Heartache Falls (Eternity Springs Series #3)

Heartache Falls (Eternity Springs Series #3)

by Emily March

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The healing magic of Eternity Springs continues in this novel in Emily March’s vibrant series about a very special town and the people who need it most.

Married for more than twenty years, and with her children out of the nest, Ali Timberlake has come to Eternity Springs alone. She’s looking for answers to heartbreaking questions and searching for something that’s missing deep within herself. Taking a lease on the Bristlecone Café in pursuit of a lifelong dream, Ali feels revitalized as she becomes part of this charming mountain town. But a big piece of her is still back in Denver with her husband, Mac, a successful judge—and a man who isn’t going to let the woman he loves leave without a fight.

When Mac shows up in Eternity Springs—sexy, seductive, and determined to win his wife back—he experiences the wonder of the place that has given Ali such feelings of happiness and belonging. He wants that for her, but even more, he wants that with her. Ali has found a special place for her heart. But is there still enough room left in that heart for him?

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780345518392
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 04/26/2011
Series: Eternity Springs Series , #3
Sold by: Random House
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 31,715
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

Emily March is the USA Today bestselling author of more than twenty novels under the name Geralyn Dawson. A graduate of Texas A&M University, March is an avid fan of Aggie sports, and her recipe for jalapeño relish has made her a tailgaiting legend. She lives in Texas with her husband and their beloved boxer, Doc, who tolerates a revolving doggie door of rescue foster dogs sharing his kingdom until they find their forever homes. 

Read an Excerpt



Two years later

In the bedroom she shared with her husband, Ali Timberlake tucked her makeup case neatly into her suitcase, then zipped it shut just as her husband emerged from his closet, a duffel bag in one hand. “Are you sure about this, honey?” Mac asked, his brow knitted with concern. “We can still change the plan.”

“Right,” Ali replied, her tone dry. “And for the rest of my life I’ll get to listen to Stephen and Chase talk about the one that got away.”

“Hey, we can go fishing in Alaska another—”

Ali interrupted. “No, it’s okay. I’m glad you’re getting to go. It’s a minor miracle that your schedule and those of the boys meshed this time. If Caitlin wanted you with her, that would be different, but she’s flexing her wings and feeling independent and ready to take on Vanderbilt University.”

Her lips twisted as she added, “Frankly, I’m not sure she really wants me to go with her to Nashville. We haven’t exactly been getting along very well lately.”

Her husband tossed his duffel onto their bed, then gave Ali a rueful look. “She did tell me you packed her toothbrush three days ago. She thinks you can’t wait for her to go.”

“After the way she’s been acting lately, can you blame me?”

“Now, sweetheart.”

“Oh, I know.” Ali shrugged and waved her hand in a dismissive gesture. “She’s emotional. I’m emotional. It’s not every day that your youngest child and only daughter goes off to college for the first time.”

“Exactly.” Mac grimaced and rubbed the back of his neck. “That’s why I think I should be there. The boys could go to Alaska without me. No reason why they couldn’t.”

He truly appeared torn, so Ali swallowed her own misgivings and pasted on a smile. “Actually, there is. This is a father-son trip. You can’t very well have a ?father-son trip if the father is a no-show. You went with me and Cait to orientation, and that was the ?important trip. This will be fun for me and Caitlin. An August road trip. A mother-daughter adventure. We’ll do just fine.”

He gave her a long, searching look, then nodded. “Okay. If you’re sure.”

“I’m sure.” She smiled with a brightness she didn’t feel. “Now I’d better get downstairs and see to breakfast.”

“Leave your suitcase. I’ll carry it down when I come.”


Ali tried to shake off her melancholy as she made her way downstairs to prepare a meal for her family. She wanted today’s breakfast to be extra special since this was Caitlin’s big day, the day she flew out of the nest and off to college. It was also the first time in months that the entire family would sit down to a meal together and likely the last meal they’d all share until Thanksgiving.

Throughout the children’s lives, Ali had made the family supper a big deal. It was the Timberlake family together time, and everyone was expected to make a real effort to be there. Since Mac had worked at her father’s firm while the kids were growing up, she had invoked the boss’s daughter privilege in that respect alone. Mac had rarely missed dinner with the family. That had changed since he took the seat on the bench, but by then the crucial years were behind them, the precedent had been set. Their family was stronger because of it.

After today, family meals would be few and far between.

Ali briefly closed her eyes. Don’t go there.

She’d have the kids set the table in the dining room and make it a celebration. Maybe even use her mother’s china. The kids would complain about having to hand-wash the dishes, but if you didn’t go to the trouble to make an occasion an occasion, it became just one more meal in a lifetime of meals.

Mentally she reviewed the contents of her fridge and pantry. Yes, she could do a Hollandaise sauce. She had fresh spinach. If she did eggs Florentine, at least the boys would have one serving of a vegetable today. Fresh berries. She could make pigs in a blanket for Caitlin. They were her favorite.

As she approached her kitchen, the aroma drifting in the air gave her warning. Bacon? Someone was already cooking? Her eyes rounded with surprise. What alternate reality was this?

Ali stepped into the kitchen and halted abruptly. The kitchen table was set with a “Bon Voyage” paper tablecloth. A SpongeBob SquarePants paper centerpiece adorned the center of the table. Paper plates proclaimed “Happy St. Patrick’s Day,” and helium-filled Mylar balloons that read “Over the Hill” had been tied to the back of each of the chairs.

Each of her three grown children turned to look at her, and Ali desperately wished she had a camera. Stephen, looking like a lawyer already with his neatly trimmed hair, freshly shaved face, and button-down shirt. Chase, the outdoorsman, with his three-day beard and longish hair drawn back and tied at the nape of his neck with a leather lace. And Caitlin, blond and beautiful and brimming with life, a typical college coed. Ten minutes ago these young adults had been grade-schoolers riding their bikes on the sidewalk. Where had the years gone?

Familiar impish grins spread across their faces, telling Ali that they were tickled pink that they’d surprised her. Some things never change, thank goodness. They’d recognized that this was an important family moment. Something she’d tried too hard to teach them had stuck. Happiness bloomed inside Ali like a springtime flower, and she didn’t try to keep the smile off her face as she said, “Caitlin, did your brothers actually cook for you to mark your special day?”

“Sort of,” Caitlin replied, glancing at the boys. “But not exactly.”

“We are cooking breakfast,” Stephen clarified as he removed the last piece of bacon from the frying pan and placed it on a paper towel to drain. He was a younger version of Mac, with his father’s dark hair and brown eyes that now sparkled mischievously. “I know it’s shocking, and I’m glad we didn’t give you a heart attack. At your advanced age, I worried about that.”

“Just because you are in law school, young man, doesn’t mean I can’t still send you to your room,” Ali fired back. Her gaze fixed on the table, she asked, “Happy St. Patrick’s Day?”

“We shopped the bargain bin at the party store,” Chase explained. “G’morning, Mom.”

“Good morning, son.” She eyed the activity at the stovetop, counter, and kitchen table. Apparently the menu included bacon, scrambled eggs, toast, orange juice, Ali’s usual yogurt and fruit, and of course Chase’s favorite, Froot Loops. “So, who is going to clue me in? What does Cait mean when she says ‘sorta’?”

Chase opened his mouth, but Caitlin stopped him with an elbow to his side, then pushed the lever on the toaster and gave Stephen, their eldest, a look that said, Go on.

“We thought it was important to mark the occasion because today is a special day,” Stephen said as Mac joined the family in the kitchen. Mac placed his hand on Ali’s shoulder while their eldest continued, “The last of your chicks is officially flying from the nest today. It is a special day for Caitlin, and that’s why we bought her a princess crown to wear during breakfast. But it’s also a special day for you and Dad. We thought it was an appropriate time for the three of us to tell you both how much we love you and how much appreciate all you’ve done for us.”

Oh. Ali brought a hand to her chest. Wow.

Stephen nodded toward Chase, then cracked another egg into a bowl. Ali’s middle child flashed his father’s grin, then said, “I’ll keep my part short because I know you, Mom. You’ll start bawling, and we don’t want you dribbling snot into your yogurt.”


As readers find their way to Eternity Springs, Colorado by way of my new series, I'm noticing a trend in comments they make about the books. Repeatedly, readers tell me they'd like to live in Eternity Springs. I usually respond by declaring, "Me, too!"

I know why I love Eternity Springs. It's my vision of a heavenly place to live with beautiful scenery, quaint shops, fun outdoor activities, and wonderful weather?usually. (Since I'm writing this town, it's only winter when winter works for me.) Yet, the primary appeal of my small, Rocky Mountain town is its people. Eternity Springs is populated by characters I find interesting, by people I'd like to have as friends, and by individuals I could love.

What is it about this fictional world that speaks to readers? I asked the question online and received some lovely responses.

Susanna C. wrote: "I like its location, isolated and beautiful, and the sense of community among its residents. I want to live beside Hummingbird Lake, buy baked goods from Sarah, put a painting by Sage in my house, maybe in the dining room over a sideboard made by Colt. And relax in the hot springs at Angel's Rest when work gets stressful."

Sylvia B. said: "I'll happily live in the house down the road from Susanna C! I like that they care?for each other, for an abandoned dog, for the land, for the community itself. I like that everyone does what he can to be a better person, but that human failings are accepted as par for the course."

Catherine C. responded: "Beauty, location, lakes and waterfalls. Sense of family, friends, cranky unhappy neighbors and neighbors who have joy to spare."

Kelli C. replied: I like the friendship of the people in Eternity Springs. They accept each other for who they are and the good that they see within them. They are people you can depend on."

Julie B. answered: "Eternity Springs feels like home. Love, cozy, warm, inviting, friendly. The business of big city life can be draining, and Eternity Springs makes me think of a place where I can be refreshed. Mountains, lakes, just sooo relaxing."

I hope you'll pardon me as I bask in the glow of reader praise.

Another question that readers often ask is when they'll be able to read the next Eternity Springs book. Happily, the third book, HEARTACHE FALLS, arrives April 26th with books four and five coming next year.

I intend to write Eternity Springs stories as long as readers want to read them. Judging by comments like this one from Anne B., that may be awhile.

"Let's build a new sub-division in Eternity Springs - we'll call it Friendship - we'll all move there and Emily will have to keep writing about it because there are so many new residents!!"

With reader responses like these, for me, Eternity Springs truly is a little piece of heaven in the Colorado Rockies.

Customer Reviews

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Heartache Falls 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 56 reviews.
harstan More than 1 year ago
Two years ago, Mackenzie Timberlake obtained his career objective when he became a federal judge in Denver. His wife for over two decades, stay at home to raise the kids Alison feels hammered by the empty nest syndrome when their last child goes off to college. She becomes upset with her husband, who is never there for her. Ali accepts a job in Eternity Springs, Colorado. She leaves her stunned spouse behind to relocate. They live separately for several months as his schedule keeps him on the bench and her new lifestyle keeps her four hours away. Reconciliation increasingly looks impossible for this pair. Contemporary fans who have not tasted the warm miracles of Eternity Springs (see Angel's Rest and Hummingbird Lake) are missing a whimsical treat. The third wonderful entry focuses on middle age empty-nesters whose relationship in spite of love is in trouble due to neglect. Readers will appreciate the deep marital war in which it is easier to root for Ali-cat, but will enjoy, as Paul Harvey would say "the rest of the story." Harriet Klausner
emmaline09 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
How can a marriage of many year withstand a midlife crisis? Ali and Mac must weather the changes that occur when family grow up and move away from home. Suddenly all Ali's life is less than what she wanted. This is the journey that Ali and her husband Mac must take to discover what they really want for themselves, from each other and most of all how their love can survive the biggest challenge, what they really want out of life, love and being happy.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A beautiful story that some of us can relate to. I definitely agree with the term your second life. Once your children are raised and moved on what will you do with your second life?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Pure_Jonel More than 1 year ago
No one can make me cry quite as easily as Emily March can, nor can they put me back together again quite as well. She never fails to engage my emotions. This novel was no exception, being especially emotionally fulfilling and wonderfully heartfelt. At the same time, March paints the scenery in all the beauty of a secluded mountain town and brings the characters to life in a manner so vivid that I couldn’t help but feel close to them. March subtly emphasizes certain aspects of a relationship to bring all of its ins and outs to life. Through that I found that I got to know the main characters very well. I fell in love with both of them, repeatedly told them both that they were crazy, and sat there smiling, hugging the book to myself when it all worked out (because we all know this book has a HEA). I fell in love with the main characters and their family, as I also got to know a little bit more about the residents of Eternity Springs. A trip to Angel’s Rest always makes a bad day better, leaving me feeling happier than when I started. HEARTACHE FALLS definitely emphasizes this.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
DimplesDA More than 1 year ago
Although a fictional town--it is a place where I think we would all like to live! Thank you, Emily March for once again delivering a story full of characters that I would just love to have as neighbors! I love each book in this series and so enjoy reading them!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Emily again has given us a deeply entertaining and up lifting story. So real and you never want to put it down.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great read! I couldn't put it down
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A empty nest for Ali makes her think about the choices she made. Mac doesn't understand that his wife needs more than just being his wife, or the mother of his children. They both need to do a little soul searching about what they both want for the future.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Kris_Kringle More than 1 year ago
A wonderful series from the first book on up the latest!! The story is interesting and the characters are wonderfully written!
emilyk52281 More than 1 year ago
Exceptionally written! Characters you'll fall in love with! A must read series!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Enjoyed this book.. I started w/#3 by mistake so have gone back and read #1 & #2...First time I have read any of Emily March and I really love her stories.. If you enjoy "series" books of small towns or areas this would be a great choice. Not sure about book club discussions..perhaps...I just read it for enjoyment not to discuss apart..:-)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love love love this series. I read all 3 of the first books within 2 weeks. Which reignited my love for reading again.
neldab More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book very much....
MissJean More than 1 year ago
This is the third book in the Eternity Springs series by Emily March. I purchased all three books together and read them within a week. This is a wonderful, uplifting, feel good story line set in the mountains west of Denver. Celeste is the town matriarch and resident angel and she has the love and best wishes for everyone she comes in contact with. I would highly recommend these books and I can't wait for more.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
BunnyCA More than 1 year ago
This is a great story with excellent characters and gets you involved in the lives of the people right from the start. If you enjoy reading about families and how problems are solved you will enjoy this book immensely.I have found the series in Eternity Springs excellent reading. This is an excellent book for book club discussions on women and their strengths and what a coommunity can do when they work together. BunnyCA
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