Out of Uniform #1-#4 by Annabeth Albert


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#M_M, #Military, #Contemporary, #Romance

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.

Universal Link | The Romance Reviews

4 out of 5 (very good)

Off Base is the first book in the Out of Uniform series. I double-checked the synopsis as it didn't feel like the first book, only to see it was a spin-off from the #Gaymers series! Now I have another series to catch up on ;)

Zack is an all-macho good guy, determined to make his deeply religious parents proud. His brother is basically a deadbeat, so he feels the pressure to be perfect. Pike is a friend of a friend, and someone who riles Zack up in all the ways he doesn't want to acknowledge. So be prepared for snarkiness and sparks between these two.

This was a wonderful introduction to this series, showing out Zack thinks he has to fight every battle alone. Seriously, you think he'd know better, but his fears have their place, and are very real to him. Pike helps him where he can, but isn't prepared to hide who he is. I absolutely love these two, so young, so unsure, and yep, so HOT!

There is romance, angst, pain, steam, and a multitude of other emotions between these pages. With no editing or grammatical errors to disrupt my reading flow, I absolutely recommend this book. An absolute blast of a start to the series, and I can't wait to read more.

* A copy of this book was provided to me with no requirements for a review. I voluntarily read this book, and my comments here are my honest opinion. *

Merissa

Archaeolibrarian - I Dig Good Books!

http://glbt.theromancereviews.com/viewbooks.php?bookid=27161

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#M_M, #Military, #Contemporary, #Romance

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.

Universal Link | The Romance Reviews

4 out of 5 (very good)

At Attention is the second book in the Out of Uniform series, and we reunite with Lieutenant Apollo Floros, who we met in Zack and Pike's story. We learn more about his past - how he is a grieving widower with two young twin daughters. He is existing with his life, not living it. When a friend asks him for a favour, he looks for a thousand different ways out of it, before he capitulates ungraciously.

That is the build up to a slow-burning, gut-churning, emotion-packed story that will get you right in the feels. There is no 'bad guy' in this, just a young hopeful man, and an older, grieving one, who just can't move past his pain. I really felt for Dylan, but couldn't bring myself to hate Apollo either, although I did want to whomp him upside the head a few times.

Saying that, there was plenty of heat in here, more than enough to keep me happy! The story didn't suffer for the steamy times though. Everything was in the right place, when it needed to be said or done. Kept on tenterhooks right to the end, I adored this book. I also loved the small cameos from Zack and Pike. So nice to see them still in love.

I have no hesitation in recommending this book, or the series, as I am absolutely loving it.

* A copy of this book was provided to me with no requirements for a review. I voluntarily read this book, and my comments here are my honest opinion. *

Merissa

Archaeolibrarian - I Dig Good Books!

http://glbt.theromancereviews.com/viewbooks.php?bookid=27162

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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.

Universal Link | The Romance Reviews

5 out of 5 (exceptional)

On Point is the third book in the Out of Uniform series, and we learn more about Ben and Maddox, who have been known to the reader since Zack and Pike's book.

They have been best friends for years, but things have been weird between them lately, and neither of them knows how to make it right. You find out what happened through a series of flashbacks, from both points of view, so you can see the situation for both of them.

Oh my goodness, I wanted to give Ben a hug - even knowing he'd push me away! He has been so hurt in the past, and it is affecting his judgement of the present and the future. For Maddox though, he will try. Maddox is a dream of a character. He is tough and gentle, hard and soft. He is a S.E.A.L. who dreams of owning his own bakery, and gets excited about trying new recipes. You wouldn't think these two would match, but they do, if only Pike would let them. Of course, it doesn't quite go according to plan, but they have plenty of steamy fun times on the way.

One thing I love about these books is previous characters aren't forgotten. Through cameo appearances, the reader finds out just how they're getting along. Brilliant!

There were no editing or grammatical errors that interrupted my reading flow, and I was thoroughly engrossed from start to finish. I am loving this series, and this is definitely my favourite so far. Absolutely recommended.

* A copy of this book was provided to me with no requirements for a review. I voluntarily read this book, and my comments here are my honest opinion. *

Merissa

Archaeolibrarian - I Dig Good Books!

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Their love is forbidden, but their hearts aren't listening to rules and regulations. Lieutenant Dustin Strauss is a reformed man. No longer a twentysomething hell-raiser, he's his SEAL team's new XO-and a man with a secret. Or seven. He's kept his bisexual identity under wraps for years, along with his kinky side and a fondness for the military-themed semianonymous hookup website Joe4Joe. His latest chat buddy is more than a sexy online distraction-they're taking their very not-safe-for-work relationship into real time. Petty Officer Wes Lowe has a smart mouth, a take-charge attitude and an uncanny ability for making things go boom. The life of an enlisted man isn't always enough to satisfy him, but one wild, no-questions-asked weekend with his online love comes close. When a transfer order comes in, Wes feels ready and centered. He'll make a good impression on his new SEAL team and keep his growing feelings for Dustin on the down low. But as they log more time online and some very real emotions surface, Dustin and Wes struggle to pretend they're just a harmless fling. And when his commander introduces Dustin to his team's newest member, they're in for the shock of a lifetime…and a crushing disappointment: their difference in ranks means even a friendship without sexual contact could end their navy careers for good. With their hearts on the line, Dustin and Wes may not survive their next mission, let alone find a way toward a future together.

Universal Link | The Romance Reviews

5 out of 5 (exceptional)

Wheels Up is the fourth book in the Out of Uniform series, and spend some time with Dustin, Dylan's big brother.

Dustin is bisexual, but his family doesn't know. Just as he is about to come out to his family, Dylan beats him to the punchline. Dustin then gets a whole heap of family pressure dumped on his shoulders. His dad wants grand-kids, after all! Plus being a SEAL hasn't always been the best situation to be in if you're gay or bi, so Dustin has stayed firmly in the closet. He has his 'special' time with an online friend though, and that is more than enough for him... or maybe not.

Now, I'm not American, and I'm not in the Forces, nor do I know of anyone who is, so the whole fraternisation rules are new to me. That being said, wow! After seeing how distracted Dustin became, I can sort of understand the no relationship part, but to have that enforced to such a degree you can't even be friends??? And I didn't get the enlisted part of it - sorry! However, that didn't stop my enjoyment of this story one iota.

I think my heart broke so many times reading this one. The need to be with each other, the wanting to show people, the absolute necessity of keeping it quiet. Dustin and Wes put paid to so many preconceptions - why is it always the big guy who is the bossy top? Big guys need cuddles too! And to be fair, I can see them needing someone else to take charge of them, after being in charge of others for so much of the time.

So much steam, so much heartbreak, so much worry, and so much hope. You get a HFN, which I just hope will be enough. Can't wait to read more and find out. There were no editing or grammatical errors that interrupted my reading flow, and I was thoroughly engrossed from start to finish. Absolutely recommended.

* A copy of this book was provided to me with no requirements for a review. I voluntarily read this book, and my comments here are my honest opinion. *

Merissa

Archaeolibrarian - I Dig Good Books!

Frequent tweeter, professional grammar nerd, and obsessive reader, Annabeth Albert is also a Pacific Northwest romance writer in a variety of subgenres. Emotionally complex, sexy, and funny stories are her favorites both to read and to write. In between searching out dark heroes to redeem, she works a rewarding day job and wrangles two toddlers.

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#MM #Contemporary #Romance #Military #4Stars #5Stars

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