Tag Archives: Carina Press

At Attention

Review of At Attention, by Annabeth Albert

I received a copy at Annabeth Albert‘s At Attention through Netgalley.

Description from Goodreads:
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.

Meh, I keep trying to love contemporary romances and I just find myself bored by them. In this particular case, I found the story predictable and trite. Don’t get me wrong, I liked Apollo and Dylan but I didn’t love them.

I also liked the twins, but I don’t think they were accurate representations of small children. Not once did they throw a tantrum or be anything other than docile and adorable. Similarly, the two men’s perfect parenting just felt saccharine and unbelievable. We’re all failing at the parent thing by comparison and how am I supposed to relate to that? Honestly, this is my main complaint in most instances in which toddlers are included in romance.

The sex was hot, but there were no surprises (in the sex or the plot). The writing was mostly fine, but there was too much exposition at the end. As if, once the author decided it was time for the happily every after, she had to explain everything. The ending was sweet, but also completely pat. Does every m/m book have to end with a ****? So, all in all, it wasn’t bad, but I didn’t love it either.

Single Malt

Book Review of Single Malt (Agents Irish and Whiskey #1), by Layla Reyne

I received a copy of Layla Reyne‘s Single Malt from Netgalley.

Description from Goodreads:
Eight months after the car crash that changed everything, FBI agent Aidan Talley is back at work. New department, new case and a new partner. Smart, athletic and handsome, Jameson Walker is twelve years his junior. Even if Aidan was ready to move on—and he’s not—Jamie is off-limits. 

Jamie’s lusted after Aidan for three years, and the chance to work with San Francisco’s top agent directly is too good to pass up. Aidan is prickly—to put it mildly—but a growing cyber threat soon proves Jamie’s skills invaluable. 

Jamie’s talents paint a target on his back, and Aidan is determined to protect him. But with hack after hack threatening a high-security biocontainment facility, time is running out to thwart a deadly terrorist attack. They’ll have to filter out distractions, on the case and in their partnership, to identify the real enemy, solve the case and save thousands of lives, including their own.

Oh man, everyone seems to love this book and I just liked it. I mean, it was ok. Whiskey and Irish were fine characters, at least one of them was likable. The mystery wasn’t super obvious. I guessed the culprit, but I wasn’t 100% certain from the very beginning, which I am sometimes. The sex was fine. But none of it came together into something I just loved.

I was constantly confused why Whiskey and Irish were doing other people’s jobs. Both cases they work are someone else’s, though they seemed to be in authority. And when there were cyber attacks, it was Whiskey who countered them, despite the head of the institute’s cyber security—who would undoubtedly know that system better than Whiskey no matter what kind of crack hacker he is—sitting beside him.

I never felt I got to know either character well, especially Whiskey. Plus, I just never bought him as this ex-basketball star, super hacker, who could cook and sing, is courteous, and great in bed. He was too perfect. The man had no flaws, other than his mystery love for Irish. Irish was a dick from the very beginning. Yes, he had reason and all, but what about him was Whiskey so enamored with? I never saw it.

There were a few passages in which I didn’t know what was meant, but other than that the writing was fine. The editing seemed fine. The book was ok. It’s not that I’m even saying I disliked it. I’d read another one. But it was just ok.