Cover Image: Something Wild & Wonderful

Something Wild & Wonderful

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Member Reviews

My coworker recommended this book to me, and I loved it! I loved the growth of the characters and the journey they went on!

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I loved this book from the first page. Alexei and Ben had chemistry from their first meeting, their personal struggles rang true, the third act breakup (never my favourite part of a romance) made sense but so did how and why they came back together, and the steam was aplenty! I was very interested in Lex's struggles with finding his place in his faith after coming out, and Ben's difficulty in trusting his own instincts and abilities because he had been hurt before. It was fun to see the characters from Love & Other Disasters again and to see how they fit into this story; you could absolutely read it as a stand alone as the connections were well explained.

Thanks to Netgalley for the e-ARC! All opinions are my own.

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This was one of the most heartfelt romances I have ever read. Full of beautifully raw emotion and swoon worthy connection - Something Wild & Wonderful is truly an amazing read.

🥾 Hiking
🗺️ Adventure
♥️ Romance
🫶 Community
🌤️ Grumpy/Sunshine
❤️‍🩹 Healing
🧠 Reset
🌲 Nature

Anita Kelly perfectly balances humor with sensitive topics while taking the reader on a journey through the mountains and into a gorgeous love story. 10/10 recommend!

Thank you Forever for the gifted copy!

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Books that take place on backpacking trips just do it for me every time. This one, Happiness For Beginners, Breathless, and Something Wilder? I just love the setting.

In Something Wild and Wonderful, Ben (friend of London from Love & Other Disasters) and Alexei meet while hiking the PCT. They eventually decide to continue their hike together.

I loved that both men were on the trail to learn more about themselves, and ended up finding solace in each other. There's so much character growth from both of them over the course of the story. I adored both of these sweet characters and couldn't wait to see where their love story would take them.

The ending made me bawl - you'll know when you get to the part.

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Anita Kelly is a leading voice in gorgeous, modern, queer romance and romance in generally! This book is a real treasure!

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I really enjoyed this book! I thought the characters were so sweet in their ability to accept each other with all their quirks. The pacing was great, and it felt like a natural evolution of their relationship to got from strangers to friends to lovers. There was also a lot of great handling of family trauma around sexuality. I appreciated the characters actually taking the tie they needed apart to be the best versions of themselves, rather than forcing one to give in to the needs of the other.

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5 shining stars to this truly wonderful romance.

Something Wild & Wonderful is a beautiful slow burn romance set along the Pacific Crest Trail. Alexei is hiking alone to find himself and grow into the person he wants to become after being disowned by his religious family for coming out as gay. Ben is hiking to meet new people and have an adventure before starting to work as a nurse, something he feels doubts about his ability to do successfully. They meet and form a partnership, each having strengths and weaknesses that balance each other.

The romance is so gentle and sweet, both men having respect and care for each other. Anita Kelly masterfully weaves together an airy and loving romance with heavier topics of grief over the loss of family, religious trauma, homophobia, fear or failure, and (unspecified) lasting trauma from past relationships.

The letters section pushed this book to even further to a 5++ star read for me.

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Absolutely adored this book! The characters were so interesting and fully fleshed out people, and the romance was sweet and had me aching at times. I also thought the backdrop of the Pacific Crest Trail was really good. The observations on life and hiking were thought provoking and nicely interwoven with the romance, and the descriptions of the scenery were exquisite. I also really appreciate how the author tackles a gay character who comes from a religious background and struggles with the loss of that community and that part of who he was and still is. Also lots of great found family vibes on the trail as well as all the things that home provides in its various forms. I could go on and on, everything in this book was perfect.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the ARC I received.

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Love this story. This was really different due to the setting and overall premise. The relationships were believable and the characters likable. I really enjoy the slow burn as these character grow into one another over the hiking journey. I really enjoyed the personal struggles of the main character and combing to terms with who he is.

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Cute love story and at the same time raises some important issues faced by the LGBTQ community.
I highly recommend it.

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Absolutely one of my favorite books that I've read in 2023!! I loved reading about the characters and seeing their love story unfold.

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I’m a sucker for a good romcom, but through queer into it and its an automatic banger for me. Anita Kelly became an auto-buy/read for me after this book. Absolutely amazing.

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Quite simply one of my favorite books of all time. It's life affirming and tender and the setting is its own incredible character, and I would protect Ben and Alexei with my life. Anita Kelly is and will remain a forever favorite author for me.

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This was in my top ten books read last year and continues to have my whole damn heart. I don't have any personal knowledge of the PCT, and I'm sure this is an extra special read for those who do- but it doesn't matter. The two MMCs are so completely perfect that you could plop them anywhere on the globe and it would still be a Very Special Book.

Anita Kelly is an auto-buy.

Thanks to Forever Books for the review copy!

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Anita Kelly knows how to write a queer fic and this one was of the best. That ending!!!! I just adored this. Alexei and Ben! Swoon. I'm so glad that space is being made for authors and stories like these.

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Anita Kelly has become one of my go-to queer romance readers. I love the way she sets the story and romance between two individuals and easily entices the reader on the journey.

Something Wild & Wonderful was a great reading experience, but it did take me a few chapters to full become invested in the story. Once I was it was hard to put down. I loved that Kelly isn't afraid to show the highs and lows of queer experiences in her fiction writing. In Something Wild & Wonderful we see one characters with a loving family who has always accepted their sexuality and the other comes from a religiously bigoted family that can't get past their sexuality. It's about so much more than the sexuality of the characters as Ben and Alexei grow as individuals on their journey on the PCT together. I felt like I went through all the emotions with Ben and Alexei throughout their journey and I'm looking forward to the last book in this somewhat linked series, How to Get the Girl, coming out in 2024.

If you haven't read the first book in the "series", Love & Other Disasters, I also highly recommend that book. You see a little bit of London and Dahlia in Something Wild & Wonderful so it isn't necessary for the story, but you'll fall in love with their love story as well.

Thank you to Forever Pub for a copy in exchange for review consideration.

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I don’t even have the words. This book was perfect in every way. As everyone knows I love a good grumpy x sunshine and this delivered. I fell in love with Alexei and Ben the moment I met them. This is an amazing but emotional story that I think everyone would enjoy.

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Anita Kelly is one of my recent favorites and I looked forward to this read. Though this was not a 5-star read for me, this was still an incredibly sweet story. Watching Alexei and Ben fall for each other was adorable and I enjoyed following their journey along the hike.

That ending with the bridge was cinematic and brilliant and sappy and made me so incredibly joyous!!

I'll always go back for more and more Anita Kelly. If you're looking for a soft, gentle, loving queer story - this is it. Plus, the outdoors are gorgeous.

Thank you to Forever for the ARC via Netgalley!

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This book sneaks up on you little by little. A story about two young adults hiking the PCT(Pacific Coast Trail) Alexei and Ben meet over an encounter with a snake and from there attraction starts to develop, filled with understanding one’s emotional baggage and mental health, and the willingness of trying to find one’s self out on the trail. Ben and Alexei will encounter many moments along the way that will have them questioning everything but in the end will love save the day. Can what they have on the trail lead to something more and be something that can last. I absolutely adored this book and had my heartstrings being pulled in all the right ways.

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I loved this one! What a beautiful, emotional journey along the Pacific Crest Trail. Anita Kelly has such a great voice.

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