Beyond a reasonable stout

Ellie Alexander

Book - 2019

Amateur sleuth Sloan Krause delves into the murderous political world in another delightful mystery from popular cozy writer Ellie Alexander. It's the dead season in Leavenworth, Washington. The throngs of Oktoberfest crowds have headed home, and the charming Bavarian streets are quiet and calm--momentarily. Villagers use the reprieve to drink in the crisp fall mountain air and prepare for the upcoming winter light festival. Soon the German-inspired shops and restaurants will be aglow with thousands of twinkling lights. Visitors will return to the northern Cascades to drink warm mulled cider and peruse the holiday markets. Brewer, Sloan Krause and her partner in crime Garrett Strong are using the slowdown to stock up on a new line of t...heir signature craft beers at Nitro. They're experimenting with a hoppy holiday pine and a chocolate hazelnut stout. The small brewery is alive with delicious scents and bubbling batches of brew. Sloan is in her element. She loves the creativity and lowkey atmosphere at Nitro. Only that is soon threatened by the incumbent city councilmember Kristopher Cooper. Kristopher is running for re-election on a platform of making Leavenworth dry. Everyone in beertopia is fuming. Leavenworth's economy relies on keeping the kegs flowing. Kristopher wants to banish beer, a policy that might just bankrupt the entire village. However, Kristopher turns up dead days before election night. Sloan quickly realizes that his murder isn't the work of a stranger. Friends, family, and every other business owner had a motive to kill him, including none other than April Ablin, Leavenworth's self-described ambassador of all things German. Sloan finds herself defending April and trying to sleuth out a killer amongst a group of familiar faces.

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Mystery fiction
Detective and mystery fiction
New York : Minotaur Books 2019.
Main Author
Ellie Alexander (author)
First Edition
Physical Description
280 pages ; 22 cm
Contents unavailable.
Review by Booklist Review

The residents of Bavaria-themed Leavenworth, Washington, are in an uproar due to city-council candidate Kristopher Cooper's campaign promise to make the tourist town dry. Brewer Sloan Krause, who works at nanobrewery Nitro, attends a rally for opposing candidate Valerie Hedy where tempers flare. When Cooper is found dead in the real-estate office of April Ablin, the annoying, self-appointed ambassador of Leavenworth, Ablin begs Sloan to help clear her. Sloan uncovers numerous suspects, from Valerie to various business owners who had a lot to lose if Cooper won the election. Complicating matters, Sloan, who was abandoned as a child, learns that two people she loves have been keeping secrets about her past, prompting Sloan to intensify her search for her birth parents. With its beautifully described small-town setting and seamlessly entwined details about brewing beer, this cozy will appeal to beer lovers everywhere as well as readers who enjoy mysteries highlighting family relationships and independent female main characters.--Sue O'Brien Copyright 2010 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

In Alexander's refreshing third mystery featuring brewmaster Sloan Krause (after 2018's The Pint of No Return), Oktoberfest is over, and the residents of the quaint German-themed town of Leavenworth, Wash., are getting ready for the winter tourist season and the upcoming local election. City councilman Kristopher Cooper is running for reelection on a platform of prohibition, which would shut down the town's craft beer breweries, its main source of income. One night, Kristopher and April Ablin, the obnoxious town gossip, have a loud argument; the next morning, the councilman is found stabbed to death in April's office. As the number one suspect, April asks Sloan to help prove her innocence. The list of suspects grows as Sloan uncovers evidence that Kristopher was blackmailing townspeople for votes. Meanwhile, Sloan, who never knew her parents, receives a frightening cryptic message about her parents' true identity. Distinctive characters and fun anecdotes about beer and brewing help make this a winner. Readers will want to keep coming back for more. (Oct.)

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Review by Library Journal Review

It was a successful Oktoberfest for Leavenworth, WA, the tourist town dependent on the local breweries, pubs, and German village appearance. Election season doesn't look fun, though, because Kristopher Cooper, the incumbent city councilman, is running on a temperance platform. Brewer Sloan Krause and Garrett, owners of Nitro, a small brewery, attend the town meeting, where a number of people argue with Kristopher. But who hated him enough to kill him? When April Ablin, self-proclaimed ambassador for the town, is arrested, the sheriff suggests to Sloan that April needs help and advice. Although she's tangled up in a relationship with her soon-to-be ex and still looking for answers to the mystery of her parentage, Sloan steps in to help April, knowing a reputation for murder won't help the town. VERDICT Family is an essential element in this character-driven cozy series following The Pint of No Return. While the primary mystery is solved in each book, the ongoing story line of Sloan's search for her own family story draws readers back. Fans of Ellery Adams's "Books by the Bay" mysteries will recognize Sloan's need for answers.--Lesa Holstine, Evansville Vanderburgh P.L., IN

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Review by Kirkus Book Review

An entire Washington town is threatened by a feud over alcohol.Leavenworth lives and dies by beer. It's tricked out to look like a Bavarian village, with shops that sell all things German and restaurants and breweries that draw in year-round crowds. Sloan Krause, who's on the verge of divorcing her cheating husband, Mac Krause, adores his parents, Otto and Ursula, who made her feel welcome after she'd spent much of her life living in foster homes. Sloan has a share in the family business, Der Keller, but is working for Garrett Strong, whose nanobrewery, Nitro, is anything but retro. The businesspeople are up in arms over an upcoming election for city council, as current member Kristopher Cooper has suddenly decided that Leavenworth should go dry. After a raucous meeting at Der Keller punctuated by personal attacks, Cooper is found stabbed in the office of April Albin, the self-proclaimed ambassador for the town whose repertory includes kitschy German outfits and a fake accent. April is arrested by Police Chief Meyers, who's worked with Sloan before and trusts her sleuthing abilities (The Pint of No Return, 2018, etc.). April begs for Sloan's help. Even though she's truly annoying, Sloan doesn't believe she's a killer. The problem is that there are endless suspects who hated Cooper for a plan that would ruin every business in town. As Sloan goes about her business, she picks up tidbits that might help solve the crime. She works with Garrett on concocting new brews for the winter holidays and refurbishing rooms above the brewery for a planned BB. But she's distracted by hints from Sally, her former social worker, that there are mysterious and possibly dangerous circumstances surrounding her birthparents. Although Sloan's talents help solve Cooper's murder, her past hints at future problems.Appealing characters, a brewing primer, and myriad suspects combine in a sprightly adventure. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.