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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars We can still count on Dick Francis
It's been a long while since I read a book by Dick Francis, having missed last year's UNDER ORDERS. For years I watched eagerly for his annual offering and many of them still hold a place on my shelves. I'm delighted that after the sad death of his wife Mary, a new collaboration with son Felix is producing such solid material.

In usual Francis fashion, the...
Published on 21 Nov 2007 by Linda Bulger

versus
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too many typing errors
I purchased Kindle Book Dead Heat by Dick Francis and Felix Francis.
The book downloaded OK. However, the book is full of typing errors. Wrong letters in word (eg VV instead of W), incorrect spelling of word so it loses context. The proof reading was extremely poor.
Often the incorrect word is a real word so spell check would miss it. Other times, error...
Published 16 months ago by RayB


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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars We can still count on Dick Francis, 21 Nov 2007
By 
Linda Bulger (United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
It's been a long while since I read a book by Dick Francis, having missed last year's UNDER ORDERS. For years I watched eagerly for his annual offering and many of them still hold a place on my shelves. I'm delighted that after the sad death of his wife Mary, a new collaboration with son Felix is producing such solid material.

In usual Francis fashion, the protagonist is a pleasant fellow with a connection to British horse racing; in this case, Max Moreton of Newmarket, a young Michelin-recognized chef. Moreton unknowingly caters a poisoned dinner on the eve of the prestigious 2,000 Guineas race, and on Guineas Day he is again catering when the site is blown up. Max's kitchen is closed and he's served with a notice of prosecution under the Food Safety Act.

To complete the tale of Max's woes, the brakes are cut on his car and his house is burned down. This is fairly standard for a Dick Francis protagonist, and Max withstands it all with the usual philosophical attitude. Max may be less edgy than some of Francis characters, and as a result less compelling.

DEAD HEAT varies in a few subtle ways from Formula Francis. For one thing, there's little of the racing world in evidence. No dawn rides in the misty Sussex training paddocks; no intrigue among the jockeys in their distinctive racing colors; no stables, spotless or otherwise, with the "lads" tending to the horses; no parade ring with the victorious horses steaming and tossing their heads while exultant owners brandish gaudy prize mugs. I never thought I loved Francis' books for the racing, but to my surprise, I missed it.

Another subtle difference in this book is that Max seems oddly devoid of friends and family. The story would have benefited from a few more characters to swell his progress. True, the point is made that a chef's working hours interfere with personal relationships; but a few more fully-drawn characters would have rounded the book out.

Ah, and the love interest. Charming, but possibly a bit too slick? The lovely Caroline fell into his lap a bit too easily.

But with those provisos, DEAD HEAT is well done and satisfying, with unexpected flashes of humor, and the good guy wins in the end. Definitely recommended if it's your kind of book, and let's cross our fingers that the Francis dynasty continues.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too many typing errors, 31 July 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Dead Heat: Horse Racing Thriller (Kindle Edition)
I purchased Kindle Book Dead Heat by Dick Francis and Felix Francis.
The book downloaded OK. However, the book is full of typing errors. Wrong letters in word (eg VV instead of W), incorrect spelling of word so it loses context. The proof reading was extremely poor.
Often the incorrect word is a real word so spell check would miss it. Other times, error should be picked up by spell check. There must be at least 50 errors in book (about one every 3 pages) which made reading the book annoying.
The book needs to be proof read and corrected (up issued) before it is sold to anyone else.
The basic story is a reasonable standard of Dick Francis/Felix Francis so if the book had been produced correctly, I would have given 3 to 4 stars.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My first Dick Francis read, 27 April 2014
By 
T. Cunningham "Tamois" (Surrey, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Dead Heat: Horse Racing Thriller (Kindle Edition)
I really adored the story of this book, in particular the descriptions of the food he cooks and tastes (this is probably because I'm a chef!).
The only thing that stopped it being the best novel I've read in years were the numerous spelling errors. Please could someone proof read this and reissue it, then I will enjoy re reading it in a couple of years!
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding, 25 Sep 2007
By 
J. Caldwell "Caldjac" (Hampshire, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I didnt think that he could write a better book than "to the Hilt" but he has surpassed himself with Dead Heat as it kept me spellbound for the entire storyline much to my partners disgust.

If you are a DF fan or even just a fan of intrigue \ mystery then this is a definate must as it is truly captivating right up until the final few pages.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Much better than I expected, 7 Aug 2009
This review is from: Dead Heat (Paperback)
I picked up a couple of Dick Francis books because they were on special offer. One was For Kicks and the other Dead Heat. I read For Kicks first as it was older and found it really boring, the characters poor and the hero unengaging. So I had low expectations for Dead Heat but enjoyed it much more. There was less about horse racing so it was instantly more interesting and I found the plot much better. It still suffered from the 'tie the hero to a chair and explain the villain's motivation' moment that spoils the ending of so many thrillers but that aside it was a good read. Felix's contribution was obviously much needed.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Back to His Very Best With This One, 26 Oct 2007
By 
J. Chippindale (England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
When Dick Francis stopped writing for personal reasons, which need not be mentioned here. It left a huge void, that was never really filled, although there are many authors with a horse racing background, writing books today. Most of them are very good, but none of them have the magic touch of Dick Francis. This is Dick Francis's latest novel. Before that he had written in excess of 35 novels. Many short stories, his autobiography and the biography of arguably the greatest jockey that ever lived, Lester Piggott.

After a spell out of the `saddle' as far as his writing career goes, Dick Francis returned with Under Orders, which many critics claimed was not as good as his previous novel. I have no hesitation in saying I was not one of them. Bad authors do not begin best seller authors overnight and Dick Francis had not lost his writing ability when he wrote Under Orders.

Some people claim that you have to have an interest in horse racing to enjoy the books of Dick Francis. I think that this is nonsense. I have not interest whatsoever in gambling or horse racing, although I do have a love of horses. I think that Dick Francis has written one of his best ever books with Dead Heat. How he comes up with all these different plots I will n ever know.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great plotting as ever, 24 Feb 2010
By 
Jo Bennie (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Dead Heat opens with Max Moreton, professional chef, once youngest winner of his first Michelin star, facing ruin the morning after cooking a gala dinner at Newmarket racecourse because, like most of the other guests, he is suffering acute food poisoning. However, this potential career killer is overshadowed by events the next day as he serves a private dinner at Newmarket racecourse and like all of Francis' best novels the reader is pitched headfirst into a breakneck ride of violence and swerving plot that keeps you guessing.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointing, 22 July 2008
This review is from: Dead Heat (Paperback)
I agree with previous reviewers - this book doesn't read like a Dick Francis. The dialogue is simplistic and bland, plot very thin, racing link extremely tenuous. DF's characters have always been very likeable heroes - but this one was just plain boring! The book had none of the charm of most DF novels. The cover was misleading - I was expecting a racing mystery, not cooking calamity! I kept on reading hoping it would get better, but it didn't.
I will re-read the original DF books and forget about Felix Francis.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Dick Francis Classic - almost., 9 Jan 2010
A really good read.

This is a page turner. Yes, some of the characters are a little shallow. But there are twists and turns aplenty. One negative is that there is very little real horse racing content. Newmarket is mentioned often but the link is a little tenuous.
That aside, this rates highly and competes well with some of the more recent, but less exciting Dick Francis books.

Great!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Back to His Very Best With This One, 20 Nov 2007
By 
J. Chippindale (England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Dead Heat (Audio CD)
When Dick Francis stopped writing for personal reasons, which need not be mentioned here. It left a huge void, that was never really filled, although there are many authors with a horse racing background, writing books today. Most of them are very good, but none of them have the magic touch of Dick Francis. This is Dick Francis's latest novel. Before that he had written in excess of 35 novels. Many short stories, his autobiography and the biography of arguably the greatest jockey that ever lived, Lester Piggott.

After a spell out of the `saddle' as far as his writing career goes, Dick Francis returned with Under Orders, which many critics claimed was not as good as his previous novel. I have no hesitation in saying I was not one of them. Bad authors do not begin best seller authors overnight and Dick Francis had not lost his writing ability when he wrote Under Orders.

Some people claim that you have to have an interest in horse racing to enjoy the books of Dick Francis. I think that this is nonsense. I have not interest whatsoever in gambling or horse racing, although I do have a love of horses. I think that Dick Francis has written one of his best ever books with Dead Heat. How he comes up with all these different plots I will n ever know.
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