Book Review: Better Not Pout by Annabeth Albert

Better Not Pout

Author: Annabeth Albert
Publisher: Carina Press (November 1, 2018)
Kindle edition, 288 pages
Goodreads     Amazon

One hard-nosed military police officer.

One overly enthusiastic elf.

One poorly timed snowstorm.

Is it a recipe for disaster? Or a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for holiday romance?

Teddy MacNally loves Christmas and everything that goes along with it. When he plays an elf for his charity’s events, he never expects to be paired with a Scrooge masquerading as Santa Claus. His new mission: make the holiday-hating soldier believe he was born to say ho-ho-ho.

Sergeant Major Nicholas Nowicki doesn’t do Santa, but he’s army to his blood. When his CO asks an unusual favor, Nick of course obliges. The elf to his Kris Kringle? Tempting. Too tempting—Nick’s only in town for another month, and Teddy’s too young, too cheerful and too nice for a one-night stand. 

The slow, sexy make-out sessions while Teddy and Nick are alone and snowbound, though, feel like anything but a quick hookup. As a stress-free holiday fling turns into Christmas all year round, Teddy can’t imagine his life without Nick. And Nick’s days on the base may be coming to a close, but he doesn’t plan on leaving anything, or anyone, behind.

Rating: 4.5 stars

This was a wonderful little holiday romance, and I LOVED it. It made me smile and laugh out loud a few times, while also making my eyes well up with tears more than once, and HOLY HANNAH, the sex scenes are hot. (Which they have to be – to keep warm, you understand. It’s cold when you’re snowed in.) 

Teddy is adorable and giving and strong, and I love that he’s so optimistic and surrounded by family in a small town where half the town is related to him in some way, and yet he feels so lonely. And then Nick doesn’t even realize how lonely his life is, or doesn’t want to admit it, as he’s being forced to retire from the military, which is the family he’s made for himself. GAH. Add in that Nick is this big, gruff, tough-on-the-outside guy who is secretly made of melted marshmallow on the inside, and I just could not get enough of Teddy & Nick. 

I was a little weirded out by the age difference between Teddy and Nick, but Nick was weirded out by it too, so … good? I didn’t love the way they both spoke in partial sentences, especially in the heat of passion, and it reminded me of another M/M romance I read and really liked except for that one thing and – surprise! – I’d been thinking of Status Update, also by Annabeth Albert. I’ve officially added Annabeth Albert to my list of contemporary romance authors to read, and you should too.

2 thoughts on “Book Review: Better Not Pout by Annabeth Albert

  1. It was definitely a big age gap, but I like when it's addressed in the book. Then it doesn't really bother me too much. I'm glad you liked this one though; I thought it was really cute!


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