Review: Truth or Beard by Penny Reid

Beards, brothers, and bikers! Oh my!

Identical twins Beau and Duane Winston might share the same devastatingly handsome face, but where Beau is outgoing and sociable, Duane is broody and reserved. This is why perpetually level-headed Jessica James has been in naïve and unhealthy infatuation with Beau Winston for most of her life. Whereas Duane and Jessica have always been adversaries. She can’t stand him, and she’s pretty sure he can’t stand the sight of her…

But after a case of mistaken identity, Jessica finds herself in a massive confusion kerfuffle. Jessica James has spent her whole life paralyzed by the fantasy of Beau and her assumptions of Duane’s disdain; therefore she’s unprepared for the reality that is Duane’s insatiable interest, as well as his hot hands and hot mouth and hotter looks.

When Jessica finds herself drawn to the man who was always her adversary, how much of her level-head heart is she willing to risk?

If there’s one thing I learned in the past year when reading books, that is not to read all the reviews I see on Goodreads or other book sites, so that I won’t get influenced or disappointed when a book I like to read isn’t like by many others, especially from those reviewers I look up to. I’d rather go blind when I read a new story instead.

This is what happened when I finally read Truth or Beard by Penny Reid. I did not peek at the reviews when I got it on Amazon. And it was good reading about Jessica James and Duane Winston’s love affair. I like stories that begin with characters getting on the wrong foot until they eventually get on each other’s nerves and fall into an avalanche of emotions in the end.

The dynamics between Jessica and Duane is both languid and spirited, or to make it more simple – it was hot and cold. Things escalated quickly when Jessica realized her mistake about the twins, but with each of them dealing with their own family drama, the main characters had to back off and compartmentalize their feelings.

To others, this dynamics didn’t seem to work on their taste, but for me, I’m cool with the hot and cold approach of the story. Call me boring and predictable, but this story by Penny Reid proved to be quite an enjoyable ride, with Cletus (the other Winston brother) holding the fort. I would definitely go read the rest of the series this year. Penny Reid, you’re a marvel!

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