Penrose not only understands the details of Hawking's work at a much deeper level than most of us, but as a contemporary of Hawking's he has followed his career for decades and can give us a good overall impression.
However, like Hawking, with whom he was a collaborator (as you read in the article), he also wrote several highly successful popular books. I haven't yet read the Emperor's New Mind and look forward to doing so, but I have read the excellent The Road To Reality: A Complete Guide to the Laws of the Universe . I might also recommend some joint lectures between the two of them .
I don't think there could be a more fitting author for Stephen Hawking's obituary.
The dominant contrary opinion is that this can be done using some form of computation. Other opinions are that something other than computation in the Turing sense is required, but that current physics is probably sufficient to describe it. Very few people think that a theory of e.g. quantum gravity is the right level of explanation for the phenomena of intelligent behaviour.
I think Penrose fell into a common trap: when you are an expert on hammers, every hard problem looks like it needs a whack with a better hammer.
I (possibly mis-)translated into intelligent behaviour in my memory, since that's something most people agree does real work and needs explaining.
Now I don't want to be unfair or hasty here, so let me say this: If I were to claim that such a book were relevant under the above conditions, I would only do it if I could say something like,
"Penrose wisely pointed out that attempts at AI run into the problem of -----, which manifests in such projects as -----, where they tried to ----, but predictably couldn't, because, as Penrose said, ----." (---- = blank)
Can you do that for TENM?
EDIT: I thought I should do a quick search on that idea and it turns out that I am not the first person to have asked that question:
Roger Penrose's book "The road to reality" is great if you want a high level overview (and list of topics) for mathematical physics (The scary stuff!).
Non-AMP link: https://www.theguardian.com/science/2018/mar/14/stephen-hawk...