Book 30 of 50 – 10 lb Penalty

Just another thrilling novel by the master of crime mystery, 10 lb. Penalty by Dick Francis kept me turning pages. Ben Juliard, the protagonist, would love nothing more than to work as a jockey after high school. Instead, his father offers him a job on his staff, in the political world. Ben must accept this job because, well, it’s complicated. And I would not want to give away too much of the plot.

10 lb Penalty by Dick Francis

When a horse wins a race, they weigh it down by 10 lbs for the next race as a penalty.

People try to murder his father, so Ben has to grow up quickly. Ben uses everything he knows about life, weapons, and the horseracing world in order to unmask the culprit.

If you have never read a Dick Francis novel, I suggest you start. Any one of his 40 titles would do, but you could read them in order of publication, of course. Some have the same protagonist, but even they do not have to be read in order.

A penalty in horseracing is additional weight put on a winning horse. It can be 5 lbs, 7 lbs, or 10 lbs. It all depends on the circumstances, the conditions of the race, etc. The most penalty imposed on a winning horse is 10 lbs. The title, you guessed it, is a metaphor for Ben’s life and his dad’s race.

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