The Silver Falcon is the superstar colt that Isabel wouldst enter in the English Derby to honor the deathbed wish of her old-aging husband, Kentuckian Charles. Now, Falcon's an ornery critter, but Isabel's unseen enemy, slinking about Kentucky and England while plotting her demise, is several hands meaner. So should Isabel be beginning to fall in love with stepson Richard, especially with all those rumors and doubts about? (Has he been in a mental institution? Did he try to drown her? And is he a bastard in both senses of the grand old name?) While mixing with the horse-fancy and mulling, Isabel further learns that a stable boy has been crippled for life in Falcon's stall, to say nothing of two subsequent grisly murders. Among the shifting stable of suspects: a nice Irish trainer who loves Isabel but has a lot riding on the Derby; competing monied owners; Charles' ""best friend""; and, of course, beloved Richard. Anthony shrewdly allows tinkling glasses in posh surroundings to drown out the jangle of bits and creak of tack, and this old nag with a new saddle should lope easily into what passes for a winner's circle on this genteel, undemanding circuit.