June 11, 2016

#Review #Giveaway of Last Call at the Nightshade Lounge: A Novel by @notlikefreddy #thanks @quirkbooks

A sharp and funny urban fantasy for “new adults” about a secret society of bartenders who fight monsters with alcohol fueled magic.

College grad Bailey Chen has a few demons: no job, no parental support, and a rocky relationship with Zane, the only friend who’s around when she moves back home. But when Zane introduces Bailey to his cadre of monster-fighting bartenders, her demons get a lot more literal. Like, soul-sucking hell-beast literal. Soon, it’s up to Bailey and the ragtag band of magical mixologists to take on whatever—or whoever—is behind the mysterious rash of gruesome deaths in Chicago, and complete the lost recipes of an ancient tome of cocktail lore.

Check out other stops on the blog crawl:
Once Upon a Twilight on June 7th
Fantasy Book Critic on June 9th
Girl Who Reads on June 10th
Crossroad Reviews on June 11th
Civilian Reader on June 13th
Teen Librarian on June 14th
Feeling Fictional on June 15th
Andrew Knighton on June 16th

Paul Krueger is a fantasy writer and avid cocktail fan whose work has appeared in the Sword & Laser Anthology. He lives in Los Angeles.

How do I express my love for this book!? It's like the demon trapper's daughter and Supernatural got a high five from Harry Potter with a weekend stay at Buffy's. I'm not even joking!!  Even if you don't drink (which I don't for the most part) this book will keep you entertained though the whole thing!!  

The characters are Whitty and funny as hell!! And the story is one of its kind! New exciting demons! A romance and a lot of action!!  The only issue I had was that I wish there would have been different types of demons. This book only had one. And although they were 100% creepy it would have been nice to have a range of them. Because demon hunters who only hunt one kinda demon are ever so slightly lame. 

But that is the ONLY issue I had with this book. I finished it in a few hours as its a very quick read and I really really hope this is a series. Because man I ❤️ these characters and want more!!! 

The mystery surrounding one character was great! And although yes we now have a good idea who she is. It would be awesome and amazing to get a back story about her! 

This is for the new adult crowd but If you don't mind the use of the f word I could see higher teens reading this. And because my daughter is pretty weird I don't see why she couldn't read it at almost 12. There's no sex so don't worry about that. There's excessive amounts of drinking of course but that is to be expected. 

The who magic from drinking thing I thought it was going to be stupid to tell you the truth. But I am happy to say that it worked perfectly!! 

Book in a Pinch
Magic, Mixology, and demons! What more could you ask for? 

 Go Into This One Knowing 
No love triangle, No cliffhanger, No Sex, Lots of F-Bombs 

"All opinions are 100% honest and my own." 

The Cocktail: A Crash Course
By Paul Krueger, author of Last Call at the Nightshade Lounge (Quirk Books; June 7, 2016)

Urban fantasy is crowded with magic cops, detectives, and other magical law enforcement. When I set out to write Last Call at the Nightshade Lounge, I knew I wanted to add magic to a different job: food service. Once I hit on the idea of using bartenders and giving them alcohol-fueled magic powers, everything came together for me right away. After all, not only do cocktails have a way of making their drinkers feel magical; they’re also a subject very near to my heart. 

Simply put, a cocktail is any beverage comprised of an alcoholic spirit, tempered with other ingredients, but while that’s a very broad definition, there are a few parameters to consider. Let’s examine those now, through the making of a simple, classic cocktail: the gin & tonic. Not only is it delicious and made from affordable ingredients, but it’s so simple that its name also doubles as its recipe.

We begin with our glass. There are four major types: the flower-shaped cocktail glass, the short, squat old fashioned glass, the middle-of-the-road highball, and the tall, narrow Collins glass. The cocktail glass is made for drinks that are served straight-up—that is, chilled, but not iced. Its stemmed design is meant to prevent your hand from warming its contents and ruining the aromatics. The other three are all rocks glasses: ones meant for drinks served over ice. The G&T is one such drink, and tradition dictates we serve it in a highball.

In shaken drinks, the ice provides agitation to unlock the flavor and alter the texture of the cocktail. In stirred ones, it merely serves as a form of temperature control. The G&T is in the latter category, so you can build it right in its glass instead of bothering with a cocktail shaker. I like to slightly overfill; when you pour, you’ll melt some of that extra ice down.

Every cocktail uses a few fundamental ingredients that exist in varying combinations, but there’s one component every single drink has: a base spirit. Usually, this is a strong liquor, like tequila or whiskey. In the case of the gin & tonic, it’s…you know what, you’re smart. You’ve got this. Once you’ve figured out what that liquor is, though, go ahead and fill your glass up a quarter of the way with it.

The next ingredient every cocktail needs is some kind of sweetening element. In the old fashioned, it’s sugar. For the margarita, it’s triple sec. And with the G&T, it’s tonic water, which is pretty funny considering the original G&T was invented as a way to make tonic water palatable, not the other way around. Fill up the rest of your highball with it, and enjoy your new invulnerability to malaria.

The third key ingredient you’ll find in most—but not all—cocktails is an aromatic component: a third flavor, meant to offset and accent the other two. For the classic G&T, this means lime juice. I like to cut a tiny slice off a fresh lime, then squeeze it directly into the drink itself. It’s strong stuff, so you only need a little. Trust me: a light touch will be rewarded, while a heavy hand will taste like cold salad dressing. Once you’ve got your hit of lime, stick in a straw and give the thing a quick stir. That’ll mingle the flavors and cool it all down at the same time.

…or in this case, a slice of lime, perched on the rim of the glass. That’s the final key ingredient: a garnish, added mostly for presentation but sometimes for flavor. And once you’ve garnished, all that’s left to do is serve.

Other cocktails use any number of different ingredients and glassware, but the fundamentals are constant from drink to drink. If the G&T isn’t to your taste—what, do you like having malaria or something?—then go to your liquor cabinet and see what ingredients catch your eye instead. Cheers!

Paul Krueger is a fantasy writer and cocktail connoisseur whose work has appeared in the Sword & Laser anthology. He lives in Los Angeles.

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Can't say I'd be a hunter, I'm a big chicken. But I'd be drinking buttery nipples like they're going out of style ;-)

Yeah, I can't hunt. My father tried to make me growing up and that did NOT work. I'd like to think I'd be able to fight the good fight and all that but...yeah, no. I will definitely take a jack & coke though!

Yes! Also called a slippery nipple. Usually a shot. Super sweet and delicious.

I am the cowardly lion, as it were -- no hunting for me...this book sounds off-the-hook awesome though...Thanks for featuring it! Cheers, Kara S

I wouldn't be a hunter. I'm a pure muggle.
This book sounds cool. :)

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