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Beard Necessities: A Small Town Romantic Comedy (Winston Brothers Book 7) Kindle Edition
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- ASIN : B07KCLZ5MW
- Publisher : Cipher-Naught (November 4, 2019)
- Publication date : November 4, 2019
- Language : English
- File size : 584 KB
- Simultaneous device usage : Unlimited
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 334 pages
- Page numbers source ISBN : 1942874588
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #35,963 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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In the interests of fairness, I have to admit that I didn't read this book's precursor. The author was very straightforward about telling readers it was not a romance but more of a doomed love story. Definitely not my cup of tea. Judging by the bits and pieces that are incessantly rehashed throughout Beard 7, it seemed more like a very well written soap opera. It's probably my own fault for avoiding the soapy book, but I had some trouble keeping the timeline straight through all the breast beating and mea culpas.
A related problem I had with this book was the fact that almost the entire plot revolves around events of the past. The twisted relationship between Billy and Scarlet/Claire is over a decade old, rooted in horrible family secrets, and in all that time every negative emotion seems to have simply petrified. Difficult to believe that all that accumulated misery and misunderstanding will simply melt away under the warm Tuscan sky. That amount of character growth takes time and serious work. At the same time, I had a difficulty being patient with the protagonists' inability to use their words, no matter how fraught with tragedy and missed opportunity their history was. Billy and Scarlet/Claire hoard their secrets like the last five M&M's, and it really bugged me that the major secret is revealed by accident. Or is it an accident? We never know. The entire story is staged as an intervention by the entire Winston clan, and, as a plot device, this is somewhat problematical. While the family's interactions have the customary humor and charm, there is a definite dissonance between the Cletus-led prank assault and the horrific events that separated Billy and Scarlet/Claire in their youth. Thing is, the jangle of that dissonance seemed familiar to me from past books.
Behind all the amusing and tender family relationships that make this series worthwhile, there is the dark influence of violent, sociopathic, criminal parents. Supremely hate-worthy parents are no rarity in romance, but Darrell Winston and Razor Dennings and the Iron Wraiths MC are more of an inescapable nightmare. And I finally figured out that the whole motorcycle gang plot thread has always been a problem for me, ratchetting up my anxiety as I read.. Any reader tackling this series with the expectation of bright cheery romance is in for a potential shock. The on page violence varies from book to book as does the ratio between the dark background and the sweetness and humor of the romances. Definitely a case of ymmv, but several of these books definitely need content warnings, and Beard Necessities is at the top of the list. Reid deserves a lot of credit for not romanticizing the whole motorcycle club culture and for portraying it as the toxic mess that it is. I'm not generally bothered by violence per se, but I always seek a sort of balance in a story that is highly personal and sometimes undefinable. All I can tell you is Beard Necessities ain't got it.
Finally and less tragically, there is a plot moppet infested epilogue. Perhaps this seems a minor gripe. However, after a less than satisfying, angst-ridden reading experience, that was the cherry on the crap cupcake. Isn't Billy and Scarlet's HEA convincing enough? Must you hammer it home with babies. You'd think that at least one or two individuals with their family background would be the tiniest little bit cautious about reproducing in such hoards. Apparently not. No wonder they chose Labor Day for tbeir reunion! And this is why I'm not a fan of most epilogues.
So, this is a "not you, it's me" review--part venting and part warning to anyone with similar reservations. Beard Necessities is not a terrible book, but it bothered tbe heck out of me. I totally understand why others would like it, but I suspect that it really isn't for every single reader. Hence, three stars.
@reidromance Winston brothers came into my life a couple years ago and I have loved each of their stories but knowing this was the last book scared me.
Needless to say I loved this book. Not only because of Billy and Scarlet aka Claire, but because I got to fall in love with all the characters again. We saw families and struggles. Pain and triumph. We saw love concurs all ❤
Billy and Scarlet also taught me that an ugly childhood might shape a person but it doesn't determine who that person chooses to be! To always look to the future!
Thank you @reidromance to a beautiful and perfect ending!
Finally, finally Billy and Scarlet get their happy ending. It was way long in arriving. The awkwardness was painful, but I was so glad to see them finally realize what we've always seen and known, and what they were blind to always. I loved getting those final glimpses into what we've missed in their stories, and this book really completed the storyline that's been present in all of the Winston Brothers books. My only grievance is with the epilogue. Y'all. Obviously, I wanted all that info. I wanted to hear about all the kids, about the family's amazing time together. The traditions. How close the kids are with their cousins and uncles. To hear what everyone's been up to. They've been up to a lot, apparently! Sad I didn't get every detail along the way. I know. I mean I get it, you can't just keep going to go on, and it really would have never ended! You just can't help becoming invested in these characters and their happiness! It was awesome to get a chance to say goodbye, and to see everyone settled and happy. Thank goodness for Cletus ;D
Top reviews from other countries
Everything you could wish for ..... Except I could have read more of Billy and Scarlet, it’s been so long coming, there could never be too much! Billy has been present throughout all the series but we’ve never been party to his thoughts and feelings. He doesn’t disappoint. Like all the Winston boys he has a touch of poetry in his soul but his defining constancy of heart for family is his trademark and occasional downfall. I loved their story but I would have loved more - where some scenes are shown in retrospect I would have liked to have lived them.
Clear your day before you start, because you won’t want to put the book down.
I loved the finale of the most amazing series of books about loving and caring family. This book was the most anticipated of 2019 . I have been waiting for this book since 2016.
The final book of Winston Brothers Series is about Billy and Scarlet. I loved how the story was dealt with the how the characters move ahead their shared painful and anger/guilt/hatred filled past. While reading the story you literally feel the points raised in each of their POVs are valid and still feel frustrated with them for not being honest and communicating with each other.
Also lets just raise a toast to the wonderful Winston family. They are just a bunch of busybodies but still so adorable! And even when reading this book as standalone, people would fall in love with this family.
I appreciate that the negatives of Scarlet's lives are mentioned and is also shown that she's getting professional help for all the abuse she's endured through her life. You as reader feel proud for her after seeing what she's gone through and how she still manage to be so positive in life. The same is valid for Billy except that he had love of his family to guide him. You feel proud for Billy too for the emotional growth you see in him and how he learns to forgive.
I love them both.
A special thanks to CLETUS and his habit of being into others' business. <3! Love him forever...
Cletus is the best character ever made.
This is such a beautiful ending to a series that has left me in good spirits! Love Penny Reid!