The Words We Lost

series: Fog Harbor Romance, A

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Three friends. Two broken promises. One missing manuscript.

As a senior acquisitions editor for Fog Harbor Books in San Francisco, Ingrid Erikson has rejected many a manuscript for lack of defined conflict and dramatic irony--two elements her current life possesses in spades. In the months following the death of her childhood best friend and international bestselling author Cecelia Campbell, Ingrid has not only lost her ability to escape into fiction due to a rare trauma response, but she's also desperate to find the closure she's convinced will come with Cecelia's missing final manuscript.

After Ingrid jeopardizes her career, she fears her future will remain irrevocably broken. But then Joel Campbell--the man who shattered her belief in happily-ever-afters--offers her a sealed envelope from his late cousin, Cecelia, asking Joel and to put their differences aside and retrieve a mysterious package in their coastal Washington hometown.

Honoring Cecelia's last request will challenge their convictions and test their loyalties, but through it all, will Ingrid and Joel be brave enough to uncover a twice-in-a-lifetime love?

"The Words We Lost is thought-provoking and tender, capturing the transformative beauty of surviving."--T.I. LOWE, bestselling author of Under the Magnolias

"A poignant, masterful exploration of the enduring power of friendship and love."--IRENE HANNON, author of the bestselling Hope Harbor series


Sometimes a love story ends in tragedy and a tragedy leads to a love story. And sometimes a hero turns a bit villainous and a villain turns a bit heroic. In this unique story within a story, Deese delivers all of the above with the finesse of a clever storyteller. The Words We Lost is thought-provoking and tender, capturing the transformative beauty of surviving.

T.I. Lowe, bestselling author of Under the Magnolias

A poignant, masterful exploration of the enduring power of friendship and love, and the links that sustain and nurture us through all of life's complications and losses. Deese once again takes readers on an emotional journey filled with heart and hope.

Irene Hannon, author of the bestselling Hope Harbor series

Poignant and intriguing, Nicole Deese's latest takes readers on a heartfelt journey, one that will stay with them long after they've reached The End. From its deeper themes of grief, trauma, and healing, to its bubbling romance and moments of lightness, The Words We Lost is a beautiful story!

Melissa Tagg, USA Today bestselling, Christy Award-winning Author

Few things in life can be depended upon as reliably as the magic of a Nicole Deese book. No one breaks my heart and pieces it back together, better than before, quite like Nicole. The Words We Lost more than lives up to the standard of beauty and brilliance we've come to expect.

Bethany Turner, author of Plot Twist and The Do-Over

The Words We Lost is a poignant tale of grief, healing, and all that falls in between. Ms. Deese is a master at getting to the heart of emotion and letting the reader experience it as well. This novel is a testament to the power of fiction and a must-read.

Toni Shiloh, author of In Search of a Prince

The Words We Lost is as deep, beautiful, powerful, and restorative as its ocean setting.

Angela Ruth Strong, author of Husband Auditions

The Words We Lost is a poignant masterpiece. Intertwined with grief and hope, friendship and family. . . and a God who gathers us up with tender strength and begins to heal. This story strikes a chord that will resonate long and deep in the very best, most beautiful ways.

Amanda Dykes, author of All the Lost Places

Interwoven with an intoxicating second chance romance, The Words We Lost delves into murky secrets that can shipwreck even the most precious of friendships and brilliantly carries readers through waves of heartbreak to the satisfying shores of healing and wholeness.

Connilyn Cossette, Christy Award-winning author

Deeply romantic and wonderfully emotional, Nicole Deese's effortlessly exquisite voice sings in another book that evokes All the Feels.

Rachel McMillan, author of the Three Quarter Time series and The Mozart Code 

A picturesque small town, a past to unravel, and hope for the future. Nicole Deese handles the complexities of life with grace and finesse. A truly standout novel.

Rachel Fordham, Where the Road Bends

The Author

  1. Nicole Deese
    © Rayla Kay Photography

    Nicole Deese

    Nicole Deese ( is a Christy and Carol Award-winning, bestselling author of hope-filled, humorous, and heartfelt contemporary romance novels. When she's not sorting out character arcs and story plots of her own, she can usually be found...

    Continue reading about Nicole Deese


"Deese is a master wordsmith, deftly weaving a story that readers won't be able to put down. This latest book has crossover appeal for fans of contemporary romance seeking realistic and endearing characters."

Library Journal

"Deese's novel has good dialogue, vivid description, and plenty of emotion."