unlike the previous books in this series, the supporting cast were just OK (with the exception of Ned of course lol). I’ve been spoiled by K.A. Tucker’s ability to deliver a stellar supporting cast who I crave to hear more from. I guess with this being the last book in the installment, maybe she wasn’t trying to lead us on by giving us any interesting side characters lol. Overall, I LOVE this series & would recommend it as a starting point for anyone interested in reading New Adult.

Does anyone have any New Adult recommendations? I’m looking for a tried and true author. Plenty have recommended COHO & I will read one of her books soon *I promise* lol but I’d like to have a variety to choose from 😉

 
 
 
 
 

 

 

Review: Chasing River by K.A. Tucker

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Chasing River by K.A. Tucker

Published by: Atria Books

Date of Publication: July 7th 2015

Genres: New Adult

Pages: 336

Format: e-book

Rating:★★★★★

 

Goodreads Synopsis:

Armed with two years’ worth of savings and the need to experience life outside the bubble of her Oregon small town, twenty-five-year old Amber Welles is prepared for anything. Except dying in Dublin. Had it not been for the bravery of a stranger, she might have. But he takes off before she has the chance to offer her gratitude.

Twenty-four-year-old River Delaney is rattled. No one was supposed to get hurt. But then that American tourist showed up. He couldn’t let her die, but he also couldn’t risk being identified at the scene—so, he ran. Back to his everyday life of running his family’s pub. Only, everyday life is getting more and more complicated, thanks to his brother, Aengus, and his criminal associations. When the American girl tracks River down, he quickly realizes how much he likes her, how wrong she is for him. And how dangerous it is to have her around. Chasing her off would be the smart move.

Maybe it’s because he saved her life, or maybe it’s because he’s completely different from everything she’s left behind, but Amber finds herself chasing after River Delaney. Amber isn’t the kind of girl to chase after anyone.

And River isn’t the kind of guy she’d want to catch.

 

Having loved the previous two books in this New Adult series, I’m not sure why I went into this one with some sort of skepticism. I thought that I couldn’t love a new couple more than I already do Jesse/Alex & Rain/Luke…Once again K.A. Tucker has managed to suck me in with her deeply layered characters, beautiful settings, and crazy story telling. I ADORE Amber & River to pieces!!!! This time we were transported to beautiful Ireland & given a good amount of historical background on the events that lead to the formation of the IRA. Up until this book, I only knew of the great famine in Ireland but not much more. It’s only a plus when I come away with knowledge of actual historical events from a book that isn’t non-Fiction. We also get to see some of our favorite characters from Burying Water (Burying Water#1)  make an appearance in this book in K.A. Tucker fashion. Rich with Irish history, obstacles to overcome, violence, and amazing characters, this story of 2 lovers from opposite sides of the world was a smash hit in my book!


                                        

                                              ****SPOILERS****

I totally did NOT see myself liking Amber at all in this book since I did NOT enjoy her parts in Burying Water. Amber was very judgmental & was comfortable being a part of the “mean girls” clique during her High School days. As an adult, she never ventured outside of her small town nor did she attempt to look outside the box. There were rules & Amber followed them to the tee. My biggest issue with Amber was how harsh she was on her brother Jesse in Burying Water, it was as if she chucked him off to be a low life because of some mistakes he had made as a teenager (given Jesse was a magnet for shit but still lol). I LOVED seeing Amber step away from her small town in Oregon & travel to Ireland. Her family doubted she would ever leave her comfort zone & it was a major step for her. Amber meeting River may not have been in the most romantic of ways (I won’t give that away), but from the minute he entered her life, all her inhibitions were thrown out the window. Now this is an Amber that I could be friends with. From her unlikely friendship with the tattoo artist Ivy to falling in love with River whose family history was deeply entrenched in the IRA of before & current day…she kept surprising me. I loved the travel bucket list she created with Alex the night they were a bit tipsy on wine & the fact that River managed to get his hands on it & continued to tease her about it. Actually, being that I got to know her as a rule follower, I was a bit embarrassed for her every time I thought about #1 on her list…Have a torrid affair with a foreigner, Country:TBD <—BWAHAHAHA! I would’ve DIED if it were me & the hottie I’m interested in, found my list. Then again I was kind of smirking BECAUSE for a change, she was the one chasing the guy and putting in some work (he really did make her work for it though lol). This book also stirred up so much hope in me for these two, I wanted so badly for everything to work out but it seemed that all odds were against them. There were definitely some casualties along the way…I cried when Rowen’s leg had to be amputated & cursed Aengus all throughout for putting Ma & Da through it. I am currently jumping right into the last book in this series Surviving Ice (Burying Water #4). I’m excited to get Ivy’s story & even more eager to see if there’s a glimpse of Amber & River because it’s K.A. Tucker & I love all of her characters! it always feels like a treat when we hear about one of the couples or characters from the previous books.

June 2016 Wrap-Up

Let me start off by saying, JUNE was EPIC!!!! I only read 4 books (finishing the 4th one tonight) this month because LIFE! It was a beautiful month filled with tons of memories that I will cherish til i’m gray & old. I married the love of my life who also happens to be my book soul mate & our little girl graduated from Pre-K as Valedictorian & Killed her speech! *Smiles*. I’m surprised to have even read these 4 books so lets get into them…

1. Me Before You by JoJo Moyes ★★★★★

I changed my rating of this book twice until I realized that if a book can move me to feel such strong emotions about a controversial topic such as Euthanasia, then that means it deserves my 5 stars. The characters in this book will stay with me for a very long time, I still have not watched the movie because I wanted to give it some time but it will def be soon (book to movie reaction post to follow).

My Review: Me Before You by JoJo Moyes

Me Before You by JoJo Moyes

2. Becoming Rain by K.A. Tucker (Burying Water #2)  ★★★★★

An edge of your seat, heart pounding, sexy New Adult novel that I DEVOURED! so far I have loved all of K.A. Tucker’s characters, they all are 50 shades of complex. Fast paced & filled with plot twists, Becoming Rain was better than it’s predecessor Burying Water. Each one of the books in this series follows a female lead and eventually her love interest with occasional guest appearances by some of the other characters from previous books. I enjoy seeing some of my favorites pop up in the next book.

My Review: Becoming Rain by K.A. TuckerBecoming Rain

3.  A Darker Shade Of Magic by V.E. Schwab ★ (4.5 stars)

My 1st V.E. Schwab book did not disappoint. The writing was on point & I truly felt immersed into all of the London’s with the exception of Black London (not yet explored). This was a fast paced read, full of action, and magic however not much character development. One thing I found myself enjoying was the focus that was given to the plot/world building & that there was no love story. Although I do enjoy my ships, I didn’t feel the need to wonder who would be paired with who & instead enjoyed the magic and adventure V.E. Schwab takes you on. My guess is that book 2 will show more character development because of how the final chapters played out in ADSOM. My copy of A Gathering Of Shadows arrived a few days ago & i’m thinking that I will hold off on reading it because A Conjuring Of Light #3 doesn’t get released until February 2017.

My Review:A Darker Shade Of Magic (Shades Of Magic #1)

A Darker Shade final for Irene

4. My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, & Jodi Meadows ★

My 1st Owlcrate box was this month’s June Royalty box & it was EVERYTHING & MORE! no regrets here. I switched over to Owlcrate from another subscription box & I loved every single item I received. I was a bit skeptical on whether I would enjoy My Lady Jane because it’s being compared to The Princess Bride & Monty Python, both of which I’ve heard about, but never read/watched. Well, I have NEVER laughed this much reading any book EVER! this book doesn’t take itself seriously at all, in fact it does the complete opposite. Light & silly, My Lady Jane was exactly what I needed for the start of Summer. I’ve got about 70 pages to go tonight & will update this post with a star rating in the morning but it’s looking like a hands down 5 STARS! (Review to come)

***UPDATE*** Finished My Lady Jane today, Review in the link below 🙂

My review: My Lady Jane By Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows

My Lady Jane

 

 

Review: Becoming Rain by K.A. Tucker (Burying Water #2)

Becoming Rain by K.A. Tucker 
Series: Burying Water #2 
Published by: Atria Books 
Date of Publication: March 3rd, 2015
Genres: New Adult; Contemporary 
Pages: 370
Format: e-book
Rating:★★★★★

Goodreads Synopsis:
Luke Boone doesn’t know exactly what his uncle Rust is involved in but he wants in on it-the cars, the money, the women. And it looks like he’s finally getting his wish. When Rust hands him the managerial keys to the garage, they come with a second set—one that opens up the door to tons of cash and opportunity. Though it’s not exactly legal, Luke’s never been one to worry about that sort of thing. Especially when it puts him behind the wheel of a Porsche 911 and onto the radar of gorgeous socialite named Rain.

Clara Bertelli is at the top of her game—at only twenty-six years old, she’s one of the most successful undercover officers in the Washington D.C. major crime unit, and she’s just been handed a case that could catapult her career and expose one of the west coast’s most notorious car theft rings. But, in order to do it, she’ll need to go deep undercover as Rain Martines. Her target? The twenty-four-year old nephew of a key player who appears ready to follow in his uncle’s footsteps.

As Clara drifts deeper into the luxurious lifestyle of Rain, and further into the arms of her very attractive and charming target, the lines between right and wrong start to blur, making her wonder if she’ll be able to leave it all behind. Or if she’ll even wan to.

Becoming Rain is the story of Luke Boone the nephew of a big timer involved with running a car theft operating ring. Luke is also the person the FBI has decided to (unbeknownst to him) use as their pawn to take down the heavy hitters. We are first introduced to Luke as one of the characters from book 1 in this companion series. Considering that I had some background story from book 1 with Luke, I knew that he was overall a nice guy with just a little hint of greed. So, Luke was basically raised by his uncle Rust after his dad walked out on him, his sister, and mother. Rust took him in as his son & groomed him to one day take over his businesses/ventures both legal & illegal. Throughout the story, Rust pretty much keeps Luke in the shadows, not really telling him much but just enough to make him earn his plate. Luke puts in time at Rust’s garage as a mechanic with hopes that his uncle will soon move him up to manager. When Rust decides to let Luke in on his illegal dealings bit by bit I was genuinely scared for Luke who was in clearly over his head.
Enter Clara Bettelli aka Rain Martinez—>a cop trying but failing to get into the FBI who by chance, happens to fit the description of the female they want to go undercover & gain Luke’s trust. Rain can’t help but be attracted to her target & in the process of trying to extract information & gain Luke’s confidence, she begins to fall for him. This was made only easier by the fact that it was clear throughout the book that Luke did Not have full knowledge on the extent of all the illegal dealings taking place. Especially none where innocents were being hurt/killed…

I enjoyed these two characters immensely! Everything from the chemistry, sexual tension, and walks/jogs in the park with their un-athletic canine counterparts was enjoyable. The entire book was done undercover with a wire tap & all. The moments where Rain switched off her wire to get into some trouble were nerve racking but oh so GOOD! I kept thinking her team would barge in any minute & take them both in for questioning. This book had me at the edge of seat on more than one occasion OR peering up from my book to make sure no one was reading THOSE scenes above my shoulder on a crowded NYC train 😂 a steamy & very well done fast paced read.

I’ve been really enjoying K.A Tucker’s writing style and her ability to interweave multiple story lines into a single plot. Also, her characters are all so complex and richly layered that it makes getting to know them an interesting ride. In the end I’m always left with the feeling that I need to know what happens to these characters after the last line in each book. You get to know these characters intimately & love them flaws and all. This was even better than Burying Water & that in and of itself tells me that I’ll be finishing all 4 books in the series soon 😉


May 2016 Wrap-Up

My very 1st monthly wrap-up! I honestly couldn’t even remember how many books I read this month so thank goodness for good ol’ Goodreads! This month I read 5 books & survived an EPIC book hangover after A Court of Mist & Fury so I think I did well lol…

  1. The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Cycle #4)                                    ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

The beautiful conclusion to the Raven Cycle was perfect! This series will always be a favorite of mine. TRK was much darker than its predecessors & I felt deeply immersed in Cabeswater. Every time I put this book down & picked it back up it felt like I was fully stepping into a dreamland. These characters will forever hold a special place in my heart. Not just Blue & the boys, but the AMAZING supporting cast of characters we get. Especially loved the strong & individualistic women from 300 Fox Way!

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  1. One Tiny Lie by K.A. Tucker (Ten Tiny Breaths #2)★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Finished this one with a big cheesy smile on my face! Who would’ve thunk it…i’m diggin the NA books. I think mostly because, K.A. Tucker writes her cast of characters well & tackles some pretty serious topics while at it. Ten Tiny Breaths was told from Kacey’s perspective but we still got to know Livie (Kacey’s sister). In One Tiny Breath, we get Livie’s perspective. The younger sister who made it her duty to watch over her older sister & stuck by her side even when she hit rock bottom finally goes to college. Livie has had to keep a strong front ever since her parents passed away in a tragic car accident, her dad’s last words to her were his wish to see her off to Princeton to continue the family tradition. Livie’s story was one of self-discovery and finding love. There are some trigger warnings for child abuse with one of the characters in this story, these parts often made me pause and re-group but overall It was a solid read.

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  1. A Court of Thorns & Roses by Sarah J. Maas (A court of Thorns & Roses #1) ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

This is only my 2nd fairytale re-telling, the first being The Lunar Chronicles & just like Marissa Meyer, Sarah J. Maas slaaaaaayed!!!! Of course there were flaws but overall I enjoyed this 1st book in the ACOTAR series.

What I LOVED about this book:
* The friendship btwn the trio (Feyre, Lucien, and Tamlin), the dialogue was often laugh out loud funny
* The introduction to the other courts (Day, Night, Summer, Autumn, Spring, Winter, & Dawn I believe), since we didn’t get much world building in ACOTAR it gives me hope that we will get it in ACOMAF
* Nesta’s revelation, so there isn’t just 1 badass btwn the siblings?!?!? LOVED IT! Hopefully we find out how she fared
* Rhys…yea leave it to SJM to throw in a bad boy to make things more innnneresting…I know where this is going SJM!

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  1. Burying Water by K.A. Tucker (Burying Water #1)★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Burying Water was a roller coaster of emotions for me, many times brutal/harsh & others sweet and Kismet. Our leading lady Alexandra is put through the ringer in the first half of this book. There are trigger warnings for domestic violence and rape. It was difficult at times but Alex proved to be “resilient” and tough as nails. In the second half of this book we get introduced to the small town of Sisters and all of its interesting residents. I absolutely love when a setting in a book is filled with charm and personality so much so that it becomes a character of its own. I LOVED this book! The plot, characters, the small town of Sisters which often had me wanting to leave the city & possibly own some horses lol.

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  1. A Court of Mist & Fury by Sarah J. Maas (A Court of Thorns & Roses #2) ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

After reading A Court of Thorns & Roses I was left with the same feelings I had after reading Throne of Glass. I knew that I wanted to continue with the series but also hoped to see some growth and world building. ACOMAF did just that & so much more!!! The personal growth displayed on Feyre’s behalf, the world building, the pacing & plot were all on point! This is my favorite book of 2016 so far & will be re-reading it at some point this year for ALL THE FEELS!

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Review Burying Water by K.A. Tucker

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Burying Water by K.A. Tucker

Series: Burying Water #1

Published by:  Atria

Date of Publication: October 7th 2014

Genres: New Adult; Contemporary

Pages: 354

Format: e-book

Rating: 5 Stars

The top-selling, beloved indie author of Ten Tiny Breaths returns with a new romance about a young woman who loses her memory—and the man who knows that the only way to protect her is to stay away.

Left for dead in the fields of rural Oregon, a young woman defies all odds and survives—but she awakens with no idea who she is, or what happened to her. Refusing to answer to “Jane Doe” for another day, the woman renames herself “Water” for the tiny, hidden marking on her body—the only clue to her past. Taken in by old Ginny Fitzgerald, a crotchety but kind lady living on a nearby horse farm, Water slowly begins building a new life. But as she attempts to piece together the fleeting slivers of her memory, more questions emerge: Who is the next-door neighbor, quietly toiling under the hood of his Barracuda? Why won’t Ginny let him step foot on her property? And why does Water feel she recognizes him?

Non-Spoilery Review
I intentionally posted a partial synopsis from Goodreads because the entire length of it is very spoilery. Burying Water was a roller coaster of emotions for me. Alexandra was very young & poor when she met the man 20 years her senior who would sweep her off her feet. Handsome, successful and yet still managed to set his eyes on her? It all seemed too good to be true…their courtship eventually led to marriage and a life she would pay a heavy price for. A husband who treats her like a trophy wife, physically harms her, an adulterer, and a key player in the Russian mob. Alexandra Petrov found herself quickly drowning with no way out until one rainy night when her life changed its course.

 

“The mind, it can be a deceitful thing. But it is no match for the heart.” 
― 
K.A. TuckerBurying Water

 

Spoilery Review

The first half of this book was at times brutal and harsh to get through. I felt a range of emotions & quickly found myself loving Alexandra. A protagonist who was “resilient” and strong underneath all the hurt, I couldn’t help but root for her triumph. Viktor Petrov, a man in a position of power attained through illegal activity in the Russian mob viewed his wife as someone to satisfy him sexually & in all the traditional (old school) ways. Alex however, had dreams of becoming a nurse & was enrolled in courses which Viktor saw as taking time away from him. This alone angered me! Then there were often times Viktor had her dress up in skin tight revealing clothes to accompany him to the night club where all of his nefarious dealings took place. I could FEEL the awkwardness & out of place feelings Alex was experiencing. I couldn’t help but scream YES GIRL!!!! whenever she dished out a bit of anger when answering his questions. I also found it hilarious that Alex continued to have car trouble throughout the book simply because she wasn’t the type to drive expensive cars.

ENTER Jesse who I view as “the BOY next door” type, this should be a thing lol. Jesse aka the mechanic savant, finds Alex on the side of the road & helps her get gas, they exchange a kiss which is the beginning of many more encounters that feel very kismet. Jesse was everything that Viktor was not. He’s only 2 years Alex’s senior, blunt when speaking yet always conscious & caring of who he’s speaking to, and overall laid back. Of course, Jesse had his flaws mostly based off of bad decisions he made when he was a teenager running with the wrong group of friends. His relationship with his father the sheriff was strained because of those bad decisions in his past. Having an affair with a married woman didn’t seem like it would mend that relationship any time soon yet it felt right for both Jesse & Alex. Viktor hiring Jesse to restore/repair one of his most prized cars in his home garage felt like fate. When Alex finally made the decision to leave Viktor (after many brutal beatings), I was over the moon happy only to have that feeling squashed by the events of the night that Viktor tried to kill & leave her body buried in a snowy mountain. Thankfully, Jesse is tipped off to what happened & manages to get her the medical attention needed. When Alex wakes up, she can’t remember anything not even her name. She’s left with a scar from her temple all the way down to her chin. See Viktor wanted to make sure he robbed her of her beauty. He raped her, slashed her face, and physically beat and broke her ribs along with other body parts. I’m glad that at the end of the book she never quite remembers the events of that night in its entirety because it really was a second chance at life.

Alex’s journey leads to an amazing cast of characters, my favorite being the grumpy and recluse little old lady Ginny Fitzgerald. Ginny gave me so many laugh out loud moments but also much heart ache. Alex and Ginny’s stories have small similarities but two stuck out the most to me. The fact that she was raped in her youth by someone she also trusted & that both her rapist and Alex’s killed themselves (inadvertently or not). Ginny’s ability to take in another rape victim & help her heal after so many years of secluding herself makes Ginny hold a special place in my heart. Lastly, I loved seeing the relationship between Jesse and his parents (specifically his Dad) mend. Jesse’s parents were key characters in this book & I can now add them to my very short list of fictional parentals that ROCK!