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30 review for Enquiry (Penguin audiobooks)

  1. 5 out of 5

    James Thane

    When jockey Kelly Hughes and the trainer he rides for, Dexter Cranfield, are called before a commision of enquiry following a race that Hughes rode on one of Cranfield's horses, the two men assume that it's a minor matter of no concern. They both know that they did nothing wrong and so assume that they will simply have to answer a few questions about the race and be on their way. Understandably, then, the two men are shocked when the commissioners exhibit evidence against them that Hughes and Cra When jockey Kelly Hughes and the trainer he rides for, Dexter Cranfield, are called before a commision of enquiry following a race that Hughes rode on one of Cranfield's horses, the two men assume that it's a minor matter of no concern. They both know that they did nothing wrong and so assume that they will simply have to answer a few questions about the race and be on their way. Understandably, then, the two men are shocked when the commissioners exhibit evidence against them that Hughes and Cranfield claim has been clearly fabricated, indicating that the two men were guilty of serious offenses during the race in question. Although they protest their innocence, both are banned from racing in the future. Their livelihoods and their reputations are at stake, and Cranfield withdraws into himself, assuming that nothing can be done about this situation. Hughes is a fighter, though, and is determined to discover who manufactured the evidence against him and Cranfield, and why. Hughes's mission brings him up against some particularly vicious people, and before long, his safety and his very life are at grave risk. This is a fairly entertaining novel and a pleasant way to while away a flight from Phoenix to Chicago, or probably anywhere else for that matter. Hughes is a very typical Dick Francis protagonist, and the story is much like most of Francis's other novels. There will be no real surprises here for people who have read others of his books, and for those who haven't, this is as good a place to start as any.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Li'l Owl

    "Winning and losing", she said. "That's what it's all about." "Racing?" "Life." ⁣"Someone has it in for Cranfield, too. Both of us, it was. The Steward's couldn't possibly have warned off one of us without the other. We were knitted together so neatly." "It makes me livid,"  Tony said violently. "It's wicked." I nodded. "There was something else, too, about that Enquiry. Some undercurrent, running strong. At least, it was strong at the beginning. Something between Lord Gowery and Lord Ferth. And then "Winning and losing", she said. "That's what it's all about." "Racing?" "Life." ⁣"Someone has it in for Cranfield, too. Both of us, it was. The Steward's couldn't possibly have warned off one of us without the other. We were knitted together so neatly." "It makes me livid,"  Tony said violently. "It's wicked." I nodded. "There was something else, too, about that Enquiry. Some undercurrent, running strong. At least, it was strong at the beginning. Something between Lord Gowery and Lord Ferth. And then Andy Tring, he was sitting there looking like a wilted lettuce." I shook my head and puzzlement. "It was like a couple of heavy animals lurking in the undergrowth, shaping up to fight each other. You couldn't see them, but there was a sort of quiver in the air. At least, that's how it seemed at one point...." "Stewards are men," Tony said with bubble-bursting matter-of-factness. "Show me any organization which doesn't have some sort of power struggle going on under it's gentelmanaly surface. All you caught was a whiff of the old brimstone. State of nature. Nothing to do with whether you and Cranfield were guilty or not." He had convinced me. He polished off the rest of the whiskey and told me not to forget to get some more. Money. That was another thing. As of yesterday, I had no income. The Welfare State didn't pay unemployment benefits to the self-employed, as all jockeys remembered every snow-bound winter. " I'm going to find out," I said abruptly. "Find out what?" "Who framed us." ******** *Audiobook Review* Enquiry by Dick Francis bolts out of the gate at a high rate of speed and never slowes down! Overall, narrator Ralph Cosham's performance was  a solid four stars. I did have to slow the speed down on the settings which is something I've never had to do before as the speed of his narration was a bit too fast. 4★'s Dick Francis is my one of my favorite authors as his novels were the start of my love of reading! His stories are always unique and fast paced, loaded with suspence that will have you on the edge of your seat! He creates well fleshed out characters, some you love and some you hate which is exactly what he intends them to be! Classic good guy vs bad guys! You can't go wrong with a Dick Francis mystery!!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Carol

    It's nice to be among a cool bunch of people that all like Dick Francis and now Felix as much as I do. I've been a fan now for about 35-40 years, and when I want a fairly quick pick-me-up, this is a really good place to go. My library had two of his books when I went last, and I lapped them up like a dog. Nice to get a Francis fix when I want one. When Kelly Hughes rides the favourite into second place, he gets penalized for his trouble. Not only has he lost the race, but also his licence, as the It's nice to be among a cool bunch of people that all like Dick Francis and now Felix as much as I do. I've been a fan now for about 35-40 years, and when I want a fairly quick pick-me-up, this is a really good place to go. My library had two of his books when I went last, and I lapped them up like a dog. Nice to get a Francis fix when I want one. When Kelly Hughes rides the favourite into second place, he gets penalized for his trouble. Not only has he lost the race, but also his licence, as the Jockey Club suspends him - believing he threw the race. Only he knows that the problem lay with the horse's performance, not his own. Suspecting he was framed, Kelly sets about finding out how it was done, and then who might have done it. But the closer he gets to the perpetrators, the more danger he finds himself in. Now there's more than his reputation and career at stake. There's also his life . . .there are many twists and turns throughout the book, and some of the characters who are good and bad. The resolution of the story is good. This isn't his best nor his worst. But a book you can read in an afternoon. Enjoy.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Jay

    Enquiry would not be my choice as a top Francis book, but it has a few things going for it. For one, this is focused on the horse racing industry. Many of Francis’ books have had horse racing as a side topic, mixing it with details on other topics like glass blowing or acting. This is all about the industry. This also had some action and some fast resolutions after what I thought was an overlong setup. The setup involved a quasi legal “courtroom proceeding” that was described by a confused victi Enquiry would not be my choice as a top Francis book, but it has a few things going for it. For one, this is focused on the horse racing industry. Many of Francis’ books have had horse racing as a side topic, mixing it with details on other topics like glass blowing or acting. This is all about the industry. This also had some action and some fast resolutions after what I thought was an overlong setup. The setup involved a quasi legal “courtroom proceeding” that was described by a confused victim throughout the first fifth of the book. That was not fun to go through, but once you finished that part, the story took off. You figure out who are the good guys and the bad guys pretty quickly here, so the fun is seeing how the good guys catch the bad ones. I listened on audio and as usual for a Francis book I enjoyed the narration.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Dennis Fischman

    I have absolutely no interest in horse racing, but Francis makes the sport and the personalities involved in it clear and vivid. This book is about a gentleman jockey clearing his name and getting the girl. I could see Cary Grant in the role of Kelly Hughes and Grace Kelly as his employer's daughter, Roberta Cranfield. I have absolutely no interest in horse racing, but Francis makes the sport and the personalities involved in it clear and vivid. This book is about a gentleman jockey clearing his name and getting the girl. I could see Cary Grant in the role of Kelly Hughes and Grace Kelly as his employer's daughter, Roberta Cranfield.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Nira Ramachandran

    Trainer Dexter Cranfield and steeplechase jockey Kelly Hughes are summarily disqualified after an obviously rigged racing enquiry. Cranfield falls to pieces, but Hughes is made of tougher stuff and takes it upon himself to get back their licenses before the fast approaching Gold Cup. As with all Francis’ heroes, Kelly Hughes is not a run of the mill jockey. The son of a farm labourer he may be, but he holds a degree from the LSE, and was planning to enter the Civil Services when he lost his hear Trainer Dexter Cranfield and steeplechase jockey Kelly Hughes are summarily disqualified after an obviously rigged racing enquiry. Cranfield falls to pieces, but Hughes is made of tougher stuff and takes it upon himself to get back their licenses before the fast approaching Gold Cup. As with all Francis’ heroes, Kelly Hughes is not a run of the mill jockey. The son of a farm labourer he may be, but he holds a degree from the LSE, and was planning to enter the Civil Services when he lost his heart to racing. Brains, sheer guts, imperviousness to threats, violence and severe injury, softened by a quick intelligence, a kind heart and impeccable taste produce a true Francis protagonist. But unlike all the previous books, which I truly enjoyed, this one is unusually slow to develop. In fact, the action begins only after a hundred pages or so. While the pace picks up and is maintained, the reader is in for another disappointment at the end. The solution to the mystery is difficult to swallow, and leaves one wishing for another twist in the tale in true Dick Francis style.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Elisabeth

    Enquiry wasn't Mr. Francis' best work. It was certainly readable (I finished it, and I have no qualms about dropping books that aren't worth my time) but it lacked the snap-and-crackle and depth of most of his other works. Upon finishing I thought it might have been his first novel, because it felt like he may have just not gotten the trick of a rich plot yet, but I later learned it was his 8th. I'm glad that I've already read most of his others and therefore know Enquiry is an exception, not th Enquiry wasn't Mr. Francis' best work. It was certainly readable (I finished it, and I have no qualms about dropping books that aren't worth my time) but it lacked the snap-and-crackle and depth of most of his other works. Upon finishing I thought it might have been his first novel, because it felt like he may have just not gotten the trick of a rich plot yet, but I later learned it was his 8th. I'm glad that I've already read most of his others and therefore know Enquiry is an exception, not the rule.

  8. 4 out of 5

    LJ

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. ENQUIRY - Ex Francis, Dick - 8th book Kelly Hughes is a jockey, labelled a cheat by a Steward's enquiry. To clear his name he investigates all those who gave evidence, including the Chief Steward who was being blackmailed. Kelly, helped by Roberta, his employer's daughter, finds out who the real villain is and saves the stables. Loved this one. Francis has a way of making you feel the emotions of the characters. I also learned about carbon monoxide poisoning from this book. ENQUIRY - Ex Francis, Dick - 8th book Kelly Hughes is a jockey, labelled a cheat by a Steward's enquiry. To clear his name he investigates all those who gave evidence, including the Chief Steward who was being blackmailed. Kelly, helped by Roberta, his employer's daughter, finds out who the real villain is and saves the stables. Loved this one. Francis has a way of making you feel the emotions of the characters. I also learned about carbon monoxide poisoning from this book.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Gilbert Stack

    One of the things that sure to get me to the edge of my seat in a good mystery is the false accusation when the hero is framed for a crime. It’s just such a situation that forms the heart of Enquiry and like any good hero, jockey Kelley Hughes is not going to stand by and allow his reputation to be ruined. What I liked most about this mystery is the way in which Hughes goes about trying to solve the mystery. He starts with direct confrontations of the men who lied about him and forged up fake ev One of the things that sure to get me to the edge of my seat in a good mystery is the false accusation when the hero is framed for a crime. It’s just such a situation that forms the heart of Enquiry and like any good hero, jockey Kelley Hughes is not going to stand by and allow his reputation to be ruined. What I liked most about this mystery is the way in which Hughes goes about trying to solve the mystery. He starts with direct confrontations of the men who lied about him and forged up fake evidence. This, quite naturally, doesn’t help him any. So he has to get increasingly sophisticated in his efforts to figure out who is behind the injustice—and all the while the unknown villain is taking steps to permanently stop Hughes from proving his innocence. This is a good quick read that left me totally satisfied. If you liked this review, you can find more at www.gilbertstack.com/reviews.

  10. 4 out of 5

    David Highton

    One of the earlier Dick Francis novels about an unfair enquiry panel which jump jockey Kelly Hughes seeks to redress. Not the best Francis book, 3.5 stars but rounded up to 4 as I read it one sitting - as usual his books are very well-paced

  11. 5 out of 5

    Algernon (Darth Anyan)

    Standard Dick Francis thriller - meaning good writing, likable characters, a little love interest, a little whiff of High Society, the usual adversary trying to use violence as a means to an end and the hero stoically enduring and digging his heels in obstinately and using brains rather than brawn to clear his name. The plot is a little less spectacular than other Francis books, dealing with the aftermath of a jockey suspension enquiry and his efforts to revert the decision. The final reveal was Standard Dick Francis thriller - meaning good writing, likable characters, a little love interest, a little whiff of High Society, the usual adversary trying to use violence as a means to an end and the hero stoically enduring and digging his heels in obstinately and using brains rather than brawn to clear his name. The plot is a little less spectacular than other Francis books, dealing with the aftermath of a jockey suspension enquiry and his efforts to revert the decision. The final reveal was not one of the brightest or most surprising ones, but the ride to reach the conclusion was a pleasant one. Speaking of rides, I would have liked more time in the saddle for the main character, but that's OK: thre'll be another Dick Francis story in my hands soon ...

  12. 5 out of 5

    Louise Armstrong

    I thought he did a brilliant job of decsribing the Enquiry itself, where everyone had found the hero guilty before it began. It reminded me of school - that nightmare feeling that nothing you can say will get you out of trouble because they are all determined to hang you and don't care about the truth. He's a great thriller writer. 'I rode him at Reading exactly as I did at Oxford without using the whip.' 'That is beside the point, Hughes, because Squelch may not of needed the whip at Reading, but I thought he did a brilliant job of decsribing the Enquiry itself, where everyone had found the hero guilty before it began. It reminded me of school - that nightmare feeling that nothing you can say will get you out of trouble because they are all determined to hang you and don't care about the truth. He's a great thriller writer. 'I rode him at Reading exactly as I did at Oxford without using the whip.' 'That is beside the point, Hughes, because Squelch may not of needed the whip at Reading, but at Oxford he did.' 'Sir, it is the point,' I protested. 'I rode Squelch at Oxford in exactly the same manner as when he won at Reading,only at Oxford he tired.' Lord Gowery absolutely ignored this. 13/10/16 reread. It felt very dated, but I still enjoyed it.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Carol

    This is an older Dick Franics novel for 1969 but the story is so well written that is lost nothing over the years. Kelly Hughes is a jockey and Dexter Carrington a trainer are warned off after a race where Kelly rode the favored horse but did not win. They both lose their racing licenses and can't race again. Both swear they are innocent and Kelly begins to investigate who set them up. I love Dick Francis novels and this one did not disappoint! I listened to this story again on CD and still feel This is an older Dick Franics novel for 1969 but the story is so well written that is lost nothing over the years. Kelly Hughes is a jockey and Dexter Carrington a trainer are warned off after a race where Kelly rode the favored horse but did not win. They both lose their racing licenses and can't race again. Both swear they are innocent and Kelly begins to investigate who set them up. I love Dick Francis novels and this one did not disappoint! I listened to this story again on CD and still feel the same. 14 Nov 2016

  14. 4 out of 5

    Trina

    An enquiry into an enquiry by the jockey falsely accused of throwing a race and the trainer for betting on the winner of the race. While I wasn't convinced by the way it turned out, I was, as always, charmed by the ever-modest main character who nevertheless outsmarts them all and solves the puzzling reasons why anyone would go to such lengths to frame them. A fine book to re-read in time for the Kentucky Derby 🐎 An enquiry into an enquiry by the jockey falsely accused of throwing a race and the trainer for betting on the winner of the race. While I wasn't convinced by the way it turned out, I was, as always, charmed by the ever-modest main character who nevertheless outsmarts them all and solves the puzzling reasons why anyone would go to such lengths to frame them. A fine book to re-read in time for the Kentucky Derby 🐎

  15. 4 out of 5

    Pete Abela

    I really enjoyed this novel and raced through it very quickly. I'm obviously getting familiar with Dick Francis' work because I guessed who the villain was (and the motive) within a sentence of him being mentioned, although I did start to second-guess myself toward the end of the book. A fast-paced thriller which may not be Francis' best but very enjoyable nevertheless. I really enjoyed this novel and raced through it very quickly. I'm obviously getting familiar with Dick Francis' work because I guessed who the villain was (and the motive) within a sentence of him being mentioned, although I did start to second-guess myself toward the end of the book. A fast-paced thriller which may not be Francis' best but very enjoyable nevertheless.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Lorrie Savoy

    All Dick Francis's novels fall into a basic pattern - stoical, likable 1st person narrator, bit of romance, some connection to horse racing, torture scene, resolution. The delight comes from how he makes each one a bit different (is the narrator a jockey? and earl, a wine merchant?). The set up for this book is the unique feature. As always, satisfying. All Dick Francis's novels fall into a basic pattern - stoical, likable 1st person narrator, bit of romance, some connection to horse racing, torture scene, resolution. The delight comes from how he makes each one a bit different (is the narrator a jockey? and earl, a wine merchant?). The set up for this book is the unique feature. As always, satisfying.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Asha Stark

    Bit of a slow start, but once it got moving it was enjoyable. If you're looking for a light and entertaining read, you can never go past Dick Francis. Bit of a slow start, but once it got moving it was enjoyable. If you're looking for a light and entertaining read, you can never go past Dick Francis.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Bert van der Vaart

    Ok 5 stars is a bunch, but in Enquiry, Dick Francis delivers everything he can in this book. Francis--himself a star steeplechase jockey winning more than 350 races, writes about horse racing in England, always examining a related theme in depth. Past books I have enjoyed include Proof (where Scotch whiskey plays an important role) or Reflex (where photography plays a key role). Here it is the less than transparent "stewards' enquiry"--which refers to an investigation which race course officials Ok 5 stars is a bunch, but in Enquiry, Dick Francis delivers everything he can in this book. Francis--himself a star steeplechase jockey winning more than 350 races, writes about horse racing in England, always examining a related theme in depth. Past books I have enjoyed include Proof (where Scotch whiskey plays an important role) or Reflex (where photography plays a key role). Here it is the less than transparent "stewards' enquiry"--which refers to an investigation which race course officials (and ultimately the UK's regulatory authority over horse racing) can launch into suspicious losses of races--suspicious because they may appear to favor betters of an outside the odds horse. Francis describes how such an enquiry can have multiple consequences on the lives of trainers, stable boys, jockeys and bookies, while painting a very realistic case where the motives of stewards themselves can be less than pure and the British caste and internal nations' issues also play important roles. Gripping, informative and insightful, this Francis novel delivers a satisfying and fast paced read.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Connie N.

    I've read most of Francis's books over the years, and they are always winners. This was no exception. In this case Kelly (and the related trainer) are warned off on the very first page. Kelly, as expected, doesn't just take it--he fights back. So he investigates who is out to get them, how it could have been faked (since he knows he didn't do what they claimed), and why. Francis creates heroes who are strong but quiet, intelligent but not showy, with a lot of grit and cleverness. Kelly is a succ I've read most of Francis's books over the years, and they are always winners. This was no exception. In this case Kelly (and the related trainer) are warned off on the very first page. Kelly, as expected, doesn't just take it--he fights back. So he investigates who is out to get them, how it could have been faked (since he knows he didn't do what they claimed), and why. Francis creates heroes who are strong but quiet, intelligent but not showy, with a lot of grit and cleverness. Kelly is a successful jockey with style and good taste (which surprises people when they see his apartment) and a strong intelligence (despite his poor upbringing--he was the first in his family to go to college, much to their chagrin). There's a good message of learning not to be snobbish ("listen to the character, not the accent") when he meets Roberta, his trainer's daughter. Lots of excitement, a fast-moving story, and a satisfying ending. I'm rarely disappointed with a Francis book. A great way to start off a new year of reading.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Chica

    My Plan: I’m going to read these books again and I an going to review them such that I know which freaking book is which. Just stating this publicly in the hopes that it will help me actually do it. In this book: MC is a widowed jockey who lives in his cousin’s racing stable yard Love interest is the snobby daughter of the snobby trainer he rides for, is 19 and just finished finishing school. He is warned off (along with snobby trainer) for losing a race. Book is him trying to prove he was framed Decor My Plan: I’m going to read these books again and I an going to review them such that I know which freaking book is which. Just stating this publicly in the hopes that it will help me actually do it. In this book: MC is a widowed jockey who lives in his cousin’s racing stable yard Love interest is the snobby daughter of the snobby trainer he rides for, is 19 and just finished finishing school. He is warned off (along with snobby trainer) for losing a race. Book is him trying to prove he was framed Decorated his own flat (apparently that’s evidence he was highly educated...even though he studied (read) economics...or maybe that he has good taste, which goes against the stereotype of jockeys?) There is something immensely satisfying about Dick Francis books. Parts of them appeal to the petty, grudge-holding, “let someone else ‘be the bigger person’” aspects of me such as this quote: “And when you lose your license for this — and I’ll see that you do — you’ll have plenty of time to understand that it *serves you right*” (very satisfying) But it also appeals my magnanimous, aspirational side (such as when he covers for the above jockey)

  21. 4 out of 5

    James Love

    The novel was a mix of the typical Dick Francis equine murder mystery with a twist of Franz Kafka's The Trial. It had all the existential angst minus the self-loathing. A jockey and a trainer are falsely accused of cheating and have their licenses revoked. The plot created out of a mix of petty jealousy and fear of social ostracism. This mystery is rife with red herrings, fabricated evidence, and enough lies to make one think the accused were running for elected office. The novel was a mix of the typical Dick Francis equine murder mystery with a twist of Franz Kafka's The Trial. It had all the existential angst minus the self-loathing. A jockey and a trainer are falsely accused of cheating and have their licenses revoked. The plot created out of a mix of petty jealousy and fear of social ostracism. This mystery is rife with red herrings, fabricated evidence, and enough lies to make one think the accused were running for elected office.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Harry

    What is there to say about Dick Francis? As I think about all of his books (yes, this review covers all of his books, and yes I've read them all) I think about a moral ethical hero, steeped in intelligence and goodness embroiled in evil machinations within British horse racing society - either directly or indirectly. The heroes aren't always horse jockies, they can be film producers, or involve heroes engaged in peripheral professions that somehow always touch the horse racing world. But more tha What is there to say about Dick Francis? As I think about all of his books (yes, this review covers all of his books, and yes I've read them all) I think about a moral ethical hero, steeped in intelligence and goodness embroiled in evil machinations within British horse racing society - either directly or indirectly. The heroes aren't always horse jockies, they can be film producers, or involve heroes engaged in peripheral professions that somehow always touch the horse racing world. But more than that, Francis's heroes are rational human beings. The choices made are rational choices directed by a firm objective philosophy that belies all of Francis's novels. The dialogue is clear and touched with humor no matter the intensity of evil that the hero faces. The hero's thoughts reveal a vulnerability that is touching, while his actions are always based on doing the right thing to achieve justice. Causing the reader to deeply care about the characters in a novel is a difficult thing to do. No such worries in a Francis novel. The point of view is first person, you are the main character as you read the story (usually the character of Mr. Douglas). The hero is personable, like able, non-violent but delivering swift justice with his mind rather than through physical means. This is not to say that violence is a stranger to our hero. Some of it staggering and often delivered by what we would think of normal persons living in British society. You will come to love the world of Steeple Chase racing, you will grow a fondness for horses, stables, trainers and the people who live in that world. You will read the books, devouring one after the other and trust me Dick Francis has a lot of novels (over 40 by my last count). There are several series woven into the fabric of Francis's work: notably the Sid Halley and Kit Fielding series. Assessment: Dick Francis is one of my favorite writers. I read his books with a fierce hunger that remains insatiable and I mourn his death.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all)

    Tony Britton's masterly reading saved this book from getting off to a dreadfully slow (dare I say pedestrian?) start. Quite between ourselves and don't tell anyone--if I'd been reading this in print I might have DNF. There's a lot of My Lording and sirring as jockey Kelly Hughes and his trainer are literally called on the carpet, cap in hand before the stewards for throwing a race--only of course as Hughes is a Francis hero, they didn't. Couldn't possibly, copious evidence to the contrary notwit Tony Britton's masterly reading saved this book from getting off to a dreadfully slow (dare I say pedestrian?) start. Quite between ourselves and don't tell anyone--if I'd been reading this in print I might have DNF. There's a lot of My Lording and sirring as jockey Kelly Hughes and his trainer are literally called on the carpet, cap in hand before the stewards for throwing a race--only of course as Hughes is a Francis hero, they didn't. Couldn't possibly, copious evidence to the contrary notwithstanding. Unlike his trainer, who comes apart at the seams when they're both warned off for an indefinite period, Hughes is angry enough to want to find out who's responsible, do or die--and it might just possibly be "die." There are many standard elements of Francis World here--madness, enabling of madness, and for what I think is the first time, kinky sexual tastes. Which appeared so often in the later novels, and so often of the BDSM type, it began to make me wonder about the author (be it Dick or Mary or both), and caused me to stop reading the newer novels in the late 90s, simply because as motifs go, it gets rather tiresome with so much repetition. All this without a single body! Well, if you don't count grievous bodily harm and at least three intended (and a couple of attempted) murders. A much better listen than my last few trips to Planet Francis, even though the denouement was juusst at taste convenient and incredible, what with Our Hero being already injured a couple of times beforehand. But that's jump jockeys for you--on Planet Francis they heal in a heartbeat and do all, see all, reveal all, and win all.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Alexis Neal

    A decent enough mystery. On the plus side, the villains are more normal, and are driven by largely normal motives (albeit normal motives inflated and aggravated to abnormal levels). Francis can sometimes fall into the habit of resolving his stories with the rather lazy trope of "a crazy psychotic madman did it!" It's much more compelling when the perpetrator is a largely normal neighbor, driven by commonplace motives. As a reader, I prefer stories that remind me that I am not so different from t A decent enough mystery. On the plus side, the villains are more normal, and are driven by largely normal motives (albeit normal motives inflated and aggravated to abnormal levels). Francis can sometimes fall into the habit of resolving his stories with the rather lazy trope of "a crazy psychotic madman did it!" It's much more compelling when the perpetrator is a largely normal neighbor, driven by commonplace motives. As a reader, I prefer stories that remind me that I am not so different from these villains . . . that the distance between us is not as far as I might like to think. I struggle with jealousy. I struggle with anger, or guilt, or fear. And I have friends who do as well. We all of us are not as far removed from villainy as we like to think. Still, this particular story was not as compelling as others he's written. The solution seemed to come too quickly, and there was no real a-HA! moment. The villain, though normal, was not terribly surprising. Francis focused more on the relationships in this story, particularly the romantic relationships, which was nice (and well done). An enjoyable read, but not his best.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Maddie

    I would recommend Dick Francis’ novel Enquiry to everyone. In the novel Enquiry a jockey named Kelly Hughes has had his racing licensed suspended and suspects it is because of foul play. On the day that he was racing he didn’t win, and that was it but instead of the owner taking it as a simple occurrence it is instead brought to a review board and with them using a pile of evidence stacked against Hughes, his license is taken away. Some main themes in this novel are proving honesty, friendship, I would recommend Dick Francis’ novel Enquiry to everyone. In the novel Enquiry a jockey named Kelly Hughes has had his racing licensed suspended and suspects it is because of foul play. On the day that he was racing he didn’t win, and that was it but instead of the owner taking it as a simple occurrence it is instead brought to a review board and with them using a pile of evidence stacked against Hughes, his license is taken away. Some main themes in this novel are proving honesty, friendship, and facing reality. The main character Hughes has to find a way to survive and try to continue living while the one thing that he loves to do is taken away from him. Hughes makes it his mission to see himself proven innocent and finds that other people before him have been misjudged or had their verdict decided before they showed up for the review board. I would recommend this novel to everyone because it is very well written and I haven’t yet found a book by this author that I didn’t enjoy. The writing is similar to that of Agatha Christie and each book has something included in it that helps you to learn something new about racing and racehorses.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Hank Hoeft

    Dick Francis wrote over 40 novels, and Enquiry is an early one--it was his eighth published work of fiction (his first book was an autobiography chronicling his career as a steeplechase jockey). And while his work has a consistent gentle rise in quality, I still love his earlier works for their economy of words and their no-nonsense, straightforward unfolding of the plot. Enquiry of course is about horse racing, about which I know almost nothing (about all I do know, I've learned from reading Di Dick Francis wrote over 40 novels, and Enquiry is an early one--it was his eighth published work of fiction (his first book was an autobiography chronicling his career as a steeplechase jockey). And while his work has a consistent gentle rise in quality, I still love his earlier works for their economy of words and their no-nonsense, straightforward unfolding of the plot. Enquiry of course is about horse racing, about which I know almost nothing (about all I do know, I've learned from reading Dick Francis novels), and that's another charm of his works: the view of the English steeplechase world that can only come from an insider. My favorite all-time Dick Francis novel is still Nerve (which, by the way, was his second published novel), but Enquiry was entertaining and worth investing a couple of hours of my time.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Lenny Husen

    Quick, Beach read. Not his best or worst. Ending was pretty darn decent. Woke up in middle of night fighting hate in my heart for our neighbors in 1997-2000, the Malevolent Malones. Actually they weren't malevolent, just snobbish greedy selfish assholes who thought they were better than everyone else. Especially that Leslie. Ugh. So I'm trying to do the Loving Kindness Meditation on the Malones and failing miserably, then I turned on the light and read Enquiry for 2 hours. Problem solved. There Quick, Beach read. Not his best or worst. Ending was pretty darn decent. Woke up in middle of night fighting hate in my heart for our neighbors in 1997-2000, the Malevolent Malones. Actually they weren't malevolent, just snobbish greedy selfish assholes who thought they were better than everyone else. Especially that Leslie. Ugh. So I'm trying to do the Loving Kindness Meditation on the Malones and failing miserably, then I turned on the light and read Enquiry for 2 hours. Problem solved. There were enough greedy snobbish assholes in the novel to keep me entertained and allow me to forgive Leslie. May she be happy, successful and spirtually improved in the past 16 years. God Bless her.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Margo

    Jockey Kelly Hughes and trainer Dexter Cranfield had been barred from racing--a devastating event for them both. The charge t the secret enquiry? Throwing a race for personal profit. It was a vicious frame-up and, worse, they had nowhere to turn to clear their names. Still Hughes refused to take the phony verdict lying down--even though his personal enquiry might have him lying down permanently... I love Dick Francis' works. Set among the racing world in England, his action moves fast, and I like Jockey Kelly Hughes and trainer Dexter Cranfield had been barred from racing--a devastating event for them both. The charge t the secret enquiry? Throwing a race for personal profit. It was a vicious frame-up and, worse, they had nowhere to turn to clear their names. Still Hughes refused to take the phony verdict lying down--even though his personal enquiry might have him lying down permanently... I love Dick Francis' works. Set among the racing world in England, his action moves fast, and I like his character development as well as his mysteries!

  29. 4 out of 5

    Sue

    Jockey Kelly Hughes had his license suspended for repeatedly losing races on purpose. An official enquiry was conducted and he was notified of the decision. Trouble was that all of the so-called evidence presented at the enquiry was false. Kelly sets out to get his license restored and uncover who framed him. A good, typical Dick Francis mystery. Sometimes I can get a sense of where it is going and who will be behind the evil. This one I couldn't at all and was surprised at the outcome. Jockey Kelly Hughes had his license suspended for repeatedly losing races on purpose. An official enquiry was conducted and he was notified of the decision. Trouble was that all of the so-called evidence presented at the enquiry was false. Kelly sets out to get his license restored and uncover who framed him. A good, typical Dick Francis mystery. Sometimes I can get a sense of where it is going and who will be behind the evil. This one I couldn't at all and was surprised at the outcome.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    I read this book solely at the recommendation of a friend. Despite knowing nothing about horse racing, I really enjoyed this book. It's very clear that Francis has done the research on the racing world. The writing is nicely done, and I enjoyed getting to know Kelly Hughes. I think people who enjoy the Hamish Macbeth series by MC Beaton will appreciate this. I've discovered I like British and Scottish fiction better than modern American fiction. I think the mystery was nicely plotted, and the pl I read this book solely at the recommendation of a friend. Despite knowing nothing about horse racing, I really enjoyed this book. It's very clear that Francis has done the research on the racing world. The writing is nicely done, and I enjoyed getting to know Kelly Hughes. I think people who enjoy the Hamish Macbeth series by MC Beaton will appreciate this. I've discovered I like British and Scottish fiction better than modern American fiction. I think the mystery was nicely plotted, and the plot was well-paced. I would definitely read more of this series.

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