A classic mystery from Dick Francis, the champion of English storytellers. Bert Checkov, a racing correspondent, drunkenly confesses to fellow Fleet Street hack James Tyrone that he's been giving his readers bum tips for years. Five minutes later, Checkov's fallen out a seventh floor window. Tyrone has a nose for a story and he's convinced there's ...Read MoreA classic mystery from Dick Francis, the champion of English storytellers. Bert Checkov, a racing correspondent, drunkenly confesses to fellow Fleet Street hack James Tyrone that he's been giving his readers bum tips for years. Five minutes later, Checkov's fallen out a seventh floor window. Tyrone has a nose for a story and he's convinced there's more to his friend's death than meets the eye. When he starts digging, he discovers that many of Checkov's tips never even made it to the start. But the deeper Tyrone gets, the dirtier and more dangerous this business appears to be. If he's not careful he'll be following Checkov to his death...Praise for Dick Francis: "As a jockey, Dick Francis was unbeatable when he got into his stride. The same is true of his crime writing". (Daily Mirror). "Dick Francis's fiction has a secret ingredient - his inimitable knack of grabbing the reader's attention on page one and holding it tight until the very end". (Sunday Telegraph). "The narrative is brisk and gripping and the background researched with care ...the entire story is a pleasure to relish". (Scotsman). "Francis writing at his best". (Evening Standard). "A regular winner ...as smooth, swift and lean as ever". (Sunday Express). "A super chiller and killer". (New York Times Book Review). Dick Francis was one of the most successful post-war National Hunt jockeys. The winner of over 350 races, he was champion jockey in 1953/1954 and rode for HM Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, most famously on Devon Loch in the 1956 Grand National. On his retirement from the saddle, he published his autobiography, The Sport of Queens, before going on to write forty-three bestselling novels, a volume of short stories (Field of 13), and the biography of Lester Piggott. During his lifetime Dick Francis received many awards, amongst them the prestigious Crime Writers' Association's Cartier Diamond Dagger for his outstanding contribution to the genre, and three 'best novel' Edgar Allan Poe awards from The Mystery Writers of America. In 1996 he was named by them as Grand Master for a lifetime's achievement. In 1998 he was elected a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and was awarded a CBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours List of 2000. Dick Francis died in February 2010, at the age of eighty-nine, but he remains one of the greatest thriller writers of all time.Read Less
Blackmail. It's a nasty word, and a nasty business. James Tyrone is a well-regarded investigative racing columnist, working for a tabloid rag. Why? Because his wife of over a decade is almost completely paralysed with polio, and the Blaze pays better than the more refined newspapers. He needs the money. But Tyrone is still a young man, with a young man's needs, and when he falls into a passionate affair, he leaves himself open to blackmail by a corrupt bookmaker. There's big money to be made when you know the favorite's not going to show up for the race.
Dick Francis' stoic heros never give up, though; and this is one of his most memorable and gripping stories. Highly recommended.
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