Friday, October 6, 2017

Review: Tangled Up In Brew by Joyce Tremel

Cozy Mystery



Release Date:
October 4, 2016

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Brew pub owner Maxine “Max” O’Hara and her chef/boyfriend Jake Lambert are excited to be participating in the Three Rivers Brews and Burgers Festival. Max hopes to win the coveted Golden Stein for best craft beer—but even if she doesn’t, the festival will be great publicity for her Allegheny Brew House.

Or will it? When notoriously nasty food and beverage critic Reginald Mobley is drafted as a last-minute replacement judge, Max dreads a punishing review. Her fears are confirmed when Mobley literally spits out her beer, but things get even worse when the cranky critic drops dead right after trying one of Jake’s burgers. Now an ambitious new police detective is determined to pin Mobley’s murder on Max and Jake, who must pore over the clues to protect their freedom and reputations—and to find the self-appointed judge, jury, and executioner.

My Review

It’s festival time in Pittsburgh and Maxine “Max” O’Hara is excited that her Allegheny Brew House will be a participant. Not only is her craft beer up for an award, so is her chef’s burgers. Her chef, Jake Lambert, is more than an employee, he’s also her boyfriend. They are hoping their participation in Three Rivers Brews and Burgers Festival will be a huge success for Max’s brew house.

Unfortunately, one of the judges, Reginald Mobley, happens to be one of the nastiest food critics around. Mobley doesn’t make the festival experience very pleasant for anyone, especially not for Max and Jake. He publicly blasts their products. Things go from bad to worse when Mobley suddenly dies at the festival. The newest detective on the force is out to make a name for himself and decides to focus his attentions on Max and Jake as the prime suspects.

Max is not going to take this lying down. She needs to protect herself, Jake and her brew house. So, she conducts her own investigation and quickly learns there are way more suspects than just Max and Jake. All have much better reasons to want the critic dead, too.

This is the second book in the series. I loved the first one. I love this one even more. Max and Jake are a cute couple with a ton of chemistry. They are surrounded by family and friends who help to make this story come to life.

For me, this story grabbed me from the start. I find a brew house premise to be a unique setting for a cozy mystery. It’s fast-paced, with a touch of romance mixed in with the mystery. Joyce Tremel had me guessing right along with Max as to “whodunit”.

Tangled Up In Brew is a well written, riveting story. Although it’s the second book in the series, it can be read on its own as the mystery is self-contained in this book. However, I think readers will enjoy reading about Max’s adventures from the day she first opened her brew house. Joyce Tremel is quickly making a name for herself in the cozy mystery community.

For reading challenges:
2017 Foodies Read Reading Challenge

FTC Disclosure: I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book from NetGalley and the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are my own.


  1. I really need to pick up this series. I love cozy mysteries and the Pittsburgh setting really sells this one for me.

  2. This sounds like a terrific cozy mystery! Enjoy your weekend, Yvonne.


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