Ellie Pagan has a list of reasons to stay away from Ford Landry.
It’s a mile long and was so much easier to stick to when he was a world away. Now that he’s standing in front of her—body hard and chiseled from a stint in the military, suit cut to perfection, and a smirk she could never resist—remembering all the reasons why just got a whole lot harder.
Ford gets Ellie isn’t his biggest fan. He just doesn’t care.
Standing in front of him, giving him hell, she’s even prettier than he remembered. All he can think about is how she felt in his arms, the taste of her kiss, the sound of her giggle in the middle of the night. He may not know how to win her back, but he does know this: he may have let her go once, but that’s one mistake he won’t make again.
For ten years, Ford Landry and Ellie Pagan have compared every person they’ve dated to each other, always finding a flaw that doesn’t fit the standard of their “perfect” significant other and further solidifying for Ford that he let the best thing that has ever happened to him slip away due to his doubts and fears about who he was supposed to be in order to bring pride to the Landry name.
But now that he has a second chance to make her his, Ford will stop at nothing to prove to Ellie that he’ll never walk away from her again and if she finds a way to allow him back into her heart, he swears that he’ll weather the storms and fight to give her the rainbows and the love that she deserves.
Since the beginning of the Landry Family series, Ford’s story is the one I most wanted; he seemed so different than his siblings, stepping away from the family business, fighting for his country, and then finding his own path once her returned home, and while his family still means everything to him, he also feels like he’s his own person and his life is exactly how he wants it…except for maybe having more than a one or two night stand with a woman and then moving on because when he really looks at his personal life, he realizes that he never truly moved on from his first love and now that he has a chance to make amends and perhaps even claim Ellie once again, he sure as heck isn’t going to allow her to put up a wall and push him away when he’s so close to having everything he’s always wanted.
Adriana Locke does a great job of explaining and illustrating Ellie’s fears when it comes to allowing Ford back into her life, her bed, and her heart. She has every right to be insecure and fearful when it comes to starting over with Ford, so even though it’s a bit frustrating to see how Ellie handles things with Ford, at times, I can’t blame her hesitancy. She was destroyed the first time Ford walked away from her, and even though she’s no longer that naïve girl, she knows that he’s still her weakness and she just can’t be completely certain that Ford won’t break her heart all over again.
But as much as I can sympathize with Ellie, Locke also shows Ford’s determination and commitment in rectifying the past and building a future with the only girl he’s ever loved. He never falters in his quest, even when Ellie slows things down or puts space between them. Ford consistently proves that he won’t give her up or ever leave her again and due to the honorable man that Ford is, readers can’t help but swoon as well as pant over the sweet and dirty words he uses to show Ellie his love.
Swear is a sweet and steamy second chance romance story; one that teaches great life lessons as well as the true value and meaning of a pinky swear, and as Locke works with Ford and Ellie in order for them to build a future together, readers can’t help but get swept away in the plot line, rooting for Ford from the very beginning and praying that Ellie gives him the chance he so desperately wants and earns as the story progresses.
4.5 Poison Apples
Our breathing quickens, the blues of his eyes growing stormy. A chill tears through me as he accidentally-on-purpose brushes his arm against mine. It’s like muscle memory, my body remembering exactly what to do around his.
My knees dip, my mouth waters, and I fight the ache in between my thighs as he looks down at me like it’s me he wants for dinner.
“What if I throw breakfast in afterwards?” he prods. “Does that make me, I mean it, more appetizing?”
That’s all it takes, that one little hint of arrogance, that brings me back to reality.
I flip him a smile. “It makes it less, actually.”
His own smile wavers. “I get that you probably hate me.”
“You’re right. I do.”
“I want the chance to explain.”
“You have the same chances of getting the chance to explain as I do of getting what every woman wants.”
I lean in, like I’m going to tell him a secret. Whispering, I say, “Being able to eat all the pizza and not gain an ounce.”
Turning on my heel, I head to the back as his chuckle fills the room. “That was good. I’ll give you that.”
I shrug and keep walking.
“You can at least let me apologize.”
The authority in his tone, like I owe him something, stops me in my tracks. I whirl around to face him. “You don’t deserve a chance to apologize to me.”
“I didn’t say I deserved it,” he says earnestly. “But I would love the opportunity to do so.” He forces a swallow, my eyes glued to his lips. “I would appreciate the chance to get to see you again.”
The snicker that comes from me is unexpected by both of us. “So charming. I forgot how good you are with words.”
“Does that mean that’s a yes?”
“That means that’s a no,” I smile. “That means I’m not about to let you come in here and look at me with those bright blue eyes and make me forget what it felt like to have you rip my heart out.”
He flinches. “I didn’t mean to do that, Ellie.”
“Don’t act surprised,” I laugh angrily. “There’s no way you thought I just went on with my life after you left. I dated you for four years, Ford. And after what we went through …”
It’s me gulping now, the anger so palpable that I almost have tears in my eyes. My hands shake as I remember the fight that ensued after he told me he was enlisting.
“You left me,” I repeat, shaking my head. “So leave me again. There’s the door. Should I hold it open for you this time?”
USA Today Bestselling author Adriana Locke lives and breathes books. After years of slightly obsessive relationships with the flawed bad boys created by other authors, Adriana has created her own.
She resides in the Midwest with her husband, sons, and two dogs. She spends a large amount of time playing with her kids, drinking coffee, and cooking. You can find her outside if the weather’s nice and there’s always a piece of candy in her pocket.