Title: Something Wilder
Author: Christina Lauren
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Narrators: Patti Murin and Jon Root
Length: 9 hours (384 pages)
Publisher: Gallery Books; Simon & Schuster Audio
Release Date: May 17, 2022
Content Warnings: death of parent, death, gun violence, kidnapping
Growing up the daughter of notorious treasure hunter and absentee father Duke Wilder left Lily without much patience for the profession… or much money in the bank. But Lily is nothing if not resourceful, and now uses Duke’s coveted hand-drawn maps to guide tourists on fake treasure hunts through the red rock canyons of Utah. It pays the bills but doesn’t leave enough to fulfill her dream of buying back the beloved ranch her father sold years ago, and definitely not enough to deal with the sight of the man she once loved walking back into her life with a motley crew of friends ready to hit the trails. Frankly, Lily would like to take him out into the wilderness—and leave him there.
Leo Grady knew mirages were a thing in the desert, but they’d barely left civilization when the silhouette of his greatest regret comes into focus in the flickering light of the campfire. Ready to leave the past behind him, Leo wants nothing more than to reconnect with his first and only love. Unfortunately, Lily Wilder is all business, drawing a clear line in the sand: it’s never going to happen.
But when the trip goes horribly and hilariously wrong, the group wonders if maybe the legend of the hidden treasure wasn’t a gimmick after all. There’s a chance to right the wrongs—of Duke’s past and their own—but only if Leo and Lily can confront their history and work together. Alone under the stars in the isolated and dangerous mazes of the Canyonlands, Leo and Lily must decide whether they’ll risk their lives and hearts on the adventure of a lifetime.
Something Wilder is very different from Christina Lauren’s other books, and a wild ride at that. Not just a contemporary romance, it is also a wild west adventure with a treasure hunt mystery, high-stakes action, and jaw-dropping twists.
While this book is more plot-driven than CL’s other books, it is full of their signature distinct and lovable characters. I adore the way Lily’s friendships, her complicated relationship with her father, and of course her second chance romance with Leo were written. I’m glad Lily and Leo were able to find sweet moments to rekindle their feelings for each other amidst all the chaos.
This book left me yearning to visit the vivid setting for a hiking trip… but hopefully much more peaceful than the one in this book!