*I received a free copy of Now and Then from Loveswept via Netgalley. This has in no way influenced my voluntary review, which is honest and unbiased *
Brynn Ahearn is gorgeous, fun, and not just a sports nut but an NBA camera woman whose work takes her all over the country. In other words, she’s a walking male fantasy—or at least, she would be if she weren’t so busy keeping the guys at bay. The fact is, with Brynn’s con-man father fresh out of jail and back in her life, dating is just too risky. Haunted by memories of her past, she couldn’t ask any man to gamble with his life for love—even one as addictive as Ford Meyers.
Ford can’t believe his luck when he walks into a bar in Chicago’s Wicker Park and gets an eyeful of Brynn, the one that got away. After the gorgeous redhead blew him off in college, Ford got on with his life and made his fortune as a bestselling game designer, but he’s never found a woman who compared to Brynn. No stranger to success, Ford is used to getting what he wants—and after a scorching stolen kiss, what he wants is a second shot with his first love. To get it, he just has to convince her that he’s man enough to take on the past she can’t leave behind.
Now and Then is a great second chance at love romances, and I had been looking forward to Ford’s story since I read the first installment in this series. Brynn and Ford had such amazing chemistry, and I loved getting to know them better.
Ford and Brynn were dating in college, and Ford was sure they would get married and have children, even when their relationship was new. And they were great together, until they weren’t. Together anymore, that is. Brynn broke up with Ford by e-mail and just didn’t come back to college. When he called her, she told him she had found someone else. Fast forward a few years, and Ford the computer geek has several popular app games to his name, and he’s living the good life. The only thing missing is a woman he can really let in, one he can love, trust, who is is friend and his lover, one he can just be himself with. He’s at a local bar with his sister Ava when he notices a woman with a Ms. Pac-Man T-shirt, one woman he knows he wants to get to know. She turns out to be none other than Brynn.
The chemistry and the easy back-and forth of conversation is just as present now as it was in the past, and Ford can’t but help feeling as if he has been waiting for Brynn during all these years. She feels the same way, but what made her leave Ford behind in the past is still creating shadows over her life today. For a while, it was as if fate didn’t want these two together, when Ford brought Brynn home, and they were ready to get it on, he was called away for an emergency, his best friends having their baby. And after that, Brynn did her best to keep her distance from Ford, even if she really didn’t want to.
I loved the fun banters and the combustible hotness between the two of them, but I got a little tired of the reasons Brynn had for not fully investing herself with him. She’s in her late twenties and still let other people’s actions dictate her own, and that didn’t really sit well with me. She acted without thinking, and because she may have been rather helpless in the past, that is not the case anymore. So I had to applaud Ford for being so patient with her, because he just knew she was the one for him, and he was ready to wade through all kinds of shit to make it happen. And while I enjoyed Brynn, in some ways, I didn’t really think she deserved a man like Ford. She wasn’t honest with him for a long while, and she could have ended up hurting both him and herself really bad.
Now and Then is written in third person point of view, past tense, and most of what happens is from Ford’s perspective, but some from Brynn’s as well.. The flow is easy, and there are dialogues that are both fun and hot as well. If you enjoy contemporary romance with mature (older than NA) characters, this series is for you.
She needed to end this. Do the right thing for both of them. Her lips parted to speak and his teeth grazed the column of her neck. Just the barest scrape, the perfect pressure, and –
“Ford,” she gasped.
He couldn’t score even a glimpse of her face but she was a redhead, with the kind of thick, dark curls spilling halfway down her back that did it for him even more than the T-shirt and kicks combined, because yeah, when it came to hair, the gigners took him back to a place no one else could.
“But aside from the sports ones I’m a bigger fan of the old stuff than the new. Put Donkey Kong in front of me and I’ll be there until next week.!”
Ford swallowed. Hard. Because, hello, girl he was going to marry.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: