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Quick Reads - 40 Short Story Books from the Quick Reads Series

James N Simpson
The list author says: "The Quick Reads series is a worthy cause to increase literacy levels by encouraging those who don't like to read beyond magazines and comic books to try fiction through cheap priced short story length fiction. Those with that limited exposure to literature, hopefully will enjoy the more simpleness of the basic no possibility of confusion style stories and want to read more. Most of the Quick Reads books are just under 100 pages with some slightly shorter or longer.

Those who don't normally read fiction or non fiction aren't the only ones who will enjoy these books. They're just normal short stories, same as appear in various multiple author anthologies anyway. With a RRP of a couple of pounds, they are a cheap way to acquire something quick to read when travelling, having to wait for a train, plane etc or just commuting to work. Also sold outside the UK but not as easily found. More American and authors from other countries have appeared in more recent years so hopefully books will start appearing in higher numbers everywhere. It's great to see cheap priced short stories as an alternative to magazines and newspapers as a way to kill time.

Some of these have also been released as audio books and as large print editions.

Stories do vary in quality, some are really good, others not so good. There's more titles than these but Listmania is limited to 40 entries. I've tried to included a broad range of genres, there's a substantial number of non fiction titles written by UK athletes and local celebrities which I haven't included, since I don't think they'll appeal to many people outside the UK and Ireland. There's also a few Doctor Who themed which you may wish to search for if you're a fan.

If you're after a quick short read to pass the time, or always wondered what some author was like, Quick Reads are worthwhile checking out!"
Quantum of Tweed: The Man with the Nissan Micra
Quantum of Tweed: The Man with the Nissan Micra
"A nerdy social outcast whose business is about to be foreclosed on by the bank accidentally runs over a man and is mistaken for a hitman.  Brilliant, fun read!"
Danny Wallace and the Centre of the Universe (Quick Reads)
Danny Wallace and the Centre of the Universe (Quick Reads)
"Non fiction - Humourous travel writer Danny Wallace travels to a town in the US which claims it's the centre of the universe. Best of the non fiction Quick Reads!"
Clouded Vision
Clouded Vision
"A con artist picks the wrong victims to try her psychic scam."
Trouble on the Heath (Quick Reads)
Trouble on the Heath (Quick Reads)
"Carl Hiaasen style eccentric characters comedy, where a Russian mob leader wants to build a massive house which will wreck the view of residents in a British street."
Men at Work
Men at Work
"Probably funniest of the Quick Reads series, a man who loves his wife deeply also loves his job where he gets to be him. His unemployed wife lands a job in the same office and he knows he must do something about it or it's the end of his fun days at work."
The Tannery (Quick Reads)
The Tannery (Quick Reads)
"Brilliantly written short story set in the years before, during and after World War I through the eyes of a six year old girl at the time her father went to war, trapped in a violent unloving household with her alcoholic mother who blames her for wrecking her life."
Jack and Jill (Quick Reads)
Jack and Jill (Quick Reads)
"One of the best books of the Quick Reads series.  10 year old Jill and and her mute younger brother Jack are dumped on a farm by their mother.  They have no idea why, but together with a farmer neighbour's son who has overheard old women gossiping about Jack in town, Jill is determined to find out the truth."
The Cave (Quick Reads)
The Cave (Quick Reads)
"Another really well written tale, set the post World War I era where a man crashes his car, walks to a town and discovers a deadly secret from the past."
One Good Turn
One Good Turn
"One of the best Quick Reads, powerful, yet simple tale set in Ypres, France during the Western Front of World War I.  Chris Ransom, gave everything for his fellow soldiers and country just because it was the right thing to do. Now he has awakened badly burnt, dirty and in a lot of pain chained to a bed in a dark basement. He can't remember much but knows he's not John Stubbs, the man on trial."
Last Night Another Soldier...: Quick Read
Last Night Another Soldier...: Quick Read
"Easily the best of the modern wartime fiction Quick Reads. The last three months of a six month tour of duty in Afghanistan for a rifle section which has already suffered heavy loss of life.  The story of these soldiers and what they go through in combat and back at camp is told by 18 year old David Briggs."
My Dad's a Policeman (Quick Reads)
My Dad's a Policeman (Quick Reads)
"12 year old Ryan's mother's an alcoholic, no one knows who his dad is.  Constantly getting into fights on the council estate and in trouble with the police, social services have finally decided to act.  He and his 5 year old brother have been placed in seperate foster homes (to protect his brother from his influence).  Ryan is having none of this."
Wrong Time, Wrong Place (Quick Reads 2013)
Wrong Time, Wrong Place (Quick Reads 2013)
"A naked captive flees her prison in the remote highlands of Scotland and stumbles across four English hikers.  Will they help her and what are the cosequences of doing so if they do?"
Blackwater (Quick Reads)
Blackwater (Quick Reads)
"A husband is being pysically bullied by another man who is having an affair with his wife.  That man expects the husband to simply leave the picture."
The Little One (Quick Read 2012)
The Little One (Quick Read 2012)
"An unethical journalist tricks her way into the home of a former soapie star to get some dirt to sell to the tabloids and finds more than she bargained for."
The Dare (Quick Read)
The Dare (Quick Read)
"Well written tale of a boy whose mother runs over another child with her car, then becomes self absorbed with her own problems not realising what effect this is having on her own son."
Screw It, Let's Do It: Lessons In Life (Quick Reads)
Screw It, Let's Do It: Lessons In Life (Quick Reads)
"Billionaire Richard Branson autobiography (not as comprehensive to his much lengthier Losing My Virginity book).  Still a good read and taste or introduction to biographies and autobiographies if you've never tried them."
The Perfect Murder
The Perfect Murder
"A husband and wife both decide they would be better off without the other and start planning the perfect murder of each other."
The Thief
The Thief
"A woman who used to get vengeance on those who did her wrong by stealing their possessions as a child, meets a bully on a plane."
The Corpse's Tale (Quick Reads)
The Corpse's Tale (Quick Reads)
"Hottest girl in a small Welsh town is murdered.  A mentally disabled man is found next to her naked body holding the axe that killed her.  Years later a court sets him free for wrongful conviction.  Can outside police prove he did it or who else did in a town that already made up its mind."
Loose Connections (Quick Reads)
Loose Connections (Quick Reads)
"An IT repairman con artist picks the wrong victim, a mother who has had enough."
CHICKENFEED: QUICK READS
CHICKENFEED: QUICK READS
"A fictional version of events based on real historic characters and events known where a chicken farmer killed and hacked his girlfriend.  Quite a good and interesting read."
Hello Mum (Quick Read)
Hello Mum (Quick Read)
"Fiction - boy's justifications to his mother about why he joined the gangs on a British council estate and a look at what life is really like for a boy growing up on them."
The Name You Once Gave Me (Quick Reads)
The Name You Once Gave Me (Quick Reads)
"Daniel, a teacher visits an old man to ask if his students can interview him about areas history.  Suprised when the man produces a photo of his white mother beside a dark skinned man.  His mother has always refused to give him any info on who his father is. Great mildly violent as Daniel explores areas people don't want him to at times thriller."
Bring It Back Home (Quick Reads)
Bring It Back Home (Quick Reads)
"Weird but good tale.  A not very bright peodophile flees his small Welsh town and gets a job in London working for a drug smuggler. Upon hearing his victim's shotgun carrying father who wanted him dead has died, he smashes a bottle over the head of the boss, empties the safe and returns home, stupidly believing no one in his current life will know where he's gone."
Strangers on the 16: 02
Strangers on the 16: 02
"Commuters on the tube with their own problems have a run in with a gang of school aged cowards."
Losing it
Losing it
"A wannabe drug barron has to help and live with his disabled father who knows nothing of the son's illegal career.  An underling has wronged him and with a reputation to maintain he must leave his father alone while tracking him down."
The Grey Man (Quick Read)
The Grey Man (Quick Read)
"Was a bit disappointed with this one. A bank employee who has always been a bit of a loser and geek in the eyes of those around him is bullied by his boss on a daily basis.  He decides to become the Grey Man and rob some safety deposit boxes."
Don't Make Me Laugh (Quick Reads)
Don't Make Me Laugh (Quick Reads)
"A man finds out his brother who he only recently just found out existed, has slept with his wife. Now he wants to kill him."
Bloody Valentine (Quick Reads)
Bloody Valentine (Quick Reads)
"Written with K. A. John (with maybe a line or two by James Patterson so his name can be on the cover).  A British through the eyes homicide inspector mystery, where a rich restaurant owner's wife is murdered, her heart removed and sent to him."
Desert Claw (Quick Read)
Desert Claw (Quick Read)
"Kuwaiti prince's worthless but sentimental painting was stolen in the 1991 invasion and is now in the hands of a terrorist organisation who looted it from one of Saddam's palaces. Ex British, NZ and American soldiers have been hired to kill everyone and get it back!"
Cleanskin (Quick Reads)
Cleanskin (Quick Reads)
"Untouchable mob leader's little girl is murdered by fire.  His body shortly after washes up and a bloody violent war errupts as the competition tries to take his spot."
A Cool Head (Quick Reads)
A Cool Head (Quick Reads)
"Forrest Gump type character works at a cemetry.  A man who stole money from the mob who he often hides things for drives through the gates and dies of his bullet wounds from the heist."
Humble Pie
Humble Pie
"A shortened version of a full length autobiography of the same name by Chef Gordon Ramsay."
Lily - QUICK READ (Quick Reads)
Lily - QUICK READ (Quick Reads)
"Mentally handicapped teenager Marie, is offered a six week position being the companion to four year old Amy in a house in the country.  However she soon believes the dead mother Lily is communicating with her, and Lily wants her out of the house!"
Beyond the Bounty
Beyond the Bounty
"What happened to the Bounty's crew after they mutinied.  Parsons gives a fictional account of what they got up to."
Rubber Woman (Quick Reads)
Rubber Woman (Quick Reads)
"An ex prostiture now known as Rubber Woman is murdered, her body found with a mouth full of condoms. A psychologist researching the effects on how a crack down on prostitution is effecting the safety and lives of the women as they are forced into seedy suburbs to conduct their trade, is determined to find proof to convict the person she believes murdered her guide to the underworld."
Someone Like Me (Quick Reads)
Someone Like Me (Quick Reads)
"Set in the future, where humans have reverted back to living in huts and hunting with swords and knives.  A hunter is hunting hairy clawed predators who terroise and mutilate humans.  In a final battle between himself and an old female creature deep inside a tunnel, only one will come out alive."
Traitors of the Tower (Quick Reads)
Traitors of the Tower (Quick Reads)
"Non fiction, Alison Weir recounts that tales of seven people who's head were cut off or met similar fates in the Tower of London between 1483 and 1601."
Hell Island (Quick Reads)
Hell Island (Quick Reads)
"An elite team has been sent in on a top secret mission alongside 40 other special force soldiers from Delta Force and the Navy Seals.  The enemy they will face is nothing like they've ever encountered before.  One of the biggest name authors provides one of the least good of all the Quick Reads series books."
Black-Eyed Devils (Quick Reads)
Black-Eyed Devils (Quick Reads)
"A small Welsh town's streets are overflowing with violence and racism due to the greedy union going on strike.  Union members beat and hang Irish and anyone else they think are scabs there to take their jobs. A stalker arrives one day and never having seen a blonde before is obsessed with  Amy, the teenage daughter in a violent union family."