Ned Talbot has been running his independent bookmaker business at racetracks since his grandfather Teddy started it years before. Everything is routine until a customer shows up one day and claims to be Ned's father, who was supposed to have died years ago. The man is then killed in front of Ned by a mugger demanding money.
Ned confirms that the mystery man's fatal stabbing was not random. He gathers more information about this man who claimed to be his father and finds out about his relationship to the horse racing business.
Sub-plots: Three sub plots add to the interest of the main story: the amusing love life of Ned's assistant Luca, the touching story of Ned's wife Sophia, and Ned's family history.
Comments: Easy reading, spare prose, excellent dialogue and character development, a solid plot and good subplots worked easily into the overall book. I enjoyed this mystery and also learned quite a bit about modern day horse racing in Britain.
Thanks to the Penguin Group for an ARC of this book.
Here's a review of Second Wind by Dick Francis by Rose City Reader.