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.


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.