cover image Sink or Swim

Sink or Swim

Annabeth Albert. Carina Adores, $14.99 trade paper (336p) ISBN 978-1-335-45486-7

With this second Shore Leave romance (after Sailor Proof), Albert delivers a charming love story that doesn’t quite stick the landing. Navy chief Calder Euler can’t believe his luck when he wins a cabin in a poker game—and his sense that things are too good to be true is proven right when the cabin’s real owner interrupts his first visit. For his part, Felix Sigund wishes he were more surprised to learn that his resentful ex-husband gambled away keys to their beloved cabin after it was awarded to Felix in the divorce. When Calder winds up snowed in with Felix and his two adopted nieces for the weekend, an intense attraction blooms. Both know that Calder’s bachelor lifestyle won’t mix with Felix’s single fatherhood, but they decide there’s no harm in one night of fun. Neither expect that night to be life changing. As they create excuses to extend their fling, Calder questions what he wants for his future. The conflict remains mild throughout, with no real third act challenge to bring the story over the finish line. Still, there’s no denying the chemistry between the men, and the hodgepodge, found-family dynamic is sure to please. Readers who prefer sweetness over drama will find plenty to enjoy. Agent: Deidre Knight, Knight Agency. (Mar.)