I am a Dick Francis fan because his plots have the balance of mystery, suspense and comfortable characters and at a nice pace. This is a typically go..Show More »od story. My one complaint would be that the reader sounded so much older than the characters.
Having just finished this book I still feel the melancholy with which it was written. The book is a good piece of literature, I want to say that up f..Show More »ront so as to not dissuade someone from listening to it. The dialog is good and Francis has a skill at turning a phrase, the story moves along well and is entertaining. Loss and melancholy are such a part of this story though that as the end unfolds you wish for some extra heroics, a chance to cheer for the underdog, but alas, it ends with the same vibe it carries all along, a bit of sadness, a bit of victory. I will read another Francis story sometime, I am glad I read this one, but not right now.
I have listened to all of Dick Francis' more than 40 books. The plot line of this one is gruesome, but fairly imaginative. Of course, Sid, the main ch..Show More »aracter, gets attacked. That's standard fair in most DF stories. The sub-plot of the sick child is touching and is woven well into the main plot.
The range of Tony Britton's voice is impressive. He does several british accents very well, and moves easily between male, female and child voices.
The experience of the story is greatly enhanced by Tony's narration.
The four star rating is due to uneven sound quality in the production. This recording was clearly taken from cassettes, as the sound quality quickly shifts from crisp and clear to muffled. You can still hear the entire story.
Without regard to production quality, I highly recommend this book.
Sid Halley is back. The one-handed ex-jockey-turned-investigator is at Cheltenham Races on Gold Cup day when three deaths occur: one horse and two joc..Show More »keys, one of whom is found murdered in the parking lot. Huw Walker's death merely fuels the rumors he was involved in race fixing, and it looks like his boss, trainer Bill Burton, may have done it. When Bill is found dead in his home, the police want to rule his death a suicide, brought about by guilt over having murdered his jockey, but Sid believes Bill was also murdered. When Sid's girlfriend, Dutch beauty Marina van der Meer, is threatened, Sid is certain Huw and Bill were killed by the same person over race fixing, but he's sure there's a bigger reason why. Those he loves are now in harm's way as Sid tracks down clues that lead to a cold-blooded killer.
Dick Francis could write a great book in a coma, and it's obvious he was wide awake when he wrote this. His unique, distinctly English writing style is like sitting down for drinks by the fire with a cherished friend you haven't seen in ages, dear and familiar. As usual, he makes me long to take a tour of every English racetrack on the map, bringing the racing world vividly to life. They mystery was also well-woven, presenting a list of suspects and planting a trail of clues. I was grateful that Dick Francis got back to work, and this book was not a disappointment after the long wait. He's been publishing since before I was born, and I hope he continues to do so for a long time to come.
<strong>Under Orders</strong> is the fourth book in Dick Francis’ series featuring one of his most popular detectives, ex-jockey Sid Ha..Show More »
lley, who turned to investigation after an accident (and a villain) left him without one of his hands. Previous stories in the series are <strong>Odds Against</strong>, where Sid adjusts to the loss of his marriage and his career as a jockey while working for an investigative firm, followed by <strong>Whip Hand</strong>, where he strikes out on his own as a detective with trusty sidekick Chico Barnes, and <strong>Come To Grief</strong>, where his relationship with the “Cassandra Committee” begins. Each book presents an not only an interesting puzzle, with illuminating insights into the world of British horse racing, but also lets you see how Sid grows and changes with his life experiences and with modern developments.
<strong>Under Orders</strong> shows us an older, more settled Sid Halley who, at 38, has finally found his new love, the humorous Dutch scientist Marina. The interplay between the two enlivens an interesting story that involves race fixing, internet gambling, and murder. The plot presented many surprises with Francis’ usual twists and turns, including the identity of the villain. In other areas it was predictable, leaving you wanting to tap Sid on the shoulder and say, “Hey, you are overlooking this!”
Although Tony Britton is my favorite Dick Francis reader, Martin Jarvis did a wonderful job and did not detract from my enjoyment of the story in any way. His reading is slightly more boisterous than Tony Britton’s but he does very well with town and country British accents from various classes.
All in all, this was a good story and an absolutely essential listen for Dick Francis enthusiasts. Fans of Sid Halley will be delighted to be reunited with his most popular detective.