REVIEW: “Too Beautiful to Break” by Tessa Bailey

The way Tessa Bailey strings together words which paint Belmont and Sage’s relationship makes them the Standard of Essential Love.  This couple takes mindful actions, think out their words, and feel so thoughtfully the intensity is tangible.  The Clarkson men definitely tear you up with their sweeping emotions in the Romancing the Clarksons series.  The main characters in “Too Beautiful to Break” are both late in life virgins.  They’re the quintessential two pieces which make a whole.  Belmont feels emphatically about Sage; everything he does is for her; to care and protect her.  He reveres her.  Sage looks at Belmont with awe, respecting his strength and vulnerabilities.  But most exquisitely beautiful things are fragile.  Sage and Belmont are simultaneously strong and vulnerable together.  They can feel too much, needing to bask in each other to excess.  They need to pull away in order to figure out how to come together.

In “Too Beautiful to Break” Sage must abandon Belmont as they continue eastward toward New York City.  Sage needs to return to her hometown to rescue the parents and reputation from which she ran away.  She plans her “escape” expertly so Belmont isn’t able to figure out her final destination from the train station.  Because both Sage and Belmont are virgins they haven’t been free about their feelings for each other.  Until this moment Sage isn’t sure if Belmont feels romantically about her.  Sage tells Belmont she isn’t certain he thinks of her “as a woman”.  When she realizes he does and she still needs to leave him, she falls apart.

Belmont has a feeling something bad is going to happen just before Sage leaves him.  He’s surprised that she didn’t know how much he feels for her.  For him it’s been torture during the roadtrip because of all the “dirty and filthy” thoughts Belmont has about Sage.  He feels he is disrespecting her until she tells him she doesn’t know if he sees her as a woman.  That’s when Belmont kisses Sage with everything he has.  After finally learning what Sage tastes like she leaves him at the train station; which wrecks him for days.

When Sage arrives at her parents home she sees nothing has changed.  Her parents are barely functioning alcoholics that are so co-dependent they can’t do anything without the other.  Her mother drinks and dithers while her husband is at work and dotes on him when he comes home.  As a young girl her parents virtually ignored her; she tended to herself and spent her time alone.  The town looks on her and her parents with pity and disdain.  However it’s the owner of the mine; in which basically the entire town works, who’s the villain.  He and her parents grew up together, her mother fell in love with Sage’s father to Augustine’s dismay.  He’s had it in for his former friends ever since.  Augie has made it his mission to make Sage’s father’s life (in particular) Hell.  Sage has come home to take her father’s place working in the mine.

She went to Augustine years ago for the funds to go to San Diego to find her bliss.  Sage has been tormented with guilt that she abandoned them and let their tormentor pay for her escape.  Now she’s going to deep into the mine’s for the couple of months her father has left before his retirement.

Sage left her scrapbook in Belmont’s car and he figures out where Sage went to after he calls his brother.  Aaron is freaked out a little by Belmont’s agitated mindset.  When Belmont finally tracks Sage down he’s truly traumatized when he learns she is trapped in a small cave-in.  When she gets out Belmont declares he going to take Sage’s place for her father.  Even though going underground is literally his worst nightmare since he was trapped in an abandoned well as a child.

Sage doesn’t make their reunion easy because she’s desperate not to be codependent like her parents.  The way she and Belmont need, soothe, and tend to each other frightens her in it’s familiarity.  Sage is of two minds.  She’s ecstatic that Belmont wants her sexually yet she wants them to find a way to exist separately.  To be able to function apart from each other.  They take the time to talk to each other telling the other things about themselves.  Belmont tells Sage the entire story about when he was trapped in the well.  Including a secret he never told his brother and sisters.

Belmont finds out there’s more to Sage’s father’s expectations at the mine.  He is even more resolute to save her from that.  However in taking up that burden he is mentally and emotionally killing himself.  When Sage learns the truth she makes a decision that will both save and devastate Belmont.  She loves Belmont so much she’s willing to sacrifice her life to save his.  Upon making this decision she calls Belmont’s family so they can be there for him.  Belmont’s done more, and endured more than his siblings know when they were children.  In the end the couple overcome all their fears however they need to separate in order to achieve their goals.

“Too Beautiful to Break” features an incredibly unique Hero and Heroine whose words and actions create a intricately delicate Love.  They piece their intense feelings together with excruciating care learning to trust themselves not to drown so they can breathe.  Tessa Bailey infuses so many different types of passion in this story.  Not to mention she definitely does not skimp on the sizzling hot sex scenes.  Belmont loses his shyness and picks up dirty talking quick.  Sage also knows what she wants and surprises and delights Belmont with her gusto.  “Too Beautiful to Break” is an incredible ending to the marvelous Romancing the Clarksons series.  Happily Rita, Jasper, Aaron, Grace, Peggy, and Elliot all are in attendance!  This book is a Romantic Must-Read!

I’m giving “Too Beautiful to Break” 5 Lightning Bolts and a Storm Warning


This novel was provided, voluntarily read, and honestly reviewed.

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