January 23 – January 29

New Releases and Publications

Hello, friends – and happy Tuesday! Welcome to another round of new releases that I was lucky enough to get an early copy of, and have either already read or are upcoming on my #TBR.

These books could be gifted from the publisher through sites like NetGalley or Edelweiss+, they could be electronic copies gifted directly to me from the publisher or the author, an early audiobook copy through the publisher or Libro.fm, or even a physical copy that has been sent to me from the author or publisher. I am so thankful for all of the reading opportunities that I am given through these various sources, and I am excited to share these new releases!

In these weekly posts I will include a 20% review if I am currently reading the book, as well as a link to my full review if I have already finished the book. And if I have not yet started the book by the time this is posted, I will leave those spots blank and edit the post to add them in later!

Running Wild

Author: K.A. Tucker

Publication Date: January 25, 2022

Genre: Romance, Contemporary Romance, Adult

Thanks so much to the author and Valentine PR for the gifted advanced e-copy of this book!

Description from Goodreads:

From the internationally bestselling author of The Simple Wild comes the story of a woman at a crossroads in her life, struggling between the safe route and the one that will only lead to more heartbreak.

Veterinarian Marie Lehr knows unrequited love all too well after pining for her best friend, only to watch him marry another woman. It’s a mistake she will never make again, especially not when she can practically hear the clock ticking on her childbearing years.

The trouble is, she can’t seem to find anyone who appeals to her even a fraction as much as that burly bush pilot did. Competitive musher Tyler Brady certainly doesn’t, especially not after the heated altercation with the handsome but arrogant, spiteful man.

Or so she thinks.

While volunteering at the Iditarod Sled Dog Race, Marie discovers that first impressions may have been false, and her attraction to Tyler is very real. But his heart belongs to someone else, leaving him with nothing to offer but friendship. Marie’s been down this road before and knows how that ends. Yet, no matter how hard she works to keep from falling for Tyler, it seems she’s doomed to follow her own trail once again.

20% Review:

Okay, coming clean, I am quite a bit farther than 20% of the way through when I’m writing this. What can I say? If it wasn’t for annoying things like eating and sleeping, I would have finished this book all in the one sitting. I am so excited to finally be back in Alaska with Kathleen and these characters that I love so much! And don’t even get me started on the new characters in this story. I already have a little crush on Tyler Brady. Sure, he still can’t hold a candle to my undying love for Jonah, but he’s definitely on the book crushes list!

Check out my full review and blog tour here!

The Appeal

Author: Janice Hallett

Re-Release Publication Date: January 25, 2022

Genre: Mystery, Crime, Thriller, Contemporary

Thanks so much to the author, Edelweiss+, and Atria Books for the gifted advanced e-copy of this book!

Description from Goodreads:

This murder mystery follows a community rallying around a sick child—but when escalating lies lead to a dead body, everyone is a suspect.

The Fairway Players, a local theatre group, is in the midst of rehearsals for an Arthur Miller play, when tragedy strikes the family of director Martin Haywood and his wife Helen, the play’s star. Their young granddaughter has been diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, and with an experimental treatment costing a tremendous sum, their fellow castmates rally to raise the money to give her a chance at survival.

But not everybody is convinced of the experimental treatment’s efficacy—nor of the good intentions of those involved. New actress Sam, a former NGO worker, raises doubts. But are her suspicions justified? Or does she have a history with the doctor involved? As tension grows within the community, things come to a shocking head the night of the dress rehearsal. The next day, a dead body is found, and soon, an arrest is made. In the run-up to the trial, two young lawyers sift through the material—emails, messages, letters—with a growing suspicion that a killer may still be on the loose.

A wholly modern take on the epistolary novel, The Appeal is a debut perfect for fans of Richard Osman and Lucy Foley.

20% Review:

(This will be added at a later date, once I start reading this book!)


(This will be added at a later date, once I have finished this book!)

How to Be Perfect

Author: Michael Schur

Narrated By: Michael Schur (with Kristen Bell, D’Arcy Carden, Ted Danson, William Jackson Harper, Manny Jacinto, Marc Evan Jackson, Jameela Jamil, and Todd May)

Publication Date: January 25, 2022

Genre: Nonfiction, Philosophy, Humor

Length: 9 hours and 13 minutes

Thanks so much to Libro.fm and Simon and Schuster Audio for the gifted advanced audio copy of this book!

Description from Goodreads:

From the creator of The Good Place and the cocreator of Parks and Recreation, a hilarious, thought-provoking guide to living an ethical life, drawing on 2,500 years of deep thinking from around the world.

Most people think of themselves as “good,” but it’s not always easy to determine what’s “good” or “bad”—especially in a world filled with complicated choices and pitfalls and booby traps and bad advice. Fortunately, many smart philosophers have been pondering this conundrum for millennia and they have guidance for us. With bright wit and deep insight, How to Be Perfect explains concepts like deontology, utilitarianism, existentialism, ubuntu, and more so we can sound cool at parties and become better people.

Schur starts off with easy ethical questions like “Should I punch my friend in the face for no reason?” (No.) and works his way up to the most complex moral issues we all face. Such as: Can I still enjoy great art if it was created by terrible people? How much money should I give to charity? Why bother being good at all when there are no consequences for being bad? And much more. By the time the book is done, we’ll know exactly how to act in every conceivable situation, so as to produce a verifiably maximal amount of moral good. We will be perfect, and all our friends will be jealous. OK, not quite. Instead, we’ll gain fresh, funny, inspiring wisdom on the toughest issues we face every day.

20% Review:

(This will be added at a later date, once I start reading this book!)


(This will be added at a later date, once I have finished this book!)

Never Tell

Author: Stacey Abrams (writing as Selena Montgomery)

Narrated By: January LaVoy & Stacey Abrams

Re-Release Publication Date: January 25, 2022

Genre: Romance, Mystery, Romantic Suspense, Thriller

Length: 9 hours and 48 minutes

Thanks so much to Libro.fm and Macmillan Audio for the gifted advanced audiobook!

Description from Goodreads:

From popular political leader and lawyer Stacey Abrams comes a reissue of her romantic suspense novel, Never Tell, written under the name Selena Montgomery.

Criminal psychologist Dr. Erin Abbott wants nothing more than to live a quiet life. That means no danger, no intrigue—and absolutely no romance. But when Erin suspects a serial killer is roaming New Orleans, her investigation throws her straight into the arms of the only man who can help her.

Journalist Gabriel Moss is hot to find his next huge story—and he knows Erin is on to something big. From the moment they meet, Gabriel senses that Erin is hiding something. One thing is certain: Erin’s boxy suits and sensible shoes hide a delicate beauty waiting to emerge…and Gabriel is just the man to reveal the woman inside.

As they join forces to find the killer, Gabriel slowly seduces Erin with his soft kisses. But Erin knows their love can never be. For she is hiding a terrible secret—and if Gabriel reveals the truth, Erin’s life will be shattered forever…

20% Review:

(This will be added at a later date, when I start reading this book!)


(This will be added at a later date, once I have finished this book!)

Rubyfruit Jungle

Author: Rita Mae Brown

Narrated by: Anna Paquin

Re-Release Publication Date: January 25, 2022

Genre: Fiction, LGBTQIA, Fiction

Length: 6 hours and 27 minutes

Thanks so much to Libro.fm and Blackstone Publishing for the gifted advanced audiobook!

Description from Libro.fm:

A landmark coming-of-age novel that launched the career of one of this country’s most distinctive voices, Rubyfruit Jungle remains a transformative work more than forty years after its original publication.

In bawdy, moving prose, Rita Mae Brown tells the story of Molly Bolt, the adoptive daughter of a dirt-poor Southern couple who boldly forges her own path in America. With her startling beauty and crackling wit, Molly finds that women are drawn to her wherever she goes—and she refuses to apologize for loving them back.

This literary milestone continues to resonate with its message about being true to yourself and, against the odds, living happily ever after.

20% Review:

(This will be added at a later date, once I start reading this book!)


(This will be added at a later date, once I have finished this book!)


Say You Still Love Me by K. A. Tucker

Atria Books – Review: 5 Stars

All opinions are entirely my own. All of my reviews can also be found on Instagram @Tackling_TBR and on Goodreads.

TW : handicap resulting from injury

If you follow my Instagram or my blog, or look through my read/reviewed books on goodreads, then y’all already know that I love me some K. A. Tucker. And so I was really excited to read this book as soon as it came out. Somehow it got pushed farther and farther down my ever growing TBR list, and I didn’t end up reading it until just over a year after it was published. So I had plenty of time to build this one way up in my head prior to reading it. But even with all of the build up, in my opinion, this one lived up to the hype.

This second chance romance alternates each chapter between two times in the female lead’s life – between a sassy and carefree 16 year old Piper at camp Wawa, and present day Piper Calloway, the badass 29 year old VP at her dad’s multibillion-dollar real estate development firm. And in both of these timelines, we get to watch her fall in love with the handsome and passionate guy-from-the-other-side-of-the-tracks, Kyle Miller.

I loved getting to read both of these timelines! A lot of the time for second chance romance stories that is all you get – stories. You hear about the past through the lead’s memories, or through them telling another character about it, but you don’t get to actually see it happen. And while the past was still told from Piper’s perspective, I found that I was more engaged with hers and Kyle’s story because I was able to actually read about their first summer together as it happened, and as if it was happening in the present tense, rather than just getting a passing “Kyle and I dated in Summer of 2006 and then he ghosted me,” you know? So while I will say that overall I found the present day chapters with adult Piper more enjoyable to read, I think I enjoyed them more because the Wawa chapters were there. If that makes sense.

Now let’s talk about characters. Obviously our leads here are Piper and Kyle, and I really loved getting to read about both of them! This was the kind of book that when it was over I truly missed the characters and wanted to know more about them and what happened after it was over. But I will say that Piper’s two best friends that she is living with in present day, and that also went to Camp Wawa with she and Kyle, completely stole the show for me! Honestly, I loved them so much and I wanted to be friends with them too. A secondary character-best friend to the lead that takes constant advice from and often references her psychic? Yes please. Sign me up for about three more books about these friends.

Overall I would definitely recommend this book to friends and readers! I thought it was so much fun to read, it was a great mix of steamy and sweet, and it had the dose of heart that I love in my stories. I stayed up past my bedtime reading this one because by the time I was a few chapters from the ending, I needed to know what was going to happen next! I think that the best way to read this book is in the middle of the summer when you’re looking for a fun and slightly light summer read. Maybe in the afternoon under a tree with an iced tea, or maybe a bit later in the evening next to a bonfire with a glass of wine.

My Reviews for more Books by K. A. Tucker

The Simple Wild (Wild #1)

Wild at Heart (Wild #2)

The Player Next Door

You by Caroline Kepnes

Atria – Review: 4 Stars

All opinions are entirely my own. All of my full reviews can also be found on Instagram @Tackling_TBR and on Goodreads.

Listen to me discuss this book more in depth on the new The Same Page Podcast, due to be released on Sunday, 8/30/2020!

TW: stalking, murder, discussion of suicide, violence, explicit sexual language

Well you guys, I broke the bookworm rule. No, I didn’t dog-ear any pages. The other bookworm rule. I watched the show/movie before I read the book. But I finally got around the reading this one, even after seeing and loving the show, and I am so glad that I did! The book and the show are both so wild and compelling on their own, as well as together, and they are just different enough that I didn’t feel like I was missing out on anything in the reading experience just because I had already seen the show.

Now with that out of the way, let’s get in to it.

This is a really different and fascinating read – it is all told through the eyes of Joe Goldberg, who sees himself as the hero of his own perfect romantic comedy. Meanwhile, the reality of the situation is that he is stalking a woman that he met at work, and eventually drives her into a relationship with him. What made this so interesting, in my opinion, is that I had to remind myself not to be rooting for this guy to get his way – while yes, he is an unreliable narrator, listening to him justify his actions (both to himself and to the audience) automatically makes you feel like you want to be on his side. Spending time in the character’s head and listening to him convince himself that everything he is doing is out of love, and that they are the things that romantic comedies are made of, he charmed me as a reader enough that I was almost surprised every time he committed his worst crimes. Until closer to the end, that is. After a while it is impossible to forget that he is a bit of a monster.

Our two main characters are Joe and Beck, the woman that he has fallen in love with. There are a hand full of other important secondary characters as well, but these two are the cornerstones of this story. And, as stated above, this whole story is told through Joe – we are seeing what he is seeing, and hearing what he is thinking. And as such, Joe comes across as a very charming guy, and Beck is the ideal of a perfect young woman, just how Joe sees her. That being said, none of the characters are perfect people, and honestly very few of the characters are even all that likable by the time that the book is over. Including Joe and Beck. Obviously Joe starts off pretty rough. You know, stalking and hurting people. But even Beck – as the book goes on and Joe is learning flaws about her and having his vision of her tarnished, the same thing is happening for the reader. I would say that all of the main characters were written in a way that I was able to feel about them exactly how the author seemed to intend in each moment without feeling like any of those emotions were forced, or that we were supposed to change an opinion of someone without cause.

Over all, I would highly recommend this book, even if you have already seen the show. As I said in the beginning, they are both different enough that I think they can be enjoyed separately or together. I would recommend this book, or the show, specifically to fans of true crime and psychological thrillers who want to get a different spin on a type of story that they already enjoy. This book is a perfect read on a chilly autumn day with a big glass of wine, maybe wrapped up in a comfy sweater. But maybe not in front of any big open windows. You know. Just in case.

The Simple Wild by K. A. Tucker

Atria Books – Review: 5 Stars

Another book that I was told over and over again that I needed to read, and about how much I would love it – from friends, fellow readers on Instagram, etc. And oh my goodness, were they right about this book! While yes, like just about any other book it is not without a fault or two, I absolutely devoured this read.

Just to jump right into the downer part before we get to the more fun part, my biggest annoyance with this book was the main character Calla during the first portion of the book. And up front I was to specify, it was not at all an issue with the way that the character was written – she comes across exactly how the author had meant her to for the purpose of the storyline. She is a deeply, and intentionally, flawed character. Which on principle I have nothing against, because you need the flaws in order to show growth. There were just a few more chapters (from Calla’s perspective) of the inconveniences and trials of her time in Alaska. Although, again, this gives the character the opportunity for all of the growth and development that she shows throughout the rest of the novel. And by the end of the novel I found myself liking and relating to her much more.

That being said, on to the fact that I really loved this book! Other than first-half-of-the-book-Calla, all of the characters in Alaska are incredibly charming and heartfelt, and it made me want to go for a visit myself! This story deals with some difficult subjects, like loss and sickness in a family member, but it tells those stories with such heart and such care that I couldn’t help but fall in love with the book and all of it’s characters.

This book was incredibly enjoyable, and had just the perfect amount of steam to meet my contemporary romance needs without being too much to read in public. It is perfect for a summery beach read, or curling up by a cozy fire in the dead of winter, with your favorite sweater and glass of wine. And I will definitely be going back in for second and maybe third trips into this world!

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Atria Books – Review : 5 stars

All opinions are entirely my own. All of my reviews can be found on Instagram @Tackling_TBR and on Goodreads.

TW : brief homophobia and slurs, physical and emotional abuse, death, implied suicide.

I don’t even know how to start this review, other than “Holy crap, I loved this book.” Which, while it is true, probably isn’t the first thing that people would want to hear about it. So instead I will say these things – I waited too long to read this book, and I wish I could have read it sooner. And that it was absolutely, without question, one of my top ten books that I read in 2019.

First, let’s talk about the characters. Love them or hate them, the characters were incredibly well written. And some of them I really did hate, but you can still find empathy for them at other times, just as I have to assume the author intended. Although, obviously, my favorite characters were our two female leads. I love character driven novels in general, which is a genre this story definitely fits into. But even more than that, this is a story driven by two strong and fiery women – working together, learning about each other, and figuring out their way through the rest of the world around them. I also love that they almost seem like two different sides of a similar story – Monique, heartbroken and lost at the beginning of her career, but along the way finding the strength that she needs through Evelyn; Evelyn heartbroken at the end of a very long and difficult career, who finds Monique and decides that she is the final piece of the puzzle she is trying to finish.
Neither character is perfect, they are at times calculating, they are at times cruel, and they are definitely always stubborn, but I think that those things just make them that much more interesting to read about. And I would read even more of both of their stories.

While talking about imperfect characters, you would think that I would mention Evelyn’s seven husbands and all of their imperfections and all they did for her story. Right? I mean, that’s the title of the book. So we’re going to talk about them, right? Wrong. Evelyn got what she needed from each of her husbands, and had different experiences and feelings related to each one, but (with the exception of Harry) I don’t actually believe that they are as important to her story as they may seem. They weren’t lifting her, necessarily, they were giving her the opportunities to lift herself. This isn’t the story of her husbands or how they helped her form her life/career, it’s the story of Evelyn forging her own way and taking the world by storm, the timeline is simply being kept straight by noting who was there with her at each point.

Just a quick note on how the story is told and on the writing itself – the book switches between newspaper clippings (primarily from Evelyn’s past), Evelyn’s words when telling Monique her story, and Monique’s interactions with other people. It made for a very fast paced reading style, because the switching narrators and points of view was very interesting, and I kept wanting to see what was going to happen next.

The last thing that I will touch on is the setting. This story is partially set in modern day New York (the portions of the book from Monique’s perspective) and partially set in the glitz and glamour of Old Hollywood. I’m just going to go ahead and say it – I love stories set in Old Hollywood. I do. If I could read books and novels with that setting for the rest of my life, I would. What can I say, other than the political issues and a few (read: a lot) of the other issues of the time, I may have thrived in it. So the setting only helped to make me love this book and Evelyn’s story even more.

Overall I would absolutely recommend this book to the folks around me who haven’t read it yet, and already have on several occasions. I tore through this book, because I had to know what happened next and what the next part of Evelyn’s fierce saga would be. The night that I finished it I stayed up far past my bedtime, because I needed to know how it would all end for Evelyn.

Although, I will say that I maybe wouldn’t suggest finishing it alone in the middle of the night. The last 100 pages or so slightly destroyed me. I have a lot of feelings, okay? Geez.