Comeback

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Overview

When globe-hopping British First Secretary Peter Darwin returns to his childhood home fo a visit, he is sorry. Waiting for him were long-hidden memories, a string of racehorse deaths and homicide. As Darwin begins to realize that the key to all of it involves his own past, he wishes he'd never come back, because he just might never leave ...
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1993-02-22 Mass Market Paperback New Perfect, unread book.

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Overview

When globe-hopping British First Secretary Peter Darwin returns to his childhood home fo a visit, he is sorry. Waiting for him were long-hidden memories, a string of racehorse deaths and homicide. As Darwin begins to realize that the key to all of it involves his own past, he wishes he'd never come back, because he just might never leave again —- alive....
"One of Francis' most winning novels."
SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE
Selected by the Book-of-the-Month Club
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
His 30th novel, an 11-week PW bestseller in cloth, displays Francis's trademarks: seamless plotting, believable characters, suspense and a bang-on horse-racing setting, in this case featuring a veterinary surgeon plagued by a series of mysterious equine deaths. (Apr.)
School Library Journal
YA-- A chance encounter leads Peter Darwin, a British Foreign Service officer newly posted back to England, to an involvement with the problems of a Gloucestershire vet who has lost several race horses during or after surgery. Francis's horse and racing trademarks are present here, as are his characters, who in this author's skilled hands, become as comfortable and familiar as members of one's family. The book conveys a strong sense of right and wrong, is fun to read, has an upbeat ending, and displays the same storytelling magic as always. It's a wonderful example of a book that bridges the gap between the YA and the adult novel. For horse lovers and armchair adventurers everywhere. --Pam Spencer, Thomas Jefferson Sci-Tech, Fairfax County, VA
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780449219560
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 2/1/1994
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 321
  • Lexile: 860L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 4.18 (w) x 6.84 (h) x 0.94 (d)

Meet the Author

Dick Francis

Dick Francis (pictured with his son Felix Francis) was born in South Wales in 1920. He was a young rider of distinction winning awards and trophies at horse shows throughout the United Kingdom. At the outbreak of World War II he joined the Royal Air Force as a pilot, flying fighter and bomber aircraft including the Spitfire and Lancaster.

He became one of the most successful postwar steeplechase jockeys, winning more than 350 races and riding for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother. After his retirement from the saddle in 1957, he published an autobiography, The Sport of Queens, before going on to write more than forty acclaimed books, including the New York Times bestsellers Even Money and Silks.

A three-time Edgar Award winner, he also received the prestigious Crime Writers’ Association’s Cartier Diamond Dagger, was named Grand Master by the Mystery Writers of America, and was awarded a CBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List in 2000. He died in February 2010, at age eighty-nine, and remains among the greatest thriller writers of all time.

Biography

Dick Francis was born in Lawrenny, South Wales in 1920. He served in the Royal Air Force for six years during World War II, piloting fighter and bomber aircraft including the Spitfire and Lancaster between 1943 and 1946.

Following the war, Francis, the son of a jockey, became a celebrity in the world of British National Hunt racing. He won more than 350 races, was Champion Jockey in 1953-1954, and was retained as jockey to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother for four seasons, 1953 through 1957. Francis rode eight times in the world famous Grand National Steeplechase, and nearly won in 1956 when his horse, the Queen Mother's Devon Loch, a few strides away from victory with a clear field, suddenly collapsed. This incident, which Francis calls "both the high point and low point of my career as a jockey," was the impetus for him to begin a second career as a writer. Shortly after the incident, a literary agent approached Francis about writing an autobiography.

In 1957, Francis suffered another serious fall and was advised to retire from race riding. He completed his autobiography, The Sport of Queens, which was published later that year, and accepted an invitation to write six features for the London Sunday Express. He stayed on as the newspaper's racing correspondent for 16 years.

Sports writing soon led to fiction writing, which in turn led to a string of bestselling novels. His first, Dead Cert, was published in 1962. His 36th novel, 10 Lb. Penalty, was published in the U. S. by G. P. Putnam's Sons in September 1997. In addition to his novels and autobiography, Francis has also published a biography of Lester Piggott, A Jockey's Life, and eight short stories. He has edited (with John Welcome) four collections of racing stories, and has contributed to anthologies and periodicals.

Francis's books have been bestsellers in a number of countries, and have been translated into more than 30 languages, including all European languages, Japanese, Korean, Taiwanese, Bantu, and several dialects of Chinese. Each of his novels has also been recorded on audio in both Britain and the United States.

Francis was made an Officer of the most noble Order of the British Empire in 1984, and was awarded the British Crime Writers Association silver dagger in 1965, gold dagger in 1980 and Cartier diamond dagger for his life's work in 1990. The recipient of three Edgar Allen Poe Awards for Best Novel from the Mystery Writers of America, most recently for 1995's Come to Grief, Francis is the only person to have been awarded the prestigious award more than once. The Mystery Writers of America named Francis Grand Master for his life's work in 1996, and he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Tufts University in 1991.

Author biography courtesy of Penguin Group (USA).

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    1. Also Known As:
      Sir Richard Stanley Francis (full name)
    2. Hometown:
      Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands, British West Indies
    1. Date of Birth:
      October 31, 1920
    2. Place of Birth:
      Tenby, Pembrokeshire, southwest Wales
    1. Date of Death:
      February 14, 2010
    2. Place of Death:
      Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands, British West Indies

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 11 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 11 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 10, 2012

    Typically Fine Francis Mystery

    This is the fourth or fifth Dick Francis book I have read, and it is the equal of the others in terms of reading enjoyment. If there is any negative criticism, I would guess that it would be a bit hard to believe that a career foreign diplomat would willingly give up weeks of his vacation leave to assist total strangers as Peter Darwin does in this novel. But that aside, this is another enjoyable book where one comes away knowing more about an area - in this case veterinary medicine - than one did going in. It is becoming clear to me that Mr. Francis researches different career fields for each of his books. As always there is the 'who done it' aspect of the story, with plenty of suspects to go around. The writing is clever, witty, and profanity-free. This was another fine book that I can recommend without reservation.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 26, 2013

    As a horse owner myself it was hard to read about horses dying e

    As a horse owner myself it was hard to read about horses dying even fictional ones but as usual I was impressed

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  • Posted September 5, 2011

    always a good read

    One of my favourite authors. If you want a good easy read mystery he is the king. Looking at some unique aspect of the horseracing industry makes for interesting reads also.

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    Posted May 19, 2010

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