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Dick Francis's Damage by Felix Francis
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Dick Francis's Damage

by Felix Francis

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Jeff Hinkley is an investigator for the British Horseracing Authority who is thirty, has a photographic memory for faces, and is a master of disguises. He is also the concerned younger brother of a sister battling cancer and live-in boyfriend who is wondering if he should marry his long-time girlfriend.

He is surprised when following a banned racehorse trainer around a race meeting to see him casually walk up to a bookmaker and slit his throat. The trainer had claimed that he was not responsible for the doping of the horses in his yard but was convicted anyway.

It doesn't take long for problems to escalate. Someone is blackmailing the BHA. Either they pay or the blackmailer will destroy the credibility of the organization and the public's confidence in horse racing. Jeff has a short period of time to figure out who the blackmailer is and figure out a way to stop him.

The book was filled with investigations. Jeff was a great character who determined to use the skills he gained as a military intelligence officer in Iraq to solve the mystery. I also liked seeing his relationship with his sister and with his girlfriend.

Fans of mysteries will enjoy getting to know Jeff Hinkley. ( )
  kmartin802 | May 27, 2016 |
I was a long time reader of Dick Francis' thrillers, and don't mind saying that, even though I knew he was a collaborator in his father's final books, that I did not really believe that his son Felix would amount to much. But DAMAGE proves that Felix Francis has made it on his own.

This novel continues in the tradition of tight thriller, with a believable plot, and clues for the reader to work on. Management of the British racing industry by an independent authority comes under threat as the BHA discovers that at one particular carnival 66 out of 69 horses have tested positive to a banned substance. Blackmail demands for five million pounds arrive with an injunction that the police are to be kept in the dark.

Tightly plotted, believable, and well written. ( )
  smik | Dec 7, 2015 |
Better than the last one of his that I read, so perhaps becoming more proficient an author in his own right after co-authoring a number with his Dad. A very quick read and quite enjoyable as he writes in a similar style. ( )
  skraft001 | Nov 2, 2015 |
Stupid all through. No interesting details about a particular profession. The one fact that I learned is that the BHA has mostly replaced the Jockey Club of the older books. ( )
  themulhern | Oct 7, 2015 |
This was a good read. A return to form for the Francis novels. The past few have been a bit disappointing but this one was very enjoyable and I didn't know who the bad guy was until the end. Passed the time very pleasantly. ( )
  infjsarah | Apr 26, 2015 |
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With my special thanks to
Brian Geenan,
former member of
Metropolitan Police Special Operations,
SO11--Criminal Intelligence Branch

And, always, to
Debbie
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"I've had the test results and the news isn't good."
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0399168222, Hardcover)

Felix Francis is back with another edge-of-your-seat thriller, in the classic Dick Francis tradition.
 
Undercover investigator Jeff Hinkley is assigned by the British Horseracing Authority to look into the activities of a suspicious racehorse trainer, but as he’s tailing his quarry through the Cheltenham Racing Festival, the last thing he expects to witness is a gruesome murder. Could it have something to do with the reason the trainer was banned in the first place—the administration of illegal drugs to his horses?

Then many more horses test positive for prohibited stimulants, and someone starts making demands, threatening to completely destroy the integrity of the racing industry. In order to limit the damage to the sport, it’s critical that Jeff find the perpetrator . . . but he’ll soon learn he’s up against someone who will stop at nothing to prevail.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:12:10 -0400)

"Undercover investigator Jeff Hinkley is assigned by the British Horseracing Authority to look into the activities of a suspicious racehorse trainer, but as he's tailing his quarry through the Cheltenham Racing Festival, the last thing he expects to witness is a gruesome murder. Could it have something to do with the reason the trainer was banned in the first place--the administration of illegal drugs to his horses? Then many more horses test positive for prohibited stimulants, and someone starts making demands, threatening to completely destroy the integrity of the racing industry. In order to limit the damage to the sport, it's critical that Jeff find the perpetrator . . . but he'll soon learn he's up against someone who will stop at nothing to prevail."--… (more)

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