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Fifty/Fifty and Other Stories by [McFarland, Matthew W.]
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Fifty/Fifty and Other Stories Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Length: 84 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled

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Product description

About the Author

Matthew W. McFarland was born in 1983 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. After graduating from the University of Dundee with a master's degree in psychology, he took several jobs including delivering mail, producing birth certificates, and working in the heart of the Northern Ireland Government. He currently lives with his young family just outside the city of Belfast.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 326 KB
  • Print Length: 84 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1484822765
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Matthew W. McFarland; 2 edition (6 Sept. 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00978M676
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #700,016 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Very enjoyable short stories. Potential for some novels in the future from this author and hopefully more short stories. Recommended.
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Format: Kindle Edition
A well compiled set of short stories which brings the reader in many different worlds with varied atmospheres.

The style is very appealing, showing precision and application, and everyone will find something to like in this book; and of course have their own personal favourite story.

The one drawback is the disappointement you'll feel when turning the last page and realising it was the last story of the book!!
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By Ignite TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 3 Oct. 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a nice little collection of stories, some of which read like snatches from an autobiography but some cover a scattering of other genres. There are stories which would definitely come into the category of Horror - Wee Tiny Spiders and The Seventeenth Door for example. I really loved The Burning Bar - the first in the book with its unexpected ending - and the title story, Fifty/Fifty was delightful. Some harked back to a youth spent in Northern Ireland's 'Troubles' and some, like Defenestration, were real thought-provokers.

The writing throughout was direct and clear and refreshingly professional! Well worth a read.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've known the author of this superb collection for many years, I hold him in high regard as a friend and confidant. I would also add I am one of the biggest fans of his writing and plan to be so for many years to come. I hope this does not sway peoples opinion of my five star review. The collection is funny, thought-provoking and heart warming in many places as well as being gritty, real and truthfully disturbed in others. If anything it is a fantastic read and I implore other readers to find it out for themselves. If I have anything negative to say it will be what I have told the author in person. Some of the stories have you gripped to the point of salivating and the end arrives to soon. I want more, a complete novel, this will only happen with people buying this one. So for the sake of my sanity buy the damn book!
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Format: Kindle Edition
I'm a short story fan. They are their own singular art, as distinct from the novel as they are from haiku. Mathew McFarland's 50/50 and Other Stories is a fine collection of eleven little gems, all set in either Ireland or Scotland. Some, like the tale of the man who ran into a burning building, have an O. Henry-like twist. Some read like reflections or slice-of-life, while others--like the tale of a census taker--you hope are purely the figment of the author's fertile imagination. This book is a perfect read for the commute on the train or sitting alone in a coffee shop. None of the stories are very long, but each holds your attention. I look forward to Mr. McFarland's next collection.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Very impressed with this new authors writing, great observational and descriptive skills. Good mixture of stories -humour,pathos,horror - hooks the reader in from the beginning and makes them want to keep reading.
Looking forward to more.
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Format: Kindle Edition
This is a delightful delve into the workings of the mind through a set of stories which find people facing or remembering very different situations. Some events could happen to any of us at any time, others are rather more unusual. Some are wild flights of fancy, others are like memories any of us might recall. What is certain is that it cannot be predicted how we would react in any of these situations: nor can you predict, when you meet these characters, what will happen next. This is what makes the stories believable and interesting. The feelings of being a small boy in Belfast are as authentic as the mental self-torture of a man tracking down spiders in his home. Sometimes, though, the reminiscences took precedence over telling a story. The insight may be fascinating, but I was left wondering where it was heading and did not always find the answer to that.

If I could award half stars I would have rated this book at 3.5. It has been well proof read, which was a very pleasant surprise. The main issue I have is the author's use of very long sentences in the earlier stories, often with clauses out of sequence. I was frequently distracted from the story, finding I was rearranging in my mind the long sentence I was reading. First impressions count for a great deal so it's a real shame that my first impression was of poorly constructed sentences. The images being painted were intrinsically very good but I had to work hard to extract them. This collection would benefit dramatically from a good editor's attentions.

That said, I would still recommend Fifty/Fifty.
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Format: Kindle Edition
As expected there were mixed feelings on these short stories. Some gave me inspiration to dig up my old notes and start up my short story writing again, but others, I am sorry to say, left me cold. So forgive me if I don't manage to review each short story in turn. Saying this, Matthew McFarland should be praised for his hard work and originality and I will endeavour to give a true reflection on how his works make me feel.

The Burning Bar has an altogether amusing ending as it reveals the true pub owner's priorities in a life or death situation. It allows me to question what I would save if the same thing happened to me. Would I be selfish enough to choose my cosmetic kit over my pet cat for example?
I love the personification of the fire and it added to my joy when I was unprepared for the ending. It is very refreshing to read a short-short story which I define as something you can read in one sitting or before you go to sleep. The atmosphere was definitely building
I am a strong believer annoying as this sounds to some readers of leaving multiple questions behind and although it do this in some degree, it didn't keep me awake at night thinking about it. It could have been shorter in my opinion as it involved word content that didn't need to be there.

With Defenestration I only researched the title name after I read it which was the right choice as it would have spoilt it for me.
There is definitely a sense of place with the obvious mention of Belfast unlike the short story before.
First person is always the best point of view to choose as it is more immediate and allows the personal views to hit home with the reader. The inner thoughts in this case are very rhetorical and one dimensional.
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