Too Hard to Forget by Tessa Bailey Book Review

Updated: Jan 22, 2021

Too Hard to Forget

by Tessa Bailey

Published by Forever

Book #3 in the Romancing the Clarkson's series

This time, she's calling the shots.

Peggy Clarkson is returning to her alma mater with one goal in mind: confront Elliott Brooks, the man who ruined her for all others, and remind him of what he's been missing. Even after three years, seeing him again is like a punch in the gut, but Peggy's determined to stick to her plan. Maybe then, once she has the upper hand, she'll finally be able to move on.

In the years since Peggy left Cincinnati, Elliott has kept his focus on football. No distractions and no complications. But when Peggy walks back onto his practice field and into his life, he knows she could unravel everything in his carefully controlled world. Because the girl who was hard to forget is now a woman impossible to resist.


Steamy Romance Feel Good

Too Hard to Forget by Tessa Bailey is the third book in the Romancing the Clarkson's series, and continues the epic road trip the Clarkson siblings take to fulfill their mothers final wish for them to jump in the Atlantic Ocean on New Years Day, just like she did when she was younger. At this point, Rita, the oldest daughter, and focus of the first book Too Hot to Handle, stayed behind in Hurley, New Mexico, to start a new life with Jasper, a man she had just met and fell in love with. In the second book, Too Wild to Tame, Aaron, the youngest son, stayed behind in Iowa not for the job he went there to get, but because he fell in love with Grace. Too Hard to Forget continues with Belmont, Peggy and Peggy's best friend Sage, just entering Cincinnati for Peggy's stop, with the ultimate plan to make her ex, Elliott Brook's life hell, and get some closure after he broke her heart.

I was looking forward to Peggy's story. Not necessarily because she is was overly interesting in the past two books (they didn't really focus on her that much), but because this is the first romance in the series that is starting out with history and knowledge of one another, whereas the past two books were love at first sight type romances. This might be my favorite of the series so far. There is the forbidden love element, because when their relationship started, she was a 22 year old senior college student, and he was a 35 year old football coach, who was recently widowed. We learn through flashbacks that it wasn't just sex. Peggy fell in love with him, and fell hard. Elliott did too. Not only did he find himself finally understanding what people were talking about when they talked about love, he felt passion like he had never felt before. What destroyed them ultimately was Elliott's guilt. He felt intense guilt for loving Peggy when he didn't love his wife. He faults himself for her death because he was ignoring her phone calls, and when she left the house, she slipped on ice, hit her head, and went into a coma after laying there for hours. He felt guilt for being attracted to Penny.

It wasn't the healthiest relationship though.

Peggy was always there. She listened to him while he told her things he never told anyone. She took care of him. He loved her, but his guilt made their relationship dirty. He frequently punished her during sex, and while she liked it, it made her feel like she was his ruin. He would tell her during the acts that she was his damnation, and he would pray, making her feel like a sin. It wasn't his intent, but it happened. He drove it home when she wanted to stay after graduation, and be with him, and he said awful things to make her leave.

That was the past though. Their relationship in the book was interesting as hell to read. We've always known about Peggy's engagements, and how she left them all before the weddings. She hinted to Rita it was because she never could get over one man in Cincinnati. We learn in this book, that she never stopped loving him. Didn't see herself good enough for those men, because she was