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Knitting in the City #4

Beauty and the Mustache

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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 Amazon kindle 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, reclusive mountain man, 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.

This is a full-length novel, can be read as a standalone, and is the fourth book in the 'Knitting in the City' series.

376 pages, Paperback

First published August 24, 2014

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About the author

Penny Reid

104 books21k followers
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Penny Reid is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author of the Winston Brothers and Knitting in the City series. She used to spend her days writing federal grant proposals as a biomedical researcher, but now she writes kissing books. Penny is an obsessive knitter and manages the #OwnVoices-focused mentorship incubator / publishing imprint, Smartypants Romance. She lives in Seattle Washington with her husband, three kids, and dog named Hazel.

Facebook: www.facebook.com/pennyreidwriter
Twitter: www.twitter.com/reidromance

Just Released:
October 20, 2022: Folk Around and Find Out, Good Folk: Modern Folktales, Book 2

Upcoming Releases:
December 13, 2022: Drama King, Three Kings Series, Book 2

Currently Working On:
2023: Pride and Dad Jokes, Ideal Man, Book 1

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 2,779 reviews
Profile Image for Ⓐlleskelle - That ranting lady ッ.
998 reviews829 followers
December 18, 2018
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 5 STARS ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I must begin this review by apologizing to Penny Reid.
For I received this arc in august and I read it not too long after it landed on my kindle app. Unfortunately, or quite the contrary actually, this book struck me deeply emotionally and I wasn't expecting it. I was in a fragile space at the time, personally, due to family matters and the subject treated in your book was both linked to this and my personal situation in regard of
So I read the book, I inhaled it, voraciously consumed it in a few hours. I was so enthralled by it all, I felt a vast array of feelings, good, bad, but when it was over I felt dumbstruck by it all. I cried a lot at certain times, but I laughed ten times more.
Now thinking about it, I realize I felt overwhelmed by this story, both the romance and the Winston family. So overpowered that I needed to distance myself from it.

Not to discourage or scare any potential reader, Penny Reid writes quirky romances, and Beauty and The Mustache doesn’t waive to the rule. It was sweet, lively, fun, goofy, entertaining, endearingly so.
“Why are heroines in romantic novels—despite their cleanliness and enviable lifestyles—so unlikeable? It’s like they’ve been hit with a vanilla ninny stick, devoid of personality and blind to the gift before them. They’re doomed to wander in ignorance until the last thirty pages of the book. By then I’m usually actively rooting against a happy ending, because the fantastical fictional men deserve better.”

But it wasn’t just a romantic comedy, no this was even better, I think it was just the perfect romance novel. A story about family, friends, regrets, love, with just the right amount of heartache, grief and pain.

If you are a fan of romances, look no further, you have your next read right here.

Looking for some bossy no nonsense alpha male? Meet Drew Runous, ladies.

An alpha male is not quite what you are looking for? I can’t hear you… A romantic and caring lover you say? Then meet… Drew Runous!

Oh, you’re an historical romance fan? No, I’m sorry I don’t have any Jamie Fraser right now, I heard the lad is spoken for by millions of women anyway. But in the same category, may I interest you in… Drew Runous?

Oh I’m sorry, you were saying you want to swoon over a man every words? Ladies, I present you… Drew Runous!

Yes, Drew Runous is all that an even more. Penny Reid might have created the man of all my dreams here. ( sorry, Swissman if you come to read this, mon ange. Or please take lessons in poetry.) Can you imagine all that in one package? Penny did! And she is just that awesome that she decided to share that with us!

“I finally figured out what kind of handsome he was. He was fiction-handsome. Like, romance novel handsome. But not the clean cut (billionaire) alpha male or even the tattooed (billionaire) bad boy archetype.
He was the bodice ripper, Scottish highlander or Viking conqueror, historical romance kind; an unshaven, lion wrestling, mountain man recluse, toss you over his shoulder and plunder your goodies kind of handsome. He was both scary and swoony. I wanted to braid his beard. I also wanted to run away.”

Once again, she delivered a superb heroine! Ashley Winston, is just everything I wish for a lead female character to be. She was kind, passionate, feisty, caring, strong, independent, assertive, smart, fun. I kid you not, she was all this in that cute little package that is Ashley Winston.

Beauty And The Mustache is undoubtedly my favorite of the Knitting in the City series. I loved all the previous couples, their stories, they were all unique characters and I never felt like I was reading the same story twice. What made Beauty And The Mustache particular is how close to home it hit me. I could relate to some things, to Ashley relationship with her family, and maybe that’s what made this book so much more than just a romance comedy to me. You get to experience a large display of feelings and love of all forms.
I positively think that any reader will find a personal connection to Ashley and Drew’ story.

About the story…

After 8 years of leaving her own life in Chicago where she is working as a pediatric nurse, Ashley is coming back to Tennessee, due to a disturbing phone call. She needs to check on her family.
Although she kept a permanent contact with her Mom over the phone all these years, circumstances made her estranged to her 6 brothers for a long period.
Her decision to leave home in part due to her brothers behavior, she expects to find back 6 obnoxious bearded men.

“I don’t care which of you hillbilly, disease infested, flea bitten, cattywampus-heads are in here making this ruckus, but you will stop right this instant!”

On her first day back in her childhood home, Ashley is woken up by an irritating and loud noise, reckoning one of her brothers to be the origin of the morning racket. But she’s unexpectedly confronted to a wall of a man, the reason of her rude awakening. (Yes, I wouldn’t mind being woken up by this sight either. Come on over my house with your morning racket, Drew Runous. A.N.Y.T.I.M.E.)
“Gray-blue eyes, almost silver, held mine in a vice grip of anger and surprise. I felt an electric bolt, like I’d been tazered in the stomach. Other than a very slight shadow of wonder, he wore an expression that would have made a thunderstorm proud.

As well, he was so ruggedly sexy I’m sure my mouth fell open to protest the unfairness of his existence. Luckily, no sound emerged. I was too busy oscillating between stunned, mortified, and turned on.
This man was definitely not one of my brothers.”

Left flabbergasted by the news about her mom’s condition, she is bewildered to observe her brothers acting like grown, caring and mature adults. They all changed for the best, and the sad purpose of her presence back home is the perfect opportunity to reacquaint with her brothers.

I screamed.
He screamed.
My hands flew to my face.
He cursed.
I heard a thud and I turned away. I was now fully, and mortifyingly, awake.
“Shit, Ash. What the hell are you doing here?”
“Sorry, sorry, sorry—I should have knocked.”
“Nah… I should have locked the door. It’s just that everyone knows Tuesday mornings are my slot.”
I shook my head, my hands over my face, my back to my younger brother. “Your slot? What do you mean, your slot?”
“It’s my private time in the tub, you know, to get my rub on

The dynamic of the Winston’s family was caring a good part of the entertaining factor in BaTM! The banter issued by living in a house full of bearded men was to die for! Hilarious situations, dialogues as well as lovely demonstration of feelings. I wish I had my own Winston brothers.
Their mom was a hoot, too! I wouldn’t expect less from the woman who gave birth to Billy, Cletus, Jethro, Duane and Beauford and Roscoe.

“What I wanted to do was hide in my room with my latest novel and escape into a world without bearded, masturbating hillbillies.”

As it was the case in every Knitting in the series novels, you’ll get to experience the awesome that is Ashley’s support group. Her close friends, her knitting group, they are crazy. The good kind of crazy, occasioning more than one uncontrollable fit of laughter. So if Beauty And The Mustache is your first book in the series, you’ll be introduced with her woman posse, and have enough time to familiarize with Janie, Elizabeth, Sandra and their men, Quinn, Nico and Alex.
[image error]“You’re off your rocker and Janie is nuts. You’re both cracked nuts.”
“I would have brought a life-sized cut-out of Charlie Hunnam, but this one,” Sandra indicated to Elizabeth with her head, “thought it would be awkward.”

And then there’s Drew. Drew, quiet, caring, helping, supporting, admiring, giving, longing, staring, writing.

[image error]

I could try to describe how wonderful, fascinating and appealing Drew Runous was, but I would fail, miserably.
My words would fail to do his character justice. The only and appropriate way to appreciate Drew’s qualities would be to read HIM. Penny Reid did here what very few authors can do, she created a man, not a dream man really, but someone tangible, someone who can be just for you to reach, a man whom even in a book commands the atmosphere in a room just by his presence. A man whose stare is as compelling as his words. A man whose words I can guarantee you, will be your undoing. Be very scared of Drew Runous, for he might become your absolute fantasy.

Your sheets, still a white pile on the table, know that envy keeps me from washing them. You left an impression, deep creases where you lay your head, where they cradled your body. It was only three days, but they memorized your scent, they carry it even in their stillness.
Were they too gentle? Was their touch too light? Do you remember how it felt when they held you? Or did you never commit it to memory?
Was I too gentle? Was my touch too light? Do you remember how it felt when I held you? Or did you never commit it to memory?
- Drew

I’m not going to say much more about the story, as usual I don’t want to spoil all the fun, but I would HIGHLY recommend you to check Penny’s bright and wonderful world, she is a singular being, Miss Reid.

Wonder Woman, over.

`*•. ARC provided by the author in exchange for an honest review. .•*´
Profile Image for Christy.
3,923 reviews33.1k followers
September 21, 2017
5 stars!


Beauty in the Mustache is my favorite full length novel by Reid to date. It was AMAZING (Ninja at First Sight is my favorite thing she’s ever written, but this is a very close second!) and I can’t believe I waited so long to read it! This one will make you laugh, cry, smile and swoon. Drew was amazing with his poetry and sweet nature. Ashley is tough and resilient. She is also fun and feisty. They were a perfect couple!

I can’t recommend this book- or anything that Penny Reid writes enough! I loved everything about this one and can’t wait to read more from this author!

Profile Image for XxTainaxX Curvy and Nerdy.
1,476 reviews459 followers
July 21, 2017
FREE today on AMAZON!!

Why did I ever wait so long to read this author!? I loved this book. It was funny, sweet, romantic, emotional, poetic, and sexy! The whole package. Drew and Ash meet after he wakes her up by revving an engine and she retaliates as she would any of her 6 brothers.

There's a reluctant attraction on either side but Drew seems to feel more strongly about resisting the allure than Ash does. Drew is actually friends with Ash's mom too and things get complicated as a family situation puts Drew right in the middle and every day for the duration. Drew is a dude that looks like a lumberjack Viking and has the heart and soul of a poet. I mean that quite literally, he actually recites poetry to Ash (swoon). Ash hasn't been around her family in years and is taking in the changes along with a very serious situation.

How this story still manages to insert funny into a plot that is anything but, is what I enjoyed best. The romance was a slow burn sexually but it had enough tension to keep us warmed up and gushing about Drew. I loved the friendships and family support and even though I started with book 4, I am very much going to go back and read about all those awesome characters. So if you can't tell, I loved this story and am glad that my friends kept making it pop up on my feed :-p Ya'll have great taste! <3

Safety: No OW/OM/Sharing. An ex of the h comes sniffing around but nothing happens. Neither are Vs. They use condoms until they decide together not to. No rape/abuse. There is pushing away.
Profile Image for Wendy'sThoughts.
2,658 reviews3,256 followers
February 6, 2023
Beauty and the Mustache is just $2.99 Over On Nook!
5 Only Penny Reid Stars
* * * * * Spoiler Free
ATTENTION: This is the book that introduced THE WINSTONS!!!!
2014 Review
I am at a loss. I cannot address all of the things I feel about this book without taking away your personal experience of it. So I won't.

What I will share is the gift this book is ... in so many ways. She gives us amazing characters; humor, banter, and just plain goodness throughout every chapter...real dialogue and thoughts... things everyday people think about and do...assumptions siblings make and she does it all with intelligence which just makes me feel smarter while reading it.

This is nothing new...she has done it with all of her previous books.

In this book, Ms. Reid addresses some of the ultimate experiences in life: first...Death

She presents it gently, and lovingly. She gives us a family that has been separated for more than 8 years...and with this focal point... this family transitions into what the mother and children wished it could have been all along. This part of the story is handled in the best possible way... there is a grace to how it is done; it felt very sincere and nonmanipulative. Having both my parents pass... I may have been more in tune with the feelings expressed so well. Each person's emotions were expressed in a valid way and my heart was open during all of it.

Second...Love...a love so intense and staggering...there were moments I found myself holding my breath. Not all of us go about loving each other the same... we demonstrate it so uniquely... it may not be seen at first.

Our main character, Drew, marched to his own drum... really was one of those people you can describe as "comfortable in his skin"... he knew who he was -what he wanted and what he needed to do in the situation he was in. Ashley was strong...even when her world was turned upside down. She found her center... and through it all, I felt for her.

All I will say about this love story is Ashley and Drew must be experienced... what happens between them... the way they connect- work through all the layers of what has been presented.... really just magnificent.

There is an added bonus to Ms. Reid's writing... she gives you amazing quotes from authors and others... things which set the tone for each chapter... and then on top of that... she gives you her own heart... you will find it on the pages... sometimes through Drew... sometimes through the descriptions of her love of Tennessee... it is plastered everywhere...

So as I usually say when I am overwhelmed by books and authors I love... look to other reviews if you have the need to know more... There are so many great ones... but if you are someone who is ok to go in blind and does not know a whole lot about a book... then please go and experience it... you can read it without knowing all the other characters... I would tell you if you did.

Penny Reid decided to gift us with a series all about the Winston Brothers! Yay!
Here they are:
Beauty and the Mustache (Knitting in the City, #4; Winston Brothers, #0) by Penny Reid Beauty and the Mustache (Knitting in the City4/
Winston Brothers, #0.5)
Truth or Beard (Winston Brothers, #1) by Penny Reid Truth or Beard (Winston Brothers, #1)
Grin and Beard It (Winston Brothers, #2) by Penny Reid Grin and Beard It (Winston Brothers #2)
Beard Science (Winston Brothers, #3) by Penny Reid Beard Science (Winston Brothers #3)
Beard in Mind (Winston Brothers, #4) by Penny Reid Beard in Mind (Winston Brothers, #4)
Beard in Hiding (Winston Brothers, #4.5) by Penny Reid Beard in Hiding (Winston Brothers, #4.5)
Dr. Strange Beard (Winston Brothers, #5) by Penny Reid Dr. Strange Beard (Winston Brothers, #5)
Beard with Me (Winston Brothers, #6) by Penny Reid Beard with Me (Winston Brothers, #6)
Beard Necessities (Winston Brothers, #7) by Penny Reid Beard Necessities (Winston Brothers, #7)

And the series that started it all:

Neanderthal Seeks Human (Knitting in the City, #1) by Penny ReidNeanderthal Seeks Human (Knitting in the City, #1)
Neanderthal Marries Human (Knitting in the City, #1.5) by Penny Reid Neanderthal Marries Human (Knitting in the City #1.5)
Friends Without Benefits (Knitting in the City, #2) by Penny Reid Friends Without Benefits (Knitting in the City #2)
Love Hacked (Knitting in the City, #3) by Penny Reid Love Hacked (Knitting in the City, #3)
Beauty and the Mustache (Knitting in the City, #4; Winston Brothers, #0) by Penny ReidBeauty and the Mustache (Knitting in the City, #4; Winston Brothers, #0.5)
Happily Ever Ninja (Knitting in the City, #5) by Penny Reid Happily Ever Ninja (Knitting in the City, #5)
Dating-ish (Knitting in the City, #6) by Penny Reid Dating-ish (Knitting in the City, #6)
Marriage of Inconvenience (Knitting in the City, #7) by Penny Reid Marriage of Inconvenience (Knitting in the City #7)

For more Reviews, Free E-books and Giveaways

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Profile Image for Brandi.
634 reviews1,275 followers
July 22, 2015

4.5 Stars


I adored this story. I can't believe I waited so long to meet bossy and broody, Drew Runous - a sexy, outdoorsy, alpha male type, who also - quotes Nietzsche, bakes pies and writes poetry. Yes, I did quiet a bit of swooning.

He was the bodice ripper, Scottish highlander or Viking conqueror, historical romance kind; an unshaven, lion wrestling, mountain man recluse, toss you over his shoulder and plunder your goodies kind of handsome. He was both scary and swoony. I wanted to braid his beard. I also wanted to run away.

Ashley Winston is a fun, caring, and relatable heroine. Growing up with 6 brothers was tough, they were rowdy and did not make her life easy. Now after being away for 8 years, a family crisis has her heading back to the Tennessee mountains, but things have changed. One of my favorite things about this story was Ashley's interactions with her family, it was heartwarming and made this romantic comedy even more special.

I was someone who could hold her own in any situation, be it a discussion on post-modernism or Japanese art as an influence on Van Gogh;...or standing up to four bearded masturbators (obsessed with schedules, no less) in the upstairs bathroom of my momma's house.

Drew and Ashley circle around each other, but when they finally come to come together, there is a lot of butter melting going on.


Beauty and the Mustache was a wonderful read, filled with endearing characters who will have you laughing, swooning and possibly shedding a few tears.

I can't wait to jump into Truth or Beard and spend some more time with the Winston Brothers.
Profile Image for Flo.
286 reviews591 followers
November 22, 2015
6 **philosophical** STARS

“We are most awake to the world and to our own longings and desires when we suffer.”

I'm legit speechless. This book was absolutely perfect to me - from beginning to the end. I can only warn you, this is going to turn into a huge gush fest. It took me a week to put my thoughts in order and write this review and still I don't feel I can do this book justice in any way. I'm just going to say it, and it's already November, so it's not such a far leap...Beauty and the Mustache was my favorite book I read all year.

I laughed, I cried, I had a stupid grin on my face even when I wanted bawl my eyes out. I was so moved, it made me think and in the end I'm just so happy. I honestly just love this book. Starting with my favourite Winston brothers, a kick-ass non annoying heroine, a silent type slightly grumpy hero. And of course knitting, bear and raccoon attacks, oh and not to forget bathroom schedules. If you want to find out what that means, I suggest you pick it up.

It's been eight years since Ashley Winston last went home to Tennessee to see her six brothers and her mother. In fact she has been avoiding it. Once she had the chance to go to college she was out of there never to be seen again, save for the daily phone calls with her mother. Now she is pediatric nurse, living in Chicago, but a strange phone call forces her to make the trip home. Her mother is in the hospital and she only wants to talk to Ash. Time to take care of the family and find out what is wrong with her mother.

I love Ashley as a character. She is a tough chick, mostly thanks to the hellraising brothers who made her life a bit of a nightmare growing up and helped her develop a thick skin - dealing with their antics. The whole Winston household is a comedic goldmine. The boys are so lovable and weird in the most adorable way. Getting to know them and Ashley starting to really see the men they are today and not the boys they were was just beautiful and heartwarming. Family is the best thing about the book and they really come together here. Well family is one of the best things, there is also this guy:

“He was the bodice ripper, Scottish highlander or Viking conqueror, historical romance kind; an unshaven, lion wrestling, mountain man recluse, toss you over his shoulder and plunder your goodies kind of handsome. He was both scary and swoony. I wanted to braid his beard. I also wanted to run away.”

Completely exhausted after travelling all day and night, Ashley promptly has a run in with non other than Drew Runous. Spoiler alert: he is the romantic interest and he is best described in the quote above. There really is very little to add. ;D He is a game warden and Jethro's boss, and for some strange reason has a very deep connection with Ash's mother and her brothers. No escaping the stoic and mysterious man.

The instant attraction between Ash and Drew, that is more irritation than love is what makes this couple the best for me. Circumstances force them to 'work' together and it's a battle of wills most of the time. Drew has a way of getting under Ash's skin and riling her up with Nietzsche quotes is just one weapon in his arsenal. He is highly intelligent, very unconventional and he loves poetry. I really can't stress enough that you need to meet this guy.

“You underestimate how deeply you cut when your intentions carry no knives.”

For people who follow my reviews it comes with no surprise that I love Ms. Reid and her quirky heroines. The Knitting in the City series in particular is one of my favorite light hearted, feel good, funny escapes. While I absolutely adored the first book. The second and third were only ok reads for me. I was entertained but the wow effect was missing. Now with this installment she knocked it right out of the park.

I was hooked from the first page. Partially because I was already invested in the girls from the knitting group, but also because I read Truth or Beard before and I was familiar with the Winston brothers. There was no warming up period for me. I knew everyone and could jump right into the fun.

The writing was a little unlike her usual style. It was a lot more poetic and lyrical. It's almost as if Ms. Reid has the ability to really embody her protagonists. Every book has a distinct voice and recall value. Of course just like the books before it a very clever book, that makes you laugh out loud and introduces some rather brilliant and equally unique characters, but it also is a lot more existential in its themes. Death and family play a big part and it creates a certain mood that makes the book reflective and thoughtful.

I read Beaty and the Mustache in pretty much one sitting. And not necessarily because I wanted to know what happens next, but because the writing and the characters captured me. It really is the best book in the Knitting series so far. I can't wait to read some more, but also go back and re-read this gem.

Now, just out of curiosity...does anyone know why the ketamine is under Drew’s sink? ;P

Profile Image for ♥Sharon♥.
971 reviews142 followers
September 8, 2023
A week ago I found myself looking for my next audiobook and stumbled across this one. I LOVED it when I read it the first time (you can tell by my review below :) ) and thought I would give it a listen.

To my utter surprised, I do believe I enjoyed it even more by listening to it. ❤ The narrator was wonderful and nailed Ashley's character, IMHO. She also did a great job with Drew and all of her brothers.

If you are a fan of this series, give this one a listen! I think you will be happy you did.

And once again, I will leave you with a favorite quote from the book!

“Drew melted my butter. He melted it standing, sitting, crouching, leaning, reading, smiling, hugging, laughing, frowning, writing, changing a light bulb, milking a cow – basically, if it was a verb and he was doing it, my butter was going to be melted.” ~ Ashley



5 +++++ Sexy, Sexy, Viking Stars!

“From which stars have we fallen to meet each other here?”
~ Friedrich Nietzsche

 photo batmcollage1_zps97835025.png Penny Reid is really amazing. From the first chapter, her words and writing style holds a promise that what your about to read will be FANTASTIC. Batm was fantastic. It was amazing. It was sexy. It was funny. And the cherry on top of all that was Drew Runous. (I’ll get to him a little later in my review.)

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Without doubt, this is my favorite of the Knitting in the City series. With each of these books we get such wonderful characters, lots of funny and enjoyable moments and sexy and swoon worthy moments too. But in BatM Penny gave us a little more. For me, there was more beauty in Ashley and Drew’s story. I found their story heartwarming and inspiring. I enjoyed them separately and I LOVED them together.

What readers will find when they pick up BatM is that this story is very relatable on one level or another. One thing that was relatable for me was her brothers. She had six of them!! Crazy huh, but I also grew up in a large family, 4 brothers and 3 sisters. I knew what it felt like to deal with some of the craziness and have the desire to run away. I also knew what it was like to have their unconditional love too.

My Drew, my Ashley and a bit about the story.

 photo drew_zps890f754f.jpg

If you have already read BatM then I am sure you will be nodding your head as you read this and if you haven’t then you will see what you’re missing out on. I am about to gush so you have been warned. Drew was exquisite. (IMO) He was such a beautiful man. There was beauty in his words, his actions, his being and the best part was he was selfless. I think I have found my most favorite book boyfriend. Penny has given us a special gift in Drew Runous. ❤ Oh wait...how could i forget, he is a poet too. **sigh**

 photo eeacfba64c977fa9daec866bc9657665_zpsd3dad834.jpg
“His voice lilting and soothing. He was epically dreamy and tremendously gorgeous. But much more than that, his compassion……” ~ Ashley

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I loved meeting her. She was really refreshing and so easy to love. Like Drew she had an outer beauty that equaled her inner beauty. But what was special about her is that she didn’t realize it. She didn’t always see the sweetness and the kindness she had in her heart. She was witty too and I loved the new relationships she formed with all of her brothers. ❤

 photo Ashley1_zps9ba60d18.jpg
“So, other than her goodness, sweetness, gracefulness, and wit, what I like about AshleyWinston shouldn’t be discussed with Ashley Winston’s mother.” ~ Drew

The story ~

Ashley has been away from her family for eight years. She left home to make a life of her own in Chicago. But after she receives some unsettling news, she returns home.

Returning home brings about sadness for Ashley but it also brings about happiness and love. Growing up Ashely didn’t always have things easy. Dealing with 6 rotten and sometimes hateful brothers took its toll on her and her relationship with her dad was nonexistent. The one she always found love and comfort with was her momma.

Then she meets Drew. When they meet, we get the first dose of funniness in the book, but it also leaves us with a hint of what was to come. And what follows with these two was WOW…..just wow. Drew and Ashley’s relationship was one that I would say is a slow burn and I savored every minute of it. The push and pull with these two was crazy. ❤❤

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Ashley’s had a lot going on with her family and really didn’t know what do with Drew and her growing feelings for him. Her heart was telling her one thing and her head was telling her another. She really needed to do some soul searching to figure out where she really belonged. Was her home in Chicago where things were predictable or was it back in Tennessee surrounded by her momma, brothers and Drew?

I’m going to stop there because it is hard for me to say much more about the plot without giving away things that I would rather not. If you love Penny’s books then you will love this one. You get to see Sandra, Janie, Elizabeth, Alex, Quinn, and Nico again. You will be laughing in no time. You get to meet her brothers Jethro, Billy, Cletus, Beauford, Duane and Roscoe. I have to say all of them are pretty damn sweet. You get to meet Momma who will make you laugh and cry. Maybe I am just a reader easy to please but I just loved this book and I think Penny Reid did a sensational job with this one.

I’ll leave you with this last quote from Ashley that I loved!

“Drew melted my butter. He melted it standing, sitting, crouching, leaning, reading, smiling, hugging, laughing, frowning, writing, changing a light bulb, milking a cow – basically, if it was a verb and he was doing it, my butter was going to be melted.” ~ Ashley

*ARC so kindly provided by the author.* ❤
Profile Image for Rachel  L.
1,869 reviews2,246 followers
July 21, 2017

4.25 stars

“With you there are only two distances that matter: Here. Not here. You are not here.”

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Ashley Winston is a former beauty queen who left home as a teenager for college and 8 years later never returned. Tormented by her 6 goofy brothers, she distanced herself from everyone in her family except her mother. Ashley receives news that her mother is in the hospital and will not see anyone, so she rushes home from Chicago to Tennessee to see what is wrong.

Upon returning home Ashley discovers that her brothers have changed from rambunctious irresponsible young men into hard working and loving men. Among her brothers is a stranger, Drew, who has become a friend of the family in her absence. Soon Ashley's world comes crashing down around her, and it's up to her brothers and Drew to keep her afloat.

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I really enjoyed this book in the Knitting series. After having so many friends who loved it I was excited to meet Ashley and Drew and the ever famous Winston brothers. I also like that this book took us out of Chicago and into rural Tennessee, a place I've never been to physically, but after reading this book I felt as if I had visited there.

Ashley as a heroine is someone I admired, she worked hard to be where she was at in her life, and despite her reservations her love for her brothers was strong. She wanted to be valued for who she was and not what she looked like.

“No. Since I first saw you. Since I first laid eyes on you and felt sorry for every beautiful thing that was made no longer resplendent—nullified by your being.”

Drew was a hot viking man that makes another great addition to my book boyfriend collection, and I wouldn't mind staying with him in his secluded cabin and not leaving (for weeks, months, years). He was a little bit too stoic for my reader tastes at some points, and near the end I was a bit shocked by his actions (more so his lack of actions) and alas I was hoping for a bit more from him.

For me the best part of this book was the family dynamics between Ashley and her brothers. Being an only child I always dreamed of having brothers, and this book only made me wish for them more. While not perfect, Ashley's brothers were a strong support system and a little bit naughty. I cannot wait to read their series!!!

“Apathy between family members makes the blood they share turn to water.”

This is a romance I would highly recommend to EVERYONE! Honestly I cannot think of a single friend who would not enjoy it at least a little bit.

“When you cried, I learned what helplessness tastes like. Because all I could do was swallow.”

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Profile Image for Belle Aurora.
Author 50 books12.1k followers
August 10, 2014
***6+ stars***

Penny Reid astounds me.

When you think of Penny Reid and her writing, you expect a certain something.
Namely depth, love and smart humour.
She delivered - as per usual - but this time, she gave more. More than I expected. More than I knew I wanted but was ecstatic to receive.

9% into this story, I had to stop and gather my emotions before reading on.
I spent majority of this book overwhelmed by the beauty of words; something that rarely happens to me.

I love Penny's author voice, and I honestly didn't think Penny's work could get any better than she has previously given.
After all, how do you beat perfection?
Easily, apparently...
Penny has done it right here with this book.

The thing about BatM is that the situations involved in this book hit so close to home, and almost everyone can relate in some way or another.
The relationship development between Ashley and her brothers is so beautiful to watch, your chest will ache from the mix of emotions that will be pulled from you.

Drew - our hero - is amazing.
He is tall, strapping and often referred to as a Viking. But best of all, *swallows hard* he has a beard.
In other words, he is a God amongst men.
And although Drew and Ash meet under hilarious and mortifying circumstances, something blossoms and grows in such a way, that you can't look away even though it physically hurts you to read parts of this book.
Drew is one of my favourite heroes ever, and I'll tell you why...
because he is deep.

Ashley is a character of fire, and I love that. She is sassy but sweet, and doesn't allow herself to be walked over. She is not a doormat. Her relationship with her best friends, their partners and her own family combined is hilarious and heart-warming all at once. The brothers were just...so awesome. I wish Penny would write books for each of them, and I think that shows just how much I enjoyed this book. BatM is not a short read, but I still wanted more. This is not Penny rushing a book, this is just my selfish side coming out to play.

Do yourself a favour and buy this book as soon as it becomes available.
It was amazing, and I feel richer for having read it. A true treasure I will keep close to my heart.
I loved it.

***ARC provided by the author in exchange for an honest review...This is a spoiler free review***
Profile Image for Beverly.
1,005 reviews796 followers
December 31, 2014
5 Bless it… Stars

“Fear don’t count if you really want something.”

Let me start by saying this is one of the most beautiful, well written stories I have ever read. From the very beginning I was hooked and it wasn’t because there was a crazy twist or suspenseful plot, no it is because Ms. Reid had me falling in love with her characters.

A little bit about me. I actually live near where this book is set. My dad was in the military so I grew up all over the place, but since my dad retired in my teens I have lived in Knoxville, Tennessee. This book is actually set an hour outside of Knoxville near The Great Smoky Mountain National Park. So I thoroughly enjoyed and was able to relate to all the Southern references, lingo, and descriptions.

We first meet Ashley Winston when she is on her way to Tennessee due to a family tragedy. Ashley is one of seven children and the only daughter. She left home as soon as she graduated high school hellbent on overcoming her raising. Ashley grew up in a backwoods hollar, yes that is how we say hollow here in Tennessee, in a place where everyone knew you and your business. Now that isn’t always a bad thing, but when you are constantly running from a stereotype it can be unbearable. Ashley’s mother is a wonderful person and loved by everyone, but her father is a con-artist who is constantly leaving damage in his wake. Ashley is beautiful like her dad, but she is also caring, intelligent and compassionate. In her opinion people only see a piece of trash with a pretty face.

Since leaving Tennessee Ashley has worked to prove she is more than what meets the eye. She has built a terrific life for herself in Chicago, has a great job and friends, but still doubts people see her as more than a hot piece of ass. Regardless of all her success she has isolated herself from her family. She still has daily chats and takes vacations with mother, but hasn’t been back to Tennessee since she left.

Coming home is never easy, especially to six brothers. When Ashley arrives back home she is immediately submerged back in her old life. Within hours of arriving she is woken by a loud engine roaring. With only a few hours of sleep she storms out the house to face down her brothers. That is when she meets Dr. Andrew Runous. Drew is her brother Jethro’s boss and a family friend.

The meeting between Ashley and Drew is humiliating for Ashley and had me laughing out loud at her antics and inner monologue. From this moment on I was completely sold. First, I loved how Ashley and Drew’s relationship started. This is not a case where two people were at the right place and right time and fell in love, no this relationship took time. The developed a relationship where she could trust, rely on and be herself with Drew.

Drew and Ashley know their time together is temporary since Ash will be returning to Chicago eventually. However, he just wants to be there for her and take care of her. Seeing the two of them fight what they think is right and their desires is heart wrenching. This isn’t a case of someone not manning up, it is about someone sacrificing their happiness for someone else.

The love story of Ashley and Drew will always be one of my favorites. Their love for each other was selfless, protective, and passionate. Their conversations where intelligent and witty. Drew saw the real Ash and was impressed with her. He didn’t want to change her, he loved her independence, quirkiness and spunk.

This story is so unique because as I much as I loved the story of Ash and Drew, I also loved the story of her and her brothers catching up and redeveloping their relationships. I loved the moments Ash shared with her mother, and her words of wisdom. The Beauty and the Mustache broke my heart, made me laugh, and swoon.

So this year I read 330 something books. There is no way I could rank them all, but this book is definitely in my top 10 for 2014. I highly recommend it!
Profile Image for Pavlina Read more sleep less blog  .
2,434 reviews4,593 followers
October 25, 2014
4,5 STARS :D

I finished this book but I'm still thinking about this all over again!It was an emotional read!The writing was so beautiful, the story,the characters ...everything was perfect! I love when I become emotionally with realistic books!The characters were intelligent !I think it's the first book that I did not only love the main characters also the supportive once..Each chapter begins with a quote!This was so clever!!!This story is about family,love,friendship,loss and acceptance.

After eight years of absence from her home Ashley comes back because her mother is sick.She hasn't had anything to do with her six brothers..Her six brothers have finally grown up, and have changed.They are funny,intelligent and determined and Ashley tries to reconnect with them and find what she never had with them!


While she is back she will meet a friend of them who is so close with the family and he knows a lot about her(but not exactly that she is "she".He has heard about her as an "Ash" so he thought she was a boy).But Ashley doesn't know anything about Drew... The way they meet is hilarious.However, they instantly find each other attractive...

Drew is amazing!!!I think every man who love reading poetry,will make you melt for him!!!He is intelligent,sexy,sensitive and romantic!!Ashley is a likeable character too.She is funny,strong,smart and cute.Also she afraid to allow men in her life so the romance developed slowly!I would say that they relationship was so romantic!!! *sigh*


Omg I don't know why I haven't read a book from Penny Reid before!!!!I loved her writing so much, she is a very gifted author!!I'm glad that I decide to read this book!! I'm so excited to read the Winston Brothers series !!!Duane <3 <3 *sigh* Can't wait for his book!!!!If you are looking for intelligent characters this is what you need!!!


Profile Image for Jen .
804 reviews586 followers
August 11, 2016
5 For the Love of Nietzsche Stars

It seemed he had a gift for shocking the butter off my biscuits.

Sweet. Baby. Jesus. Yes!

Do I feel like I'm objectifying Drew and his quiet and steady brand of awesomeness by posting a hot viking gif? Kinda, but I've come to terms with my pervy self and I've decided I'm OK with it.

"Roosters need a purpose. If you don’t give a rooster a purpose, they make trouble.”

Drew and Ashley together made for a sweet and lovely book, but the way Penny Reid can weave together a story makes all the difference.

And I do mean weave.

The slow, intense love story coupled with the coming together of the Winston family in a time of tragedy made me late for work due to extreme sleep deprevation. It was totally worth it!

There's something inexplicably wonderful about this author's writing. I can't seem to get enough of it.

Did my author crush (it's a real thing, people!) reach new levels after reading Beauty and the Moustache? You bet. But if loving books about knitting and bearded hillbillies is wrong, I don't want to be right.
Profile Image for Geri Reads.
1,232 reviews2,066 followers
September 2, 2014
5++++ stars!

Fire burns blue and hot.
Its fair light blinds me not.
Smell of smoke is satisfying, tastes nourishing to my tongue.
I think fire ageless; never old, and yet no longer young.
Morning coals are cool, daylight leaves me blind.
I love the fire most because of what it leaves behind.

This book made me happy and in love. Full stop.

It’s one of those reads that didn’t have unnecessary angst, just a well thought out plot with awesome dialogue and great characters all around. I’ve enjoyed every couple in this series, from Quinn and Janie, Elizabeth and Nico, Sandra and Alex. But I have to say I fell head over heels in love with Drew and Ashley. Their story resonated with me the most. I know I sound like a broken record because I’ve been saying this as each book in the series gets published but this book just keeps getting better and better. And this is hands down my favorite in this series.

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After 8 years Ashley is back with her family in Tennessee to care for her ailing mother. Being back home also means seeing her 6 bearded brothers again, who were partly responsible for her wanting to live a life away from Tennessee. But as days turned into weeks and as Ashley spends her time caring for her mother, she realized that things have changed. Her brothers were no longer the irresponsible hooligans that she remembered from long ago. They have changed. Everything it seemed has changed.

And a big part of that change was Drew. Drew Runous was also bearded, hunky, quiet and the most fascinating man Ashley has ever met. Their first introduction to each other was hilarious. But as Ashley soon found out, Drew was more than just a friend to her family. He played a big role is her brothers’ lives and ultimately her own life as well.

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Beauty and the Mustache not only proved that Penny Reid is a talented author (we already know that), but it also shows the depth in the way she wrote these characters. While this book still retains her trademark humor and quirks, it was also more emotional and poignant. Even the subject that was tackled here was a departure from her previous works. But it was handled with such care and with humor that even though this book made me cry, it also made me cry. Sometimes at the same time.

“I’m glad you know my heart, because you are my heart.”

Drew. The fact that Charlie Hunnam and Travis Fimmel was the inspiration for his character had nothing to do with the reason why I loved Drew at all (liar, liar, pants on fire). I swears. Seriously though, Drew is PR best hero to day. He’s sexy alpha minus the asshole part. And he’s also sensitive, smart, and steadfast. Best of all, he writes poetry. I’m sorry but any guy character who writes beautiful poetry is a winner in my book. No doubt about it.

Ashley was just as wonderful. When I found out it was going to be Ashley’s book, I was hesitant because I couldn’t even remember her from the knitting group. She sort of flew under the radar. It wasn’t surprising though because Sandra was such a big personality that she overshadows even the other girls. But as I continue to read this book, I fell in love with Ashley as well. It broke my heart the things she went through in this book.

Ashley Austen Winston,
You don’t know how deeply you cut when your intentions carry no knives.

But what truly made this an inspiring read for me were Ashley’s brothers and the ladies of the knitting group. If you read this book, you’ll know the reason why I lumped them together. Ashley’s brothers were just phenomenal. Either you wanna sleep with or you want them to be your brothers as well. Each has a distinct personality that just jumps off the page. They’re bold, hot, loyal and most of all, they all loved Ashley in their own unique way. They provided some of the most beautiful heartrending moments in the books.

The ladies of the knitting group outdid themselves in this book as well. I loved that I was able to get to know these ladies through the course of this series. They are hilarious. I loved their friendship. Most of the time, in romance novels, the women are get pitted against each other; the virgins and the sluts, etc. But in this series, we get to read about a group of women who love and support each other. And it’s a beautiful thing to read.

Ultimately, I’d say this book is so much more about the romance between Drew and Ashley. It’s also about family, friends, loyalty and growing up. Definitely one of my favorite read this year. Oh, and the quotes at the beginning of each chapter were fantastic.

ARC provided by Penny Reid in exchange for an honest review!
Profile Image for Didi.
865 reviews287 followers
August 18, 2014
I'M AT A LOSS FOR WORDS. Maybe not, but it feels like that. This was...PERFECTION. I want to wrap this book around me and lose myself in it's intensity. I loved it!

I love this series, it's everything you would want. It's romantic, laugh out loud, bust open your gut-hilarious, sweet, smart, witty, with great friends I wish I knew, wonderful support, fantastic fun times and heroes that not only make you swoon, but effortlessly melt into a puddle. My favorite so far was Friends Without Benefits. I loved Elizabeth and Nico, it was seriously a fantastic book. But this one...this one may surpass even that one. It was more serious, more intense, more thought provoking but it never lost it's witty charm and comedic timing.

We get Ashley's story here, where she returns to Tennessee after getting some alarming news. She's been gone 8 years, leaving behind her mother who she's very close with and 6 obnoxious brothers. Her life is in Chicago, her friends, knitting and working as a nurse practitioner. They all make up Ashley's life. Those and her love of reading. But once in Tennessee, things start happening and maybe, just maybe...home is where her heart is.

Drew Runous, WOW. He is ah-maz-ing. He is the epitome of MAN. He is a testosterone-infused, hulky, burnin-burnin-piece of manly man, MAN. Sweet, smart, intense, giving, strong, self-assured, all consuming sexiness personified. I loved this man. I think he's my favorite hero in the series and probably one of my favorite male leads, ever. Penny Reid writes males like theyre supposed to be written. They don't come across as anything other than pure, unadulterated MAN. Characterizing a male isn't easy, and I can count on one hand how many authors are spot on. This isn't to say the rest can't write male leads realistically. What I'm saying is, only a handful of female authors have written a man that literally comes off the pages. His characterization is a living, breathing and affecting thing. You can FEEL him, hear him as if he's in the room and actually smell his manliness! Drew needs to be read to be appreciated. But with his poetic words, strength of character and off the charts sexiness, he blew me away, totally annihilated me. LURVE that character.

Ashley was a wonderful person as well, I loved her too! She put others needs ahead of her own and never stopped trying to be there for those around her. The reconnection with her brothers showed her that she wasn't the only one who had changed over the course of 8 years. She woke up and saw what was right in front of her and I was ecstatic with her decisions and realizations. Of course, we got loads of time with her wonderful friends. I love seeing them over and over again. I shed several tears reading this and laughed so many times I lost track. I highly recommend this series, it's fantastic, intelligent and witty beyond belief. I finished with a smile on my face, loved it to infinity!
Here's a quote that sums up Drew...sigh.


**Copy provided by the uproariously funny and talented, Penny Reid! **
Profile Image for Astrid - The Bookish Sweet Tooth.
794 reviews892 followers
February 9, 2018

Review @ Vanilla & Spice Books

"Roses are red, violets are blue, rhyming is hard. Wine.” - Sandra

Beauty and The Mustache is the book I was looking forward to most and it certainly didn't disappoint but here's the thing - if you read books out of order in a series oftentimes you miss out on a lot of details or insider jokes. So when Penny said that you need to have read the previous books in the series to enjoy Marriage of Inconvenience I started catching up via audiobooks. Now I find myself wanting to re-read the books I read previously to see what I've missed. Anyway, I digress.

Ashley is on her way home to Tennessee, a home she couldn't wait to leave eight years ago after graduation. Her mom missed their daily phone calls, something that is so out of character that it worries Ash. Arriving at home she is being welcomed by her six brothers and a stranger, and boy, is that encounter awkward and hilarious. Between paying heed to the bathroom schedule her brothers have set up (as to not run into an awkward scene where one of them gives special attention to their salami) and caring for her terminally ill mother she also needs to get a grip on that pesky attraction she feels for Drew.

“Drew melted my butter. He melted it standing, sitting, crouching, leaning, reading, smiling, hugging, laughing, frowning, writing, changing a light bulb, milking a cow – basically, if it was a verb and he was doing it, my butter was going to be melted.”

Ashley is a strong female lead. Feisty, warm, caring, witty and romantic. And tough because if you grow up with six rambunctious brothers a thick skin is essential for your survival. The pranks they played on her were terrible. It was lovely to see how Ashley got to know them anew, to experience how they doted on her now. Ashley is distrustful of men - a former beauty pageant contender she doesn't know many men who won't judge her by looks and her southern accent. And then there is Drew. It was a little heartbreaking that she didn't see what was right in front of her because of her hangups.

You are loveliness personified; you are grace and fascination. I think of you and I stop breathing. I worry that any movement will steal the image of you from my mind’s eye. But the memory is a pale, hollow specter to luminous reality.

If you've read some of the Winston Brothers books by Penny Reid you know how adorable, peculiar, quirky and special they are. To imagine the hell they raised when they were teenagers? It takes a strong mother to turn them into wonderful and good men. I felt for the Winston family when they were faced with the passing of their mother - Bethany was a mother bear with a gentle hand and the wisdom that comes with a life fully lived.

Drew? All the freaking swoons. He is one of those still waters that run deep. He is a poet with unassuming grace, friendly and his soul is as romantic as Ashley's. I want to gush about his chivalry, his sweetness, his devotion to Ashley but if you think you know Drew when you come to the last chapter of the book wait for the epilogue - his urge to possess, to consume Ashley and be consumed by her...wow. That was a one-up if I've seen one. He was a revelation until the end. This epilogue was one of the best I've ever read and a glimpse into the beautiful soul of Drew Runous.

Words are clumsy things. Raw, wild, hunger, need, desperation, fascination do not adequately define how I long for her complete capitulation. I want her to weep. I want to quietly tear her apart and lovingly watch her bleed. I crave knowing that I can inspire one tenth of the torment she inspires in me. How can I speak such things out loud?

Do yourself a favor and read the books in order (and in particular - read Knitting in the City before the Winston Brothers). Even if you are tempted to forego reading the earlier books - they will give you so much insight and the experience will be much richer.

Beauty and the Mustache is along with Love Hacked my favorite in this series and I hate rushing through the books instead of savoring them. I'll definitely re-read both series back-to-back at some point. I adore Penny Reid's writing, she's starting to ruin me for all other authors. There is so much beauty in it, especially in this one, not just the poems themselves. The musings, the trains of thought, they are one beautiful piece of art. Thinking about this series coming to an end makes me said...but to quote a famous quote I found in Beauty and the Mustache:

'Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.' - Dr. Seuss

Here are some more of my favorite quotes because this book is full of them.

Her body is slick, yielding softness, sweetness replete. I want to worship, yet need to possess. I suffer because she is forever anticipation, even when I hold her, fill her, taste her, dominate her, consume her. I need her.

With you there are only two distances that matter: Here. Not here. You are not here. - Drew

“When you cried, I learned what helplessness tastes like. Because all I could do was swallow.”
Profile Image for Christie«SHBBblogger».
965 reviews1,248 followers
July 21, 2017
This book is currently FREE right now! (7-21-17) If you haven't read it yet, what are you waiting for?

Title: Beauty and the Mustache
Series:Knitting in the City #4
Author:Penny Reid
Release date:September 9 , 2014
Rating:5 stars

Drew was beautiful and poetic and raw and real.

The end. Enough said.

Alright...maybe I'll talk about a little more.

When I heard that Drew was a poet I already knew I was going to love him. Add into that, that I have loved every single Penny Reid book I've read and I had zero doubts that I would enjoy this book. Now that I've read the book? I can tell you confidently that I was right. Although this book didn't have the same amount of trademark witty humor in it, it was still there and still gave me the silly grins. This book is a slight departure from Penny's norm because it dealt with more serious topics but I didn't mind that in the least. I felt it only added another layer to her writing and made it that much better in my eyes. Penny has come to be one of my absolute favorite authors because very, very few can match her in her unique stories, characters, and the emotional upheaval she causes with her words. I just can't get enough of her knitting in the city series and every time a new book comes out, I scramble to get my hands on it.

Ashley Winston is returning home to Tennessee with preconceived notions of what her 7 brothers are like. They are the main reason she left home in order to make a better future for herself in the city. They were bullies and troublemakers. She set out to set herself apart from the chaos she was surrounded with in the past.

I'd worked eight years to change and improve myself. I'd become someone new. Someone stronger, armed with knowledge, fierce.

Ashley was a fabulous heroine. She was strong, opinionated, sassy, a book lover (a girl after my own heart), intellectual, and had a sensitive soul. She goes home expecting to find conflict with her brothers and what she really gets knocks her life off it's axis.

Drew is a mysterious close friend of the family who she's never heard a word about before from her mother. He rubs her the wrong way immediately and puts her on the edge. Not to mention his stunningly good looks and his stares that seem to stare right through her. She doesn't quite know what to make of him.

I was hot, flustered, ill prepared or emotionally equipped to interact with fictionally handsome men, staring at me like I was cake, speaking in intimate tones.

Drew keeps showing up every time she turns around and makes it impossible for her to ignore him.

My heart just broke for what Ash discovers. She has a long struggle ahead of her and Drew is there to keep all her broken pieces together. He was absolutely perfect in his support of her. Always giving her what she needed even if she didn't know what that was at the time. He was the calm in her storm and the protector of her heart.

I can't imagine loving a hero more.

Penny introduced a whole new cast of characters in this book. Ash's brothers have all turned their lives around-thanks to Drew. He was the catalyst that pushed them to excel and better themselves. Now, as Ashley builds a relationship with Drew, she's building one with her brothers as well and rediscovering each and every one of them. Their love and protectiveness of her was so sweet to see and it made me want a bunch of bearded rascals as brothers myself.

I swooned, I laughed, I got teary eyed, and melted at Drew's romantic poetry. This book was another big success from Penny Reid!!

"Sugar, I'd be honored to catch you anytime you fall."


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Profile Image for Stacey.
1,446 reviews1,154 followers
January 16, 2022
LOVE this audiobook...

Still one of my very favourites by Penny Reid. I absolutely LOVE Drew and I will keep coming back for re-reads/listens when I'm in the mood for a thoughtful, strong, caring and considerate hero.

Knitting with the Winston Brothers

I HAD to re-read/listen to Beauty and the Mustache after recently reading Beard with Me. I needed to see those Winston Brothers but I also needed to laugh at them and with them.

Coincidentally, a very good friend lost a loved one right at the same time I was listening to Ash dealing with her family tragedy. I think it hit me a lot harder listening this time and those tears on the train were even harder to hold back.

Penny Reid, you are a marvel. Listening to Beauty and the Mustache definitely made me want to hold my loved ones close and tell them how much I love them.


Everything I hoped for and more

Wow!! I was expecting good things from this story and I wasn't disappointed. Ash Winston is someone I know well. I was initially introduced to Ash from her knitting group, but I really got to know her better from hanging with her brothers. I'm a HUGE fan of those bearded hotties, the Winston brothers. Mixing the two series together made it absolutely epic. Sure, I probably should have read them in the correct order but I kind of think my reading order was better.

This book started off funny, and I was happily chuckling along while catching the train to work. Imagine my embarrassment when my chuckles turned to tears. Hiding my face, sniffling discreetly, I was shocked that my emotions could go to such extremes. To be honest, I found the whole story a lot like that. I was high...then I was low.

Full credit must go to Penny Reid for writing such an amazing story, but I definitely think my experience was enhanced by the talents of the narrator. Her voice was easy to listen to, humorous and adaptable. I always knew when a character was changing and never struggled to understand what she was saying.

Loved Beauty and the Mustache and think this is my favourite in the series so far. Can't wait to listen/read more in the future.

Profile Image for Catarina.
896 reviews1,977 followers
September 20, 2014
4,5 “SO MANY BEARDS” Stars


Ashley left home and her family behind a few years ago to find a life for herself in Chicago. She never regretted that decision and she never returned home. But when a sad family event happens she has to come home to her mother and her biggest support and her six (yes, SIX!) bearded brothers. Its when she meets Drew, another awesome and yes, bearded, man that will make her feel things that she wasn’t used to.


Their lives are different, they live in different cities but somehow they can’t stop falling. I will not tell you too much so I don’t ruin the plot but get ready for an amazing and slow burn love story that you’ll not want to miss.


Rating: 4,5 Stars.
Storyline: A wonderful heartwarming romance that will leave you with a smile on your face. I’ve said that before and I say it again with undeniable certainty: Penny Reid is one of the most amazing romance author’s of our time. If you like the simple and pure romance that is lately hard to find on books, please, read hers. You will not be disappointed.
Writing Style: First person. Female POV. This was wonderfully written and although it wasn’t my favorite (The first one stole my heart!) because sometimes it was TOO slow, this is a completely addictive reading. But one you’ll be glad to have.
Character Development: Ashley was great. Yes, she was insecure and sometimes she wouldn’t be able to see herself as the others saw her, but she was sweet and loyal and a great friend. Drew as also amazing. He was a perfect male character but I must confess that the whole poetry thing made me a little itchy. (I have a thing against poetry. It’s completely unjustified and I really don’t know why I have it!). As always, it was great to see more of the previous characters and Ashley brothers?? They were amazing and I loved them and their beards so much!!
Steam: Meh.
Profile Image for Dee Montoya.
942 reviews587 followers
August 22, 2014
*****5++++ Pogonophile Stars*****

*ARC so kindly provided by the author.* ❤

"There is always some madness in love. But there is also some reason in madness."
-Friedrich Nietzsche

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BATM is the fourth book of the Knitting in the City series, I recommend reading them all, because each book is truly AMAZE-BALLS! but this one can also be read as a standalone.

Ashley is a pediatric nurse who left her hometown of Green Valley, Tennessee to go live in the city, looking for a better future far away from the troubles and insecurities that have plague her since she was young. She has a great life in Chicago, awesome friends and a job she loves. Her mother has fallen ill, so she has to go back to the smoky mountains she once escaped, to be there for her mom. Once Ashley arrives, she learns the truth about her mother's condition and together with her six bearded, hillbilly brothers they do everything they can to care for their beloved momma as a team. One of the reasons Ashley left all those years ago, was because of the rude antics her brothers were always pulling on her, this boys were mean and crazy. As it turns out, eight years have done them right, because now unlike before, they all hold responsible jobs, and even though they are still crazy, they show support and love to their sister, making Ashley realized how much she's missed her family. I gotta say I loved all of Ashley's brothers, they were all quite charming and very entertaining. Coming from a family of six kids, I could relate to the silly fights and unconditional love.

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On her first day back she has a peculiar encounter with a handsome, Viking looking man on her mother's yard. Drew Runuous has become an important part of the Winston family. He's sexy, smart and very quiet and Ashley is mad at her traitorous body's reaction to this enigmatic man. Drew and Ashley get off on a rough start but little by little they become two fools, helpless to the incredible attraction that has develop between them. Their story is highly romantic, I was constantly swooning with Drew's poetic way of communication, not only did he take over but heart but totally melted my butter. Unfortunately the reality of Ashley's mother's illness creates a cloud over the whole situation making this couple afraid of wanting more out of each other for the future.

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I thought this book was absolutely gorgeous, is not as humorous as the other books in this series, but I still laughed and enjoyed myself to no end. The Tennessee setting, the poetic dialogue and the return of all the awesome characters from previous stories has made Beauty and the Mustache, Penny Reid's best book yet. I'm a huge fan of her work but now I'm even more impress, by how she always manages to top herself with each new novel. Honey, that's what this novel feels like, sweet and smooth; don't pass up the chance to experience this absolutely amazing read. <3
Profile Image for Kat.
Author 9 books408 followers
May 29, 2022
I have been so waiting for this one! We finally get to the Winston Brothers and Ashley, the sole Winston sister’s story. The comparison of Snow White and her bearded dwarf brothers is quite apt. What it must be like to grow up in a house with so many boys. You can sympathize with her for escaping rural Tennessee with the roosters and dead car parts littering the yard for civilized life in Chicago. And yet the way everything is described is so endearing and homey, you can’t help but fall in love. I adored the relationship between her and Drew, who is very closed off and private, a hunky park ranger, and especially seeing the relationship heal between her and her brothers.
Profile Image for Duchess Nicole.
1,258 reviews1,547 followers
October 30, 2015

I think Penny Reid must be really smart and she must read a lot of fucking books. All kinds. Lots of variety. And I love her. And I loved this hero and heroine. A favorite of the series, fo sho. When I can't tell if the hero is a beta or a gamma, I know I'm in love.

Profile Image for Sabrina.
3,390 reviews1,993 followers
July 31, 2017
Currently FREE
Amazon US * Barnes & Noble

4 'Melted my butter' Stars

I've been meaning to go back and read the Knitting in the City series but for some stupid reason I didn't. So when I saw that Beauty and the Mustache was free on Amazon I decided it was a sign that I should finally read at least something from this series. And now here I sit, mad at myself for not reading this sooner.

Ashley Winston is so unlike her brother, whom I've already fallen in love with, yet she's also the same in the unpredictability of her character. She made me fall in love with her within the first few chapters and I had a big 'ole grin on my face the majority of this book. There were some really sad parts too that had my grabbing for the tissues, but the overall feeling of happiness never left me while I was reading this.

She and Drew had an amazing connection and I really liked that even with that strong chemistry they had more of a friendship in the beginning than anything romantic. It really showed how well they were together and them leaning on one another in their time of need was very sweet and what true romance is.

Overall, I am definitely not making my same mistake again and I won't be waiting too long to go read more from this series. Getting to see some of Ashley's friends featured in this story already has my interest piqued
Profile Image for [~Ami~]♥Sexy Dexy♥ .
501 reviews454 followers
December 14, 2014
4 stars  

Who is this guy on the cover? No, seriously who is he? Because he isnt my Drew. I wasnt going to write a review but I felt like I wanted to shout to everyone how I swooned over Drew. So here goes: *swoooooon*  


A few reasons why I couldnt rate 5 stars. I felt it was a bit slow in places, the title (I guess Beauty and the Beard doesnt have a good ring to it?), I must be loosing my sense of humour because I didnt find it funny.  

Overall an enjoyable read, I liked the interactions with her friends and Drew will be remembered for doing crazy somersaults to my heart ♥
Profile Image for Mo.
1,363 reviews2 followers
October 5, 2014

I really enjoyed this one. Ashley returns home after eight years. She has 6 brothers, all of whom have beards!!

Loved her first meeting with Drew. Yes, we do regress to our teenage years when we interact with our siblings. I know.
Loved her friends. There was an interaction in the kitchen with two of her friends and I swear I was nearly pissing in my knickers at their carry on.

“In that moment, I finally figured out what kind of handsome he was. He was fiction-handsome. Romance novel handsome; but not the clean-cut (billionaire) alpha male or even the tattooed (billionaire) bad boy archetype. He was the Scottish highlander, Viking conqueror, bodice-ripper historical romance kind of handsome; an unshaven, lion wrestling, mountain man recluse, toss you over his shoulder and plunder your goodies kind of handsome. He was both scary and swoony. I wanted to braid his beard. I also wanted to run away.”

There are so many pics I could post here of gorgeous bearded men. Who knew beards were so sexy?

Reading for me was like breathing. It was probably akin to masturbation for my brain

Look, I’m not going to say too much about this one.

It was a great read. I think you can read it as a standalone although it is part of a series. The other books here are fantastic also.

”My mind went to double the ginger, double the fun."

All I could think of with this one was… Jamie Fraser.

Good Lord, I must have been half-unhinged, because that Nietzsche quote made me laugh.

Get reading, this author is great.

Profile Image for Dali.
1,854 reviews484 followers
August 31, 2019
Ok, ok... my review is a pretty bad one but the teaser I found is really swoony, right?

I need more stars in my rating system. It deserves a minimum of 5+ ⭐️. Wow... so darn swoony, but also fun, entertaining with pull at your heart strings feels. A breathtakingly beautiful romance.

Drew Runous is THE perfect book boyfriend. He’s a man’s man, thoughtful, caring, supportive and oh so incredibly romantic. The list goes on and on, hence THE PERFECT MAN. And Ashley Winston is his ideal match. She’s smart, strong and independent but also caring and fun.

Giving this story an added layer of goodness, was the introduction of Ashley’s now grown, but still wacky brothers. I love their dynamic, the banter, the laugh out loud situations, and most of all, their unconditional support for one another.

And of course, a Knitting in the City book wouldn’t be completely without Ashley’s knitting posee. I love this group of lovely, caring women and their men.

Seriously this entire series is guaranteed to make you smile.

Amazon -> http://amzn.to/2uilgHJ
Profile Image for Karen.
810 reviews1,026 followers
February 26, 2015
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”With you there are only two distances that matter: Here. Not here. You are not here.”

Another stunner! I loved the whole book…bearded hillbilly brothers and all! This is the fourth book in Penny Reid’s Knitting in the City series. And honestly these books just keep getting better and better.

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This is Ashley Winston’s story. When she’s called home to Tennessee for a family crisis, she is faced with something much more dire than she was expecting.

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And while dealing with one of the most difficult tasks of her life, she definitely wasn’t expecting to find HIM. The man who seems to have taken over her family, as in really taken over. It seems that while she’s been gone these last eight years, Dr. Drew Runous has placed himself at the center of everything Winston.

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Employer. Friend. Landlord. Financier. Legal counsel. Security. And overall Poster Boy. So, who is this man, and how did he come to know her family? And why is she feeling so left out?

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“We are most awake to the world and to our own longings and desires when we suffer.”

This was probably the most emotional book in the series so far. Ashley had some real life-changing events to overcome. But in the process, it opened her eyes to the life and family she left behind. A life she missed. A family she loved.

“Apathy between family members makes the blood they share turn to water.”

Growing up as the only girl in a family of six brothers, Ashley was teased and tormented on a daily basis. Add a sleazy, abusive and exploiting father into the mix, and come 18, she couldn’t get out of there fast enough. She wanted more out of life… an education… a big city… a new reputation, and a little respect.

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Although, coming home quickly reminded her of all she’d given up. Her family and all the loved she’d left behind.

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And then there is Drew, with his “fiction-good-looks” and his brooding personality. The Viking philosopher, Nietzsche quoting, poetry writing musician. Not to mention his gorgeous body, his capacity for writing poetry, and the simple fact that he’s in love with her.

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“Fire burns blue and hot.
Its fair light blinds me not.
Smell of smoke is satisfying, tastes nourishing to my tongue.
I think fire ageless, never old, and yet no longer young.
Morning coals are cool: daylight leaves me blind.
I love the fire most because of what it leaves behind.”

His only problem… he’s too freaking perfect. He loves her too much to make demands. He’s willing to let her go. He never even tells her how he feels… I must say… this pissed me off. But all’s well that ends well… right?

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“If I told you I love you now
How many seconds would it take
How long would you allow
All that I am to break
I turn away
Before you can see
How badly I need you to stay
With me”

Once again we are blessed with Penny Reid’s endearing characters and her funny, yet emotional writing style. I cannot say enough about her. And I am dying for more. Bring on the rest!!! I’m not sure who is next, but just know I will be there for the duration, with my wine glass at the ready and my knitting needles in hand.

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“This came from Sandra. "Roses are red, violets are blue, rhyming is hard. Wine.”

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Profile Image for Sher❤ The Fabulous BookLover.
875 reviews554 followers
February 19, 2015

Gosh I LOVED this book. Having 3 brothers of my own I could empathize with Ashley. I literally fell in love with these characters. Especially Drew. Get your smelling salts ready cause he will make you swoon! He was everything a girl could ask for and more. He was charming, poetic, selfless, caring and so thoughtful! Every word that came out of his mouth was luscious.

I don't want to give the story away, but I must say I loved the storyline. Ashley Winston comes home after 8 years away and a lot of things have changed. Ashley has 6 meddling brothers and they all live in a very small Tennessee town. Only Penny Reid could tap into so many of my emotions at once. I experienced love, laughter, grief and best of all I even had my intellect stimulated! The characters are all so quirky and lovable, especially Ashley's brothers (I cannot wait for their individual stories!)

I have so many quotes that I loved but this one topped them all:

"He was a Scottish Highlander, Viking conqueror, bodice-ripper historical romance, toss you over his shoulder and plunder your goodies kind of handsome."

Overall, this is a fabulous read, and if you love Penny Reid you'll enjoy this.

Just make sure while reading this to do these three things:

1. LISTEN TO SOME GOOD OLD COUNTRY MUSIC (George Strait or Brooks and Dunn preferably)

2. EAT This (cause nothing is more country than chicken fried steak):


Profile Image for Jacqueline's Reads.
2,842 reviews1,483 followers
September 7, 2015
4 Major Beard love Stars

Beauty and the Mustache is a standalone novel and is part of the Knitting in the City series. I am doing the audio version of this read. I enjoy audio books a lot because I can listen at any time or place. Also I feel like I can connect to the characters better.

There are many reasons why I picked up this book. All my friends love Penny Reid, I am also a knitter and I love funny books. I would describe Penny Reid’s writing style (at least this series) much like a chick-lit book. It’s not very steamy, but it’s a no fuss, no muss kind of read. It’s cute and adorable. If you have a group of girls in your life then this book will make you miss and appreciate them.

One of the things I enjoyed a lot about this book is the overall storyline. Ashley needs to go home because of a family emergency. She hasn’t gone home in YEARS. She also has SIX brothers.

Oh one more thing I should note, Ashley is from the south. So the narrator has an accent and it’s the CUTEST thing ever. I simply LOVED LOVED LOVED the accent. I’m from the south and the way people talk, the way Ashley talked, hit it on the mark. It’s true, with all “bless your heart”, I couldn’t get enough of it. Also, when the narrator would do the male parts and with the accent, I just died laughing.

Anyway, back to the review. Ashley has to deal with her family issue, on top of her hillbilly brothers, on top of the new guy, DREW. Who… wait for it is an educated philosopher? Like I said, the storyline is cute. Another aspect of the book I loved was the overall tone. I enjoyed how light and comical the read was. I loved Ashley’s brothers antics and I can’t wait to get to know more about them.

Ashley and Drew’s relationship is very slow building. There’s a lot of character development and there’s little steam, which is fine, just know that is how the book is written. I thought the relationship was unhurried, but sweet. I felt like I could truly feel the feelings forming between Ashley and Drew.

I loved Ashley. I loved how she put up with her family, how much she loved her mom and that she always put everyone first. I enjoyed Drew. I enjoyed how caring and loyal he was towards Ashley and her family. This book will tie you up in knots and “put the butter on your bread”… hehehe.

If you are a fan of the series or want to try a Penny Reid book, then I suggest this one. It will leave a smile on your face.

Audio Questions

Would you consider the audio edition of Beauty and the Mustache to be better than the print version?

I didn’t read the print version, but I enjoyed the audio very much. The accent was perfect and it got me completely engrossed in the story.

Who was your favorite character and why?

I loved Ashley’s six brothers. I found them comical, endearing and it added a little something to the storyline. I loved how protective they were towards Ashley too.

What does Joy Nash bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

This is my first narration by Joy and she completely nailed this book. With all of the voice transitions to the accent, it was simply top notched. She conveyed Ashley’s emotions so well and I felt all of them. Joy is on my favorite list.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

I hate this question because I can never do it justice…. Maybe something like “A mountain man, bear wrestler and philosopher, Ashley may have met her match” < ---- I tried.
Profile Image for BookLover.
387 reviews80 followers
April 5, 2020
**Originally read in 2016, re-read in 2020**

This story was FLAWLESS! As I move forward through each of the books in this series, I get more and more invested in the knitting group. After each read I think to myself, Penny Reid can’t top that one. But she does!

In reading Ashley’s story, I felt like I was stepping into her life at such a pivotal and heart wrenching time. Despite the seriousness of what was going on in Ashley’s life, I laughed, swooned and, yes, cried. Like I said, the story was flawless. At no time did any situation feel contrived or misplaced, nor did I feel emotionally manipulated by the sadness present.

As usual, the knitting group gave support, comfort and added a hint of ludicrousness to many of the scenes, even when at a distance.

“I heard some commotion coming from the speakers of my laptop and glanced at the screen.
Everyone in my knitting group was huddled together, obviously in front of the screen on their side. At some point, one of them must have made popcorn, because all seven of them were eating it, their eyes glued to the action going on in Tennessee.”

Drew was a bit of a tough nut to crack in this story. Like Ashley, I had trouble figuring out what he was thinking. He truly won me over, though, with his unwavering support of Ashley, despite her best efforts to avoid it.

I knew Ashley had what she referred to as “a bunch of hillbilly brothers” so I had NO idea what to expect with them. I was so tickled pink by their funny expressions and obvious love for their sister, though, and now I am VERY excited to read their stories. Their "schedule" still cracks me up.
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