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A Killer Read (An Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery #1)

3.63  ·  Rating Details ·  1,025 Ratings  ·  172 Reviews
For the first meeting of the Ashton Corners Mystery Readers and Cheese Straws Society, six friends gather in Molly Mathews's old Southern mansion-including Lizzie Turner, a reading specialist with a penchant for mysteries. But the mystery book club meeting becomes the scene of an actual murder when a stranger is shot--and nobody knows who the victim is, or how Molly's anti ...more
ebook, 304 pages
Published April 3rd 2012 by Penguin Group (USA) (first published April 2012)
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(showing 1-30 of 2,726)
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Feb 20, 2013 Rane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

The word refreshing came to mind after finishing 'A Killer Read' by Erika Chase.
The pace was on the slow side, but fit the small town feel as our sleuth Lizzie Turner, a reading specialist and her friends from Ashton Corners Mystery Readers and Cheese Straws Society sort out clues on why a stranger unknown to everyone is murder out in one of the club members front lawn.

I really love when our sleuth doesn't go all Jane Bond with guns blazing into trouble, but uses her smarts to pick up clues
Aug 20, 2012 Andree rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012
I saw this book on the shelf at my friendly neighbourhood bookstore. I read the back and was vaguely intrigued, but not intrigued enough to buy. Then I happened to stumble across it at the library and picked it up. Possibly I should have stuck with my original inclination.

It wasn't terrible, but there were some significant issues with it. For one, I'm not sure why this was set in the south, excactly. There was something slightly off with the dialogue. Originally I thought it was just the dialogu
Jul 04, 2013 Fanficfan44 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-mystery
Just finished this for the Cozy Mystery Corner book group on Goodreads. I really have mixed feelings about this. This book was on the short list for the Agatha Awards from Malice Domestic but it didn’t completely work for me. It was as though the author had a checklist: book theme, check, cats, check, small southern town, check, sheriff love interest, check, but she wasn’t really invested in these items.

I didn’t solve the mystery prior to the reveal but looking back I suppose I could have guesse
Laurie Garrison
Feb 20, 2016 Laurie Garrison rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cozy-mystery
After 5 days of struggling to read this book, I'm moving on. I don't care for the authors writing style, more of a teller not a shower and the characters have no depth.
Nidah (SleepDreamWrite)
Like I said, I been in a cozy mystery and urban fantasy mood, looking for a new series I've been either hearing about or wanted to always read but hadn't had the time. Until now that is.

So, this one I took my time reading and really liked it. I was going to give this a 3 or 3.5 star rating. But to be honest, 4 stars is just as good. What I liked about this was the characters. They each had their own personality, their likes, dislikes etc. The pace while slow, worked well and it is a cozy mystery
Jun 22, 2012 Kaye rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012-challenge

A mystery bookclub? Ooh, I've died and gone to cozy lovers' heaven! Although the characters are diverse in age and social circumstances, Erika Chase makes it all work. And work well it does as she introduces her characters in an orderly manner so that the reader gets to know them well.
I really liked the fact that Lizzie is a reading specialist. It was also amusing to see the not so subtle rivalry between the former chief, Bob Miller and the new young chief along with his bad-tempered deputy, Am
Oct 06, 2012 Larraine rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I read this book at the recommendation of someone in a Facebook group. Admittedly, I'm a sucker for a lightweight mystery featuring cats. However, this one, in the end, was misleading. Yes there are two cats. They have names: Edam and Brie. However, the cats are hardly ever acknowledged except for when the heroine, Lizzie, has to feed them on the way out the door. The two cats are referred to as "the cats" and are really just appendages. It's obvious that the cats were made a part of the story i ...more
Oct 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: andra

A Killer Read
By Erika Chase
Ashton Corners Book Club Mysteries, Book #1
ISBN-13: 978-0425247037
Author’s Website:
Brought to you by OBS staff member Andra


A Killer Read is the first in the Ashton Corners Book Club mysteries from Berkley Prime Crime.

It’s the first meeting of the Ashton Corners Mystery Readers and Cheese Straws Society and an intruder is later found dead in his car. When the owner of the mansion which is home to t
They say that everyone has a story and that is so true of the members of the Ashton Corners book club. Author Erika Chase has introduced us to a read-worthy cast of cozy characters who are connected by their membership in the Ashton Corners Mystery Readers and Cheese Straws Society. I think that other diehard cozy fans will like this book. Thriller fans will probably not be able to handle the gallons of tea that are consumed by the characters!
Aug 11, 2012 Mainon rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Bleh. I like the idea of a book club mystery. I liked the quotes from other cozy mysteries at the beginning of each chapter. But, the whodunit reveal was a character so obscure I didn't even remember who that character was, so that was a giant letdown. Sigh.
Shelley Giusti
Apr 15, 2012 Shelley Giusti rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved this book!!!! It draws you in from the very first page! I recommend this book to anyone who wants to meet new friends. You feel like you are part of the book club!!
Jan 16, 2016 LORI CASWELL rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2012
Welcome to the Ashton Corners Mystery Readers and Cheese Straw Society hosted in Molly Mathew’s old Southern mansion.

The first meeting doesn’t go as planned when a stranger bursts through the door and demands to use the phone. He is later found dead in front of the house. Nobody knows who this man is or why he died in front of Molly home. The group is even more dumbfounded when they learn he was shot by an antique gun that belonged to Molly’s deceased husband.

Add to this confusion, a manuscript
Sep 07, 2012 Rebecca rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lizzie Turner is a reading specialist at the local elementary school. She's also a founding member of the local mystery Book Club. But when a mysterious stranger turns into a dead body outside their first meeting as a club, Lizzie and the 6 other members are curious enough to get to the bottom of it themselves.

Why I started this book: Mom sent me the book for Valentines and said that she enjoyed it.

Why I finished it: I made it to the end because it was recommended to me and for no other reason.
Alannah Davis
The words in this novel are well placed, as if a teacher or college English major had written them. But (for me) the most important thing - characterization - is missing. The author fills us in on lots of reasons why we should feel empathy for the characters, but gives us no real motivation to really and truly feel that empathy.

On the good side, this is technically well-written and has an absorbing storyline and interesting side-plots. I would definitely read another mystery by Erika Chase again
Mar 01, 2016 April rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Absolute and utter DROSS.

This is the least compelling mystery novel ever, with characters that are altogether too happy. As a mystery writer, if your main character's biggest worry is her waistline's possible future expansion, you have some major problems. Why? Because there's supposed to be this thing that drives the story called conflict!

Mystery novels are supposed to have conflict in the primary focus of the story, not off to one side where the main character is mainly worried about her frien
T K Nelson
Mar 28, 2015 T K Nelson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cozies
This book has multiple simultaneous mysteries with information about one leading to another. I felt the author did an excellent job keeping them all straight, provided just enough information for readers to try to form a conclusion and, most importantly, wrapped everything up in the end as realistically as a cozy can do.

The main characters' personalities were all touched on giving readers a feel for who they are yet leaving gray areas to be built on in future books.

Can't say this book is on my "
Liza Gilbert
I feel I do not know enough southern slang to cuss this novel out the way I would like. This debut in a mystery series succeeded and failed in fits and starts. For example, by page 52 Chase STILL hadn't indicated where the story was set; I had to Google a couple of rivers mentioned in the text to figure that one out. This novel also suffered severely from what I call CCC, or Cozy Compassion Conundrum, where all the characters in a cozy mystery are so friendly to one another and bake and serve dr ...more
Jul 31, 2016 Jill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cozy
Cute and friendly read.
Carol Stanley-Snow
Enjoyed this little mystery. A great mystery book club, and a great group of sleuths!

The mystery clues are woven together very nicely.

A good beach read.
Oct 14, 2014 Julie rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dnf, library-returned
I couldn't finish this cozy mystery. It crossed the line separating cozy from boring - and it was a snooze fest. Halfway through, I thought to myself "this simply isn't worth finishing," but decided to soldier on, then gave up at 65%. There are more words spent on what Lizzie wears, eats and does than there are moving the story forward. By the time I gave up, someone could've killed everyone in the town of Ashton Corners, and I wouldn't have cared.
First in a series of modern cozies centered on a book club in a small town in Alabama. A literacy teacher and reading specialist is the main focus along with her interesting group of friends including both sexes and multiple generations. At the first meeting of the book club a strange man wanders into the house and shortly thereafter winds up dead outside with a gun stolen from the widowed homeowner. The new police chief assigns a tough female cop to investigate and she focuses on the book group ...more
Apr 24, 2014 Holly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Lizzie Turner, a reading specialist at the Ashton Corners, Alabama, high school, has returned to her hometown. She starts a book club with some friends and fellow mystery lovers, and invites some of her students, in an effort to get them interested in reading. A body is discovered. Since this is the first book in the Ashton Corners Book Club series, I suspected everyone, as does the new police investigator. The book club members begin to investigate to find information to let various club member ...more
Jan 25, 2016 Pele rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: add
I really liked this book because it was a mystery and I really like to read mystery book. In this story you read about an innocent reading teacher Lizzie Turner and her book club called the "Ashton Corners Mystery Readers and Cheese Straws Society. Try to solve a mystery revolving around a random dead guy who showed up to their door dead. You will really love this story because of the mystery and the many characters that are all lovable and cool. The end of the will really be a mind blower when ...more
Lynn Demsky
A most enjoyable read, was so very good I finished it in a day! The characters were interesting and well defined. Plot was a wee bit tangled up – kept adding things to it. The chapters were short so you could easily pick up and put down during the course of a day --- lots of good food mentioned but no recipes (which was disappointing) – author put a bunch of crappy book read lists in the back of the book (as that was what the main character was into) which was also disappointing --- at the top o ...more
Apr 30, 2012 Shoshana rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 17, 2014 Lynn rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The incessant description of clothing drove me crazy and made me want to stop reading this book. There was absolutely NO reason to spend several paragraphs describing clothing. We did not need to know that she was wearing a pink ruffly shirt with black slacks, gold earrings and a pink plastic bracelet and black flats in order to drive her 2004 Mazda 3 car to get run off the road by the killer.

We did not need to know that the man who was unconcious and bleeding from a head wound was wearing a fl
Jan 15, 2015 Anne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The first in the Ashton Corners Book Club series introduces the reader to a charming cast of characters in a fictitious small town. At the inaugural meeting of the mystery book club a stranger to town, with a reported broken down car, is murdered sometime after he barges in to the manor holding the club meeting. Not only is he ostensibly a stranger, but he is killed with an antique hand gun owned by the owner of the home. Lizzie Turner, the leader of the group and a literacy teacher, is drawn in ...more
Jan 20, 2014 Connie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Ashton Corners mystery book and cheese straws club has been officially formed. Literacy leader/teacher, Lizzie Turner, is trying to come up with a new idea to get people reading and hoping this club might also help a couple of her literacy students. On the night of the first meeting, they are interrupted by a stranger, who uses the phone and goes to wait outside. Gets even more serious when the stranger is found shot to death, just a short while later. Now all of the members of the mystery b ...more
May 13, 2014 Denise rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-cozy
This could have been so good - overall mystery and plotting were good. It fell down on characterization (a lot of description of what the characters ate, and read, but not much about their personalities/motivations). I think the author was trying to go there but got lost in the pink tank top blouse with the navy slacks and navy wedges (yikes!).
This is such a great premise - cozy mystery with the starting point of a mystery book club. I like the references to other books/authors although I know
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Erika writes the Ashton Corners Book Club mysteries for Penguin/Berkley Prime Crime. In a parallel life Erika Chase is also known as Linda Wiken. A former mystery bookstore owner (Prime Crime Books in Ottawa, ON, Canada), Linda is also a short story writer. She is a member of those dangerous dames, The Ladies' Killing Circle.

Her short stories have appeared in the seven Ladies’ Killing Circle antho
More about Erika Chase...

Other Books in the Series

An Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery (5 books)
  • Read and Buried (Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery #2)
  • Cover Story (Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery, #3)
  • Book Fair and Foul (Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery #4)
  • Law and Author (Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery #5)

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