“The Jumpin’ Black SteepleJack” Cocktail

There are two ways to travel into a fantasy world: get lost in a great book or have a few Pick Your Poison cocktails. 

And this week's Pick Your Poison—where we create a cocktail inspired by a recently published mystery, thriller, or crime novel—can certainly take your there!

So, escape reality with a refreshing “Jumpin' Black SteepleJack” cocktail—inspired by New York Times bestselling author A.J. Hartley's Steeplejack!

Steeplejack by A.J. Hartley is the New York Times bestselling author's young-adult debut, set in a 19th-century South African fantasy world (Available June 14, 2016).

Seventeen-year-old Anglet Sutonga lives repairing the chimneys, towers, and spires of the city of Bar-Selehm. Dramatically different communities live and work alongside each other. The white Feldish command the nation’s higher echelons of society. The native Mahweni are divided between city life and the savannah. And then there’s Ang, part of the Lani community who immigrated over generations ago as servants and now mostly live in poverty on Bar-Selehm’s edges.

When Ang is supposed to meet her new apprentice Berrit, she instead finds him dead. That same night, the Beacon, an invaluable historical icon, is stolen. The Beacon’s theft commands the headlines, yet no one seems to care about Berrit’s murder—except for Josiah Willinghouse, an enigmatic young politician. When he offers her a job investigating his death, she plunges headlong into new and unexpected dangers.

Meanwhile, crowds gather in protests over the city’s mounting troubles. Rumors surrounding the Beacon’s theft grow. More suspicious deaths occur. With no one to help Ang except Josiah’s haughty younger sister, a savvy newspaper girl, and a kindhearted herder, Ang must rely on her intellect and strength to resolve the mysterious link between Berrit and the missing Beacon before the city descends into chaos.

Read an excerpt of Steeplejack here!


“The Jumpin' Black SteepleJack”


– 1 1/2 oz. Jack Daniels Tennessee Whiskey

– 1 oz. coffee liqueur (Kahlua)

– 1/2 oz. triple sec

– 1/2 oz. lemon juice

How to make the cocktail:

  1. Pour all ingredients into a mixing tin.
  2. Add ice and shake well.
  3. Strain into an old fashioned glass (rocks optional).
  4. No garnish is required, but it does look nice with a skewer of dark fruit, such as blackberries or sour cherries, or an orange slice.

Cool down with a refreshing “Jumpin' Black SteepleJack,” and then, make sure to pick up your copy of Steeplejack by A.J. Hartley!


To learn more or order a copy, visit:

Buy at Barnes and NobleBuy at Amazon



A.J. Hartley is the international bestselling author of a dozen novels including several archaeological thrillers, the Darwen Arkwright children's series, the Will Hawthorne fantasy adventures, novels based on Macbeth and Hamlet. Steeplejack is his first young adult novel. Hartley teaches as the Robinson Distinguished Professor of Shakespeare at UNC Charlotte.