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Customer reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
11

on March 30, 2012
Steve Morris has done a wonderful job of putting together 30 short stories, roughly three to five pages in length, in his collection, In All Probability. The stories are about ordinary people, real people, you and me, and the choices they make which can have life-changing consequences. The endings aren't what you would call unhappy, rather they are what most probably would happen, and of course life isn't all happy endings so let's say the endings are `real'.

Fate and destiny are big characters in this collection and I believe control also plays a big part. For example, people wanting to control sleep, events, depression and emotions. It is actually a good life lesson - we cannot control everything, sometimes it is already predestined and if we try too much to change what, in all probability, is around the corner for us we can meet consequences we don't want to. We mustn't become too complacent, thinking that we have it made, because in the end what we thought we had and what we thought was a sure thing, in all probability, might be taken away from us. Nothing is a sure thing. What will be will be. A life lesson indeed. Call it karma, or whatever name you choose to attach to it, sometimes we do need to be taught a lesson just to let us know we mightn't be the ones in full control. We must also watch what we wish for. You may think you want change but you don't know what's on the other side of that change, good or bad, so perhaps we should be happy with what we have got instead of wishing we had more of something.

Throughout the stories we meet with spirits, ghosts, workaholics, loners, dreams, conspiracy theories, climate change, OCD, the marketing of cigarettes, supernatural events and futuristic environments. I must say the futuristic stories are a little scary - because they could end up being real. They certainly have a real feeling about them. In fact, I would think these would make good stand-alone novels and perhaps that is something Steve Morris could work on. A lot of the stories I wanted to know more, what happened later on, and this shows good writing in my view. Steve made the characters engaging and because they are `real' people I could see myself or someone I knew in some of the characters.

Three of my favourite short stories in this collection: "The Lay-Off", where a soccer player injures his knee and is told by the doctor he won't run on it again. Soccer is this man's life and years later he does find soccer again (or does soccer find him?). What will become of this? In all probability perhaps not what you would expect; then again, in all probability perhaps what you would expect.

"If I Could Bottle It" is a great story of a department store employee being creative with smells. He places smells around the store in strategic places to evoke memories in customers of good times gone past in the hopes of them buying more product. What will become of this? In all probability perhaps not what you would expect; then again, in all probability perhaps what you would expect.

"Swansong" has Darren as its main character. Darren is not well and is on lots of medication. He decides to up and leave, travelling to Ibiza where he ends up drinking quite a bit. Darren is befriended by a dog and they become inseparable. What will become of this? In all probability perhaps not what you would expect; then again, in all probability perhaps what you would expect.

I loved how I could read a story here and there when I had a moment to spare. That's the beauty of short stories. Steve made the `real' come alive through characters that were `real'. Some endings were quite abrupt, which left me wondering hm, what happens next? I can't say I could guess any of the endings, some were quite a surprise. In all probability most will like this collection of short stories and I say if you can get your hands on it read it, enjoy it and think about it.

Thank you, Steve, for providing me with a copy of your work. I've said it before and I will say it again, I love the cover! I wish you well in your future works and look forward to reading more from you. Thanks, Steve!
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on August 4, 2010
The first story "Dead Eye" has a good flow to it, reminds me in the beginning of a short story by Mark Twain, the way the mundane details of the everyday become intriguing. the ending made me laugh a bit. Irony. Yet, I also enjoyed the way the sentences flowed in this story, Some short and some long confutation of words makes it flow naturally.

"Lightning Strikes Twice", the second short story, about a possible one time wonder musician has another shot at a record deal and a woman, but though he tries to runaway from his past, his past catches up to him eventually in the end. I enjoyed the witty humor in this one.

The third short, "The Lay-Off", told in first person, tells a story of an athlete, a soccer player, with poor luck. or perhaps just luck most of us have. Relatable and true, this was a joy to read.

"My Tune" about a father and his son, is not fully realized until the end, a common theme webbed in all of these author's shorts, full disclosure of the meaning is held to the last word.

"Older Not wiser" is an interesting tale about a boy suffering anxiety and his development into the 'real world'. Finally finding a girl named Polly, he almost feels 'normal', but in the end he is reminded of a flash from his past.

"If I could Bottle it" is another story in first person, an array mix of third person, first person stories, Steve Morris manages to keep each tale unique and page turning. In this story, sometimes the best inventions come back to bite you in the ass.

"All Around Us" Is a supernatural story in first person about a couple who take on too many photos. We all know what happened to the curious cat, does the same happen to the main character in this story?

"Life's too Short" Sometimes answers cause more problems, and just like in real life, this story hits the nail on the head.

"Shared House" A first person story, a tale close to a man's heart. The building of a house. what man doesn't enjoy a good tool and hammer? But more than a house, the reader will soon find the supernatural in the wood.

"Three Strikes and you're out" Is a short story many woman today can relate to, with themes of love and trying to find it:)

"The Best Days of Our Lives" If you love a good mystery or detective story, this is a great tale for you! Keeping you entertained by witty words and story, it was fun to read.

"Revenge on a Plate" Told in first person is filled with an ending humor to what revenge brings.

Better Late Than Never" Is great for all the bachelors out there:)

"The Brand New Colour" Is an intriguing tale verging on the science fiction. Showing that sometimes you can be right even beyond the grave. Always with humor, the author weaves a tale of truth.

"Dreamer" For Architects and Dreamers!

"Enchantment" Between the fantastic and enigmatic exists Lucien. A story hinting of the fantastical.

"Quiet Life" Is perfect for photography enthusiasts.

"Perfect" A great story about a single man in love. Most men could relate:)

"If Only" Another great story for single men on the look for a great woman:)

"Its An Ill Will" A first person commentary on the United Kingdom and mundane life.

"Let the Good Times Roll" If you suffer depression, you might not want to read this one:) Seriously, this is a good twist on government interference and the emotional state of humanity.

"Memories are Made of This" Another great story by Steve Morris with police relying on a device thought to trace memories, but in fact is sensing dreams...will the discovery be made too late?

"Potential Energy" War can take you far places and this story touches on just how far and just how much at home you can be.

"The Remainder" Doing a good thing is never without its rewards, or in this case, punishments:)

"Voices" For anyone who has had strange experiences in life, telepathy or the oddity here and there, this story might make you feel less odd:)

"Winston Churchill" Told in first person, the man awakens confused to find himself in a world he could not have expected. Is it really Winston? You will have to read it to find out:)

"Signal" Conspiracy theorists will love this one!

"Swansong" For dog lovers, a story about a pup and a guy named Darren, this is heart-felt and warm.

"Progress" If you have felt imprisoned in life and burdened with problems, needing escape, this short could be the story you need in our life. Told in first person, with hints of OCD, it is always the truth that remains fertile with humor and entertainment.

"Acquired Taste" A crack at the government and smoking laws and beyond. Another great commentary using wit, humor and truth.

Reviewed by Ami Blackwelder, Author of The Hunted of 2060
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on February 29, 2012
Book Title: "In All Probability" & "Jumble Tales"
Author: Steve Morris
Published By: Pneuma Springs Publishing
Age Recommended: 18 +
Reviewed By: Kitty Bullard
Raven Rating: 5

Review: These are two wonderfully delightful books by a man that has clearly had his own ups and downs in life. Steve Morris weaves tales of good fortune and hardship with a master storyteller's pen. I am use to anthologies that range from romance to horror and almost any other genre you can think of, but this is the first time I have read a book about the lot life can hand you and the good or bad that often comes with it.

I'll admit I was skeptical going into these books but I was surprised to find the mixed bag of tales that both contained. These books prove that true life can often be just as wonderfully exciting, adventurous, and fantastic as tales woven from the gossamer fabric of fantasy.

I will be looking for more to come from this UK Author!

Read more: [...]
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on June 2, 2010
I need to pretext this by saying that I love good short stories. The problem is that many authors cannot pull it off properly. The characters usually seem too thin (sometimes non-existent) or the stories omit any descriptions to make room for dialogue or narrative. In All Probability is interesting because I felt myself feeling empathy for most of the characters while enjoying a well written prose. Morris does well at spinning intriguing tales where the characters seem, well, human.

The diversity of the stories was also interesting. Not only do the characters come from all walks of life, convincingly told by the way, but the stories range from the subject of haunting spirits to espionage to dreams and memories.

The book is dense with short stories, and, while their are some that I think could have been better, most are very well done. I almost want to complain about the brevity of most of them, but some part of me thinks that is one of the things that I liked most about the book. I very much enjoyed reading a whole story while I was eating my cereal or in one of the other few calm moments of my otherwise hectic life.
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on March 2, 2010
This is a collection of various short stories about very different characters, with very different lives. A very good read as each story is usually only a short three pages or so. A lot of these stories left me wanting for more! A couple left me simply confused, such as "Three Strikes and you're out." It was about a woman who is denied entry into a dating service after she had supposedly used up her "Three times of true love." She's sadly turned away, and the story ends. Others, such at "Let the Good Times Roll" had me laughing out loud, as the world finds a way to make everyone happy. Things begin to go very wrong from there, and this story might have actually made a very good novel if it could have been extended another 200 pages!

The author shows an amazing imagination in all of these stories, and I would really encourage him to move from short stories into full novels. An obvious writing talent like his should be encouraged! Great book, well worth the money!
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on March 10, 2010
From the moment I started reading this collection of short stories I knew I was in for a treat. Steve Morris takes a sometimes amusing, "Let the good times roll" sometimes sad "three strikes and you're out" and sometimes serious "Revenge on a plate" look at chance and how it affects a seperate but distinct group of individuals.
A collection you'll love that will leave you wanting more with characters like 'Dead Eye' and 'Lucien' from 'Enchantment' they really are inspired, i'd love to see new and longer stories from just these two characters as i really got into them. Although I would have preferred slightly longer stories throughout I thoroughly enjoyed this collection which I read during breaks at work or at home in the evenings.

If you like short stories you'll love this, give a go you may be pleasantly surprised, as I was.

In all probability I will definately keep an eye out for more from this promising new author.
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on February 17, 2010
This book has received highly rated press reviews in the UK. The book contains thirty short stories on the theme of chance and how life often backfires on you in the very last minute. Each story is short and convenient enough to be read in a short coffee break. Each has a characteristic flip-around ending on themes that are sometimes darker than first apparent. Strongest stories are "Lightning strikes twice", "Dead-Eye. Not many happy ever afters but plenty of ordinary people placed in weird and wonderful situations as if lady luck has placed them there just to have a laugh at them....just like real life....

Overall it is a fantastic book - highly recommended.
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on March 22, 2010
In all probability is brilliant. It contains thirty short stories that you, young or old, will find exquisitley delightful. The stories vary in contents but Mr. Morris writes about things and emotions that we have all seen and felt. You will no doubt find yourself in one of his characters because he writes about ordinary people, not heroes as most authors base their protagonists on. All of them are exposed to an interesting ending whether its fate, destiny, or just irony. The stories contain everything, chills, humor, and at times unique abilities. But the ultimate question still remains, will YOU love this book?

In all probability, Yes.
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on December 16, 2012
In All Probability is a wonderful mix of short stories perfect for a quick read. The characters are engaging and easy to relate to. The themes of chance and destiny and the various surprising twists give that extra flavour. All this combined with a clever style of writing makes it one of the best collections of short stories I've ever read.
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on March 17, 2013
An absolutely brilliant book which everybody can enjoy. I've read 3 of his now, have loved them all, and will read everything else he has out and/or will publish in the future. Thanks mr Morris. Now please get back to work, and write me another.
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