Review: Sailor Proof (Shore Leave #1) by Annabeth Albert

Rating: 4 🌈

Sailor Proof , the first book in Annabeth Albert’s series about a submariners group of men, is a wonderful contemporary romance. Low on the angst, it’s sweet, fake boyfriend trope that quickly turns real over the course of a massive group family annual camp outing.

It all starts with dumped Naval Chief Derrick Fox who’s ex is now paired up with another mate on board his submarine. That person has been making a point of rubbing that new relationship in Derrick’s face as well as the fact they got the all important “first kiss” off the ship.

To stop the hazing and remarks, and make the ex a little jealous, Derrick’s best friend hatches a plan for Derrick’s own kiss. With his little brother, now grown into a hot 25 year old musician.

Arthur Euler remembers the man he crushed so hard on growing up . And decides to take on his brother’s mission of the fake boyfriend meeting at the dock and whipping up their own great kiss!

What follows is a memorable, lively scene full of chemistry, unpredictable moments, and a romantic situation that both men sort of fall into, after one of the best kisses of their lives.

Albert’s characters are believable and layered. Both Derrick’s past lonely history and Arthur’s perhaps too full one mesh beautifully. And where it doesn’t? Communication, from different sources, and reflection helps move the men through the obstacles they’ve raised to the point they can see a life and HEA together.

There’s many wonderful elements in Sailor Proof. The camp and the show the two men put on with the kids. That’s amazing.

The only aspect that’s a bit missing is the lack of connection with the brother that initially started the process. It’s a bit broken, and it never feels fixed here. Perhaps that happens in the next story.

Sailor Proof (Shore Leave #1) by Annabeth Albert is a terrific contemporary romance and one I’m highly recommending.


Shore Leave
Book 1: Sailor Proof
Book 2: Sink or Swim › showSailor Proof (Shore Leave #1) by Annabeth Albert – Goodreads


The sexy Navy chief and his best friend’s adorkable little brother…

It’s petty, but Naval Chief Derrick Fox wishes he could exact a little revenge on his ex by showing off a rebound fling. His submarine is due to return to its Bremerton, Washington, home base soon and Derrick knows all too well there won’t be anyone waiting with a big, showy welcome.

Enter one ill-advised plan…

Arthur Euler is the guy you go to in a pinch—he’s excellent at out-of-the-box solutions. It’s what the genius music-slash-computer nerd is known for. So when he finds out Derrick needs a favor, he’s happy to help. He can muster the sort of welcome a Naval Chief deserves, no problem at all.

Except it is a problem. A very big problem.

When Arthur’s homecoming welcome is a little too convincing, when a video of their gangplank smooch goes enormously viral, they’re caught between a dock and a hard place. Neither of them ever expected a temporary fake relationship to look—or feel—so real. And Arthur certainly never considered he’d be fighting for a very much not-fake forever with a military man.

Carina Adores is home to romantic love stories where LGBTQ+ characters find their happily-ever-afters.

By Scattered Thoughts

At over 50, I am ruled by my terriers, my gardens, and my projects. A knack for grubbing about in the woods, making mud pies, and tending to the injured worms, bugs, and occasional bird and turtle growing up eventually led me to working for the Parks. I was a park Naturalist for over 20 years, and observing Nature and her cycles still occupy my hours. From the arrival of Ruby-throated Hummingbirds in the Spring to the first call of the Snow Geese heading south in the Fall, I am entranced by the seasons. For more about me see my bio on my blog.

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