Jake Tucker is broken. At twenty-two, he went in to the Marine Corps a naïve, troubled youth. Nine years and four tours later, Jake finds himself back on US soil, though his mind remains firmly planted in the sands of Afghanistan with the men he left behind.
Wounded, chewed up and spat out by war, Jake has only his dog, Nuke, PTSD, and survivor’s guilt to keep him company. He’s lived every day for nine years wondering when it will be his last, but there’s little comfort in the fact that he’s still standing when his platoon isn’t.
Ellie Mason doesn’t have time for broken. She’s too busy trying to put food on the table. And keeping up with the demands of her autistic son, Spencer, is sometimes like fighting behind enemy lines. As if navigating the minefields of single parenthood isn’t enough, Ellie finds herself drawn to the quiet Marine who’s just as lonely as she is. But she’s loved damaged men before, and it left her wounded.
Set against the picturesque backdrop of Fairhope, Alabama, Ellie and Jake find themselves running toward the sound of chaos.
Love is war.
Only the strong survive, and surrender is inevitable.
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About the Author:
Carmen Jenner is a thirty-something author, doctor, pilot and CIA agent.
She's also a compulsive, flagrant prevaricator who gets to make things up for a living.
While Sugartown may not technically exist, Carmen grew up in a small Australian town just like it, and just like her characters, she always longed for something more. They didn't have an Elijah Cade, though. If they did, you can be sure she would have never left.
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“Did I hurt you?” she whispers.
“Angel, it hurts just looking at you.”
She smiles and continues her exploration of my body, openin’ old wounds with every scar she touches, and yet it’s as if she’s tenderly sewing them shut at the same time. I haven’t felt the touch of a woman for a very long time, and never again did I think I would, especially not one as perfect and kind-hearted as this.
“What did they do to you, Jake?” Her eyes are bright with tears, and I grab her hands and hold them flat to my chest.
“I don’t want your pity, Elle.”
“You think that’s why I’m here?” she says, staring up at me with those incredible eyes. “You think that’s all this is between us?”
“I thought about it.” I nod. “I can’t see much other reason that a woman like you would want someone like me. I’m a freak and a drunk, and you? You’re so goddamn beautiful it hurts.”