From the first page it is clear that "Francome" wants nothing more than to be identified with Dick Francis. Unfortunately, all he manages to turn out is a slavish and sub-par imitation with little to recommend it to anyone, let alone a true fan of the master.
The plot setup is the same as Francis: 30-ish, single guy involved with horses and, oh, by the way, another unrelated hobby. A nasty character unfairly threatens our hero, who must act to protect himself and those he loves, and maybe get a little revenge. All the elements are there for Francome, right down to a couple of eligible young ladies. But where Francis' main characters are brilliant, subtle, strong, brave, self reliant, and above all obsessively honest, Francome's "hero" is incautious, petty, horny, and about as subtle as a jackhammer. He is out for himself, and we don't quite believe that he really cares who will be hurt along the way.
Francome's prose, too, is a very poor imitation. As with so many sub-par authors, he falls prey to "telling" instead of "showing." The characters spout whole improbable paragraphs full of impossible insights into the character and motivation of others, making me feel like I've read a book report and not the book itself.
All in all, the shelf-space they so conveniently share at the bookstore is as close as Francome is likely to come to Francis. Even on a bad day ("Shattered," "10 lb Penalty") Francis shines above the "competition." On a good day ("Odds against," "Whip Hand," "Reflex," "For Kicks," or "In the Frame" which has a similar subplot) there's absolutely no comparison.