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Dead Heat

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  5,795 ratings  ·  389 reviews
It was the most painful episode of Max Moreton's young life. Just as he's beginning to gain full recognition as a chef, nearly all his guests at an elegant private party fall victim to severe food poisoning. The disaster leaves his culinary reputation in tatters, but worse is yet to come. The very next day, as he's catering an exclusive racetrack luncheon, a bomb goes off ...more
Audiobook, 0 pages
Published September 17th 2007 by Penguin Audio (first published 2007)
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Average rating 3.84  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,795 ratings  ·  389 reviews

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Julien Kreuze
Aug 20, 2007 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
A very interesting read, for one particular reason: this can't be Dick Francis. All the surface pieces are here that indicate a Francis novel: the the understated tone, the careful plot, the (yawn) quietly brilliant protagonist. And yet all of the essential elements that make Francis so GOOD, that extra layer of... substance, are absolutely missing. The wry, unassuming humor, the deft characterizations, the simple insights into people and situations. Nada. If you really like Dick Francis, you mi ...more
Bev Taylor
Sep 02, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
max is a leading chef at a restaurant in newmarket with a michelin star. h/e after a dinner in his restaurant nearly all the guests fall ill with food poisoning, including max

his restaurant is closed down pending an investigation but he has an o/s catering job at one of the boxes at newmarket for the 2000 guineas. not feeling really up to it he soldiers on with the help of his staff and just when things have finished a bomb goes off .....

19 people r killed and although max manages to survive h
Oct 06, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who enjoys good writing
I'm not a horse racing fan, but I am a fan of good writing, and Dick Francis is one of my top all-time favorite fiction writers. He's a master of the cliffhanger chapter endings that keep me turning the pages until I've finished, to the detriment of sleep and chores getting done. This book is no exception. I'd heard he's retired from writing, but apparently his son persuaded him to keep it up; Dead Heat is a collaboration of the two of them. Excuse me, but I've got to get back to the book ...
Sep 02, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: action-adventure
Year before last I re-read all my Dick Francis books in order of publication because I was afraid he would stop writing after his wife's death. Last year he produced Under Orders, much to my gratification and pleasure, since Sid Haley is one of my favorite characters. But Dead Heat, written with his son Felix, is Dick Francis and better. I could hardly put the book down and was thrilled at the end to find an advertisement for the next book, Silks. Now I can stop worrying. Dick Francis will conti ...more
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.

May 17, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mysteries
This was co-written with his son Felix--meaning Dad did the outline while Felix did the writing with Dad looking over his shoulder. It's an okay mystery, but the pacing and feel is just slightly off. Sometimes there are too many information dumps that slow the pace and others, everything is there, but just doesn't quiet gel. When Dick Francis' name is over everything, you expect certain things from the book, and this one just doesn't quite deliver the goods.

While I don't expect Felix to be exac
Dec 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horse-crime, fiction
5 stars if only for no other reason that I couldn't put this down. I have this nagging feeling I've read this before, but it turns out I only remembered one of the protagonists and not their motives, which gave me a nice surprise. The plot twists started from the beginning, and built into a delicious climax. I would have preferred slightly more resolution, but what there was made me smile.
Jun 30, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: francis
Easily the most boring book bearing the Francis name.It appears to be mostly the work of his son,Felix.The book hardly ever comes to life and the tedium stretches on for over 400 pages.
Lynn Pribus
The big puzzle here is why I continued listening to this CD set. While it purports to be by Dick Francis, it was most likely mostly by his son Felix who, sad to say, is no Dick Francis. The usual torture, frustration, blood, and flimsy romance, but it was about a restrateur rather than racing, although horses did have something do with the incredibly unlikely plot.

And there was a bit of esoteric horse information toward the end that "enabled" the plot.

Aug 15, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Yikes this book was sexist, racist, clumsy, plodding, and at points laughably bad (e.g., the line about how it's improbable that a chef would use cocaine because the heat of a kitchen and drugs don't mix. K.)
David Highton
May 26, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another good reliable Dick Francis book, this one written with the help of Felix Francis. Our hero is a chef, whose outside catering at Newmarket races ends in tragedy and mystery
Jan 12, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This Heart-pounding, nail-bitingly exciting story will have you reading in a feverish frenzy to get to the end!

Highly acclaimed, bestselling author Dick Francis returned after a six-year absence with ‘Under Orders’ much to the delight of both avid readers and horse racing fans alike. His exceptional writing-style, detailed and intricately woven, cleverly crafted plots fueled by such dramatic, intense narrative is outstanding. As a horse racing enthusiast, Dick Francis is an author who stands-ou
Cindy Bellomy
Not one of his/their better ones. Just not as well written as the older Dick Francis books. Missing that special humor & cleverness.

Actually, a second read, which I didn't realize for quite awhile. Tells you something about the book, I suppose.
Ann Webb
Mar 19, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Back in the 80s and 90s I read every one of Dick Francis' novels. I loved them then and I still love them. This is how to write mysteries folks. You have believable and likeable characters set in an arena that the author is obviously familiar with and comes to a nice conclusion without a lot of bombast. In this instance Francis is writing with his son and it is still recognizable Francis fiction. (sometimes collaborations of authors don't go so well)

Max Moreton is a Michelin star che
Mar 31, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This had a double appeal, with a restaurant owner as the main character with a musician angle thrown in. (I used to own a restaurant and I play French Horn.) I have been reading Dick Francis for many years and have an extensive collection of firsts of his. Although he is now old and fragile, this piece co-written with his son encourages all us fans that he has passed on his talents. There's some interesting info about this collaboration on his website - worth a visit.
Wendell Hennan
the sense of humour evident in Bloodline has not returned. The plot twists and turns, but dragged slowly for many chapters and seemed unbelievable. The final few chapters brought it all together with an intensity as Max Moreton and Caroline fend off Komarov and a good customer/friend and an employee.
Apr 13, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Dick Francis books never fail. Same formula perhaps, same type of protagonist, but the settings and individual characters are so well researched that each one is a fresh adventure from which I always learn something new. They're not all about horses!
sonja figueiredo
really enjoyed the book. Very interesting.
May 07, 2017 rated it liked it
Enjoyable enough, but certainly not great. The "crime" part of the plot was incredibly far-fetched, but the main character (Max Morton) was charming and likable (so I'm rounding 2.5 stars up to 3).
Brendan Shea
Aug 29, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed Felix Francis' contribution to his Dad, Dick Francis' Twice Shy; that the younger Francis knows about things like physics and marksmanship is interesting to me, particularly as I don't really have any keen knowledge of those topics.

As Felix began to contribute heavily to Dick's books, however, I was somewhat disillusioned with his tone and with his writing style. With Dead Heat though, while the book is a bit uneven, and while I noticed some very minor narrative strands seemed just sl
Jul 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dick Francis is one of those authors you can rely on to write an interesting story when you are cruising about the library trying to find something to read. Horse racing is always involved in the stories somehow, and though I care nothing for horse racing, the stories are great anyway. In this one, the racing is more tangential than in others. The main focus is a chef (who serves the horse racing crowd) who is accused of poisoning guests at a dinner he catered (with an ingredient he knows he did ...more
May 06, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019
Another Francis book I enjoyed - this one focusing on a top restaurant owner who finds himself ill and others who ate with him, in his place, have also fallen ill - but how? and then he gets caught in a bomb blast - who was it intended for, Max, decides to try and find out ... and finds his life in more and more danger
Wendy Hearder-moan
I think I may have read this before, many years ago, but couldn’t remember how it ended. Not too surprising as it finishes up quite quickly. Not quite the usual Francis style as horses are just background.
Lori Buchholtz
Jul 24, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dead Heat is a murder mystery that is humorous, entertaining and captivating. It drags slightly in the beginning, but picks up as the plot thickens. I thoroughly enjoyed the audio version and reader was excellent.
Jun 27, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: listened-to
Very good plot - lots of complex twists and turns, and some great characters to keep you interested.
May 07, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Someone recommended these books. I was not impressed and do not intend to check out any others!
Ray LaManna
Oct 29, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dick Francis is a good writer... good engaging novel...and I learned a lot about racing and running a restaurant!
I liked this one better than the other collaboration of theirs I read. I think I still prefer the older mysteries.
Vivian Vilmin
Eating and Horsing around

By first appearances the book would be about horse racing, but surprisingly a restaurant, a new love, and viola concerts are in the mix.
Barbara Nutting
Aug 12, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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100 pages still no plot!! 5 23 Oct 04, 2013 05:11PM  

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Dick Francis CBE (born Richard Stanley Francis) was a popular British horse racing crime writer and retired jockey.

Dick Francis worked on his books with his wife, Mary, before her death. Dick considered his wife to be his co-writer - as he is quoted in the book, "The Dick Francis Companion", released in 2003:
"Mary and I worked as a team. ... I have often said that I would have be
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“Things may come to those who wait, but only the things left by those who hustle.” 0 likes
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