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Can't Judge a Book By Its Murder

(Main Street Book Club Mysteries #1)

by
3.99  ·  Rating details ·  143 ratings  ·  113 reviews
Not every murder is by the book…

As Sugar Springs gears up for its all-class high school reunion, Mississippi bookstore owner Arlo Stanley prepares to launch her largest event: a book-signing with the town’s legendary alum and bestselling author, Wally Harrison. That’s when Wally is discovered dead outside of Arlo’s front door and her best friend is questioned for the
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Mass Market Paperback, 320 pages
Published October 29th 2019 by Poisoned Pen Press
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Average rating 3.99  · 
Rating details
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Natalia  Ramlal
Oct 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Bookstore owner Arlo Stanley is preparing for a book signing event with local bestselling author, Wally Harrison when she receives a shocking phone call from the police. Wally has been found dead outside her store. To make matters worse, the police suspect her best friend Chloe is the one responsible for his death. Arlo knows her friend is innocent and with the help of her elderly book club members, she is determined to catch the real killer. Can't Judge a Book By Its Murder is a wonderful ...more
Brenda
Sugar Springs in Mississippi was a small town where everyone knew everyone else. The bookshop – Books and More – was owned and run by Arlo Stanley and her best friend Chloe, with Chloe in charge of “and More” and Arlo running the book side of it all. When Wally Harrison, author and one-time resident of Sugar Springs announced he was heading for a book signing in Books and More, the preparation made Arlo nervous. But when she was called down to the bookshop early one morning by the police, the ...more
Gail C.
Oct 11, 2019 rated it liked it
This is an entertaining book that is just as much about introducing the inhabitants of Sugar Springs, Mississippi. It’s time for the annual high school reunion which encompasses all class years since the school and town are so small. This year is particularly exciting since one of the graduates who has achieved fame and fortune as a writer is coming back to town for a book signing at Arlo and Chloe’s shop, Books and More. Arlo owns the books portion and Chloe provides specialty teas and coffees ...more
Deanne Patterson
Oct 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Deanne by: cnnamongirl@aol.com
The story kept me on my toes wondering, who did it!
Is it the obvious choice or is it the unexpected?
Strong story plot, the author does a wonderful job of keeping your attention the whole way through you'll want to read this cozy mystery more than once.
Expected publication: October 29th 2019 by Poisoned Pen Press
I was given a complimentary copy if this book. Thank you.
All opinions expressed are my own.


Jeri
Jul 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley, e-books
This was a good starter book for a new series. I always enjoy books based in the south and centered around books and friends. Some of my favorite things.

Anyway, the story was very interesting with our dead guy being a local boy come home for a class reunion and to sign books is found dead in front of the local bookstore. Not only that but his high school flame works in part of the bookstore and had his child which he wanted nothing to do with, until recently. Lots of red herrings and possible
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JoAn
Jun 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cozy-mystery, arc
Can't Judge A Book By It's Murder by Amy Lillard was a interesting cozy mystery set in Sugar Springs, MS.

The suspicious death was front and center in the first chapter but the plot moved slowly as Ms. Lillard was introducing the central characters. Arlo and Chloe are friends and business partners in Sugar Springs. Chloe has a history with the murder victim and subsequently is arrested for the murder. Arlo's book club members, Camille, Fern and Helen, decide they need to investigate the murder so
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LORI CASWELL
Nov 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2019
Dollycas’s Thoughts

Arlo and Chloe’s Books & More is set for a book signing for bestselling author Wally Harrison as part of the Tenth Annual All Class Reunion. Then Arlo receives a phone call that will bring that event to a screeching halt. Arlo has been summoned to the store because a dead body has been found on the sidewalk directly in front of the bookstore. The man has been identified as Wally Harrison and the death is classified as suspicious. Suicide? Murder? It looks like Arlo’s best
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Shelly
Jun 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
Can't Judge a Book By Its Murder is the first in the Main Street Book Club Mysteries. Sugar Springs, Mississippi bookstore owner Arlo Stanley is busily preparing for a book signing event with a famous local author when she is contacted by the police. A body, dead as a doornail, is lying on the sidewalk directly in front of her bookstore. To make matters worse, the dead body just so happens to be her special guest of honor, author Wally Harrison. Instead of a popular shopper’s destination, her ...more
Gloria
This story starts off with a shock when a body is found outside Arlo Stanley's bookstore in Sugar Springs, Mississippi, the scene of an apparent suicide or was it murder? Arlo has a scheduled book signing with local guy, Wally Harrison, who has returned home with a bestseller but that won't happen now. Wally either jumped, fell or was shoved out of the third floor window over Arlo's bookstore. Arlo's best friend and business co-owner is arrested for Wally's death when the clues are stacked ...more
Tari
This was a really enjoyable bunch of new characters, and I got such a kick out of the book club ladies wanting to do their sleuthing in such a way that Arlo must have felt like she was herding cats trying to keep them under control and out of danger. I liked Arlo and her bestie Chloe. They worked well together at their business, and Arlo was a fierce and faithful friend when Chloe was charged with murder. She was relentless at trying to prove her best friend's innocence, and I know Chloe and her ...more
Nancy Baker
Oct 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is an enjoyable start to a new series. Book store owner Arlo Stanley and the book club ladies (meddling grannies") want to figure out who killed their famous hometown author after Chloe, friend and co-owner of the store, is arrested for his murder.

The plot was predictable yet still intriguing enough that I was totally invested in finishing the book. The protagonist is a likable character but the fun characters are the book club ladies.

Thanks to Poisoned Pen Press and NetGalley for an ARC.
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Dawn Michelle
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kirsti
Jul 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for the chance to read this book!

This is the first in a new cozy series, and it was definitely a good start. I liked the friendships in this book especially; the sleuth is not only friends with a diverse group of people, but it really has that small town feel throughout. Being centred around a book store is always a plus, but it has a mini cafe going on too. Add in the reunion going on in the background and you have many situations to investigate in terms
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Lori
Sep 30, 2019 rated it liked it
A man falls from atop the bookstore to the sidewalk below. The investigating officer initially believes the man committed suicide, but the autopsy reveals poison in his system, confirming the suspicions of those who knew he was unlikely to commit suicide. When Chloe ends up in jail, Arlo begins her own investigation to get her friend freed. Some of the action stretches the imagination. The solution was fairly obvious. Still I enjoyed this mystery set in extreme northern Mississippi. Farmington ...more
Christine
Jul 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cozies
This is the first book in the Main Street Book Club series.
Arlo Stanley owns a bookstore café in Sugar Springs, Mississippi. The book starts with Arlo getting called to her store because the author who she was having for a book signing was found dead in front of her store. Initially, it looks like Wally Harrison jumped out of the third story window above Arlo's shop. But how did he gain access to the building and did he really jump or was he pushed. As it begins to look like Wally was pushed,
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Karen Hollins-Stallman
Nov 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: net-galley-arc
"Can't Judge a Book By Its Murder" the first book in the "Main Street Book Club" mystery series by Amy Lillard.

Not every murder is by the book…

As Sugar Springs gears up for its all-class high school reunion, Mississippi bookstore owner Arlo Stanley prepares to launch her largest event: a book-signing with the town’s legendary alum and bestselling author, Wally Harrison. That’s when Wally is discovered dead outside of Arlo’s front door and her best friend is questioned for the crime.

When the
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RO G'ma
3.5 star rating rounded up to 4 stars
Can’t Judge a Book By Its Murder is the first book in Amy Lillard’s Main Street Book Club Mysteries series. The beginning of the book was slow and a bit rough. As with most first in series books, a lot of time is devoted to introducing readers to the characters. The cast of characters are likable, including an Amazon parrot, and the set-up includes a love triangle I hope will not continue to overshadow the mystery in future books.

Arlo Stanley and Chloe Carter
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AngryGreyCat
Jun 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
I received a free digital copy of this title from NetGalley in exchange for a fair review.

Can’t Judge a Book by its Murder is the first in A Main Street Book Club Mystery Series by Amy Lillard set in small town Mississippi. Arlo Stanley owns a book store with a coffee shop attached along with her friend Chloe. The entire town is getting revved up for a big reunion, which is seeing the return of a local boy who has “done good” as a nationally known crime writer. Arlo and Chloe both knew him in
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Amy
Oct 22, 2019 rated it it was ok
Chloe and Arlo own a small coffee and bookshop in Sugar Springs, Mississippi. They are preparing to hold a book signing for best-selling home town author Wally Harrison. Everything comes to a halt when his body is found dead on the ground in front of their storefront of an apparent suicide. Even more complicated is that he is the father of Chloe's son. When Chloe is arrested for his murder, Arlo is determined to exonerate her and find the killer.

The book is the first in the series and the title
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Maureen Timerman
Oct 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019
The author has us on a quest to solve the murder of one of her high school class members, and with an all class reunion in town, it could be anyone.
With chuckles and sleuthing we go about looking who killed Wally, and then trying to get her friend and employee out of jail. We have a bookstore owner, the one who has a body fall out of her building, and her worker and friend accused of the dastardly deed.
We get to see the Book Club go about trying to prove the innocence of their friend.
Surprises
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Lisa Morin
Jun 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
As a first in a new series, I found Can't Judge a Book By Its Murder to be an interesting story.
Arlo and Chloe are owners of a book store cafe, and while preparing for an author book signing, a mysterious death turns their world upside down.
I did find the beginning of the story to be a bit rough, but once I got deeper into the story, I found myself immersed in the mystery.
This story has fun, colorful characters who are likable and interesting.
I'm looking forward to reading more in this series by
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Ann
Sep 25, 2019 rated it liked it
This is book 1 in a new cozy series, Main Street Book Club. Set in Sugar Springs, Mississippi, Arlo is getting her book store ready for a book signing by big time author, Wally Harrison. Wally is back in town for their high school reunion. When he is found dead in front of her bookstore, Arlo and her book club members investigate to exonerate their good friend Chloe. Chloe just happens to be the mother of Wally's son and is fighting his attempt for custody. Good characters, especially the ...more
The Bookish Hooker
Though I felt that the first few chapters of this new cozy mystery series was a little disjointed, I quickly fell in love with Sugar Springs, Mississippi. Charming and with more than its share of sweet, quirky residents, the small town is home to Arlo Stanley, her bookshop, and the Friday Night Book Club. With the addition of a love triangle and a hilarious group of meddling, white-haired ladies, this has the promise of being a wonderful series.

The action was off to a quick start, which I
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Betty
Jul 23, 2019 rated it liked it
The first book of the Main Street Book Club is an amusing story that brought smiles and chuckles as I read it. I had difficulty reading the story as it was disjointed at times. I did not connect with any of the characters.
The small town of Sugar Springs Mississippi is preparing to celebrate home coming with it's high school graduates Arlo Stanley receives a phone call that there is a body laying dead in front of her store. It turns to be Wally Harrison, a well known author with a best saleing
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Jerri Cachero
Aug 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
What do you do when your guest author, Wally Harrison dies before his book signing? Solve the crime, of course! That's just what Arlo does to keep her best friend Chloe from being convicted of murder and save their fledgling business - Arlo & Chloe's Books and More!

Arlo is determined, smart and a loyal friend. I enjoyed her relationships with the Friday Night Book Club members- Fern Helen and Camille. Those ladies made the book so much fun! While all are "mature" they're young at heart.
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Barbara Sousa
Nov 11, 2019 rated it liked it
Can’t Judge a Book by its Murder, the first book in Amy Lillard’s Main Street Book Club cozy mystery series, shows some promise, but ultimately was a mixed bag for me. While the mystery itself was intriguing, the story was bogged down with too many characters and not enough action.

In connection with her upcoming high school reunion, bookstore owner Arlo Stanley is gearing up to host a book signing by author, and fellow classmate, Wally Harrison. Unfortunately, before the event can take place,
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The Cozy Review
Oct 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Series: Main Street Book Club Mysteries – Book 1
Author: Amy Lillard
Genre: Cozy Mystery/Bookstore/BookClub
Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press
Page Count: 320

Publishing Date: October 29, 2019

New from Poisoned Pen Press comes Amy Lillard’s new series “Main Street Book Club Mysteries,” and the first book in the new series Can't Judge a Book by Its Murder.

Arlo is an unusual character in a new series. She’s a bit confused, whiney, and at times unbelievably brave. Finding a dead guy at her shop front door
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Gail Hollingsworth
Oct 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I love the cover and anything to do with bookstores. And Arlo owns the only bookstore in the small town of Sugar Springs Mississippi. Former classmate Wally Harrison is a best selling author and is scheduled to do a book signing at the store, until he is found lying in a heap in front of it, dead. When Arlo’s co-owner and best friend Chloe is jailed for the crime Arlo is determined to prove her innocence. After all, Wally did have lots of enemies.
I adored the three older ladies that formed the
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Peggy R
***Upgraded from 2.5 stars

This was a new author to me and I really liked the premise so I was looking forward to reading this book. Unfortunately, it just wasn't my cup of tea. I struggled to become engaged in the story and with the characters. For me, I felt the story dragged until about the midway point. There are some fun, quirky townspeople that made me chuckle, but I just couldn't connect with the main characters. I felt the pace was too slow and at some points the story a bit disjointed.
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Elaine Shorb
Sep 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What a wonderful book!
From the first sentence to the last paragraph, you will not be able to put this book down!
Arlo Stanley is headed to her newly opened bookstore. She needed to make sure everything was ready for Wally Harrison's book signing. Wally was in town for a high school reunion. He had just written a best seller book. So, what better time to do a book signing at her store.
Just as she turns the corner to the bookstore, she sees a dead body lying in front of her door. It couldn't be.
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I'm a wife, mother, and bona fide Southern belle. Published author, expert corn bread maker, and Squirrel Princess.

I live in Tulsa, though I was born in Mississippi. I moved to the Sooner State when I was seventeen and met my soul mate and best friend not long after. I've retained a little of my Mississippi accent though most people think I'm from Texas. (?) Rob and I have been married for over
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