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The Short Forever [Mass Market Paperback]

Stuart Woods
3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Jan. 28 2003 Stone Barrington (Book 8)

The unflappable Stone Barrington comes face to face with two men whose lives are wrapped in shadows and lies—and who both still feel the sting of betrayal they can never forget.


Between a Rock and a Hard Place


Hired by an odd client previously unknown to him, Stone arrives in London, on a mission he thinks he understands, but doesn’t. Soon he finds himself not only out of his territory, but out of his depth as well. Baffled as he is by the behavior of both his quarry and his client, Stone’s life is further complicated by two, possibly three, murders and the affectionate attentions of two former lovers. When the intelligence services of three countries become involved, he can only hang on for a wild ride and hope for a not-too-bumpy landing.

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Product Description

From Amazon

Stone Barrington, Stuart Woods's suave, urbane series hero, is approached by an enigmatic new client, John Bartholomew, who hires him for what looks like an easy assignment: find his young niece, who's living somewhere in London with a shady character liable to involve her in his illegal activities, and persuade her to return to New York with Barrington. Handing him a ticket on the Concorde and an unlimited expense account, Bartholomew sets Stone on a chase in which identifying who's the predator and who's the prey turns out to be the key to solving a puzzling mystery involving two American spies and a great deal of money.

As usual, Stone wraps it up without getting his tuxedo nearly as wrinkled as the sheets on his bed, which he shares with a bevy of beautiful women including two old girlfriends and one new one. Woods is a lively, engaging, and reliable writer whose bestselling thrillers feature plenty of eye candy, brand names, and plots that don't tax the brain but do make the most of his narrative gifts. Look elsewhere for high art, but this is high entertainment. --Jane Adams --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

In recent Woods bestsellers like Cold Paradise, N.Y.P.D. detective-turned-PI Stone Barrington has gone upscale in lifestyle, international in expertise. This time, mogul John Bartholomew hires Stone to fly to London and persuade his niece, Erica, to leave her cocaine-smuggling boyfriend, Lance Cabot, and to make sure Lance winds up in jail. Dapper Stone charms Erica, who offers to set him up with her sister, Monica, and then introduces him to Lance. With help from two British investigators, Stone learns John Bartholomew is not who he seems: not only is he not Erica's uncle, he's really CIA biggie Stan Hedger. Confronted, Stan owns up, revealing that Lance is an ex-CIA agent who blew ops, ran with cash and nearly killed him. Meanwhile, Monica asks Stone to a country weekend with Lance and Erica at what turns out to be the manse of his old flame, Sarah Buckminster, who previously dodged a New York bombing and is now engaged to a megatycoon. The fog thickens when Stone's N.Y.P.D. pal Dino Bacchetti flies over to smooth out the beating death of one of Stone's investigators and Scotland Yard brings in MI6, who suspect Lance is after a top-secret military device for a Mideast client. Woods may have left behind the police action of L.A. Dead, but he churns up plenty of conflict and twisted plotting in this speedy tale. Several bombshell revelations and multiple resolutions combine with the cinematic plot for a perfect flight or beach read. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Stone Barrington sipped his third Wild Turkey and resisted the basket of hot sourdough bread that the waiter had just placed on the table. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A Suave, Sophisticated Mystery with a Bond-ish Hero Sept. 13 2006
Format:Mass Market Paperback
In The Short Forever by Stuart Woods, retired homicide detective-turned-PI Stone Barrington--a cross between James Bond and Spenser--is sent on what might be a 'wild goose chase'. His assignment: to find his mysterious new client's missing niece who is somewhere in London.

Stone leaves the US and the niece, Erica Burroughs, is found rather quickly. But then the plot thickens. She has no uncle. Stone is stumped. He soon finds himself embroiled in a puzzling case, where most of the pieces don't add up. Just who is his client John Bartholomew? And what does he want with Erica and her drug-smuggling boyfriend Lance Cabot?

Erica introduces the dashing detective to her sister Monica, and things heat up. And the appearance of two former lovers unsettles Stone, especially when old flame Sarah Buckminster hosts a weekend get-together with her fiancé James and invites Erica, Monica, Lance and Stone. But fun and games turns swiftly into tragedy as a boating accident claims a life. Then more bodies turn up and Stone is thrown headfirst into an international dilemma.

Best Selling author Stuart Woods delves deep into his characters, giving them plausible backgrounds and emotions. He creates means, motive and opportunity for each suspect and gives you just the right mix of action, suspense and romance. This page-turner contains every element that makes an excellent suspense and Woods drives home the twists at every possible corner.

If you're looking for a good read, with interesting, quirky and multi-faceted characters and tons of fast-paced action, pick up a copy of The Short Forever. Kudos, Mr. Woods!

~Cheryl Kaye Tardif, [...]
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5.0 out of 5 stars Another fabulous Stuart Woods book Jan. 26 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
To say Stuart Woods is a good storyteller is like saying Tiger Woods is a good golfer. This is another is what is becoming a long line of terrific and highly readable novels. Although my personal reading interests are diverse, I pick up each new Woods' release shortly after they come out and I've never been disappointed. Stone Barrington fans will love the situation he gets into this time and those not familar with him will become loyalists after this one. A quintessential beach read, even if the beach is miles away.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable light read mystery/suspense novel Jan. 14 2004
I came across this author as a member of an online book club, and was hooked on Woods' main character of Stone Barrington after reading his latest ("Dirty Work"). This book, "The Short Forever", is a very fast-paced story that manages to keep you intrigued and guessing for all of its 300+ pages. Let me tell you a few things that may help you make up your own mind about "The Short Forever" (NO SPOILERS):
Though I think this is seventh book in a series with his main character Stone Barrington, I did not feel at a loss at all for not having read any of his previous books. That alone impressed me, but then add on top of that a story that grabs you and does let go until the thrilling (and surprising) conclusion.
Woods combines characters that are cops, ex-cops, lawyers, British & US intelligence, and international smugglers and does it all masterfully. Pick this book up and you likely won't be able to put it back down until its over. For a light read, its very entertaining.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Pretty [bad] Aug. 12 2003
I don't know what book these other reviewers were reading, but I found this to be a very [bad] effort. I read a lot of books in this genre, and I'm not usually very critical, but this mess is an exception. The whole style of writing, not just the locale, is very upper-crust British, annoyingly so. I don't really care exactly what Stone (what kind of name is Stone, anyway?) had for lunch at the Connaught grill, or how many suits his tailor made for him, ad nauseum.
The plot is bad, and gets worse as it goes along. I stuck it out till the end, hoping for some kind of surprise, but it never climaxes, just fizzles out. But the biggest problems for me are the characters and the dialogue. Characters are extremely one-dimensional, and even the lead is never flushed out. And really, PEOPLE DON"T TALK LIKE THIS, and if they do, I don't care to read about them. The dialogue is simply terrible.
I've given this some thought, and I came up with this comparison (maybe it's the British setting that did it). IF Roger Moore is your favorite James Bond, then you will probably like this book. Woods' writing is on a par with Moore's acting. But if you have any taste, and you like Connery or even Brosnan better, or you want something with more meat than any Bond flick, then skip this fluff, and go get some Parker (Robert or T Jeff) or LeHane, or SJ Rozan, or Connelly, or anybody, really.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Stuart Woods is a master of mystery July 29 2003
By JFree
Stone Barrington is hired by an odd client previously unknown to him. He arrives in London on a mission he thinks he understands, but later realizes he has no idea. Stone is baffled by the behavior of his client and his quarry. His life is again complicated by two, possibly three, murders. When the intelligence agencies of several countries become involved he can only hang on for the crazy ride.
I loved this new book in the Stone Barrington Series. Stone is, as always, intelligent and quirky when he gets hired by his interesting client. This book is as enjoyable as the rest of this series.
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Most recent customer reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Much Ado about Nothing
This isn't a mystery novel. That is the first thing one should understand if one chooses to read this book. It would barely qualify as a procedural in my opinion. Read more
Published on June 9 2004 by barbre
4.0 out of 5 stars Stone Barrington Rocks
This Stone Barrington novel does not disapoint. Stone is, as always, a James Bond-type hottie, and you gotta love him. Read more
Published on June 27 2003 by "himelria"
5.0 out of 5 stars The Short Forever Fo Sho
The Short Forever by Stuart Woods is just one of the many books written by him with the character "Stone Barrington." Stone is an ex-cop turned investigator for a law firm. Read more
Published on April 24 2003
4.0 out of 5 stars Stone Barrington comes in from the cold
Stuart Woods has been writing suspense novels for about 25 years now, and has been writing Stone Barrington stories, I would guess, for about 10. Read more
Published on March 31 2003 by David W. Nicholas
2.0 out of 5 stars Yuck, what a waste of time
Woods spends 200 pages building suspense and actually kept my interest setting up a bizarre mystery filled with shady characters and descriptions of London lifted straight out of... Read more
Published on Feb. 26 2003 by M. Chang
3.0 out of 5 stars Murder and intrigue among the jet set
It must be great to be Stone Barrington. Every beautiful woman you meet wants to sleep with you and every client you have is willing to pay for you to live in high-style. Read more
Published on Feb. 18 2003 by mrliteral
2.0 out of 5 stars Trite ,Trite
I passed comment on Blood Orchid a few weeks ago. The same applies to Short Forever. Thin plot corny dialogue, boring. Bye Bye Stuart
Published on Feb. 17 2003
2.0 out of 5 stars Trite ,Trite
I passed comment on Blood Orchid a few weeks ago. The same applies to Short Forever. Thin plot corny dialogue, boring. Bye Bye Stuart
Published on Feb. 17 2003
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