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!"
"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."
"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."
"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."
"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."
"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."
"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."
"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."
"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."
"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."
"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."
"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."
"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."
"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."
"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!"
"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!"
"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."
"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."
"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."
"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."