Wednesday, May 10, 2017

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

At Attention (Out of Uniform, #2)****
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.

At the end of Off Base, I was crossing all my fingers and toes that Lt. Apollo Floros was going to get his own book.  I’m a sucker for the widower trope.  Give said widower kids and double swoon.  Fortunately, Annabeth Albert knows what the fans want and she didn’t hesitate to deliver. 

At Attention starts out with Apollo getting caught checking out a young guy’s ass at the grocery store.  What he doesn’t find out until later that day is that the young guy from the grocery store is his best friend’s little brother, Dylan.  Yep, Dylan’s not so little anymore.  And Dylan is finally old enough to hit on the guy he’s crushed on since he was a teenager.  Yep, not only do we have the widower trope, we also have the age-gap and best friend’s younger brother tropes.  Seriously.  It’s like this book was written just for me.

As you can guess, there is some angst in this story.  Apollo’s main hang up about dating anyone, let alone Dylan, is that he’s still grieving the loss of his husband.  Not that he will admit that to himself or anyone else.   On top of his grief, he has more than a bit of OCD (I’m envious of his orderly kitchen and weekly meal plans) and an old injury is making him a bit cranky.  And then all of a sudden he has a super hot young guy living in his house and taking care of him and the kids.  A hot guy that he considers completely off limits.  He just cannot deal.

I’m surprised that I was so attracted to Apollo simply because Dylan is basically the beta hero of my dreams.   This attests to Albert’s ability to write amazing characters.  The fact that an Alpha former SEAL can compete with my adoration of the steady beta hero is pretty amazing.  Don’t get me wrong.  I loved Dylan too.  His willingness/desire to be part of Apollo’s ready-made family and to insert himself in ways that Apollo didn’t know he needed was heartwarming.  And his insistence on doing what was right for HIM was inspiring.   

So yeah, another hit from Annabeth Albert.  I’m fairly confident there isn’t anything she can’t write.  If you love your Alpha heroes and your military romance then this book is definitely for you.  And if you like your “forever boys” then At Attention is for you too. 


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