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Squared Away

(Out of Uniform #5)

by
4.03  ·  Rating details ·  1,547 ratings  ·  347 reviews
In the wake of tragedy, SEAL Mark Whitley rushed stateside to act as guardian to his sister’s three young children. But a conflicting will could give custody to someone else—someone Mark remembers as a too young, too hot, wild party boy. Even after six years, Mark can’t shake the memory of his close encounter with Isaiah James, or face up to what it says about his own sexu ...more
Kindle Edition, 336 pages
Published April 16th 2018 by Carina Press
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4.03  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,547 ratings  ·  347 reviews


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Heather K (dentist in my spare time)
Annabeth Albert does it again with another emotional, compelling, AMAZING installment in her Out of Uniform series!

I could seriously read Annabeth Albert and only Annabeth Albert and be a happy camper. She just gets me and my taste, you know? *happy sigh*

We get a very character-focused story here, folks. It's really all about these two men and their feelings and journey through some extremely tumultuous personal times. We get a dual POV so we get to see inside both MCs' heads, and I loved that
...more
~✡~Dαni(ela) ♥ ♂♂ love & semi-colons~✡~
~4.5~

Out in the field, Mark is Wizard, the brilliant SEAL medic who saves lives. At home, dealing with the pain of losing his sister and brother-in-law, Mark seeks control. He's used to relying on his own judgement, making snap decisions, and having quick follow-through. One moment of hesitation, and someone dies.

But Isaiah doesn't want Wizard the stoic medic. He wants Mark the man: an incurable romantic, a caring uncle, and the best kisser in the world.

"I like you more than my pillow."

"Yea
...more
Shile
Book: Now go and sit in the corner and think why you didn’t love this book:

Me:
description

This book frustrated the hell out of me. MC's not talking is my biggest pet- peeves, something that can be resolved by just talking, is dragged out the whole book until the end, for the "Drama effect", is annoying. At some point i wanted to smack the back of Mark's head and tell him; You are grown ass man..

description

This series and this Author has been a hit/miss for me

Book 1 – Hit and Miss it was 50/50
Book 2 – Hit because of Dy
...more
~Mindy Lynn~
4 Stars!

Mark likes control and he has it when he's in the field, in his job, but no so much when he has to return to the outside world. There he's vulnerable and a bit unsure of who he is. He doesn't like not having a plan. So when tragedy strikes and he arrives home to take care of things and finds Isaiah in charge and making all the decisions it throws him off.
Isaiah has wanted Mark since he was 18. They had a moment at his cousin and Mark's sisters wedding but Mark was in denial of his feeli
...more
Dia
4,5 rounded up because I loved the writing

I discovered Annabeth Albert with this series.
Off Base is still my favorite, but this one is my second favorite.

Mark and Isaiah met 6 years ago. Mark's sister married Isaiah's cousin. Isaiah was 18 years old and had a big crush on Mark - the older and hot SEAL medic, but Mark pushed him away.
After 6 years, they end up taking care of the 3 young children Mark's sister left behind as orphans. Mark was determined to take full responsibility, but Isaiah w
...more
Nazanin
Apr 20, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018, m-m, netgalley
3 Stars

Isaiah and Mark met each other at Dani and Cal’s wedding (Mark’s sister and Isaiah’s cousin), six years ago. At the time, Isaiah was eighteen and wanted to lose his virginity. He’d chose Mark but not only Mark rejected him but he claimed he’s not gay. Six years later, Dani and Cal die in a car accident. They both had separate wills and in each will, one of Mark or Isaiah were chosen to be the guardianship. So until the court settles everything, they have to share custody. And both of them
...more
Fabi
Mar 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars

Even though it was borderline too angsty for me, the realness of the story makes it a huge winner.

I am amazed at how the author incorporated an interracial relationship, a marginalized sexual orientation MC, grief at sudden and unexpected death of family members and three very young orphans. That's a lot in one story isn't it? Oh, and let's not forget the overriding setting of this series is the life of Navy SEALS, so one of our MCs is also dealing with that aspect in his life.

WOW

Too mu
...more
.Lili.
Feb 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing



Squared Away by Annabeth Albert was a real gem. It dealt with some weighty topics in a realistic matter. There was guilt and grief that both men carried a secret carried by one of the leading characters. But none of it ever felt contrived in a story which could've easily been full of drama.

What I loved:

-Opposites attract

-The children. Kids in books make me nervous. Sometimes authors make them about to be cartoonish, and they get annoying, thankfully it wasn't the case here.

-Hurt/Comfort/Heali
...more
Jewel
2.75 Stars

Squared Away had a strong start for me. I love military themed novels, and Navy SEALs are a personal favorite. That this series is specifically about Navy SEALs being laid low by love is what drew me to it. I think the novels stand alone well enough, but I am a fan of reading a series from the beginning, regardless.

Now, I am in the minority among my friends that have read this one. I didn't love it. I loved both of the MC's and I appreciated their challenges, but I never really "got" t
...more
*J* Too Many Books Too Little Time
Solid 4 Stars!

I'm kind of shocked that I'm 5 for 5 with this series. Obviously some books I've enjoyed more than others. But I will say this one is one of my top three books in the series.

I was a little worried after the first chapter, I thought Isaiah was SUPER immature, granted he was what 18? Thankfully we jumped forward six years and he'd really grown up a lot.

Not a lot of steam in this one, given Mark's sexuality. Which was fine. It felt authentic and I loved how Isaiah was so respectful
...more
Lyn
Audio – 5+++ stars!! Greg doing the children’s voices…adorbs…simply adorbs!!!
Story – 4.5 stars!!

Phew!! I’m one of the lucky ones. I loved this book.

I’m appreciating that, for the most part, the author isn’t going the cookie cutter route with this series. Each couple has their own set of problems, different backgrounds and experiences. The lack of communication seems to be the go for creating the angst though. It gets frustrating, but when the resolution happens, the feels come into play, and a
...more
Ele
Feb 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: military
*4.5 stars*

I really liked this! I'm a big fan of this series and Squared Away is actually my second favorite after Off Base.

Six years ago, during a wedding reception, Isaiah James (cousin of the groom) decided that he wanted SEAL Mark Whitley (brother of the bride) to pop his cherry. Things didn't go as planned and Mark's rejection set the tone for all their future encounters.

Six years later Uncle Ikey is no longer the party boy extraordinaire but a responsible adult ready to take action, and Un
...more
Elsa Bravante
Apr 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Uno de los que más me ha gustado de una serie, que teniendo en cuenta que no me gusta mucho el tema militar, me está encantando, excepto el tercero de ellos.

Isaiah y Mark se conocen en la boda de sus hermanos y algo surge entre ellos que nunca llegan a finalizar, años después se ven obligados a convivir y a encontrar una solución a la situación de sus tres sobrinos pequeños después de la muerte de los padres. Una historia diferente, con un ritmo muy pasado, centrada en cómo se construye una rela
...more
David Alexander
Feb 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: albert
~4.5 Stars

Maria✦❋Steamy Reads Blog❋✦
May 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: m-m
I le cried. *sniff*
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Chris  C - A Midlife Wife
Interesting twist in this one
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
This book was a bit different from what I expecting. Usually when I read a M/M story it’s pretty darn hot. This book, however, is more in the medium heat range. It’s more of an emotional connection and that’s just one difference about this story.

There are other differences too. On one hand you’re dealing with children you didn’t expect. On the other hand, you’re dealing with the unknown details of someone else’s life. What you expected from you
...more
Ariana
Apr 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: lgbtq
*4,5 stars*
Another fabulous book by Annabeth Albert!

I have not read a lot about people on the asexual spectrum, and I was really moved by Mark's story. He identifies somewhere on the gray asexual/demi-sexual scale, which has severe implications for his love life. He has given up in believing that there is someone out there for him who will 'put up' with him.


Annabeth Albert described his emotions, his sexual feelings in the most sensitive and relatable way. And it was such a joy to watch how gent
...more
SheReadsALot
Tag Team Review with Adam!

4 HEARTS--Back in again more Annabeth Albert and I am not tired of this series yet!

Squared Away can be read as a standalone. It features not only an ace MC but a biracial MC as well. If you've followed along in the series, Isaiah (secondary character from book #2 - At Attention) the sex positive roommate has harbored a crush on his cousin's brother-in-law, Mark aka Wizard. The two have a rocky start and years passed. They hear about each other in passing but a tragedy b
...more
Ami
3.5 stars

As an asexual reader, one thing I need to say first about this book. THANK YOU so much, Annabeth Albert, for writing a character in asexuality spectrum.

Now, I know that experience in sexuality between asexual people can be different, uniquely defined by their own nature vs. nurture environment, I still feel that what Mark has been going through rings through. I also thought in regards to Mark's approach to sex with Isaiah, it was respectful to his sexuality. So, I wholeheartedly apprec
...more
Zoe
Feb 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Sensuous, intimate, and sensitive!

Squared Away is a heartfelt story that takes us into the lives of Mark and Isaiah as they each must learn to cope with the loss of a sibling, their new status as guardians to three children, and a budding relationship that will require a lot of trust and understanding.

The writing is generous and compassionate. The characters are sorrowful, supportive, and flawed. And the plot told from two different points of view nicely unravels to reveal a tale about life, los
...more
Ky
The "Out of Uniform" series is one of my favorites and so far I've enjoyed every story I've read. Sadly, the fifth book didn't quite hit the mark for me but it wasn't a total miss either. It landed somewhere in the middle.

Wizard, or Mark, and Isaiah have been present in previous books but we never really got to know them. In this book we learn a lot about Mark and his sexuality and we get to know Isaiah pretty well.

Mark is reliable, calm under pressure, the teammate everyone depends on when thin
...more
Martin
Jun 01, 2018 rated it it was ok
Man, this was a most unsatisfying romance. Like, seriously. It's so sad, because the 'Out of Uniform' series is amazing and one of my favorite books ever (At Attention) is part of this series.
Who doesn't like Navy SEALs as romance characters?!

But this?

First of all, I absolutely don't like romances that make heavy use of sexual labels such as demisexual, pansexual, asexual (ace...what a nice term) and whatnot.
Either you like another human being sexually or you don't. I can't stand guys putting la
...more
Lost in a Book
3 Stars

Well, *sigh* this wasn’t my favorite book in the series. I had a very “meh, this is an ok read,” vibe going on throughout.  However, I’m still a fan of all things Navy and especially all things SEALs.



Too bad Isaiah wasn't a SEAL because this one could have been the inspiration. 🔥🔥

Mark.jpg

Did you get an eye full of the.......... dog tags?

Sorry, where were we?

In Squared Away, we get to know the confident virgin, Isaiah. He’s 18 and determined to lose his virginity to the hot AF Navy SEAL, Mark. Wh

...more
Izengabe
Jul 16, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: m-m
Tiene alguna parte muy mona que me ha gustado mucho pero me temo que en general no he conectado con los protagonistas, no sé, los encontraba demasiado correctos, tampoco me ha convencido cómo se desarrolla el romance entre ellos.
Me ha gustado leer sobre la demisexualidad de Mark, lo mejor del libro para mí.
Cadiva
Feb 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
There's a few authors who I know, when it comes to a military setting, that I'm going to get a book that not only gets that aspect right, but also perfectly pitches the romance that goes with it.

Annabeth Albert is one of those and in her latest Out of Uniform offering, she gives the reader something different. This book still has all the military elements down pat, even with the narrative including a rush job home at the end of a deep ops mission.

But it also has great depth, especially when it c
...more
Adam
Tag team review with Baby!


3.5 stars



From the first page it’s clear that Mark and Isaiah are complete opposites. Mark is a one-man fortress - stoic and completely self-reliant. Isaiah has more of a wild personality, preferring fun and living life in the moment.

These differences make it hard for the two to understand each other. Their relationship is made more difficult by the fact that Mark rejected Isaiah at a wedding six years ago, something neither man has forgotten.

But despite this history, th
...more
River
Apr 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arcs, m-m
3.5 to 4 stars.


I love Annabeth Albert and I especially love her SEAL books. I love how every story gives us a different set of characters with different struggles and realities.

I really liked Mark, I especially liked reading about an asexual character. It was different and I deeply enjoyed getting to know him.
Isaiah was such a nice character, I wanted to hug him and protect him. his love for his little family was so big.

This story starts with a tragedy and little by little you get to know th
...more
Hollis
I want to say the reason I didn't love SQUARED AWAY is that the plot has a lot of similarities to that of book two (with the kid element, loss, age gap..). But at the same time they are very different (no one's a widow, there is only a temporary injury element, but the age still plays a factor RE settling down). And yet there was still that nagging sense of familiarity. And not always in a good way.

That being said, I absolutely loved the introduction of a character on the asexual spectrum. The f
...more
Mandi Schreiner
Apr 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
Guys - I've never read Annabeth Albert. What the heck, self??? I think a publicist reached out about this book asking for a guest post, and when I read the blurb I thought - ooooh, I'll give this one a try. And I ended up really enjoying this author's voice. She gives us Isaiah, biracial, and younger than Mark. And Mark, a Navy SEAL who working out his identity.

Mark, who has been deployed for many months gets the news that his sister, Danielle and brother-in-law, Cal have died in a car accident,
...more
⚔ Silvia ⚓
I was sent this book as an advanced copy for reviewing purposes, but all opinions are my own.

(Maybe 4.5 stars but rounding up for the cuteness)

Okay so don't mind me while i SQUEAL because this book made me feel all kinds of feels. I was weirdly in the mood for an M/M romance where one of the guys has to raise a kid on his own, but get this: BOTH guys are raising THREE KIDS. Together.

I don't think I could've asked for more from this trope. This had everything I wanted: cute domestic scenes, fun
...more
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1,557 followers
Frequent tweeter, professional grammar nerd, and obsessive reader, Annabeth Albert is also a Pacific Northwest romance writer in a variety of subgenres.

Emotionally complex, sexy, and funny stories are her favorites both to read and to write. In between searching out dark heroes to redeem, she works a rewarding day job and wrangles two toddlers.

Other books in the series

Out of Uniform (7 books)
  • Off Base (Out of Uniform, #1)
  • At Attention (Out of Uniform, #2)
  • On Point (Out of Uniform #3)
  • Wheels Up (Out of Uniform #4)
  • Tight Quarters (Out of Uniform, #6)
  • Rough Terrain (Out of Uniform #7)