Two of my favorite things in the world are craft beer and books. On the last Thursday of every month I pair a women’s fiction novel I love with the perfect pint to sip while reading it, under the theory that there is a perfect beer to compliment every book.
I was excited about Lindsay Emory’s Sisterhood is Deadly from the moment she first posted about it online. Sorority advisor turned ammeter sleuth when a sister dies during a chapter meeting. You had me at sorority advisor. Seriously, I’m a sucker for books set on college campuses. Throw in a lighthearted mystery, a cast of dramatic college women, a hilarious best friend and a broodingly attractive cop who isn’t a fan of the Greek system– and I won’t be able to put the book down.
And then there’s the main character. Margot Blythe is truly the reason Emory’s story is so very unputdownable (it’s totally a word). At first blush she’s a stereotype; into fashion and her hair and her sorority– in a BIG way. At age 26 she’s been working for the national office of her sorority since college graduation. She frequently evokes quotes from the founding members and can recite the Standards and Morals (S&M, *snicker*) without consulting a manual. She also holds her own against the inappropriate advances of the fraternity advisor, is kind but stern with the young women she advises, and hunts down murder suspects with tenacity and an eye for details. But Emory also masterfully weaves in a few other glimpses of Margot’s life that are neither bubbly nor badass- like hints about a family where love was less prevalent than money. So sure, Margot is goofy and funny, but she’s also intelligent and flawed.
Which brings me to the beer pairing. While the story takes place in North Carolina, Margot is from Atlanta, Georgia. I can never think of Atlanta without thinking about the giant peach statue thing downtown. So, easy– a peach beer. Done. Except it’s not that simple. Just like Margot isn’t really who she appears to be on the surface, neither is the beer I’ve paired this book with. When I mentioned peach beer, you probably were thinking of something akin to a Fuzzy Navel cocktail, right? Here’s the thing, Dogfish Head’s Festina Peche is not that. It’s got a tang like a not quite ripe yet peach balanced with a really delicious Berliner-Weisse base. There’s a depth that’s unexpected for a fruity, summer ale, which makes it a perfect pairing for a light summer read featuring a main character with the same strength beneath the surface.
Cheers and happy reading!
Oh, and one more thing – the beer comes in a four-pack and Lindsay’s book comes in a three-pack (by which I mean there’s another book in the series coming later this year)!
Thanks for reading! To return to the FICTION WRITERS BLOG HOP on Julie Valerie’s Book Blog, click here: http://www.julievalerie.com/fiction-writers-blog-hop-aug-2015 Then check back here tomorrow (August 27) for the August Installment of Books & Brews. My newsletter subscribers are eligible to win a copy of the book I feature. There’s still time to sign up before 11:59 EST on August 26 (hint, hint!)