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Book Review: Grin & Beard It by Penny Reid

Grin & Beard It

Written by: Penny Reid
Reviewed by: Mary Warren

Sienna Diaz takes a wrong turn on a back country road on the way to her on-location movie set in the Smoky Mountains. This beginning could go any number of ways, depending on the genre, but it is the start of a wonderful romcom between a plus-sized Latina movie star and the park ranger who rescues her from the side of the road. 


This is the second book in the Winston Brothers series. It follows Jethro Winston, a reformed bad boy trying to take care of his family and working as a park ranger. When he rescues Sienna, sparks fly, but he is a perfect gentleman. They seem to keep running into each other, and one thing leads to another, and it’s a romance novel.


The fat representation in this book is wonderful. Sienna threads the needle as a fat character navigating a world that does not like fat people (particularly Hollywood) while remaining confident in who she is despite what the critics say. She is a strong character who knows who she is and owns the body she lives in. It is inspiring for people living in fat bodies to see that kind of confidence and ownership of one’s body. I have read several books with fat main characters falling in love with celebrities. I like that this one flipped that script to offer a fat movie star; I am here for that.


This is a story of an unlikely pairing who find their person. They both belong to two very different worlds, and they have to decide if they will fit into each other’s world and if the sacrifices that need to be made will be worth it. Both Jethro and Sienna are easy to root for both in their love and their success. This is a good book; I am excited to read some of the other Winston brothers, because if they are anything like Jethro it promises to be a good read.

book cover: a wooden framed cross stitch of short hair and facial hair with no facial features. Grin and Beard It by Penny Reid.