Monday, April 10, 2017

At Attention by Annabeth Albert

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.

Add to Goodreads –

Book 2
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Avid Reader☆☆☆☆
M/M Military Romance
Triggers: Death

Apollo has been struggling since he lost his partner and love of his life. Despite having 2 amazing twin girls to live for, his mom helping him, and his squad surrounding him, he's at a loss. Existing isn't really living, but for Apollo, he can barely make it through the day. Avoiding things that remind him of his husband is hard but he's not sleeping in their old room, doesn't go to their favorite restaurants, and still has some difficulty seeing his in-laws.

Dylan is vibrant, charismatic, and funny. He loves kids and wants to work with them. When an opportunity comes up that would allow him to work as a summer camp director, he jumps at it. As a bonus, he is staying with Apollo while Apollo's mom goes on a long-deserved vacation. The catch, Dylan used to have the most gigantic of crushes on Apollo. Now, all grown up, Dylan hopes that Apollo can see him as more than a kid.

What follows is a story where compromises are made, miscommunications occur, and hearts are broken. This was a story more about learning to live again, loving yourself, and allowing yourself to lean on those around you.

It was sweet and somewhat frustrating at times, but overall, a really good story.

At Attention is the second installment in the Out of Uniform series by Annabeth Albert, but can easily be read as a standalone romance novel. If you're familiar with Annabeth Albert's writing style, then you won't be disappointed with At Attention. Easy flowing scenes, with an addictive quality to the romance, and fully developed characters.

Apollo is widower with two small, twin daughters. His mother is going on vacation during the summer months, and unexpectedly his best friend's brother is in need of a place to crash while he works at the same summer day camp the girls will be using. It's a win-win situation. The only issue is that Dylan has had a crush on Apollo since he hit puberty, and Apollo is still deep in mourning over the loss of his husband. Apollo sees Dylan as hands-off, as he's Dustin's kid brother and has vowed to never fall in love again.

Apollo is afraid all the time, channeling that into a control-freak personality, scheduling a month's time at once. Dylan is a responsible guy, but he's spontaneously always finding the fun in any situation. There's an age-gap, but the pair balances each other out nicely.

At Attention is sure to hit all the right notes with romance lovers. Angst of unrequited love. The heart-tugging pain of loss. The sweetness of young children wanting their dad to be happy. Mixed with doubt, fear, guilt, and need, this novel is an emotional punch to the gut...

I want more – can't wait to get my hands on #3.

Recommended to MM romance fans.

It has been a few days since I read the book and I still have the feels for this one. I read the first book in this series, which you don’t need to read in order to enjoy this book. I am not sure what it was about this book but man, I just loved it and can’t stop thinking about how warm and fuzzy it made me feel. Apollo’s husband died and he is left to raise his two kids on his own with the help of his mother. Apollo’s mom is going on a vacation for the summer and he will need help with the kids. In enters Dylan, Apollo’s best friend Dustin’s brother. The chemistry is instant and you feel it through the entire book. Dylan isn’t the kid that Apollo remembers. Like I said, this book just gave me the feels and I know I will re-read it again and again when I need a pick me up. The chemistry is off the chart, the twins love Dylan, and the storyline is just good. We did see characters from the first book as well, briefly. I can’t wait to see what is in store for the next book in the series.

Characters: Well written
Sex: Yes
Religious: No
Would I recommend to others: Yes
More than one book in the series: Yes
Genre: M/M Romance
Would I read more by this author: Yes

From Apollo's point of view, this is the story of a widow raising twin daughters and learning to live again. From Dylan's point of view, it is the story of a guy living with his childhood crush and learning who he is as a man and falling in love with him all over again.

This is such a lovely and hot romance. Dylan is such a good guy, upbeat, great with kids, and crazy about Apollo. Dylan is also the younger brother of Apollo's best mate and that, combined with a nearly 10-year age difference, are some of the many hurdles this couple have to get over.

Dylan moves in with Apollo just as a friend to help him look after his girls. But once they are under the same roof, they are living in domestic bliss no matter how much they try to deny it.

At Attention was such a pleasure to read. A simple tale of two guys falling in love. I'd definitely recommend this for m/m fans.

This is the story of a sweet and angsty romance between a widowed Marine and his much younger manny.

As a grieving widow and the father of young girls, Apollo is surly and miserable when we first meet him. His grief is intense and his self-imposed isolation is heartbreaking. His angst feels horribly real.

Dylan reads much older than 23. The early childhood education graduate is very sweet. He’s brilliant with kids, he’s gorgeous to look at, and he fits perfectly into Apollo’s complicated life. He is wonderful but he might be too perfect. It isn’t until late in the book that we see him start to develop a backbone and some character.

Apollo is a Marine, but unlike the last two books, the military is very much on the periphery of this novel. Apollo took a training role when his husband died and he struggles to balance his work commitments with his responsibility for his daughters. Characters from earlier books reappear briefly and a couple of new ones are introduced for future books.

This is the only family focused story I’ve read by this author. I’m not a huge fan of kids in romances, but both Apollo and Dylan are interesting characters beyond the girls. The kids add charm to this story and they humanise Apollo when he is at his most obstinate.

There is less heat in this book than I’ve come to expect from Annabeth Albert’s books – this is aimed at a slightly older audience. The connection between Apollo and Dylan is a slow burn as Apollo struggles to move past his husband’s death. There is chemistry from the start but the age gap, Apollo’s grief, and the kids make their relationship quite complicated.

As always, I love Annabeth Albert’s writing style and I enjoyed the complexity of her characters – but I’m probably not the target audience for this story. It is a great book, but it is just a little bit too cute and too domestic for me.

This is the second book in the series – and as I had enjoyed Zack and Pike's story, I was delighted to read this latest installment. Although they did make an appearance, we have a new SEAL, Apollo's story this time.

Ms. Albert has a wonderful writing style which brings the names on the page to life, to the extent that you would know them if you met them. Apollo failed to recognise his best friend's younger brother when he saw him in the supermarket; something he realises later in the day when Dustin brings Dylan round with a proposal... and the course of his life is about to change – if only he can come to terms with his grief and associated guilt and anger.

The twins are delightful element of the story and their inclusion is done with great effect and humour. There are plenty of other good side characters who provide the light relief and a glimpse of who may feature in future books.

Also Available in the Out of Uniform Series

Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo

For reviews & more info, check out our Off Base post.

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.

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 toddlers.

Represented by Saritza Hernandez of the Corvisiero Literary Agency

Connect with Annabeth

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Google+  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads
Facebook Fan Group

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of At Attention (Out of Uniform #2) by Annabeth Albert to read and review.

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