From Ellie Alexander, beloved author of the Bakeshop Mysteries, comes the first in an intoxicating new series: Death on Tap.
When Sloan Krause walks in on her husband, Mac, screwing the barmaid, she gives him the boot. Sloan has spent her life in Leavenworth, Washington becoming an expert in brewing craft beer, and she doesn’t have time to be held back by her soon-to-be ex-husband. She decides to strike out on her own, breaking away from the Krause family brewery, and goes to work for Nitro, the hip new nano-brewery in the Bavarian-themed town. Nitro’s owner, brewmaster Garrett Strong, has the brew-world abuzz with his newest recipe, “Pucker-Up IPA.” This place is the new cool place in town, and Mac can’t help but be green with envy at their success.
But just as Sloan is settling in to her new gig, she finds one of Nitro’s competitors dead in the fermenting tub, clutching the secret recipe for the IPA. When Mac, is arrested, Sloan knows that her ex might be a cheater, but a murderer? No way. Danger is brewing in Beervaria and suddenly Sloan is on the case.
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Death on Tap
This book was good from beginning to end. I cant wait until the next one!
First book in A Sloan Krause Mystery series!
Death on Tap by Ellie Alexander is the first book in A Sloan Krause Mystery series. Sloan Krause is working on a new brew and quickly runs to her office at Das Keller to get her notes. She opens the door to discover her husband, Mac playing hide the sausage with Hayley, the new barmaid. Three weeks later, Sloan is ready to start her new job at Nitro, a new nanobrewery in Leavenworth, Washington (a Bavarian themed town). Garrett Strong inherited the building from his great aunt Tess and has completely renovated the inside (looks like a sterile science lab). The morning after the soft opening, Sloan goes to toss some hops into the fermenting tank and discovers Eddie Deluga face up in the Pucker Up IPA brew. Mac ends up at the top of Chief Meyers suspect list. Mac may be a cheater, but he is no killer. To clear Mac of suspicion, Sloan sets out to discover who could have wanted to harm Eddie.
Death on Tap is unique in that it dives into the world of beer brewing. I have not experienced another cozy mystery with this theme (unique). It is obvious that the author did her research into the topic. We get to learn a great deal about what goes into creating, distributing and selling beer. The mystery did not take place until I was 24% of the way into the story. By the time Sloan found the body, I already knew who committed the crime (secondary mystery is equally easy to unravel). The mystery takes up a small portion of the story. More of the book is devoted to beer brewing, regulations, etc. I admit that it is interesting (even though I do not drink the stuff), but I would have liked a better mystery. I like the sound of the Bavarian town of Leavenworth (loved the descriptions of the town and buildings). It reminds me of German Village (in Columbus, Ohio) where I grew up. It had me longing for a real German bratwurst (not the type you find in your local grocery). My rating for Death on Tap is 3 out of 5 stars. I found it odd that Garrett Strong is having the soft launch of Nitro without any staff (except Sloan), no planned menu, no remodeled kitchen, no furniture or décor (Sloan mentions having to find tables and chairs), and a limited beer menu. For a man with a business/corporate background, it shows a distinct lack of planning. I was not a fan of Mac Krause and his constant use of the word “baby” when talking to Sloane (big pet peeve of mine). The pacing was slow in places causing me to lose interest (more about beer). I know that the author needs to set the stage for readers, but I do not believe we needed quite so much detail (it seemed like Ms. Alexander wanted to put in everything she learned while researching the topic). Many details are repeated frequently throughout the story (hops, Sloan’s lack of family growing up, description of Sloan’s farmhouse, etc.). It will be interesting to see what direction the author takes with the next book in the series (I hope a divorce is in the works for Sloan).