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To Cut a Long Story Short
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To Cut a Long Story Short

3.75  ·  Rating details ·  6,530 ratings  ·  272 reviews
From the master storyteller comes a masterful collection of fourteen riveting tales of elaborate confidence tricks, political chicanery, immoral behavior, and dangerously illicit affairs, rendered with the breathtaking narrative twists that have become the Jeffrey Archer hallmark.

Here are all new stories that will engross and astonish, peopled with a rich assortment of tru
Paperback, 416 pages
Published December 4th 2001 by HarperTorch (first published 2000)
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Obalola Ibrahim I think it was for Pauline. Him being a bachelor and a lawyer. Remember Pauline doesn't like lawyers.

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Average rating 3.75  · 
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 ·  6,530 ratings  ·  272 reviews

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Sumit RK
Dec 18, 2015 rated it liked it
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!
Feb 20, 2013 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
Aug 04, 2016 rated it liked it
14 tales from master storyteller Jeffrey Archer, according to him 8 from these were based on true events. Maybe not my favorite one, cause I liked “And thereby hangs a tale” more. Anyway, some of his stories are wonderful and make the book worth reading. In my case, my favourite ones were “The expert witness”, “The endgame”, “Crime pays”, “Chalk and cheese”, “A change of heart”, “Love at first sight”, and finally “The grass is always greener” (Though maybe this was the simplest one, a kind of Xm ...more
Shabana Mukhtar
It is a collection of short stories and each one is a master piece.
Rating says it all.
Need I say more?
Sep 27, 2011 rated it really liked it
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
Sep 01, 2013 rated it liked it
Some of the stories are amazing. Others leave you wondering 'what was the point of this story again?!'
Pamela Small
Aug 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
Engaging stories by a master storyteller!
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, "
Mar 22, 2013 rated it really liked it
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
Jun 07, 2009 rated it it was ok
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
Aug 06, 2013 rated it liked it
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.
Jan 22, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I quite enjoyed this collection of stories. My favourite was The Endgame, which had the feel of a whodunit, even though no one was killed. It was like a whole novel crammed into fifty-some pages. I'm glad it was among the longer short stories of the book, because is was a real page-turner, and I really didn't want to run out of pages.
I liked the fact that many of the stories were based on true incidents; it made me all the more curious to see what they were really about. It just goes to show a g
Nov 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Exceptional! A master story teller, Jeffrey Archer is one of the most revered writers in the world. I loved each one of the stories - all are beautiful and 100% would read the book again.
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
Jan 05, 2011 rated it really liked it
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
Jan 02, 2014 rated it liked it
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

Avel Rudenko
Sep 04, 2010 rated it really liked it
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 13, 2013 rated it really liked it
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
Jun 12, 2013 rated it liked it
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 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
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
May 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
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
Dolly Anderson
Sep 19, 2016 rated it liked it
This little collection by Mr. Archer was a perfect grouping of stories featuring the 'Art of the double cross!'

From family members whom are overly selfish when it comes to possible inheritance to falling victim in a love affair,where the party whom captivated you was only in it for their own benefit.

Usually I have a problem with short stories, as some can throw you with a twist and just leave you stunned or hanging with a WTF just happened, but with these you felt a bit of satisfaction in that
Timothy Quinlan
Sep 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
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 (Say-dee-Jane) 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.
Krishna Kumar
May 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
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.
Brenda Opperman
Apr 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
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.
Feb 09, 2015 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.
Apr 04, 2014 rated it liked it
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.
Toshali Gupta
Apr 20, 2014 rated it liked it
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 rated it it was amazing
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.
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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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