Friday, 18 January 2008

Reading right now: Under Orders by Dick Francis


I discovered Dick Francis a few years ago through my sister who is an equestrian and (naturally) crazy about horses. We exchange the books we each borrow from the library then subject them to a postmortem and believe me, it's great fun sharing our reads this way.

That first book was Driving Force, and it made a fan out of me. His horse-flavoured murder mysteries are written with a highly entertaining combination of vigor and wit. I was pleasantly surprised when I moseyed over to the Edgar Awards list (on the recommendation of the stilettoed writer-crushing Miss Snark who advised that every aspiring writer should read each year's winning titles) and discovered that Francis had received the following awards:
Under Orders is my current read. Sid Halley, a former champion jockey, is forced into retirement after a crippling injury and begins a second career as a P.I. In this mystery he investigates the unintended consequences of Britain's legalization of Internet gambling, as well as the murder of a jockey who had been suspected of throwing races. "Sadly, death at the races is not uncommon. However, three in a single afternoon was sufficiently unusual to raise more than an eyebrow. "

I'm just getting into the story. Driving Force was a fun read, and I expect no less from this one.

2 comments:

Chumplet said...

I'm pretty sure I've read every Dick Francis novel ever written. Some of them came to me twice.

His understated prose is endearing -- he makes a wound to the ribs in a knife fight sound like an unfortunate mishap.

I'm glad he resumed writing after the passing of his wife.

wordtryst said...

I read that he co-wrote his last book with his son, who's also his manager. Interesting.