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A Killer Read

(An Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery #1)

3.66  ·  Rating details ·  1,352 ratings  ·  214 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 ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 286 pages
Published April 3rd 2012 by Berkley Publishing Group (first published April 2012)
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Average rating 3.66  · 
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 ·  1,352 ratings  ·  214 reviews

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Feb 19, 2013 rated it really liked it

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
May 10, 2013 rated it liked it
So much mainstream mystery is from the USA, I was excited to find Erika Chase. I am befuddled the pages of “A Killer Read” are rife with American habits like “have got” - instead of plainly using “have”. Erika even spells “colour” without “U”, which should come naturally. American ‘stuff’ is already abundant. Canadians with the chance to produce work, usually showcase our country. Instead, here’s yet another setting in the American south!

I like the protagonist, ‘Lizzy’ and cast, after taking
Jul 01, 2013 rated it it was ok
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
Aug 14, 2012 rated it it was ok
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
Oct 06, 2012 rated it it was ok
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 ...more
Laurie Garrison
Dec 02, 2014 rated it did not like it
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.
Aug 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This was one cozy that has been on my to-read forever, and because I forgot to update my Kindle in wifi today I had to make some different choices to read while I was at the farm. This one caught my eye, and it turned out to be a really excellent choice!

The actual mystery spans over a number of years, and actually involves different situations and people. It's hard to guess where it's going, and although ultimately I was a little confused with the revealed murderer, after a bit of thought I
Aug 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017
4.5 stars. I thought it was a great cosy mystery absolutely love them. However the only downfall with this novel I would like to see the plot setting change. Was mainly set in Lizzies house, Lizzies School and Molly's house. With only a fraction of the novel Lizzie actually going to another location. But like I said other than that can not fault it.
Oct 10, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: library-returned, dnf
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.
Aug 07, 2012 rated it did not like it
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.
Jul 31, 2012 rated it did not like it
Too much redundancy, many of the events take place at Molly's house with Lizzie eating. Author needs to broaden the characters and the locations. Will not continue this series
Mar 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
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,
Sep 07, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 10, 2013 rated it liked it
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!
Shelley Giusti
Apr 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing
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!!
Mar 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Book 1 in the Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery series brings together an assorted group of characters at their first book club meeting. Cheese straws being a hit as an appetizer they add the words Cheese Straws Society to their name! This should give a hint to the playfulness of the characters. However, the group is thrown into turmoil from the get-go as a murder takes place during their meeting.

Lizzie is the reading specialist for the Ashton Corners school district. Her love of reading has her
Apr 17, 2019 rated it liked it
AUTHOR Chase, Erika
TITLE A Killer Read
DATE READ 04/17/19
FIRST SENTENCE I've got an idea, Lizzie…why don't you just do, like, brain surgery or something on me. Slice me open, pull out my brain, squish all this Shakespeare stuff into it, put it back and sew me up like new.
GENRE/ PUB DATE/PUBLISHER / # OF Cozy Mystery/2012/Berkley Crime/283 pgs
SERIES/STAND-ALONE #1 Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery
CHALLENGE Good Reads 2019 Reading Goal 62/111;
CHARACTERS Lizzie/reading
Linda Smatzny
May 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Lots of mysteries in this story including a murder. The main character is Lizzie Turner who is a reading specialist and mystery book lover. Interesting beginning to a series set in Alabama. The book was a quick easy read.
Kristy Epperson
Jan 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Really enjoyed this first book in the series. I loved getting to know the cast of characters and look forward to reading the next book!
Cathy Cole
Sep 13, 2012 rated it liked it
First Line: "I've got an idea, Lizzie... why don't you just do, like, brain surgery or something on me."

Literacy specialist Lizzie Turner's days don't always run smoothly, especially when she has a reader as reluctant as teenager Andrea Mason. But Lizzie doesn't know the meaning of the word quit, and she's inspired to invite Andrea to the very first meeting of the Ashton Corners Mystery Readers and Cheese Straws Society.

What no one bargains for is the fact that the man who barges in on the
Nov 12, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
Except for the fact that Lizzie Turner, the literacy consultant for a small school district who serves as the protagonist for A Killer Read, and Lizzie Borden have the same number of syllables in their names, these two women named Elizabeth are not only from different eras, but they are also on opposite sides of the word “killer.” While Borden was the infamous axe murderess who gave her parents forty whacks, Turner loves to read murder mysteries and, as one might expect, ends up solving them. ...more
Oct 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
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
Mar 01, 2016 rated it did not like it
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
Apr 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
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
Nidah (SleepDreamWrite)
Jul 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
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
Jeannie and Louis Rigod
Apr 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book was a charming surprise to me. Not only did I truly enjoy the story and meeting new characters, each chapter had a familiar quote by Authors I follow religiously and somehow my favorite novels were chosen also.

The story follows an Reading Specialist, Tutor, Literacy Teacher, Lizzie Turner who has returned to her childhood town to live and work in. Lizzie's Mother has special needs which need her living close by as well.
No one is quite sure what happened to Ms. Turner to cause her
Mar 16, 2013 rated it it was ok
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.
Aug 16, 2014 rated it it was ok
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
Alannah Davis
Jun 21, 2012 rated it liked it
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
Dec 29, 2016 rated it liked it
Not bad. I like to this of these mysteries as my "light" reading. I'll probably continue reading the series. Lizzie Turner is a likeable character with interesting friends. I like the idea of a book club trying to solve a mystery - who committed an actual murder.
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.

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'

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)