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A Killer Read (Ashton Corners Book Club) Mass Market Paperback – April 3, 2012
"Warlight" by Michael Ondaatje
A dramatic coming-of-age story set in the decade after World War II, "Warlight" is the mesmerizing new novel from the best-selling author of "The English Patient." Pre-order today
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About the Author
Erika Chase writes the Ashton Corners Book Club Mysteries. In a parallel life she's known as Linda Wiken, a formermystery bookstore owner and a short story writer. She is a member of thosedangerous dames, The Ladies' Killing Circle.She has been short-listed for an Agatha Award for Best First Novel, andan Arthur Ellis Award, Best Short Story, from Crime Writers of Canada. Sheadmits to a passion for choral singing, chocolate and Siamese cats!
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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 withdrawal from the present.
During a book club meeting at the home of Lizzie's friend, Molly, a man comes wandering into the house. What happens next will affect the lives and reveal the past of the groups that frequent Molly's home.
That is all I am going to reveal as the story is tightly written and each piece fits into another like a cleverly made jigsaw puzzle.
Ms. Chase writes with a 'voice' that feels familiar to me and I instantly felt at home with the rhythm of the scenes. I will look forward to her next novel "Read and Buried" due out in December, 2012.
Perhaps because it included a new book club being formed and, since the murder occurred right outside of where they were meeting, all the members were suspects!
Well, that just was unacceptable to our main character, Lizzie Turner, who had started the new group. Lizzie is a "Reading Specialist" who not only worked with teachers, but also tutored individual students who were having problems in their classes due to their limited reading and study skills. Lizzie also led literacy classes, was in the community choir, and was a sympathetic friend... It's a wonder she had time to breathe...
And I was sorry to say that she really didn't take much time with her cats, Edam and Brie, so I just had to spotlight them a little on my blog, even though they stayed at home, while Lizzie was out all the time... Poor things! But then I snooped around and found that the cats in the Chase household actually help the writer rather than the characters! Their names have been changed to keep them from all the fans that normally surround the stars, but I did "snatch" a couple of pics to share with my cat lover readers!
Molly hosted many of the activities Lizzie initiated both because they were friends and because as a widow she enjoyed having people visit. But when the book club members had settled down and one came in late, she had announced that there was a man in the hallway. Nobody knew him and he quickly asked to use the phone and then left, only to be killed. It was around the same time that Molly realized that several small things had been taken from her home... Had the man stolen them while he was there roaming in the front area?
That issue became even more important when they discovered that the gun used to kill the man had also been owned by Molly. Apparently that had also been stolen although she had not been aware it was gone. Of course, the police thought that was a little too convenient and made it clear that Molly was being seriously considered!
At that point, the entire group decided to investigate. Bob Miller who was the retired chief of police was certainly going to check things out... But as things progressed, Lizzie was seeing things along the way that made her question what several of her group may be hiding. Was it related to the murder?
And then Lizzie started getting phone calls about her father who had died many years ago! At the same time, somebody started sending her a manuscript. At first she thought somebody in one of her classes wanted her to review their work--but why keep it a secret?
The investigation was not only getting more complicated, but the police were getting nowhere, especially since they kept looking at the book club members! Lizzie was determined to get all of their names cleared, but after issues about her father came up, she realized that apparently there was something about his death that needed to be discovered as well! But how could all of this be tied together? Many years separated the two deaths!
Now readers, the author gave a one-word clue early on that, if you pick it up, you will know who is guilty! Do you read that closely? I did! And I was right. Still, I was totally in the dark about all the other issues that were discovered along the way... The twists that forced everybody to go back into time made things difficult since so many of the individuals were already dead through natural causes. Still, there had to be people who knew what was going on--following the trail to those individuals was difficult but fun as each tip led to another person, who knew a little more, and so on...
By the way, the members of the book club are proving to be interesting characters so I'm looking forward to getting to know them better and see whether the budding relationships that came about in this first book, will continue on. But it will probably be somewhat boring to settle into normal reading activities--unless, of course, there's a murder or two for them to solve in each book. LOL...
Into Cozies? Do check this one out!
The book seems sort of repetitious. Lizzie gets up, a description of what she is wearing, and then she feeds her cats, goes for a run, goes to school, or literacy class, or book club over and over. She doesn't seem to have much personality. I was also disappointed in the solution.
What annoyed me more, for some silly reason, was the series of quotes by mystery authors at the beginning of each chapter. They are neither funny nor interesting. It almost seems as if she lined up a series of assorted mysteries, opened each one to a random page, and selected a random sentence.
None of the characters sparkled, but I'm hoping the next one, which I already own, is better.
• Decent story line/plot for a cozy mystery with good character development
• Mystery centered around a book club and teaching others to read
• Name of the book club – loved it - Ashton Corners Mystery Readers and Cheese Straws Society
• It centers around a book club and the teaching of reading
• Series of quotes by mystery authors at the beginning of each chapter; drove me crazy
• Story drag in various parts of the book
• Too much repetitive text on her daily routines and feeding her cats
OVERALL: Good start to a cozy mystery series. I look forward to reading the next book in the series.
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It has been a VERY long time since I began a new cozy mystery series where I was blown away.Read more