Review: "Served Hot" by Annabeth Albert (Portland Heat #1)
Note: This ARC was provided by Kensington Books via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Each weekday, Robby and David meet at 11:50am for a cup of coffee. Robby makes and serves it; David buys and drinks it. Robby owns a coffee cart and sells his coffee creations inside a building and David is a regular customer. They exchange pleasantries and engage in idle conversation before David sits at a table to have his coffee and bagged lunch. Then he leaves and the same scenario repeats the next day.
When David leaves his wallet, Robby goes after him and soon realizes that the man makes the trek to his coffee cart, bypassing other places that serve coffee. This gives him a glimmer of hope that David has, at the very least, a smidgen of interest in him. A chance meeting at a Pride parade has them kissing in public but David appears spooked when they're noticed and rebuffs Robby's invitation to go out.
Robby's beginning to think that David is so far in the closet that he's never going to come out, but then David surprises him by inviting him out to brunch. What follows is a regular meet-up for the two and while Robby's a tad frustrated at the snail's pace their friendship/non-romantic relationship is going, he can't seem to turn his back on David and his old-fashioned and understated care and concern for him.
But David's past has him hesitant to fully pursue a future with Robby, causing their present stall. Robby's not sure if he can be with someone who can't move forward from his past or the man he shared it with and David isn't sure if he can see beyond his painful yesterday. For these two, patience and acceptance will be necessary if they hope to have any chance to realize the possibilities waiting for both of them.
Served Hot is the first novella in the Portland Heat series by Annabeth Albert. This was a quick but satisfying read, the pacing fast without making me feel there were loopholes in either the story or character development. It is sometimes sweet, sometimes steamy but there is, indeed, a story worth reading. This appears to be a standalone and has no cliffhanger. ^.^ I'm giving it four stars. ♥
Release Date: 03 March 2015
Date read: 02 March 2015
Learn more about author Annabeth Albert here.