Wednesday, March 15, 2017

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

Off Base (Out of Uniform, #1)

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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.


If you’ve read Albert’s Connection Error, you are probably familiar with Zack Nelson.  The kid with the broken leg that Ryan met in the hospital.  We knew Zack had a story the minute he reacted to Ryan’s relationship with Josiah.  In Off Base, we see exactly why Zack reacted the way he did and why he lives life the way he does. 

Zack has fast tracked his way into becoming a SEAL.  He is uber focused and determined to be successful. But success may not be possible with the continued harassment he has experienced from one of the guys on his team.  Determined to remove himself from the situation without causing any waves, Zack moves off base.  Which is awesome until his gay best friend’s gay friend needles his way into a roommate situation.    

Reading Zack’s struggles with his teammate was heartbreaking.  Here is a young guy who can’t even see the door to the closet he’s hiding in and he has one of the people that he’s supposed to depend upon in literal life and death situations secretly harassing and blackmailing him.   To top it off he’s falling hard and fast for his roommate.  An out roommate that deserves way more than a guy who is unwilling to be honest about who he is.  

Pike was one of those characters that is always fun to read.  He is irreverent on the outside but a pretty complicated guy on the inside.  One of those people that is so much more than what they choose to let the world see.   People’s initial reaction to Pike is that he doesn’t have much in the way of empathy or feelings of his own.  But nothing could be further from the truth.

Yes, there is some definite angst.  Your heart will likely break for these guys a couple times while reading their story.  But, as in all Annabeth Albert’s books, the angst is never so heavy that you can’t recover after the promised happy ever after.  Don’t hesitate to jump into the Out of Uniform series. Not only will you love it, you won’t have to wait long to read more.  Book two is already out and book three is due out next month!

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