book review

Grin and Beard It by Penny Reid

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Penny Reid does it again!

In this Winston Brothers sequel, the readers are treated to all things lumbersexual in Jethro, the eldest Winston brother, former deviant turned upright citizen. He turns up those gentlemanly manners and southern charms the pants off of A-list comedic celebrity, Sienna Diaz.

It starts with another case of mistaken identity (the first book also starts off with Jessica mistaking Duane for Beau) when irresistible wildlife park ranger, Jethro, comes to Sienna’s rescue and doesn’t recognize her at all. But with Sienna’s awful sense of direction, it was inevitable for them to cross paths constantly. Between Jethro’s chiseled features and southern charm, and Sienna’s fun and flirty personality, trying to navigate their past, present and future was bound to get interesting, especially in the spotlight.

Things I loved about the book:

1. It really is laugh-out-loud funny. The one thing that Penny Reid is great at is creating moments that give you no choice but to read even in public. The story flows so fluidly that it’s impossible to put the book down, despite the urge to keep the snorts behind closed doors.

“You’re a movie star. A celebrity with millions of fans.”

“And you’re a wildlife ranger who traps giant, dangerous black bears for a living and acts like it’s no big deal. Tell me that doesn’t sound like a heaping helping of crazy, with bizarre gravy, and a slice of mashed loco for Cocoa Puffs.”

2. The characters are fleshed out so well. It was a joy to read about non-traditional main characters. Sienna is plus-sized and Latina. And it moves away from the traditional movie-star-slash-billionnaire romance cliche where the male usually has the higher stature in life. That’s not to say that Jethro lacks in the drool-worthy-alpha department. He’s every bit lumber-sexy and commanding. It really is a refreshingly original story.

3. Jethro makes it onto my book boyfriends list (much like Duane did in the first book) in the same way that Sienna falls in love with him. It wasn’t really so much the chiseled features (that accounts only for a teeny tiny part of it), but really the way he treats Sienna. He wears his heart on his sleeve, and you can’t help but feel for the guy who risks losing the one person who could be “the one”, for fear that his past could ruin her future. How can you not love a guy who puts his girl first? He was sweet, without the overdose of sugar.

4. The chemistry between Sienna and Jethro blows through the roof. Embarrassingly, I had to fan myself in public while reading through the steamy, long looks they throw each other’s way.

5. In true Penny Reid fashion, this book has an abundance of swoon-worthy lines that make me want to hug myself to savor the feel-good moments.

“I don’t think I knew what beauty was, until I met you.”

“She may have been named Sienna instead of Sarah, and was apparently a celebrity of huge proportions, but she was still dimples and eyelashes to me.”

“Jethro had been the disappointment. I’d been the clown. Individually we had become more. But together and with each other, we didn’t need to be our labels. We were free to be just ourselves.”

Bonus: I loved seeing more of the rest of the Winston brothers, and I’m still carrying a torch for Cletus. I can’t wait to read more!

Rating: 4 stars

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