Dr. Strange Beard by Penny Reid
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
The more Penny Reid books I read, the less prepared I am for them. Except that I am prepared to be taken on a ride into a new direction. I know that I'm getting a romance, but how I'm getting there with the newest couple is going to be journey into likely little explored dimensions. And I love that. I love that she takes risks and gives us more than just a love story. How does this relate to Roscoe and Simone's story? Because Roscoe and Simone explore new territory with their lives and their relationship, and Penny writes it so well.
Let me first say that I loved this book. I loved getting to know Roscoe and Simone. Roscoe was a fairly one-dimensional brother in the previous books of this series. I didn't know much about him except he was the baby of the family. But here he is fully exposed. And this takes us into the unknown areas of Penny's writing. Because Roscoe has a special memory situation that we learn more about. Wow, I really loved being in Roscoe's head. I felt for the guy and had so much compassion for him. He definitely became a multi-dimensional person to me. He's this sensitive, kindhearted, gentle, yet loyal and protective soul. But then to finally see him step out of his comfort zone and be vulnerable. Now that was the Roscoe I really fell in love with. And I really loved Roscoe.
Simone is also wonderful, but in her own way. I was heartbroken for her (and for Roscoe) with the abrupt way their friendship ended 10 years ago. Learning the reasonings why were understandable from a 16-year-old's up-close perspective, but from an adult stepping back from the situation perspective, I felt sad about it. But thankfully, they grew up and life brought them back together. And speaking of life, Simone's life is fascinating. The things we learn about her are fantastic, and I loved her focus and determination in career and life. She also grew in her vulnerability, which was also a beautiful thing when she and Roscoe could tackle those hurdles together.
And there are a lot of hurdles to tackle here! Simone's job is crazy town. Roscoe's memory is beyond fascinating. Roscoe is having some majorly unexpected family stuff hitting the fan. And then a whole bunch of stuff I can't even talk about for fear of spoilers. Oh man, there are things that happen here that hit me in the feels. So many things.
But let's not forget to mention the realistic and sensitive way that Penny dealt with real-life race issues in this book. I'm glad she used sensitivity readers during her writing process to give Simone's story as honest a perspective as possible. The situations Simone deals with were so well done and I loved their incorporation in a real and honest way.
I can't leave this review without once again saying how much I loved Roscoe and Simone as a couple. They have a beautiful second chance romance and I loved reading their sweet story.
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2yCyB0v
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2Be0r4m
Amazon AU: https://bit.ly/2NuVyXi
Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2M2xVVJ
Google Play: goo.gl/sGvHH3
Paperback: Coming August 14th!
Audiobook: Coming Soon!