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The stakes just keep climbing in this satisfying prohibition-era mystery series.

When moonshiner Delores Bailey returns from a trip to Virginia City to find her moonshine still destroyed, her world falls apart. For almost two years, she’s made a good living in the Montana mining town, Pony Gulch, running ’shine for the locals. Now that’s gone, and she has no idea how to proceed. Staying comes with high risks. Without finding who took her still out and stopping them, there’s no guarantee it won’t happen again. Delores is nothing if not resourceful, but she fears this problem may be more than she or her best friends Lucie Santoro and Sheriff Sam Brown can handle.
With the mayor running a re-election campaign based on temperance, an out-of-town brewing magnate closing in on her territory, and the local moonshine competition upping their game, Delores needs an ace up her sleeve. She turns to Mickey Duffy, a mobster friend from her past, but she is soon wondering whether the person she’s asking for help may just be the greatest threat of all.

Whiskey Wars is the fourth book in the Moonshiner Mysteries series. All these novels can be read alone, but they work much better when read in order. Each of the major characters has their own internal lives and goals, and all of them grow through the series, so starting at the beginning feels like falling in with old friends.

The thing I’ve admired in every one of the Moonshiner Mysteries so far is the fact that the formula changes so drastically. The characters grow in each novel; there’s no systematic paint-by-numbers plot line. The story follows whatever trajectory it needs to reach a satisfying conclusion. This one is no exception. In the previous novel, Soiled Dove Murder, the story branched out by introducing two of the main characters to the big city. In Whiskey Wars the big city comes to Pony Gulch.

Stakes are higher than ever in Whiskey Wars, and as the novel progresses, all they do is rise. Delores has more on the line than she has had before. In the first novel of the series, Big Sky Murder, skipping town only means that she’ll have to set up elsewhere. Here, she’s lost everything she’d need to move and leaving would also mean losing the friends she’s become so close to and the closest place she’s had to a home. This happening during an election year means that Sam’s job is uncertain and that the choices he makes will mean the difference between keeping and losing his livelihood, which throws Lucie into a precarious position too.

All the characters that readers of the Moonshiner Mysteries series love are back in Whiskey Wars, along with the shady politics, bar fights, and big open sky. In short, the latest book in the series has all the charm and excitement that fans will expect and enough historical clout and action to hook new readers.

- Joelene Pynnonen, Independent Book Review

Available April 11 2024

Dive into the rugged beauty of Montana’s Pony Gulch, where moonshine flows, friendships are forged, and secrets unravel in ‘Whiskey Wars.’ A gripping tale of betrayal, resilience, and the pursuit of justice.

1927: Set during the lawless years of Prohibition amidst the remote wilderness of Montana, Delores Bailey emerges as a resilient force against the relentless winds of adversity. In “Whiskey Wars,” she confronts a heart-wrenching reality—her cherished moonshine still, the lifeblood of her trade, lies in ruins. With a shattered world and a heavy heart, she turns to her friends for solace, grappling with despair, traumatic childhood memories, and the grim prospect of leaving Pony Gulch, the small goldmining town she now calls home.

This gripping tale of resilience unfolds as Delores confronts the ghosts of her past, her notorious reputation, and shadowy adversaries threatening her future. Entangled in a web of intrigue and corruption, she endeavors to safeguard her moonshine business and uncover the truth behind the arson, navigating a perilous game of cat and mouse. The discovery of a crucial clue sets the stage for a high-stakes quest for justice, testing Delores’s mettle and the bonds of friendship.

“Whiskey Wars” unfolds as a riveting saga of moonshine, treachery, and resilience. Join Delores on a captivating journey, where her indomitable spirit unravels corruption, confronts shocking betrayals, and discovers the true meaning of home. Prepare for a riveting mystery that takes you through the untamed mountains of Montana, leaving echoes of Delores’s story long after the final page is turned.

 

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