As usual in the 44 mysteries by Dick Francis, my favorite author, the main character is an honest, hard working man who is respectful of women and unexplained things keep happening to him, as happened in RISK.
The hero may get shot, stabbed or beaten up but he doesn't go looking to shoot, stab or beat anyone up, just to solve the problem and make it go away. This describes WILD HORSES about a movie director, 10 LB PENALTY about a young man helping sis father run for Parliament, TO THE HILT about an artist, STRAIGHT about a jockey whose brother is a gem wholesaler, LONGSHOT about an author, PROOF about a wine merchant, REFLEX about a jockey becoming a photographer, HIGH STAKES about a toy designer, All but 6 books are stand alone. Some were made into TV movies and series.
It is very nice that the author refrains from graphic sex and violence. Of course, these are mysteries so some violence is expected as well some romance as the characters are well rounded.
Dick Francis was the Queen Mother's steeplechase jockey and champion before retiring in the 1950's. He went on to write a horse race column and then all these mysteries. Very few of the mysteries are duds but all mention horse racing in the background if not in the main story. A dependable mystery nearly every time and I always learn something I didn't know before.
This is a very enjoyable mystery. Just as Dick Francis brought the whole horse racing industry to the reader through his wonderful satisfying mysteries, so Simon Wood lights up his mysteries with open-wheel Grand Prix racing. Both authors are able to people their books with characters that are familiar and in their heroes, people we would like to hang out with. Some violence, it's hard to have a murder mystery without it, but without graphic sex and violence which tends to slow down the plot.
I had a little problem with the narrator as his British accent was so strong I couldn't understand some words. I notice he is also the narrator for the 2nd book in the series HOT SEAT but I will solve it by getting the Kindle book first and then the Audible book and put both on my Kindle Fire so I can read along with the narrator. It is sort of like have captioning on for British movies, I don't miss words that may be important.
I look forward to reading this authors earlier works. This is so well paced and interesting.
Felix Francis has matured in his writing. He sticks with the plot, introducing plot complications, characters, and clues in a timely matter. He inserts explanations where needed so the reader isn't scratching his head about why a character seems to be overreacting. His last book was good but over long and could have used a sharper pencil. This one is sharply written and doesn't get bogged down.
It is reminiscent of his father's work in that his main character is someone you might like to hang out and is a hard worker that things happen to and who must find out why before he is killed. Felix Francis' characters in this book seem to have the same good characteristics and a bit more depth. I look forward to his next book.
This story follows my rules of a good book. It does NOT have graphic sex and violence. The main characters of Foxy and his girlfriend are likable and people I would like to hang out with. The situations between them and each other, fellow workers and clients, family and friends were familiar and real. A Good read.
RISK by Dick Francis which also involves accounting and horse racing but the main character is much different.
The break between part 1 and 2 worked well for me.
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