Did Not Finish Hardcover – Sep 1 2011
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About the Author
Simon Wood is a California transplant from England. He's a former competitive racecar driver, a licensed pilot, an endurance cyclist and an occasional PI. He shares his world with his American wife, Julie. Their lives are dominated by a longhaired dachshund and four cats. He's the Anthony Award winning author of Working Stiffs, Accidents Waiting to Happen, Paying the Piper, Terminated, Asking For Trouble, We All Fall Down and the Aidy Westlake series. His latest thriller is NO SHOW, the first in the Terry Sheffield mysteries. He also write horror under the pen name of Simon Janus. Curious people can learn more at http://www.simonwood.net. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
Top Customer Reviews
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
In addition to all the adventurous plot twists in Did Not Finish, and there are many, I'd have to say the suspense scene three-quarters into the story is one of the most breathtaking I've ever come across. To say more would be a spoiler. But wow!
It's my understanding the author is a former race car driver himself, and I can see how that experiences enhances the storytelling. I wish I had better words to say what I mean here as I've never thought to say this about an author before, but Simon Woods's writing is extremely complete; he can describe scenes or characters well and thoroughly, using a lot of words without there being too many. I have the sense that when he writes all the words come out in the right order, and I'm not left wanting anything except another story. So I bought Hot Seat, the sequel, right after I finished. Hoping for more Aidy, and soon.
Finally, I have read that Kirkus Reviews compared this book to British thriller author Dick Francis's book, Nerve. If you like Dick Francis--and he's one of my favorites--I submit that you'll like Simon Wood. (And if you have never heard of Dick Francis, I think you'll still like Simon Wood.) Enjoy!
When a dangerous race maneuver by Derek causes a crash that indeed kills Alex, Aidy is convinced he followed through on the threat because the slick thug also sails to victory in the race and the championship, which brings with it serious sponsorship money. Stubbornly, Aidy is driven to prove that Derek murdered the competing driver, especially when witnessing Derek's smugness. Aidy's father, a champion Formula One driver in the making had been killed in an accident that claimed both him and Aidy's mom, so the young sleuth sets out -- with the help of his grandfather Steve and his buddy Dylan -- to investigate the accident he believes is a crime. The fact that Derek seems determined to oppose his every step, the official race footage has been scrubbed, and Alex's wrecked car suddenly disappears before it can be examined, all points to a conspiracy, but why? The headstrong young driver is even more determined to seek justice when he finds himself attracted to Alison, Alex's fiancée, despite her father's disapproval. Meanwhile, Derek's methods grow more overt, and the local police detective who's assigned to the case appears to be in cahoots with the arrogant driver.
Crafting this traditional and yet unusual mystery, Wood relies on his own race car driving experience to lend it a searing realism that sets it apart. There's almost a charming Hardy Boys quality to Aidy's investigative efforts and his dogged intention to avenge his friend and bring the killer to justice, but this doesn't hamper any of the proceedings and in fact provides part of its distinctive character. Here's hoping Aidy Westlake will return to solve other racing-related crimes. Simon Wood (Accidents Waiting to Happen, Paying the Piper, Terminated) continues to produce compelling thrillers and mysteries and occasionally horror, as both himself and Simon Janus, and is well-worth adding to your To Read list.
--Review by W.D. Gagliani, author of Savage Nights
Another incredible story from master storyteller Simon Wood.
The story opens with Derek Deacon threatening to kill his main rival Alex Fanning. The threat is heard by all and when Alex is killed in a collision with Derek a couple of hours later, everyone wonders if it was an accident or murder.
Disappointed with how quickly the police declare it a tragic accident and fail to fully investigate or interview witnesses, rookie driver Aidy Westlake decides to carry out his own investigation.
Although clearly intelligent, Aidy quickly finds there's a lot more to investigating crime than he thought. He is drawn ever deeper into the sinister and dangerous world of organised crime.
Time and again, Aidy finds his line of investigation leading to a dead end.
When he discovers someone has tampered with his own vehicle, Aidy is able to eliminate a a large number of suspects.
He knows that he will be risking his life, but has the perfect opportunity to discover who killed Alex Fanning.....
An early novel from Simon Wood, recently re-released on Kindle. The author's considerable experience and knowledge of motor racing is beautifully conveyed, resulting in a truly magnificent crime thriller that will keep you guessing until the very end.
I'm looking forward to reading Hot Seat very soon.
It all begins the night before a big race when a nine-time champion threatens to kill his rival, who is in the lead to capture the title. When the rival actually is killed during the race under suspicious circumstances in a collision with the champion, Aidy Westlake undertakes to prove it was a case of murder. Throughout all sorts of hardships and dangers, he doggedly continues his mission, until the plot inevitably takes a sharp turn.
Filled with loads of details on the racing scene and the people and equipment that make it possible, the novel moves spiritedly apace. It is filled with suspense and startling revelations, and is recommended.