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To Cut A Long Story Short
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To Cut A Long Story Short

3.72  ·  Rating Details  ·  5,012 Ratings  ·  187 Reviews
The latest collection from the master storyteller. The fourteen - all new - stories show Jeffrey Archer's great skills with a wide variety of character, of subject and of setting, but all with that trademark twist in the tail. Every reader will have their own favourites: the choices run from love at first sight across the railway tracks to the cleverest of confidence trick ...more
Unknown Binding
Published March 5th 2001 by Not Avail (first published 1997)
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Feb 26, 2013 Mark rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Mark by: Lynne Cezare
Shelves: short-stories
As far as memory serves this is the first Jeffrey Archer I have read. I am a lover of the short story form and so when a friend, who is a big fan of ex-Lord Archer, lent it to me it seemed a good place to begin as it would be a win-win. If I liked his style of writing then I could throroughly enjoy them and perhaps move on to something more substantial later, if I did not, well it was only a small part of my reading life wasted. I did enjoy the stories but perhaps not as much as I had hoped I wo ...more
As a fan of Archer's style of writing & especially his short stories, I would not consider this collection of stories as his best ( A Quiver Full of Arrows & Twelve Red Herrings were truly great)
Most of the stories are great but few were a bit predictable .
Among the good ones, the true stories like The Expert Witness,Crime Pays,A change of heart, Chalk and Cheese were excellent. Overall great but not his best!
John Stammers
This review and other book reviews can be found on my blog, among other kinds of posts:

I don't know about anybody else, but I've always felt that Jeffrey Archer was a famous name I had heard many times but could not remember where I heard the name or anything about him. I saw his name on the cover of a book every time I walked into a bookshop, but I never really gave him much consideration. Then one day I decided to pick this up, only for my dad to say, "
Jun 08, 2009 Mira rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: i-own
drags on.... and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and ...more
Sep 27, 2011 Tiger rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am an avid fan of all Archer books. In general, I avoid short stories, probably because I find myself unable to master the genre, but I was willing to give anything by Archer a chance.
I found the the pleasure in reading these that I did in reading his novels. They are well written, with unseen plot twists that grab you when least expected.
If you've never read anything by Jeffrey Archer, give these a try. Then move on to his longer works which are even better.
Abu Yillah
Some of the stories are amazing. Others leave you wondering 'what was the point of this story again?!'
Mar 27, 2013 Ammey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Death Speaks
This story is written by an anonymous writer. Jeffrey was so moved by the story that he placed it at the beginning of his book.

The fourteen short stories reviewed below are written by Jeffrey archer. The * in the title of the story indicated that the story is based on true incidents

1) The Expert Witness*
As the name suggests, it’s a story of a court room trial. No doubt this is based on a true incident.
The story has a very good climax and equally good ant-climax
I would rate it as 4 ou
I enjoy reading Jeffrey Archer's books. His style is one that appeals to me a great deal. He particularly demonstrates a mastery of 'the twist ending' in his short stories which generally prompts me to gasp aloud in astonishment.

In all honesty, this volume is not a collection of what I consider to be his best. I do not regret having read it... quite the contrary! He has published several other collections of short stories; I have found the others to be more compelling.
May 09, 2016 Shivani rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It was suggested by a dear friend when I said that I want to read something that is light and enjoyable and does not keep me on my toes for "what next"? I loved the idea that it had short storied so I throughly enjoyed it during my travel. Some of the stories were completely amazing while for some I felt the end was too open. I almost though that a page is missing from my book and this can not be the end of the story. Enjoyed the book overall and the fact that it had something to offer to people ...more
Rachael Hewison
This book was, to me, intriguing as nine of the fourteen books were based on true events meaning that the stories had a lot more impact on me as they had actually happened. The only problem was that it only told you which were true at the start which meant constant flicking back to the contents page.
Many of the stories were very humorous, varied enough that you don’t get bored. It’s suitable for both people who want to power through them, but also people who just want to have a read every so oft
I would give this a 3.5 actually.

The book was overall, quite good.
Some stories standing out much more than the others.
But what I felt was that the endings of some of the stories were predictable.
I managed to guess 2-3 or maybe 4 stories' endings.

The language and certain events in the book...
It was a bit hard to relate to.
I am not sure if it's because it's an old book or because it is very English.
There are many references to English culture.
Or maybe I am just not that well-read :P

Lori Bigby
I think books of short-stories are wonderful and Jeffrey Archer is certainly good at story telling. I think it is good to be reading a book that you can sit down and capture the entirety of what the author is saying in one sitting and then move on. I don't like it all the time, but it's refreshing on occasion. These stories are well written and most of them had the same twists in them that you would expect from a full-length novel. I admit, there were two or three that I just didn't get, but the ...more
Jan 05, 2011 Joan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have read numerous Jeffrey Archer novels through the years; but this book of short stories bore little resemblance to those mysteries. The fourteen short stories contained in the book varied in length from 2 pages to more than 30 pages. Topics also varied, of course, ranging from confidence games, romantic mysteries, to even some with supernatural characters. Many seemed to take on the flavor of old-fashioned fables with insights into human nature in general. Although I enjoyed some stories mo ...more
Aug 13, 2016 Darren rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I got this book from the store book exchange at the store I have coffee at. It was a good book to read. It is a book of short stories by the author. I hope to read more books by this author.
Avel Rudenko
Sep 04, 2010 Avel Rudenko rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have been a fan of short stories for a while. Mainly because they are digestible and accomplishable in a short sitting. These stories are very well written. Just when you adapt to a storyline, something changes and you stumble down another path. You do physically smirk to yourself at the outcome of a story and I find this work by Jeffrey Archer very enjoyable, though I have yet to read more of his books. There's one slight glitch, If I sometimes settle in for a short story at night, it ends up ...more
Jan 25, 2013 Sana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
January 25, 2013

I have read almost half of this short story collection and I am liking it very much. I wanted to read short stories just because I did not want to start a hard-to-put-down novel during my busiest days (exams!).
Now I think it was a good decision. I might not read short stories when I had more time to read novels, so I might not have come across this collection in the first place.

Well, the stories are well written and interesting. I thing Archer has squeezed some good thrillers i
Zara Arshad
This is the first book I've read by the infamous Jeffery Archer, and it turned out to be a short-story book so I thought maybe why not try something new this time...

The book in itself was well-written; like a story being told but the main problem I felt was that the stories were mostly about crimes, cases, courts, business and finance; all of which is clearly not my area of interest. So sometimes it did get a tad boring for me.

But in the end what I liked most about reading it was that it made
Jack Kardiac
Jun 16, 2014 Jack Kardiac rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was my first exposure to Jeffrey Archer, who came highly recommended by a friend. While I will say the stories are well-written and are not inherently boring, I have to admit I had expected more. I'm accustomed to reading Alfred Hitchcock and crime or horror-lite stories with a twist (or at least more action sequences). So I think it's not so much his style of writing as it is my preferences at this point. I DID find his rendering of the real-life stories to be fascinating and educational. ...more
Athul Domichen
This was a collection of short stories by Jeffrey Archer that I had borrowed from Joel. All the stories are told in a typical Archer style- simple, thrilling in places, and a definite twist at the end. I like Archer for the ways in which he places and packs his stories with plot twists. He begins the collection with a tiny Persian folktale about death -'Death Speaks'. It's just about a paragraph but it is as powerful as the best of stories. 'Eli' the short film by Alphonse Puthren says a similar ...more
Krishna Kumar
May 06, 2015 Krishna Kumar rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nice title and there are several good ones in this collection. This is less of a surprise ending kind of story, as we generally get a sense of how the story will develop. A story like “The Grass is Always Greener” easily gives away what it wants to say. But even without the element of surprise, the stories are well written and it is a good read.
Timothy Quinlan
Sep 06, 2014 Timothy Quinlan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think Archer plots short fiction better than anyone. The stories in this one cover a good range of settings and personalities, and deliver his trademark twists and turns. There are also a couple of shorter short stories which are great and interesting given the challenges of delivering a well plotted story line with such a small word count.
Sadie-jane (sj) alexis nunis
3.5 stars.

First series of short stories by Jeffrey archer. I can see why there are so many fans. I did enjoy most of them but the one that blew me away was chalk and cheese. loved the Lil twist.. you do want to smack Robin btw and John sounds too good to be true. .but the writing was fluid and made for enjoyable reading.
Feb 09, 2015 Jd rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015, short-stories
I found these stories fun to read and also thought-provoking. I particularly liked "Chalk and Cheese", "A Change of Heart", and "The Grass is Always Greener...". This is the first work of Jeffrey Archer's that I have read, but I am now planning to more of his stories.
Gláucia Renata

Interessei-me pelo autor após ler seu fabuloso Caim e Abel, não sabia que ele também escrevia contos. O livro contem quinze, alguns baseados em fatos reais. Destaco:
A Morte Fala: fábula árabe com uma mensagem sobre a inexorabilidade da hora fatal e derradeira.
O Perito: um advogado usa a mesma tese em dois julgamentos diferentes, em um desacreditando e em outro confirmando a credibilidade de uma mesma testemunha (um perito), mostrando o que é o Direito. Genial.
Como Água e Vinho: sobre dois irm
Brenda Opperman
Apr 09, 2014 Brenda Opperman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I do not typically read short stories but decided to give it a try with this one. I enjoyed most of the stories and tried to predict their endings as I read them. It was difficult to find the point of one or two of the stories, but a good read overall.
Toshali Gupta
Every story has a plot to be extended and rewritten in a 300 page book. How jeffrey archer manages to convey the message in simply 10 pages is something you should read his books to understand.
Aug 02, 2014 Emi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I would say that I found most of the stories witty, compelling and amusing. My favourite ones are: The Expert Witness, The Endgame, The Letter, Chalk and Cheese, A Change of Heart.
Gregory Barron
Apr 07, 2015 Gregory Barron rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great book of well done short stories
Some based on true incidents
Change of Heart being my favorite
About Stoffel van den Berg - the crossroads convert. Great true story
Apr 10, 2014 Bobbi rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
i enjoy short stories so this was all good to read. it was about many different characters and each tale was different. Mr. Archer is good at writing an interesting story.
Karen Moseley
A very easy to read collection of short stories, most very entertaining often with an unexpected twist. interesting to note that several of them were based on fact!
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Jeffrey Howard Archer, Baron Archer of Weston-super-Mare (born 15 April 1940) is an English author and former politician.

He was a Member of Parliament and deputy chairman of the Conservative Party, and became a life peer in 1992. His political career, having suffered several controversies, ended after a conviction for perverting the course of justice and his subsequent imprisonment. He is married
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