Amateur sleuth Sloan Krause returns in The Pint of No Return, another delightful cozy by Ellie Alexander—this time investigating a movie star who's murdered not long after arriving in Leavenworth, WA to film his latest project.
No other festival compares to Oktoberfest in Leavenworth, Washington. The whole town is buzzing with excitement over this year’s activities and eagerly awaiting Nitro’s latest offering Cherrywizen, made with locally sourced cherries. But local brewmaster Sloan Krause is tapped out. Between trying to manage the pub, her pending divorce with Mac, and her mounting feelings for Garrett, she’s fermenting in internal turmoil.
To complicate matters, dreamy movie star Mitchell Morgan and his production crew have arrived in the village to film during the authentic Bavarian brewfest. Mitchell has his eye on Sloan and a taste for Nitro’s Cherrywizen. Sloan escapes his advances for good when she finds Mitchell slumped over the bar. Is this a case of one pint too many, or has Mitchell been murdered by microbrew?
“A charming new series . . . fascinating and fun.”—Kate Carlisle
“A ‘hopping’ good cozy mystery.” —Meg Macy
Alexander's satisfying second Sloan Krause mystery (after 2017's Death on Tap) finds beer brewer Sloan settling into her new job at Nitro, a start-up microbrewery located in the German-themed tourist mecca of Leavenworth, Wash. It's Oktoberfest, when the remote mountain village swells with visitors, and business is booming. This year's celebration is especially exciting because a film crew from Los Angeles has come to town to make a documentary about beer. The documentary's host, Mitchell Morgan, is a former child star with a giant ego who manages in short order to offend half the population of Leavenworth. So when Sloan hears screams late one night and discovers Mitchell dead behind a festival tent, there are plenty of suspects, some of them Sloan's friends and family members. Sloan must once again turn amateur sleuth. Alexander has created an appealing cast of characters and a lovely setting for them to live in. Best of all, she treats the reader to a fascinating look at the skill and artistry involved in brewing craft beer.
Enjoyable cozy mystery!
The Pint of No Return by Ellie Alexander is the second book in A Sloan Krause Mystery series. The town of Leavenworth, Washington is busy preparing for Oktoberfest. It is a three week long event that has tourists flocking to their Bavarian looking town. Nitro owner, Garrett Strong with Sloan Krause have been working on a new brew titled Cherry Weizen which will be unveiled that night. April Ablin approaches Sloan regarding her attire. A documentary film crew is in town to film Wish You Were Beer and she would prefer Sloane to dress in costume (not going to happen). The crew shows up at Nitro that evening to try out their new brew and, hopefully, get some good footage. Their host, Mitchell Morgan leaves a lot to be desired with his arrogant attitude and large ego (I’m surprised his hat fits). Sloan is heading home at the end of the night and hears a woman screaming. Mitchell Morgan is dead in the town square with a growler from Nitro broken around him. Lisa Balmes is accused of murdering Mitchell by his biggest fan, Kat Kelly. Sloane knows Lisa did not kill Mitchell and starts nosing around the crew for suspects. Sloan must also deal with her estranged husband, her search for her biological mother and Mitchell’s biggest fan, Kat. Join in on the Oktoberfest fun in The Pint of No Return.
The Pint of No Return is an engaging cozy mystery. While it is the second book in this series, it can be read alone (easily). I thought it was well-written with a nice steady clip. Ms. Alexander’s conversational writing style makes The Pint of No Return easy to read and enjoy. I like Sloan, Garrett, Hans Krause, Alex Krause as well as Otto and Ursula Krause (such a sweet couple). April Ablin, while not a character I like, does provides comic relief. I am amazed that Sloan married someone like Mac. I fail to see his appeal (the cheating louse). It was nice to find out more about Sloane and her relationship with the Krause family. I appreciate the author’s descriptive writing style which makes the book come alive for me. I can picture Leavenworth with the Bavarian style buildings and people walking around in costumes with beer steins in their hands. There are two mysteries in the book. The murder of Mitchell and Sloan’s search for her biological mother. I thought Mitchell’s murder was straightforward with a simple solution. Unfortunately, I identified the killer before Mitchell went belly up. Sloane’s quest to find her birth mother is the more intriguing mystery. It looks like it will play out over the course of the series with new information revealed in each book. I wish the murder had been more of a focus in this book. The story concentrates on the characters (mainly Sloan) and the town. While I appreciate getting to know the characters, I do read a cozy mystery for the mystery. It was interesting to learn more about the brewing process. I did not realize there were so many types of beers. I am baffled by the food that they serve in Nitro. I do not understand why they do not hire a chef and offer real food instead of meat and cheese trays (it seems odd). They could at least offer tapas. Overall, The Pint of No Return is a pleasure to read. I thought it was an improvement over Death on Tap. My rating for The Pint of No Return is 4 out of 5 stars. If you are looking to capture the feeling of Oktoberfest, visit Leavenworth in The Pint of No Return.