book review

Truth or Beard by Penny Reid

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If given the choice, recent college graduate, Jessica James, would never have gotten hot and heavy with the surly half of the Winston twins because as far as she can remember, she’s always been infatuated with the nice twin, Beau. Meanwhile, for all the childish banter between Duane and Jessica growing up, Duane has always carried a torch for Jessica. So, when a case of mistaken identity forces Duane and Jessica to admit finding off-the-charts chemistry with each other after all these years, they’re both faced with the dilemma of how to deal with Jessica’s plans of leaving home after two years to fulfill her dream of traveling the world.

I read this book on a recommendation from a friend who swears by how laugh-out-loud funny this story was, and I definitely got that. What I didn’t expect was crying my heart out at some points as well. It’s a light and delightful read, which had me adding more Penny Reid books to my read queue.

Things I loved about the story:

1. Oh, the steam! The chemistry between Duane and Jessica just had me fanning myself.

2. When my friend said this was laugh-out-loud funny, she wasn’t kidding at all. I tried just quietly snickering, but I’ve gotten weird looks from people on the bus for bursting out in giggles. It’s just downright fun.

3. Despite the laughs, I really appreciated reading through the struggles of Duane in this book. It’s very rare that I believe the insecurities of the male heroes in most romance novels. The fact that his insecurities stem from always being compared to his twin just reinforces the tension between Duane and Jessica, and it sets the stage for everything happening the way it did. And for once, the heroine was the more level-headed one in the story.

4. All the other brothers’ characters were fleshed out so well that my anticipation for reading their stories is through the roof. I totally have a special place in my heart for endearingly eccentric Cletus.

5. Tons and tons of snippets of conversations that make the butterflies in my tummy soar. Same lines that earned Duane a spot on my book boyfriends list.

My momma once told me you need to be pushed in order to fall. I don’t think you need to do much pushing, Jessica.

Overall, it was a great introduction to Penny Reid as a writer. Nothing but love love love for this book and spine-tingling excitement for the other brothers’ stories.

Rating: 4 stars

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