ARC REVIEW: Tight Quarters by Annabeth Albert

About the book

Tight Quarters
(Out Of Uniform #6)
by Annabeth Albert

ebook
Publication Date: July 9th 2018 by Carina Press
>> Review copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion <<

Petty Officer Bacon, a navy SEAL and ace sharpshooter, has been on the front lines of more than his fair share of dangerous ops. Yet when a minor injury relegates him to the beta team, he’s tasked with what may be his riskiest assignment yet: the silver fox journalist he’s babysitting is the hottest, most charismatic man he’s ever encountered.

Award-winning journalist Spencer Bryant may have been named one of Pride magazine’s most eligible bachelors of the year, but he’s not looking to change his relationship status. He’s a consummate professional who won’t risk his ethics or impeccable reputation by getting involved with a source. Even a sexy-as-hell military man. But while Spencer can resist his physical attraction to Bacon, he has less control over his emotions—especially when the mission goes sideways and the two men are trapped alone.

Getting out of the jungle alive turns out to be easy compared to facing the truth about their feelings for one another back in the real world. And whether or not they can build a future is a different story altogether.

review

Tight Quarters is the sixth book in the Out Of Uniform series and I kinda don’t know what I’m supposed to say about this series anymore. I like it! Didn’t loved it, but I liked it. I like the way its written. I like the way the characters are portrayed. I like the story. I like the romance. If I didn’t like this series or this particular book I would have abandoned it long ago, but I’m still here, so that should tell you everything.

The thing I especially liked about Tight Quarters is that the age-gap wasn’t make into a big deal. I think it was mentioned once – in a thought – and that was it. Really liked that. Normally, at least in most m/f romances I’ve read it was always made into a problem, even though in most cases it just wasn’t one. That’s one of the reasons I like m/m romances. Way less unnecessary drama in my opinion. There was some drama in Tight Quarters but not related to the age thing, just saying.

Overall I really liked it and can’t wait to read the seventh and if I’m not mistaken last (*cry*) book in this series.

Rating: 3,75 stars

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[Blog Tour] Annabeth Albert ~ Squared Away + Giveaway

When a SEAL medic inherits three young children, he must battle to keep the family together and keep his long-held feelings for the man challenging him for custody at bay.

Squared Away

Series: Out of Uniform #5

Publisher: Carina Press

Release Date (Print & Ebook): April 16. Print, ebook, and audio all available.

Length (Print & Ebook): 80,000 words

Subgenre: m/m military romance

Includes: military romance, insta-family, hurt/comfort, angst, interracial, heroes-with-kids, gay romance, demisexual/gray ace hero, first time, loss, reunion, forced proximity

 

Links:

Amazon | Paperback | Audible | iBooks | Kobo | B&N | Carina Press

Synopsis:

In the wake of tragedy, SEAL Mark Whitley rushed stateside to act as guardian to his sister’s three young children. But a conflicting will could give custody to someone else—someone Mark remembers as a too young, too hot, wild party boy. Even after six years, Mark can’t shake the memory of his close encounter with Isaiah James, or face up to what it says about his own sexuality.

Isaiah’s totally over the crush that made him proposition Mark all those years ago. In fact, he’s done with crushing on the wrong men altogether. For now, he’s throwing himself into proving he’s the best person to care for his cousin’s kids. But there’s no denying there’s something sexy about a big, tough military man with a baby in his arms.

As the legal details get sorted out, their long-buried attraction resurfaces, leading to intimate evenings after the kids are tucked in. A forever future is within reach for all of them, if only Mark can find the courage he needs to trust Isaiah with his secrets—and his heart.

What Annabeth Albert has to say about this book in her Out of Uniform series:

“I wanted to write a book about the nature of family and how loss and tragedy can shape family, mold it into something stronger, force growth and change. I’m enormously proud of SQUARED AWAY as a result because how I fell in love with this little family.”

“When Wizard first appeared in ON POINT as a secondary character, I was intrigued by him, but it wasn’t until I let myself get into his head that I really saw how complicated he was. I feel honored and privileged to have been able to tell his story.”

“No book gets written in a vacuum and this one is no different. I owe a huge debt on this book to my sensitivity readers who really encouraged me to dig deep.”

Praise for the series:

“Mark and Isaiah’s budding relationship happens with sensitivity and steamy moments…” RT Book Reviews on SQUARED AWAY

“Annabeth Albert’s Out of Uniform series is a unique look at SEALs’ lives, showing us the insides of their hearts and homes and the love that drives them.” ~Layla Reyne, author of the Agents Irish and Whisky series.

Short Excerpts

It was not a date. Mark had been on those, and they usually made him feel like his clothes were three sizes too small, all buttoned up and uncomfortable. Hanging out with Isaiah was nothing like that. Sure he drove Mark nuts, but he was also fun, making Mark relax in a way he did with few others, and that had been the case ever since their first meeting. And despite himself, despite everything that had happened, he found himself looking forward to the rest of the day. And that was something he hadn’t thought possible.

Damn it. Liking Isaiah was just too easy. He needed to be careful.

About Annabeth Albert:

Annabeth Albert grew up sneaking romance novels under the bed covers. Now, she devours all subgenres of romance out in the open—no flashlights required! When she’s not adding to her keeper shelf, she’s a multi-published Pacific Northwest romance writer. The #OutOfUniform series joins her critically acclaimed and fan-favorite LGBTQ romance #Gaymers, #PortlandHeat and #PerfectHarmony series. To find out what she’s working on next and other fun extras, check out her website: www.annabethalbert.com or connect with Annabeth on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Spotify! Also, be sure to sign up for her newsletter for free ficlets, bonus reads, and contests. The fan group, Annabeth’s Angels, on Facebook is also a great place for bonus content and exclusive contests.

Emotionally complex, sexy, and funny stories are her favorites both to read and to write. Annabeth loves finding happy endings for a variety of pairings and is a passionate gay rights supporter.  In between searching out dark heroes to redeem, she works a rewarding day job and wrangles two active children.

Connect with Annabeth:

Twitter | Facebook | Facebook Group | Newsletter | Instagram | Website

Giveaway:

win 1 of 2 ecopies of any back catalog book by Annabeth Albert:

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Direct Giveaway Link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/88d45f0353/


Here is my review for Squared Away in case you are interested how I liked it

>> HERE <<

ARC Review: Squared Away by Annabeth Albert

About the book

Squared Away
by Annabeth Albert
ebook
Publication Date: April 16th 2018 by Carina Press
>> Review copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion <<

In the wake of tragedy, SEAL Mark Whitley rushed stateside to act as guardian to his sister’s three young children. But a conflicting will could give custody to someone else—someone Mark remembers as a too young, too hot, wild party boy. Even after six years, Mark can’t shake the memory of his close encounter with Isaiah James, or face up to what it says about his own sexuality.

Isaiah’s totally over the crush that made him proposition Mark all those years ago. In fact, he’s done with crushing on the wrong men altogether. For now, he’s throwing himself into proving he’s the best person to care for his cousin’s kids. But there’s no denying there’s something sexy about a big, tough military man with a baby in his arms.

As the legal details get sorted out, their long-buried attraction resurfaces, leading to intimate evenings after the kids are tucked in. A forever future is within reach for all of them, if only Mark can find the courage he needs to trust Isaiah with his secrets—and his heart.

review

After not liking the previous book Wheels Up as much as I hoped I would – I’m just not a big fan of those boss + subordinate settings – we are back to me liking Squared Away as much as all the other books, meaning it got 4,5 stars. Just a head-up.

Be aware that if you don’t like reading about kids, this book won’t be for you, because the kids take a big part of the book and let me say they were adorable. I  personally couldn’t care less if children are part of a book or not, it’s ok if they are a part and it’s ok if there are not. As long as they are not super annoying – never read about annoying kids in a book – I’m good.

I really liked how the relationship between Mark and Isaiah progressed, but I knew what the big fallout between them would be from the very start. It was obvious, but throughout the whole book I hoped that Annabeth Albert would choose a different way. Still I waited for the other shoe to drop and sadly it did. That “twist” made sense, but it was a bit unnecessary, all they would have needed was a bit more communication, but I’m picky when it comes to that. Don’t mind me. Otherwise I really liked the dynamics between Mark and Isaiah and also between those two and the kids.

Also I’m happy that Annabeth Albert introduced some different sexualities as well, which I won’t name. Read the book if you’re curious 😉

Overall I was really happy with this book and can’t wait to read the next one, which I hope will be about Bacon – the guy, not the food. If Annabeth Albert ever chose to write a book about talking food I would probably still read it though, just saying. LOL.

Rating: 4,5 stars

Mini Reviews #1

Wheels Up by Annabeth Albert (Review copy provided by Netgalley)

>> Goodreads Link, Genre: Romance, M/M

Wheels Up is the fourth installment in the Out of Uniform series by Annabeth Albert and while I liked it, I didn’t like it as much as the previous three books. The main reason for the might be the fact that I never was into the whole boss and subordinate thing, which this absolutely is. Another thiny reason is that it took a really big part of the book for me to warm up to Dustin. I don’t really know why.

Overall I still enjoyed this and will definitely read the next book in the series, if there’s another one.

Rating: 4 star


Cover Up by L.A. Witt (Review copy provided by NetGalley)

>> Goodreads Link, Genre: Romance, M/M

Cover Up is the third book in the Skin Deep series about tattoo artists and their significant other.

I really loved this book. Lucas and Nate were a cute couple and I was glad to see that Nate got an happy ending, after the way we left him in the previous book.

I always find it easier to point out what I didn’t like about a book, and since I pretty much liked everything about Cover Up my review will end here. I was missing one little thing about this book, but I can’t really pinpoint what, so I’m just going to let that slide.

Rating: 4,5 stars


Wild Ride by Julie Ann Walker (Review copy provided by NetGalley)

>> Goodreads link, Genre: Action, Romance, M/f

Wild Ride is the ninth installment in the Black Knights Inc. series and probably my least favourite, even though I loved Ozzie, the hero, and the action. Also the banter between the characters, that’s always funny.

The biggest problem I had with this book was Samantha, the heroine. Half of the time she was annoying and the other half she was horny. In the end it got better and she was more likeable,but overall I just could warm up to her.

Another thing that bothered me was the ending. It felt to me like the author didn’t had enough pages left, but had to put all the stuff down anyway. The ending felt rushed.

Rating: 3,5 stars


Enrage by Rachel van Dyken

>> Goodreads link, Genre: Dark Suspense, Romance, M/f

I still remember when I started the first book in the series and thought to myself if I could possibly like this series, because this normally isn’t my piece of cake. But here I am, reading book 8 and loving it more than ever.

The whole series grows darker and darker with each installment and if you have a weak stomach I wouldn’t recommend it, but if you love mafia books and all that comes with them, these are totally for you.

Also that twist at the end, totally did not see that coming, let me tell you that.

I personally can’t wait for the next installment “Eulogy” which comes out in February next year.

Rating: 4,75 stars

ARC REVIEW: On Point by Annabeth Albert

*I received this book a while ago, but due to a stressful internship and my very last finals – which are still not over – I kind of abandoned my blog and all the books for which I still own people reviews. So here’s me catching up. I’m sorry it took so long*


About the book

On Point
(Out Of Uniform #3)
by Annabeth Albert

ebook
Publication Date: June 5th 2017 by Carina Press

Never fall for your best friend…

Pushing thirty, with his reenlistment looming, decorated navy sniper Maddox Horvat is taking a long look at what he really wants in life. And what he wants is Ben Tovey. It isn’t smart, falling for his best friend and fellow SEAL, but ten years with Ben has forged a bond so intimate Maddox can’t ignore it. He needs Ben by his side forever—heart and soul.

Ben admits he likes what he’s seen—his friend’s full lower lip and the perfect muscles of his ass have proved distracting more than once. But Ben’s still reeling from a relationship gone to hell, and he’s not about to screw up his friendship with Maddox, too.

Until their next mission throws Ben and Maddox closer together than ever before, with only each other to depend on.

Now, in the lonely, desperate hours awaiting rescue, the real challenge—confronting themselves, their future and their desires—begins. Man to man, friend to friend, lover to lover.

review~ Book provided by NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion

On Point is the third book in the Out Of Uniform series by Annabeth Albert and I decided that it should be the first book I would read after my really long book hiatus. So I did just that and I told myself I should get slowly back into the game, so I intended to only read a few chapters at a time,  I’m pretty sure you all know how this worked out. I read the whole damn thing in one sitting! Typically me. LOL. I totally forgot what that felt like.

Like always Annabeth’s writing had me hooked from the first page. I couldn’t put it down and while I have to confess I’m not really fan of best friends to lovers book, but I was rooting for these two since their first introduction. Their romance was cute and I loved how all worked out between them in the end.

I’m quite curious to see about whom the next book will be about, but I know that I will devour it the same why as the three ones before that. Keep them coming, Annabeth!

[Review] At Attention by Annabeth Albert

About the book

At Attention
(Out Of Uniform #2)
by Annabeth Albert

ebook
Publication Date: April 10th 2017 by Carina Press

Lieutenant Apollo Floros can ace tactical training missions, but being a single dad to his twin daughters is more than he can handle. He needs live-in help, and he’s lucky a friend’s younger brother needs a place to stay. He’s surprised to see Dylan all grown up with a college degree…and a college athlete’s body. Apollo’s widowed heart may still be broken, but Dylan has his blood heating up.

It’s been eight years since the teenage Dylan followed Apollo around like a lovesick puppy, and it’s time he showed Lieutenant Hard-to-Please that he’s all man now—an adult who’s fully capable of choosing responsibility over lust. He can handle Apollo’s muscular sex appeal, but Apollo the caring father? Dylan can’t afford to fall for that guy. He’s determined to hold out for someone who’s able to love him back, not someone who only sees him as a kid brother.

Apollo is shocked by the intensity of his attraction to Dylan. Maybe some no-strings summer fun will bring this former SEAL back to life. But the combination of scorching desire and warm affection is more than he’d expected, and the emotion between them scares him senseless. No fling lasts forever, and Apollo will need to decide what’s more important—his past or his future—if he wants to keep Dylan in his life.

review~ Book provided by NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion

Truth be told after reading the synopsis I was a bit afraid – for two reasons. First because I couldn’t quite remember who Apollo was and if he even was in the previous book. I’m bad at remembering names, let me tell you that. Reason number two was that a few days ago I’ve read a book about a married guy with children, who was secretly gay, but never came out to his wife and then she died. So, because I couldn’t remember who Apollo was, I thought it would be the other book all over again. Note: I didn’t like that other book. But of course, I didn’t need to worry, everything was totally different. I really need to work at remembering names. I remembered there was a guy in the military who was gay with children, but I didn’t know anymore that that man was Apollo.

So if you made it through my little “I am stupid” paragraph, let me tell you that I love this book. I rarely give a book a full 5 star rating, but I just can’t do anything different with At Attention. I loved the character, loved the story and loved the writing.

I loved Dylan, Apollo’s love interest. He was adorable. ADORABLE. He didn’t push Apollo into starting something new after his husband’s death, but let him decide the pace. Also he was really good with the children. He was fun and at the same time everyone thought of him as a child, even though he’s long grown up.

Then there was Apollo. There were some scenes where I wanted to bash his head in, because he kept hurting my poor Dylan without knowing it, but I still also loved him.

At Attention didn’t have too much talk about the military part of Apollo’s job. There were a few scenes that dealed with that topic, but overall it only took a minor role in the book.

I can’t wait to read the next book in the series, which could be about Ben and Maddox, but I’m not quite sure it actually is. I guess I have to wait and see.

Also I told myself to wait before I start reading At Attention. I didn’t want to start till March. Joke’s on me. I already finished it and it isn’t even February yet. LOL.

Rating: 5 stars

[Review] Wrapped Together by Annabeth Albert

About the book

Wrapped Together
(Portland Heat #5)
by Annabeth Albert

ebook
Publication Date: December 6th 2016 by Lyrical Shine

In the bustling restaurants, shops, and cafés of Portland, Oregon, things really heat up for the hard-working men behind the scenes when the holidays come into town . . .

For a stationery store owner, the holidays are great for business. But for Hollis Alcott, Christmas reminds him of the tragic events of three years past, and the last thing he wants to do is take part in Portland’s over-abundance of festive cheer. But Sawyer Murphy, a hunky gift shop owner whose brother is married to Hollis’s sister, has made it his mission to pluck Hollis out of his holiday blues. And his plan is beginning to work. Wrapped in the warm glow of newfound passion, the former business rivals hit up Portland’s finest holiday traditions—and Hollis’s icy attitude begins to melt like snowflakes on his tongue. But he isn’t sure he can trust anyone with the only gift he has—his heart—without breaking it like an antique ornament. Unless he can find the courage to take a leap with the one lover he never expected .

review~ Book provided by NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion

Wrapped Together was only my second book by Annabeth Albert and haven’t I just looked it up on Goodreads I still wouldn’t know that this is part of a series. The fifth installment in fact. I was perfectly able to read it as a stand-alone.

But guys, I did it in the wrong order. This story works around Christmas. When do I read it … right, after Christmas, of course. Didn’t hurt the story, but it made me miss Christmas already. Stupid me. Haha.

Wrapped Together was a really cute and heart-warming book. I read it in one sitting, that’s how glued to the pages I was.

The guys – Hollis and Sawyer – Annabeth created were really down-to-earth and felt so real. Their romance hadn’t overly much drama, except for that one scene that I thought fit perfectly into the story. Reading about the progress between these two was sweet and fun. Their sex scenes were steamy though! I loved how they told their families that they are together. So funny. I highlighted so many funny conversations between those two on my Kindle. They made me smile a lot.

The only thing that made me a bit sad was that Wrapped Together was so short. Only a bit over 100 pages, but I think that gave the story the charm it had.

Wrapped Together was a really cute story about Christmas and really likeable characters. This won’t be the last time I read a book of this series.

Rating: 4 stars

[Review] Off Base by Annabeth Albert

About the book

Off Base
(Out Of Uniform #1)
by Annabeth Albert

ebook
Publication Date: January 9th 2017 by Carina Press

After trading the barracks for a fixer-upper rental, navy SEAL Zack Nelson wants peace, not a roommate—especially not Pike, who sees things about Zack he most wants to hide. Pike’s flirting puts virgin Zack on edge. And the questions Pike’s arrival would spark from Zack’s teammates about his own sexuality? Nope. Not going there. But Zack can’t refuse.

Pike Reynolds knows there won’t be a warm welcome in his new home. What can he say? He’s an acquired taste. But he needs this chance to get his life together. Also, teasing the uptight SEAL will be hella fun. Still, Pike has to tread carefully; he’s had his fill of tourists in the past, and he can’t risk his heart on another, not even one as hot, as built—and, okay, yeah, as adorable—as Zack.

Living with Pike crumbles Zack’s restraint and fuels his curiosity. He discovers how well they fit together in bed…in the shower…in the hallway… He needs Pike more than he could have imagined, yet he doesn’t know how to be the man Pike deserves.

review~ Book provided by NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion

I found this book on NetGalley by pure accident. I was browsing through the pages and then my mouse decided to twitch and stop on this book. I was intrigued and click on it to read the description and after reading it, I knew I had to request it. Thankfully I got accepted otherwise I would have had to wait for more than another month.

On this note, this is my very first book by Annabeth Albert and it won’t be the last one, let me tell you that.

I have this weird love for M/M books where one of the guys is totally out in the open about him being gay and the other one is still fully in the closet. In this book Pike was the one out and Zack was the one still in the closet.

Both of these guys were pretty awesome in their own ways. Pike was so compassionate and honored Zack’s wishes about coming out on his own terms and Zack was sweet and always around to listen to Pike’s rant about his teaching gig.

I loved that this book was about a gay military guy – Zack’s a SEAL – but without the typical “he’s a SEAL, don’t you forget it”-stuff that seem to take place in straight couple books. Also Pike’s teaching job at the university was a nice contrast.

Annabeth Albert’s writing style drew me in from page one and hadn’t I looked up to take a look at the clock and hadn’t I seen that it was midnight, I most definitely would have finished Off Base in one sitting, but sadly I had work in the morning. So I had to cut my reading session short and read the rest of the book right after I got of my shift.

I will absolutely read At Attention, the second book in the series, as well as Ryan and Josiah’s story Connection Error – two side characters in Off Base – I really want to find out more about how they got together. By the way I only now in the progress of writing this review found out that the Out Of Uniform series is a spin-off series of the #gaymers series. So if you read those, I’m totally confident that you will like Off Base as well. If you haven’t read those, trust me, you can read Off Base without reading the #gaymers series first.

Rating: 4,5 stars