Cover & Excerpt Reveal - FREE TO FALL (Amaryllis Heritage #1) by Tracey Jerald



Amaryllis Heritage - Book One

by Tracey Jerald

Cover & Excerpt Reveal

Release Date: April 18, 2024

Cover Design: Deborah Bradseth

Genre: Contemporary Romance Standalone
Trope: Single dad, nanny, age-gap, wounded hero & heroine, second chance, redemption, insta-attraction, small town


When an ER doctor agrees to become a temporary “nanny,” she never expected she’d plunge headfirst into a diagnosis worse than death—falling in love with the single dad who hired her.

Dr. Laura Lockwood never anticipated a time she wouldn’t live up to her nickname of “Queen Gore.” Every shift, she nobly leads her emergency room team to achieve miraculous feats. That is until the day her hospital is threatened by a man holding a grudge.

In the aftermath, Laura’s shattered. As she journeys toward personal redemption, Laura encounters Liam Payne—the older, hot father of one of the hospital victims. Liam, a man who wears Tom Ford better than a runway model, needs a caretaker for his young daughter for the summer. And his only hope is Laura.

Finding her lost bedside manner is almost instant once Laura crosses Liam’s threshold. Despite warnings coming her way, Laura’s in for the long haul now that her heart’s involved with both father and daughter. Still, Laura’s cautious about becoming love-sick because someone’s still watching and waiting to see her fail.

The only question is, will Liam return her feelings, or will Laura be the only one to fall?

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“We’re a complicated family, Liam. You’re not going to figure us out in one night.”

He holds out my drink. I step forward to take it when he captures my other wrist. “Then let’s drink to that.”

“To what?” My voice is raspier than normal.

“To complications—wherever they lead us.” He lifts his glass and holds my gaze.

My heart is racing in my chest, but it isn’t anxiety making it dance. It’s the irresistible lure of the man standing mere feet in front of me. I tap my glass against his. The ping rings clear around the room before I repeat, “To complications.”

We both sip and the fiery burn of the sweet and spicy liquor slides over my tongue as it makes its way toward the back of my throat.

I’m about to lift the glass to my lips for a second drink when his voice stops me. “Laura?”

I lower my glass. “Yes?”

“Your family isn’t the one that’s had me lying awake at night trying to figure them out.” He steps closer. “Who are you, Laura?”

My lips part when he plucks the glass from my hand and places it on the windowsill. In the shadow of the moon, he rasps, “Why are you becoming so vital to me? To us?”

In the dim light of the living room, Liam’s green eyes glow as they lock onto mine. My breath comes out in short bursts as a magnetic force pulls us closer. Despite the clanging alarm going off in my head about Bailey asleep only a few rooms away, the air between us electrifies. The tension is so incendiary I feel as if my blood could catch on fire. I try to justify it may be the sole sip of liquor, but I know better.

It’s him.

It’s me.

It’s whatever this is between us.

Knowing there’s an equal desire I’ve been suppressing, I don’t stop Liam when his arm snakes around my waist.

When he hauls me up against his chest.

When I feel the drum of his heart pounding against mine.

Still, I fall for him even more when he hesitates, torn between the sizzling desire arcing between us and the responsibility of being Bailey’s father as he casts a last glance toward the hall leading to Bailey’s room. It’s possible I might want him less if he didn’t, I think to myself as my arms twine around his neck.

His hand comes up to slide into the thickness of my hair, fingers clenching the bound curls tightly before tugging my head back until my eyes meet his.

My breath catches at the emotion leaping from his when he admits huskily, “You’re special to me, Laura. Listening to that song tonight…” He doesn’t finish his sentence.

He lets his kiss speak for him when his lips cover mine.

But if he thought he would own this kiss, he’s in for a big surprise. My lips part beneath his. I feel his start of surprise before his lips slant over mine, confirming what I already suspected. His kiss is just like him—scorching hot, intense, with a hint of softness he shows to too few people.

Also, as I expected, kissing Liam Payne could be my downfall.

All from a single kiss.

Well, that and the way the banked fire between us springs into an inferno the moment we released it.

“Laura,” he whispers as his arm bands around my hips, freeing his hand to roam the bare skin of my back, to slide around to cover the silk encasing my breasts. God, I’ve never been so grateful for the wonders of Aunt Emily’s miracle construction. The feel of his hands molding my breasts elicits a moan from me I can’t restrain. I’m going to pool into a puddle of couture silk soon; I just know it. It’s all because of the way Liam Payne drives me insane.

My arms start slipping from around his neck, but he catches them. Wrapping them tighter, he smirks down at me. “I love being able to touch you.”

“Kiss me again,” I plead breathlessly.

As his head lowers between my raised arms, he murmurs, “With pleasure.”

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About the Author

Tracey Jerald knew she was meant to be a writer when she would re-write the ending of books in her head on her bike when she was a young girl growing up in southern Connecticut. It wasn’t long before she was typing alternate endings and extended epilogues “just for fun”.

After college in Florida, where she obtained a degree in Criminal Justice swearing she saw things she’ll never quite believe and never quite forget, Tracey traded the world of law and order for IT.

Her work for a world-wide internet startup transferred her to Northern Virginia where she met her husband in what many call their own happily ever after. They have one son.

When she’s not busy with her family or writing, Tracey can be found in her home in north Florida drinking coffee, reading, training for a runDisney event, or feeding her addiction to HGTV.

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