Excerpt: Hold On To Hope - Vilma Iris | Lifestyle Blogger

Evan Bryant wasn’t your typical hero.
But he was mine.
Broken by the worlds’ standards, he was still the strongest boy I would ever know.
My best friend. The boy I’d given everything to. My heart, my body, and the promise of forever.
The day I’d needed him most, he walked away.
He left me shattered and questioning the love I’d thought we’d shared.

Three years later, I wasn’t prepared for him to return to Gingham Lakes.
It wouldn’t have mattered if he wasn’t the most beautiful man I’d ever seen.
My fingers still would have ached to caress his skin.
My body still would have begged to get lost in his touch.
And my heart . . . it would have always sung his name.
But time changes things. With it, secrets that could ruin everything.
Can we find a way to love again, or have the fears of our past stolen the hope of our forever . . .

Book Type:

Contemporary Romance

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Excerpt: Hold On To Hope
By A.L. Jackson

Excerpt: Hold On To Hope

A.L. Jackson has always been one of my favorite authors, her words are lyrical, evoking such emotion in the love stories she shares with us. Her latest, HOLD ON TO HOPE, is a best friends-to-lovers romance and it’s available now! Read an excerpt from the book below to get a taste of what awaits…

Have you ever heard the sound of silence?

The echoing nothingness banging through the stillness?

I’d lived it my entire life.

Like moving through a stifled ocean of complete, utter quiet.

Deaf from day one.

But I didn’t think I’d ever felt it more profoundly than when I stepped through the entrance of A Drop of Hope as my mother came through the kitchen door.

Like it was all playing in slow motion, a tray slipped from her hands, the metal hitting the ground, bouncing twice before it skidded.

The treats she’d made my entire life tumbled across the floor.

Every single person in the bakery froze as a shockwave of confusion blistered through the air. I felt it like a hushed anxiety clawing across my skin.

The stilled vibrations that shivered and shook.

They shouted louder than a voice ever could.

Had I expected a different reception?

A prodigal son coming home to a ring on his finger and a feast at the table?

My mom’s hands flew to her mouth, holding back what I knew was a shout of pain. Her eyes were rounded, though they were pinched at the sides, bleary with an overwhelming shock of emotion that I was one-hundred-percent responsible for.

Disbelief and hurt oozed from her like a flood.

Only solace was that in it, there was the most stunning kind of relief.

Sometimes it only took one single moment to realize how badly you’d fucked up.

My moment was right then.

But there was nothing I could do but come here.



Hell, I’d get on my hands and knees and grovel and beg if I had to.

I hiked Everett up a little higher against my side, and he dug his little fingers tighter into my shirt, tipping his trusting gaze toward me in question.

My throat tightened.

Fuck. Still didn’t know how to deal with it. What to do with the crush of fear that pulsed through my veins like a flash of fire. A million different emotions I couldn’t seem to process.

They all came at me in strobes.

Only thing I did know was I had to return. No matter the consequences.

“It’s okay,” I told him, sure my voice cracked with the tremor of dread.

I started to say something to my mom. To plead with her.

That was until my own shock was jutting from my lungs when my attention jumped to the door swinging open behind her.

Frankie Leigh stumbled out.

A kaleidoscope of that energy boomed through the air.

She was there.

Of course, she was there.

My tightened throat fully constricted, and my heart tried to climb out through the stricture, like it recognized its home and it couldn’t wait to lay itself at her feet.

No regard to whether it was going to get all busted up on the way to get there.

It’d been broken since the day I was born, anyway.

Didn’t think there was any hope for reconciliation now.

Might as well take a swim in the pain.

I stood there watching the horror etch across her face as she jerked to a stop.

Didn’t matter if it made me a fool.

My eyes climbed to hers as if they were searching through the rubble, fingers bloody and knees scraped from the time it’d taken to claw my way back to her.

I felt her like a goddamn stake to the heart.

A scourge.

A balm.

Didn’t fucking know.

Brown eyes with the cinnamon flecks I could never forget roamed over me, like she was trying to reach out and touch me through the distance.

To remember.

But then that gaze was twisting.


The disorder whipping into a frenzy when her attention landed on the child I was holding.

My son. My son. My son.

The words spun through my mind like a windstorm. A vortex that was going to suck me into oblivion.

Still unable to process it myself.

But Frankie Leigh?

Her head rocked back like she’d been punched in the face.


I wanted to shout at her. Beg her to understand. To not look at me like I’d completely shattered her because it was the last fucking thing I’d wanted to do.

I knew immediately her face was wrought with the same expression I’d been too much of a coward to stand in front of three years ago when I’d left. Knew this was the kind of pain that would have been written on her when she found the note.


Absolutely demolished.

There wasn’t one goddamn apology that was going to fix this. No explanation. No reason that would be deemed sufficient.

But I had to remember the mess I’d left between us wasn’t the reason I was there.

I had a child to protect.

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One Comment:

  1. A.L. Jackson said:

    Thank you so much Vilma!


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