REFLEX by Dick Francis


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Don't let the book-club selection and change of publisher worry you: this is the same old Dick Francis, very much true to form, with a stoic jockey-sleuth (amateur photographer too) who uncovers dirty business at the track while getting beaten up and testing the limits of honor, loyalty, and friendship. He's Philip Nore, an aging jockey with a family problem: abandoned long ago by his unwed drug-addict mother, loner Philip is now asked by his rich, despised grandmother to find a much younger half-sister he's never known about. And so he will, picking up bits of his own past--and a lovely soulmate--along the way. But the main mystery here involves the legacy of late (car-crash), abrasive track photographer George Millace: George's house is burned; his widow (with whom Philip develops a fond, affecting chumship) is beaten up; and Philip gets some scraps of George's film which--when elaborately decoded in the darkroom-document the dirty secrets of a track-society climber, an owner who shot his own horses (for insurance), and other blackmail victims of the late photographer. Which of the blackmailees killed George (and nearly kills Philip and his new, fond friends)? Will Philip follow the late George into blackmail--or into professional photography? Good questions. Good book (not as good as Risk, let alone the early greats; but better than Trial Run or Whip Hand). And Francis is still faster around the track than anybody else in the business.
Pub Date: April 1st, 1981
ISBN: 3257219822
Page count: 341pp
Publisher: Putnam
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1st, 1981


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