Book Review: Brew or Die by Caroline Fardig

Brew or Die by Caroline Fardig is the fourth book in the Jave Jive series.  The Previous books were Death Before Decaf, Mug Shot, and A Whole Latte Murder. While newcomers might still enjoy the mystery, I think those that have read the series in order will get much more enjoyment from the read. 

Inspired by her past sleuthing successes, Juliet Langley has officially joined the ranks of Nashville’s licensed private investigators. Her best friend, Pete Bennett, doesn’t worry that her detective work might interfere with her full-time job running his coffeehouse, Java Jive. He just wishes she would spend her free time rejoining the local music scene instead of tailing cheating spouses. But when one of Java Jive’s baristas, Shane, asks Juliet to look into the suspicious death of his fiancée, Pete encourages her to plow full steam ahead. Since his fiancée died on the job, Shane suspects that her party-planning colleagues are up to something criminal—and will do anything to keep it quiet. After Juliet recruits Pete to go undercover with her at a wedding showcase, she discovers that white lace and black satin have a way of hiding big, fat secrets. If that weren’t enough to fill her plate, her latest P.I. job has her crossing paths with her ex, Detective Ryder Hamilton. They’re barely on speaking terms, but to solve the case, they might have to cooperate. No matter where Juliet goes, she’s brewing up trouble.

Brew or Die has the same feel, and some of the same troubles as the previous books in the series. I still like Juliet and all of her neurosis. I like her confidence, intelligence, and willingness to help others. I like that she is just as flawed and occasionally insecure as any real person- especially when it comes to her relationships. That being said, I am over the tension between her and Pete, and would love to see that fade away a bit more- especially with Ryder trying to get himself back into the story. I also like that Juliet has enough self awareness to realize that she is not always making the smartest choice, and is willing to own her own choices and mistakes. I liked the level of danger and mystery- and the character interactions, particularly with Juliet and Ryder. A fast, fun read that offered a few surprises along the way. 

Brew or Die is a fun continuation of the series, with just as much intrigue, danger, and troubled in relationships as fans have come to expect. The result is a quick, entertaining read. 
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