Beauty and the Mustache (Winston Brothers) – book review

Beauty and the Mustache
by Penny Reid
Release Date: August 24, 2014
Book #0.5 in the Winston Brothers series
Number of Pages: 372
Contemporary Romance
Ages 15 and up
CW: cancer, grief, death of a parent,
child abuse, domestic abuse
There are three things you need to know about Ashley Winston: 1) She has six brothers and they all have beards, 2) She is a reader, and 3) She knows how to knit.

Former beauty queen, Ashley Winston’s preferred coping strategy is escapism. She escaped her Tennessee small town, loathsome father, and six brothers eight years ago. Now she escapes life daily via her one-click addiction. However, when a family tragedy forces her to return home, Ashley can’t escape the notice of Drew Runous—local Game Warden, bear wrestler, philosopher, and everyone’s favorite guy. Drew’s irksome philosophizing in particular makes Ashley want to run for the skyscrapers, especially since he can’t seem to keep his exasperating opinions— or his soulful poetry, steadfast support, and delightful hands— to himself.

Pretty soon the girl who wanted nothing more than the escape of the big city finds she’s lost her heart in small town Tennessee.

I recently read Truth or Beard, so decided to go back and read this book that was the bridge from the Knitting in the City series to the Winston Brothers series. This is the story of the lone sister amongst the Winston brothers, Ashley.

Considering how quickly the aforementioned lit up the pages, this book was surprisingly slow to ignite. Ashley and Drew had a spark, but it took far too long for anything to happen. I will note, when Ashley was deep in her woe at the tail end of the climax I felt the slow burn was worth it. The last few chapters are sooooo good.

The pace of this story isn’t helped by the subject. Ashley is home after 8 years to help care for her terminally ill mother. Most of this story involves Ashley coming to terms with her mom’s diagnosis while sitting bedside, reconciling with her brothers, and just overall being sad. There are some bright spots, it’s not all doom and gloom. But it is a heavy story.

What it comes down to is this story felt very uneven. There were parts I adored and others that plodded along. It did give me more insight into the brothers which will add depth when I’m reading the rest of this series.

3.5 stars

About Cheri

I'm the mom of two boys and wife to my high school sweetheart. Our oldest, Josh, is living at home while working and paying off student loans. Our youngest, Griffin recently left his active duty Army job and is now National Guard here at home. He moved back to Michigan with his wife Kirsten and our beautiful granddaughter Hazel. I work part time and try to fit as much reading into my life as possible.
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2 Responses to Beauty and the Mustache (Winston Brothers) – book review

  1. I hope you’ll continue the Winston series to at least Cletus’s book. That one is so fun!

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