cover image Blood Stock

Blood Stock

John Francome, James MacGregor. Trafalgar Square Publishing, $22.95 (256pp) ISBN 978-0-7472-0129-8

The writing partnership of two young Britons follows up a first thriller, Declared Dead , with another authentic horseracing yarn. Fergus Kildare has not seen his father, Patrick, since their champion racer, Moondancer, was mysteriously shot on their stud farm 18 months earlier. Along with several others, Fergus and Patrick had hoped that the horse would make them all wealthy; Moondancer's prowess as a stud had proved negligible, however. When Fergus discovers first his father's skeleton and the corpse of friend and stable hand Joe Slattery soon after, he is certain that all the deaths are connected. Investigator Jack Hendred is also looking for a connection. He's been engaged by the insurance company that insured the horse for five million pounds to establish that one of the owners of Moondancer killed the animal to fraudulently collect payment. Along with assistant Seamus Pink and barrister Amy Frost, Hendred sets out to demonstrate that there were many who would have benefited from the death of the horse and the demise of the two men as well. Champion jockey Francome and barrister MacGregor (a pseudonym) once again provide a thoroughly entertaining read. (May)