Zane (Part 1) – Liv Bennett

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Author: Liv Bennett
Series: Pleasure Extraordinaire #1

Pages: 254

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The new CEO and the owner of Hawkins Media Group, Zane Hawkins is officially dating to marry. After two years of on-again-off-again romance with the actress Penelope Davis, Zane is now ready to settle down.

Multiple sources confirm that it’s the recent death of his father causing him to re-think his bachelor lifestyle and consider starting a family of his own.

Who will be the lucky bride to tie down California’s most eligible bachelor? A wildly famous Hollywood actress? An activist and visionary lawyer? A humble and media-shy nurse?

If the persisting rumors are true, there’s a secret list of the most suitable candidates drawn up singlehandedly by Zane’s very capable assistant, Julie Connor. Even so, Zane has never been one to follow rules and directions.

Whoever is going to be the lucky winner, she deserves special kudos, as the road to Zane’s heart is known to go through several hoops and hurdles.

When I was a kid, I saw my grandma put some lentils to her dessert yogurt. Back then, I thought that was the weirdest mix I was going to witness in my life. I guess I had to read this book to find a mix that could unseat my grandma’s special yogurt on my list. This book is short, but it has enough room to create a madness that was only lacking several dragons and one or two starships…

We have the immense honour and pleassure to meet Zane (his words, not mine), a rich guy whose lifestyle can be described with just one simple word: womanizer. But her assistant, Julie, convinces him to look for a wife. In order to easy that search, she comes with a list of possible candidates. Zane must date those girls until he finds the love of his life…

This book was free on Amazon when I got it (so I didn’t look beyond the price tag) and I only learnt it was a spin-off after reading it. I don’t think it is mandatory to read the books of Lindsay to understand the books of Zane, but I guess you could develop some sympathy for the characters that could make the reading of this one somehow bearable. That was harsh. The book is not so bad. It has a pretty good idea full of fun possibilities, but everything is butchered with forgettable characters and ridiculous situations. It doesn’t help that the book doesn’t know what identity to adopt. Sometimes is Erotica, others is Contemporary Romance, it flirts with Comedy and even Dark Romance makes a cameo. It would have been much better if the author picked one and forgot the others.

Zane as a characters is a mess. And I don’t mean cute mess you want to cuddle. No. He is a horribly written characters that drinks from the worst fountains of the Romance genre. I think the author attempts to make him cocky and confident, but the result is a vain and self-centered character who considers himself above most mortals just because he has more money and better looks… And no one tells him the opposite… Because he is Zane, eveything he does is a good thing worthy of the warmest round of applause: sex with barely legal girls, sex in front of his own brother, sex with unwilling women, unprotected sex without consent… For some strange reason, that was meant to make him look like a sexy bad boy, but the result is way grosser than that. Pure gold the moment he refuses to hug a woman, because he didn’t want her to fall in love with him… Keep dreaming man…

And then we have Julie. Yes, the assistant. If by reading the blurb you didn’t know the good assistant had a crush on her boss, I guess you haven’t read enough Romance (like two or three books). So… why is she so eager to hook Zane up with a random woman? Well, she explains it all, but let me tell you it doesn’t make much sense. Is it really your plan to make your boss discard all women so you can be the only choice? Have a bit of pride! And self-esteem! And good taste! Because there are thousands of better guys out there. And worst… Julie describes the perfect woman for Zane. What means she tries to describe herself… Someone should tell her we are currently living the 21st century.

Is there something else good beyond the idea? Not really. But it is short, easy to read and such a chaotic display of characters that the reading will be fast and mostly harmless. There is a second part. I know I will read it sooner or later. Maybe there will be some cleaning in Zane’s aisle…

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2019 – Book Gallery

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Tight Quarters – Annabeth Albert

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Author: Annabeth Albert
Series: Out of Uniform #6

Pages: 336

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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.

Little by little I’m getting to the end of this saga. I’m so proud of myself for being able to read all of them in a couple of years instead of twenty… At least, I hope to read the last one sooner rather than later. I also hope that the last one is better than the sixth book, which I can only describe as plain.

This is the book of Bacon and I don’t mean the food. It follows the adventures of the Petty Officer we met in other books as merely a cameo. He is a SEAL through and through. One that keeps his sexuality a secret to avoid complications with his team. The one destined for rocking his world is a journalist called Spencer, who has been given the chance of being embedded in Bacon’s team to write a story. Obviously, our ace sniper is the one who must protect the journalist at all times. I have your six gets a new meaning…

The story looked like a cool cauldron for a romance to bloom. I was expecting something feral in the middle of a terrosrist crisis, full of danger everywhere with heroic and sweet situations. Something like what we read in the book of Ben and Maddox (no-prize for rembering their names!!). And there was a little bit of that, but it ends too abruptly and leaves the reader eager for more. Too bad that there is not more. The rest of the story is just about Bacon coming out and a too much drama about how incompatible their lives are. It is not boring, but this saga has always delivered emotional impact and this book lacks sorely of it.

The drama that tries to spice things up is messy and the weird elephant in the room. Why does Bacen get so pissed with the book? If he is afraid of the Navy getting thrown to the mud, he should read-proof it to bring his own point of view instead of running away and behaving which such self-righteousness. Spencer’s way of dealing with the issue is not much better. The worst part: at the end they just put what devide them on hold and keep moving… not very convincing if you ask me… Of all the love stories of this saga, this one is by far the least enjoyable.

There is also not much to say about the characters. The only interesting point of Spencer was being embedded in a SEAL team for research, but that ends quickly. So we soon get stuck with a very uncharismatic character. Thankfully, the difference in age between both characters doesn’t take part in the story. I wasm’t in the mood for a repeat of the worst parts of the second book… And Bacon is also very plain. His main trait is his pansexuality, but that is not really important for the development of the book… so that detail felt a bit empty.

I’m trying to come up with something with soemthing else to say about it, but it’s not worthy of my effort. It is not a bad book, but I can’t point to anythhing extraordinaire, either. I just hope next one is better.

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2019 – Book Gallery

 

Defective – Mel Teshco

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Author: Mel Teshco
Series: The Virgin Hunt Games #1
Release day:  March 18th 2019
Pages: 274

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Melody Simmons desperately needs to fill her bank accounts with credits that could help her family climb out of near poverty. And in the Virgin Hunt Games, that means enticing as many hunters as possible to bed her. The downside? Billions of viewers from all parts of the galaxy would be watching her fall from virtue with avid interest.

Alien Damon Banscott despises everything about the Virgin Hunt Games. Except the fact he can now legally destroy his enemy in the games. He is in this only for revenge. Then Damon sees one of the beautiful hunted and, for a moment, his heart stops beating. He’ll fight to the death before allowing another hunter to touch and deflower Melody.

But while the hunters get more credits by pleasing their captive mate sexually, the hunted women received more by finding their pleasure with any of the hunters who weren’t their assigned mate.

The hunt is on…

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

You won’t find me reading Erotica too often, but when I saw the cover of this book and read the interesting blurb; I knew I had to request an ARC in NetGalley. I was lucky enough to be chosen as a reviewer. So, first of all, thanks for the chance given.

In this book we follow Melody, a woman from Earth who needs money desperately. She has never been with a man intimately, so being picked as one of the virgins for the game wasn’t so far-fetched. Her suitor is not other than Damon, a soldier from an alien planet who is only taking part on the game to get his revenge against another of the participants. Is that particular setting the best place for starting a relationship? It seems, it could be…

It’s pretty obvious from almost the beginning that the author has translated the Hunger Games into an adult version in space where sex and violence are the main course. Which is nice if you take it as it is. Do not commit my mistake of overthinking the Game, because there are a bunch of holes that could be hard to fill. That wasn’t the best metaphor in the context of the book… What I want to say is that there are several rules or character behaviours that don’t make much sense. First of all: why virgins? It looks like a hard constraint for such little reward. Second: pretty unbalanaced for the participants. If you are male, your boost credit reward comes from catching their chosen hunted and just have their way sexually. Females must hide from their chosen hunter and seduce another one, which seems much harder (the hunters are not paper pushers…). And lastly: if most of them are taking part for the money, why don’t strategize to maximize the income through bouts of sex? Reading the book I thought most of them were a bunch of idiots who weren’t listening when the rules were stated. As I said, it’s better if you don’t think too much about the game and just read the book. That would enhance your enjoyment of the book.

When I read the blurb, my impression was that every participant was a willing one. But pretty soon the reader discovers that most of the women have been blackmailed into taking part. That adds a very uncomformatble feeling while reading. What I thought was going to be consent uninhibited sex was at risk of becoming plane and simple raping. That would have ruined the book without any hope of recovery. Thankfully, such kind of actions are not present. Sometimes they are hinted, but never narrated. And yet, the sex scenes are not enjoyable. There are several of them, but they lack spice (even though that would mean much more credits…) and I soon lost my interest in them. Luckily, there is also a heavy presence of action scenes that make up for the uneventful sexual encounters and grant the book a perfect pace.

I don’t have much to say about the characters. They fill their roles, but nothing else. I like Melody much more than Damon. He is sometimes too “macho male“. His annoying protective instincts and the way he avoids adult conversations overpowering Melody through sex don’t make him a good character on my book. It doesn’t help that we don’t get to know many of his qualities. The only one that is mentioned over and over again is the size of his manhood. Actually, that is probably the only thing that is described about the hunters. It’s not that I can’t handle the dirty talk… it’s more like, so what? They barely use it… By the way, the epilogue is pretty unbelievable (too fast!!) and make this couple much more likely to fail miserably. It’s the classic ending of a Romance book and I wasn’t expecting it in an Erotica book…

So, in few words: nice book to kill time. Fast pace and easy to read. Ideal for lazy days. If you ask more of it, you will de disappointed.

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2019 – Book Gallery

Co-Ed – Rachel Van Dyken

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Author: Rachel Van Dyken
Pages: 248

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Four guys.

Constant moaning.

And a revolving door across the college suite I somehow ended up in because my first name is Shawn.

They don’t discriminate. Girls. Guys. Grandmas. Plants (okay maybe not plants) all walks of life stroll in stressed to the brim, and leave so satisfied I’m wondering what sort of talents lie behind that door.

My roommate calls them the pleasure ponies.

But the rest of the college campus?

They just call them the new face of Wingmen Inc. A paid for relationship service that makes big promises.

Breakup? They’ll glue you back together again.

Depressed? They have the magic pill.

Lonely? Just spend a few minutes while they rub you down and you’ll forget all about it.

And broken hearts? Well, that’s their specialty. They’ll fix you.

For a price…

I swore I wouldn’t get involved.

But apparently they like a challenge, and a girl who doesn’t put up with their BS is basically like waving a red flag in front of a bull.

They. All. Charged.

But one holds my attention above the rest.

Knox Tate looks like a Viking — and getting pillaged is starting to look more appealing by the day. Though he’s hiding something — all of them are. And the closer I get. The more I realize that some things are left better in the past.

I haven’t posted it here, but at the end of the blurb the author says clearly this is kind of a reverse harem book. The “kind of” part is the key, because there is nothing remotely similar to a reverse harem story. It’s just a young woman having four male friends. That is called friendship, not reverse harem… So I must say I felt a bit cheated when the book didn’t display a ménage or two…

In this book we meet Shawn, a student who has just gone through a hard break-up and asked for a transfer to another University. Due to her masculine name, she is stuck in a room with a man (Slater) and, in the opposite door, are the infamous interns of Wingmen, Inc.: Knox, Finn and Leo. The three of them show an inmediate interest for Shawn, but it is Knox the one who is feeling a stronger pull towards her. Slater is not happy about their interest in his new roommate, but no one cares to air the secrets they are hiding from Shawn.

I forgot this book was a spin-off of the famous saga Wingmen Inc. I know it is just right there in the blurb, but I didn’t re-read it when I chose this story to be my “C” of the ABC Challenge I’m following. Otherwise, I would have read the other two books before. But, I can declare this book works fine as a standalone. There is no need about previous knowledge of the Wingmen to understand Co-Ed. The several little facts that are explained by the guys are more than enough to get the reader ready to enjoy the story.

And enjoyment I had. At least at the beginning. Sadly, my level of enjoyment was downhill pretty fast after the first chapters. The good thing I can say about this book is that the pace is perfect and it’s easy to read. It also has some good sense of humor and several gooofy moments that make the book lighter, but there was a constant murmur in my head while reading the book telling me there was something terribly wrong. There was sometinhg that was eating away my good time with the book. Sadly, that thing is not other than the three guys selling their services.

They were fun for a couple of chapters. A bunch of hunks hell-bent in mastering the dance of courting and in making their partners have the best possible time. It is a nice thought, but the author takes it too far. They are SO good, they have the walkthrough so well studied that there is not a sliver of spontaneity in their actions. Everything is perfectly calculated to assure maximum enjoyment. But while the clients and Shawn were riding the peak of their pleasure; I, as a reader, was trying to hold a yawn… and failing. The spark of getting to know the buttons to push is never lit, because the guys don’t need it. For them there is no exploration or uncharted territory. Everything is mapped and perfectly geolocated, with times of arrival and exact periods of stay… Their rotation may grant them perfect scores, but it lacks emotion.

But that is not the worst part. I guess it must be nice to have three hotties covering all your needs in a daily basis, but it goes way beyond that. More often than not, Shawn is treated as a delicate porcelain adornment incapable of taking care of herself and without the proper skills to even feed by her own means… When they don’t allow her to eat her own junk food or put a drink in her mouth I just wanted to scream. And don’t get me started about the constant shoulder massages everytime she encounters them. Those guys know no boundaries and it’s not OK. I felt uncomfortable more than once while reading. And it pissed me off that Shawn doesn’t fight it back as she was supposed to.

The story itself is not bad. The secrets are unraveled little by little and you can even be a bit empathetic about the protective behaviour of the guys (which is the least of their issues…). What I didn’t like was the ending itself. It’s a bit messy and I’m still trying to make sense of it. How did she know that Shawn was going to be at the party? Is she alkways ready to provoke an overdose? Was the friend of Shawn an accomplish? How did the guys put all the pieces together suddenly? And are you kidding me about the ghost? It was a mess that exploded in just a couple of chapters.

I don’t sound happy, because I am a bit disappointed with it. But even though there are several annoying issues with the book, I will insist on its easiness to read. A nice light reading to kill time, but nothing more.

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2019 – Book Gallery

All The Right Moves – Becca Taylor

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Author: Becca Taylor
Pages: 233

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Being called the worst boyfriend can do a number on a man’s ego.
But I handled it the way any full-grown adult male would—by eating copious amounts of carbs and wallowing over whether I was good enough.
I admit, it wasn’t the best of moments, but it made me realize I needed answers to the question, what are women looking for inside and out of the bedroom?
After I researched the subject, I compiled my data into a solution.

Thirty days.
Thirty right moves.

But I needed to test out my newfound theories, and my best friend, Tenley, was going to help.
It was a foolproof plan.
We would date and act like a real couple, all in the name of research. And when the thirty days were up, we would go back to being just friends.
Piece of cake, right?
Only, I forgot to take into consideration the multiple outcomes. Specifically, the one where it left me wanting more and refusing to go back to what we were… ever again.

What is the main thing I expect from a Romantic Comedy novel? To have some good laughs along the romance. Witty banter and funny situations. Some belly ache due to a really bad joke. Sense of humor in general. So, let me be disappointed if a so-called Romantic Comedy is anything except comedic. It’s harsh, but it is the truth. Nonetheless, it’s a nice reading that I have enjoyed.

The story is mostly told from the point of view of Preston, a 25-yearl-old guy whose girlfriend has just dumped him. That same girlfriend wrote a list about the worst attributes of Preston and that made the guy to apply his statistical skills to forge his own list with the steps to become the perfect date. On the other hand we have Tenñey, the best friend forever of said guy who has always been in love with him but has neves got the guts to say something fearing it could destroy their friendship. Lucky for her, Preston decides that she would be the perfect guinea pig for his recently minted list to become a mind-blowing lover.

When I read the blurb I was so down for this. I thought that Preston was going to be kind of a crappy guy whose cockiness would let him believe he could make a list to be irresistible to any girl. I was expecting the sweet erosion of the macho male realizing little by little that what he has is not what women want. The typical case of the caterpillar becoming a butterfly. A path that should be ridden with lots of funny situations and banter. But the truth is far from that and it’s the main issue I have with this book. All the plot is based on Chanel breaking up with Preston because he sucks at everything surrounding a romantic couple. But since the beginning we take notice that Chanel’s opinion doesn’t hold any weight. She is stuck in her teenage years and all her comments in the book are petty and utterly immature. So… why the hell Preston takes it so seriously??? He makes the list to become a better boyfriend, but he doesn’t really need one and he barely uses it during the book. What I was sold as the foundation of the story is just a passing moment that doesn’t make any sense…

For the sake of the story, I tried to believe that Preston needed the list and I was ready to enjoy his application of said ways to improve himself. Here comes the second issue. He picks his best friend, Tenley, to test it out. I don’t know if it was meant to be a funny situation, but for me was very awkward and not enjoyable at all. So yes, the beginning of this book wasn’t working for me. I had too many issues with it and none of the humor I was promised. Thankfully, once the first barrier is passed; it is pretty easy to start getting along with the main characters.

The main strength, and I dare to say the only one, is the cast of the book. Alone, Preston and Tenley are nothing out of the extraordinary, but together… There is nothing better in a Romance book that a couple you totally believe in. The author sold me the purest love she could come up with and I bought it!! They are so sweet together that the sex scenes, even when falling in the light espectrum, are really hot. I also have to thank the author for using Preston point of view during some of those scenes. In many M/F books with dual point of view, the sexy times are always related from the woman point of view; so this has been a welcome change.

The peak moment is almost at the end, when their love story is beautifully summarized with just one word: right. That is how it felt and I approve that the author didn’t try to overexplain their feelings. It wasn’t needed. It’s one of those cases where the love is so obvious that trying to rationalize it would ruin it. I even cried a little bit, becasue I felt truly happy for them. Yes, the couple won me over and I was totally invested.

It’s an uneventful book that I would never label it as Romantic Comedy with a misleading blurb and really sloppy beginning, but it compensates some of those weaknesses with a great couple. This is a standalone book, but it seems the author has created a Universe where all her books take place; so the characters could appear in other works. I’m curious. I’m a sucker for interconnected stories. I wasn’t impressed with the book, but learning about that has made me check more of Becca’s books.

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2019 – Book Gallery

FU: Fixer Uppers – Devon McCormack

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Author: Devon McCormack
Pages: 326

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I stand at the front door, naked. My bro’s roomie, Scott, is pissed about how much noise I made with the girl I just escorted out of their apartment, but I figured we were alone, and I couldn’t help that she liked to scream out to let me know she was enjoying herself. Just like I can’t help that the raging boner I have right now is for Scott, not her. I don’t know what it is about the angry glare he’s giving me that turns me on so much, but I just want to tug on his curly brown locks and hear him call out my name as I show him a good time.

Scott doesn’t want anything to do with me. At least, I think that’s the case, but I learn just how wrong I am one night when we wind up tearing each other’s clothes off and racing for the bedroom. He blows my mind…and well, me too. We spend the next few days messing around before I head back to California. That’s supposed to be the end of it. But after my sister makes a crap investment on a rundown house near my bro’s apartment in Atlanta, I jump at the opportunity to help her fix it up. I don’t want her to have to stay with our parents, who I’ve avoided since I left for college–don’t get me started.

Scott volunteers to work on the project too, which gives us plenty of time to have a little fun together. It’s supposed to be about fixing up the house, but the more time I spend with him, the more I realize it’s not the only fixer upper Scott’s working on. He’s doing something to me–making me better. And even though I’m heading back home when this is all over, I don’t want it to end. Because I’m falling for Scott…so hard.

I don’t usually feel confident towards a book whose blurb is so long and full of useless info, but the cover… The Eye Candy makes me weak and I end reading something that my more sensible senses were telling me to avoid. I must confess that those senses are usually muted, because if the cover catches my eye, I will add it to my TBR list without a second thought.

In this book we follow the story of Mikey, a successful engineer whose sex life is beyond epic; but nothing more serious than that. On the other hand we have Scott, a freelancer graphic designer who is still recovering from a break-up. Mikey lives in California, but he travels to Atlanta for a vacation to meet with the family. Instead of booking a room in a hotel, he prefers to crash in his brother apartment. There he meets the roommate: Scott. In the middle of a lot of family drama, an unexpected love blossoms…

Let’s start dissecting the story. Or better yet, the lack of it. It’s not a short book for the Romance genre, so I was expecting that something would happen. But it’s an endless loop of sex with some really boring and cringe worthy family drama. There is no real development for the characters. They start in Point A full force and by the end of the book they have barely moved from there… The emotional powerhouse of this book were the couple family conflicts of the main characters: Mikey’s parents and their weird relationship and Scott’s father with his “not-good-enough” attitude. I feel you, guys. I really do, but it gets into my nerves the way is handle. The author wants us to root for them, but the only thing I wanted to do was leave, close the door behind me and never look back. Shameful spectacle…

I would like to talk about the romance a little bit, but… what romance? It is rushed in the first chapters and going forward stays in the same position. They just have sex and more sex and more sex… And when they should talk to each other to mention their future, they just have more sex… No wonder they are so fit!! Are they really the perfect match from the first moment? Some disagreement would have made this book a lot better, because the characters would have done something different instead of the same thing over and over again.

And the characters don’t help either. I’ll start with the easy one: Scott. This guy is mostly OK except for his neurotic self-deprecation that drives everyone crazy (not in a good way), Mikey included. The total opposite is Mikey. I have no idea what the author was trying to create here. Such a chimera!! A lot of pieces that barely fit together, but we have to swallow the whole package… In some situations I can’t put up with his behaviour. He is so full of himself! And I don’t mean about his sexual cockiness, which is aceptable. I’m talking about the high horse he is riding whenever his parents are around. He is pretty selfish and shows several times that in his mind, his emotions and well-being are more important than those of his brother and sister. Mikey is incapable of looking beyond his belly button, creating several situatiuons in the book that are embarrassing even for the reader. He is only happy when everything is about him and everybody has pity on him… Veeeeery mature!!

When they are apart I don’t really like them, but when they are together it doesn’t get better… Mikey is constantly reduced to a bunch of muscles and a big penis. And when I say constantly, I mean constantly. I’m not sure if Scott would be able to describe his partner’s face, because he is always comenting on the same part of his body… And yes, the first time is fun, but after the hundredth… Thankfully the sex is rather good in several parts of the book, although there is so much that getting fed up with it will happen pretty soon, too.

This has been my first book by this author. Not a good first encounter. I will keep trying, though.

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2019 – Book Gallery

Wheels Up – Annabeth Albert

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Author: Annabeth Albert
Series: Out of Uniform #4

Pages: 320

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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.

I have never struggled so much in my life to give a mark to a book. I usually know the number of points it gets as soon as I finish them. This time it took me a while. I like the book, no doubt about that. It’s just… I don’t know. The other books of this saga felt more substantial.

This time we meet Dustin, Dylan’s brother, who is a closeted bisexual army guy having a rough time dealing with himself. And on the other hand we have Wes, a gay SEAL who doesn’t like being the focus of attention… so he hides himself from the world. They met using an app with the self-explanatory name of Joe4Joe and their love relationship starts to blossom. Too bad Wes ends in Dustin’s team and military regulations frown upon that kind of things…

The main trait of the Out of Uniform books is the well written and well handle drama. In this case the main characters have to deal with the crazy army regulations against fraternization. I could understand that a love interest in the same team could mean a distraction, so they have to avoid them. But in this case we are told the XO can’t even show friendship of any kind to any of the people below him. I’m an ignorant without any family or friend even closed to the military lifestyle, but that seems a bit too much. Such cold environment in the line of command would drive me crazy! I wonder how so many people can take that path in life with so many human restrictions. It doesn’t feel natural, but that’s not the point of the review.

What I wanted to say before starting babbling is that Dustin and Wes had enough drama with the military. There was no need of adding the sexual identity drama to the mix. Any other time with any other set of characters I would have welcomed it, but in this case… it’s a nonsense. Dustin’s family and firends are very tolerant, so I don’t know where the fear to reveal himself comes from. Almost all of his friends are gay!! If you can be open with them… no one can. So yeah, I couldn’t believe Dustin’s turmoil in that aspect (which he recognizes at then end…). A little more believable is Wes’ closet situation. Even though he could totally be opened with his friends, he is just some kind of emotional masochist.

And talking about Wes and emotions… His sister part of the plot almost killed me. I felt it pretty deeply, even though there are barely five pages total about it. I would have loved something else about Sam and a lot less sex scenes. That story thread isn’t properly finished and that pissed me off a little bit.

I have a love-hate relationship with the sex scenes in this book. The first ones are really good. Plenty of eroticism to feed anyone’s fantasies for a long time. But soon they feel a bit too much. Most of the book is a loop of Dustin and Wes meeting when they shouldn’t, having sex and regretting it the day after. Over and over again. The book gets stuck so badly that I got fed up of its adult parts pretty quickly. Annabeth was so much better balancing the plot and the sex in the previous books…

I liked the book, yes; but I have more issues with it than with the other ones I have read of this saga. I still love the authr’s style and the lovely characters she creates, so I will keep reading more of the Out of Uniform saga!

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