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Fragments of Us (Broken Hearts Romance Series book 2)

Who has the perfect love story? Certainly not Mr. and Mrs. Chatham. 

It’s been five years since Davis and Nicole said their I. Dos—five years, two children, and a mansion on the hill, let’s not forget . . . their very own island.  Perfect love story right?  Wrong.  Not when old habits die hard, and new ones are worse than the old.

This will be the ultimate fight for survival and takes them back to where it all started.  In Fragments of Us, Davis and Nicole can only hope to put the broken pieces of their lives back together.

 

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EXCERPT

 

Dana,

I apologize that it has been a while since my last letter.  Thank God, my mind is finally clear enough to write, but that clarity has given way to such a heavy heart.  I’m a mess but getting better every day.  Since I have been here alone—without Davis—on our island, I have had plenty of time to think.  A month can seem like an eternity when you are by yourself, away from everyone you love, with only your thoughts for company. 

I have had nothing but time to reflect on how things went so horribly wrong—how I arrived at this place and became this person.  Five years ago, things were so different.  If you told me then that my life would look like this, I wouldn’t have believed it.  I mean, seriously, I was caught up in the hype.  I convinced myself and everyone around me that Davis and I were living the fairytale—but not everyone.  You knew better, even if you were tactful enough not to say anything.  I know you did.  How?  Because you understand that fairytales don’t actually exist.  Still, I’m grateful you didn’t burst my bubble and left the façade that was my life intact.  It was something I had to figure out on my own.  I only wish the make-believe Gods were just the tiniest bit more honest.  I wish they would have told me before I got married that a husband couldn’t fix what’s broken inside.  I wish they would have told me the true Hollywood story of the fairytale—that successful love stories are really quite messy, require a lot of hard work, and a lot of forgiveness.  Instead, they tell you to find your prince, and he will keep you safe, protect you from harm, and make everything perfect.  Perfect?  Really?  What a load of bullshit. 

While this is cliché, it is the truest statement I’ve ever heard—if only I knew then what I know now—maybe I would not be in this situation.  The one where I allowed myself to focus on things that masked my own brokenness.  Where I knowingly believed the lies in my life.  Where I believed what I wanted to and not what was staring me in the face.  I never knew those cracks could only be hidden for so long before they showed up and showed out.  There wasn’t one space in my life that wasn’t affected by them either—especially my relationship with Davis.  The marriage I wanted, what we had once been to each other, became so strained that we became people I didn’t know, unrecognizable to each other, and only fragments of the us I once knew.  But I don’t blame him.  I can’t.  I take full responsibility for my part in how things turned out.  Just thinking about it makes my chest tighten almost unbearably, knowing that it was me who caused a lot of the damage.  That it was my actions that had the most effect on those around me.  You cannot imagine the weight of responsibility that I feel for tearing my family apart.  And the worst of it, I have no idea if I can ever make up for all my mistakes, but I want to try.  I just hope it is not too late.  If so, that will be my burden to bear, and I will carry it.  Still, every day I pray that I get one more chance.  It scares me knowing that I may never be forgiven, and if that is my fate, I will have to accept it.  I can only hope the loss of my family is not the universe’s way of issuing my punishment.  After all I’ve done, I won’t blame Davis for whatever decision he makes.  I let him down; I let our children down, but, most of all, I let myself down.  Whatever happens, going forward, I will pick up the pieces of me and do my best to be a better person, a better mother, and a better friend.

If I have not said this to you lately, thank you, Dana, in spite of everything, for always standing by my side and having my back.  We’ll talk soon.

Love,

Nicole. 

Nicole Chatham sat with her legs crossed as she finished her letter.  She placed the notepad on the ground next to her and inhaled.  The warm sea breeze caressed her skin as the salty ocean air filled her lungs. 

This place, this stretch of sandy beach, was home.  The jungle that sat far off behind the beach house was once something that haunted her dreams, but now, maybe it was the wildness that gave Nicole a sense of calm and freedom.  At this moment, it was the safest place she had ever known, somewhere she could come and lick her wounds, even though many of them were self-inflicted.