Such is the way of sequels that they can either turn out with less impact than the original text or soar above it, getting better with each page. Fragmented not only soars, it crackles with action, inspires a healthy dose of gut wrenching fear, and speaks of the most selfless act of love given on behalf of another. All this and a hint of a potential third in this series and you have a wonderfully written story that tugs at your heart strings and leaves you with such hope for a brighter future for all.
After declaring his love for Isaac, Hart returns to work, still nursing the scars from his last encounter with a serial killer. His accomplice now in jail, Hart should be able to put the encounter with a paranormal creature on the mountain and all the ensuing bloodshed to rest. Isaac is safe, Hart is alive, and their future looks bright. They are in love, surely now they can get on with the happy ever after part?
Unfortunately fate is a cruel mistress and murder waits for no one. Once more cases pile up and the threat of another serial killer, this time targeting gay men, rears its head. Hart is drawn into the case reluctantly and thanks his lucky stars that Isaac has forgiven all and is by his side once more. But there is something a bit off about Isaac; he is constantly fatigued and his headaches are increasing in severity. When he finally reveals his earth-shattering secret to Hart, there is little time for either of them to do anything to stop the relentless downward spiral they are trapped within. With only one solution at hand, Isaac sets off to do the unthinkable and the time he may gain will not come near to the incredible loss he will incur.
Now Hart must decide. Leave Isaac be—walk away and guarantee he is healthy and safe? Or try to reawaken that which is lost, reclaim that which has been stolen, and hopefully find that happy ever after again.
Indra Vaughn does the miraculous—she creates a sequel to the original novel, Fated, that is better, faster paced, gangster, and, at times, heart breaking. I love Hart and Isaac so much—they are so well mated and their chemistry bursts off the page and draws you in immediately. These two characters are never weak, but they are amazingly vulnerable and that alone makes them fascinating. This novel grips you by the throat and hurtles you into a maelstrom from which there is no easy escape. With your heart beating like an angry drum, you watch a love that was so hard fought, dissolve and there is nothing either man can do about it. Helpless—this was the catchword for this novel and right about the time you begin to despair, this author reaches in and pulls you and her men back from the brink.
I sincerely hope that the little teaser line at the end of this story holds true for I think author Indra Vaughn has much more story to reveal about her hero and his love. In the meanwhile, I highly recommend Fragmented to you. It is a battle for love and stability and the hard, treacherous road one must sometimes travel to find both.
A review copy of this book was provided by Dreamspinner Press.