[ PDF ] ✈ Decider Author Dick Francis – Manifest-money.info
I love Dick Francis characters They are very philosophical and good natured, able to survive the most horrible calamities with a sense of humor The hero of this book is in a rather depressing marriage, but as usual is a very likable guy Fast paced and tense, as most of his books are. Not a typical Dick Francis story, even though it is based around a family owned racecourse Lee Morris is a builder with six sons who has inherited a small share in the racecourse who gets embroiled in conspiracy and no little danger. Architect Lee Morris Inherits A Partial Ownership In The Stratton Park Racecourse And With It, A Dangerous Position Among The Warring Upper Class Family Trying To Settle Its Fate Morris Would Like To See The Course Restored To Its Former Grandeur, But The Various Stratton Heirs Have Plans Of Their Own When An Explosion Rocks The Grandstands, The Disagreement Turns Violent And Morris Finds Himself In A Race To Save Himself And His Family From An Unknown Culprit I probably would have given this one five stars but was so disappointed in the ending Lee Morris is an architect with six sons all young It is obvious from his story that he is very proud of them and loves each one but sadly, his marriage is struggling However he is committed to his family, and is about to prove his commitment when his family is introduced to danger at the racetrack.Lee is through marraige distantly related to a family of shareholders and because of a tragic past, has never attended the meetings However, learning that the racetrack is faced with either a permanent closing, or pointless renovations Lee s field , he decides to attend a meeting The hostility of the family is perhaps a little overdone but has the reader pulling for Lee all the way.When one of Lee s boys discovers a trail of hidden wire at the racetrack, the danger begins and as always, the hero of the novel will have to prove his mettle.Another fast paced Dick Francis mystery that kept my interest all the way. I love this one It s the first mystery he s ever written where the hero had kids, so he gave him seven All boys On the other hand, he went back to the unhappy marriage theme letting the wife have an affair and the hero long to have one Can t have everything A great example of the history factor where it is only by learning what characters have done that the hero can blackmail his way to safety Also a fine example of psychological detection, since the hero must consider the various members of a large family to figure out who is the criminal Compounding the difficulty of figuring it out, there are multiple crimes and criminals More stock Francis the older iron willed woman, wealthy, capable of graciousness that the hero comes to like and admire the Queen Mother I can t help but wonder and the angelic mother now dead in this case He deals with topical issues again, namely domestic and sexual violence, and I love the architecture stuff Best of all, the hero lives in a barn with his brood.1 Jan 1998 Francis writes about horse racing, that s well known But his recipe for a book is to also mix in one or two other topics, like glass blowing or computer viruses or movie making These extra topics flesh out the characters and differentiate the stories, and I m sure Francis enjoyed researching these extra bits Sometimes it takes some reflection to figure out the topics, often it doesn t This one certainly had the role of an architect builder as a key part of the story The architect is our protagonist, and unlike many Francis books, you get of a surface view of the life of the architect without getting much detail in his work The detail that was there regarding explosives and design was not that compelling, and I missed that depth here The book seemed to be much about relationships, and the second topic was managing families Lee, our architect, manages this entire episode with his brood of sons with him I was worried this might turn into a mystery episode of The Brady Bunch , but Francis writes the boys as prototypical Boy Scouts well behaved and adventurous And the work Lee does in the story is related to a dysfunctional and rich family of racecourse owners I ve read a few Francis books that deal with families, like Hot Money and Longshot , and I like them best Francis has a way with navigating family politics and dealing with family trauma that he only touches on occasionally in his books I think his writing about families give him the ability to bring some interesting characters to life, such as the grandson here trying to cure his baldness Francis also, as he likes to do, includes a beating scene here I ve read than a dozen scenes in Francis various books where the protagonist is beat up They are always very cringe inducing Just once I d like to see the good guy beat up the bad guy without getting his own clock cleaned first I suspect that s not in the Francis story formula Overall, one of the better ones. This novel stands out because Lee is one of the few Francis characters to have children And Lee s love for his children is very strong It s strange because the character does not have a good relationship with his wife and the romance, if you wish to call it that seems to occur with a character that really isn t an entity In fact, Lee s wife Amanda seems to be a Disney mother not there but supposedly a good one That said Lee and his children are extremely well drawn One wonders if Francis was making some comment on marriage, divorce and children Or perhaps this is an experiment of a protagonist with children, just in case Francis had decided to take Kit or Sid there. This may be my favorite Dick Francis novel, with an atypical hero whose quiet architectural brilliance and unusually creative parenting of five boys sticks in my mind This is my second read of Decider and I liked it even this time, admiring the elegant turns of phrase, realism, and depth of character Francis creates The integration of plot, character, and setting is OH so satisfying. Lee Morris is the kind of guy you d want for a friend He s self assured in many ways, physically strong and mentally at the top of his game Lee makes a living by prowling around Britain scouting out old ruined buildings and businesses he can remodel, restore, and revitalize.Lee shares his house with his wife, Amanda, and six boys He s a good dad despite the coldness and apathetic distance of the marriage, which is crumbling and dying not from verbal abuse so much as from a lack of love and compassion.As this book opens, Lee has just finished restoration of an old barn, turning it into the house he, Amanda, and the boys now share It s a remarkable structure, a real attention getter to any visitor And Lee indeed has some visitors as this book begins Too officials from a nearby racetrack come to beg for his help It seems the track s owner has died, leaving in his wake a family tearing itself apart over what should be done with the aging track and grandstands But why would the visitors come to Lee Morris Because many years ago, before Lee was born, his mother was married briefly to one of the hyper abusive sons of the wealthy racetrack owner He regularly beat Lee s mother and once impregnated her against her will So traumatized was she by that event that she couldn t raise the resulting child a girl She left the home, but the family quickly closed ranks around the son, and she agreed to never mention the abuse and marital rape as long as she could simply be left alone The racetrack owner, a kindly enough man, recognized that his son was inherently evil, and gave Lee s mom several shares in the track, assuming she could sell them to gain enough money to start anew Instead, she kept the shares, and they eventually reverted to her son, Lee, upon her death He s paid little attention to them over the years, simply going about his business remodeling old buildings and selling them But on a particular spring day just before Easter, two gentlemen from the track arrive at Lee s home to plead with him to assist in preserving the track and its grandstands His eight votes, they feel, could make a difference in terms of the track s preservation.Lee initially declines their offer, but a series of events cause him to change his mind and actually show up at a board of directors meeting wherein all of the family factions with their naked hatred for one another are in full bloom.Amanda wants Lee and the boys out of the house for a week, so she insists they go with him to the track during the boys spring break While there, they witness a horrible racing accident that kills a rider and horse And on Good Friday, one of Lee s sons notices what look to be wires connecting plastic explosive charges together running throughout the grandstands He quickly alerts his father, and the boy and his father must now rescue the other boys who are playing in the grandstands All but one boy leaves the area, and while Lee searches for his 9 year old son, the stands explode in a horrific manner Lee and the boy are reunited just seconds before the grandstands blow, and while the boy is spared, Lee sustains injuries on his back and legs as some of the structure falls in on him.The remainder of this book focuses on Lee s efforts at revealing some of the destructive family secrets that prevent its members from working together Lee is in constant danger from family members who want him dead, including his half sister, the girl born as a result of the forced sexual assault and the man once briefly married to his mother.You may be able to predict how this one turns out, but it s a thrilling action packed mystery just the same Dick Francis does a magnificent job as usual with this plot You ll learn fascinating things about British architecture, but not to such a degree that you will glaze over and lose interest What singularly strikes me about this book is Francis s way of developing his characters Even Lee s sons are beautifully developed and super realistic Their differences and strengths and weaknesses are used by this author to move the plot along nicely So vivid is the description of Lee and Amanda s crumbling atrophying marriage that your very heart hurts for both of them.The Stratton family, who are so hateful to one another and so divided as to the future of the racetrack, are also masterfully developed This book ends very satisfactorily in one sense, and somewhat sadly in another, but I won t go into that here lest by some means I spoil it for you.If you re looking for that perfect action mystery thriller to serve as the soundtrack for your spring cleaning efforts or even to hang onto for that first trip to the beach or the mountains, this one really fills that niche There aren t so many characters that you ll get confused trying to figure out who s who The plot is consistently fast and constantly interesting You ll marvel at Francis s economy of words saying so much with so little This is a rather short book, but long on character development and excitement You ll see the basic decency in both Lee and Amanda and yearn for them both to find the best solution that works for them You ll cheer for those boys, too So detailed are their descriptions that you feel as if you know each one of them individually. Lee Morris is a beginning architect and engineer who gets in the middle of a feud over a racecourse between members of a family that he is connected to He believes that choice is preordained When murder occurs he comes in danger himself and must make critical choices.