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In the bestselling tradition of Seabiscuit, the extraordinary true story of the world's most famous racehorse, and the rogue who owned him.

About the Author

Nicholas Clee is a journalist, cookery writer, and racing enthusiast. He lives in north London with his wife (also an author) and two daughters.


This British import, shortlisted in the UK for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award, is the story of one of the greatest racehorses of all time. Journalist and racing enthusiast Clee reveals to readers the wild and crazy racing world of the saucy 1700s in Great Britain, where Eclipse was bred, raced, and put to stud. Ninety-five percent of horses racing today have Eclipse in their male racing line! He was first owned by a meat salesman and then by an Irish rogue, Dennis O'Kelly, who became rich via gambling and Eclipse. O'Kelly was also the companion of one of England's most famous and successful madams, Charlotte Hayes. In England at that time, social classes were able to mix in only three worlds: racing, gambling, and brothels. In spite of his wealth and ownership of Eclipse, O'Kelly was never allowed membership in the Jockey Club owing to his low social status. With color illustrations, a pedigree of Eclipse, and a list of racing terms and definitions. VERDICT Clee has done a great deal of research and tells a marvelous story. His book is sure to appeal to horse and horse-racing fans and English history buffs. Highly recommended.-Patsy E. Gray, Huntsville, AL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

A ripping yarn expertly told: part Flashman at the Races; part Seabiscuit without the schmaltz * Observer *
Clee combines the story of Eclipse's racing and breeding career with the lives of those who bred and owned him, a crowd who were racy in every conceivable sense * Daily Telegraph *
Clee knows how to tell a gripping story: he weaves the halves together into a well-written narrative of social change... fascinating * Independent *
This splendid book... This is a read bursting with life, and Clee has the balance and worldliness to weigh all his material with sense and perspective. No racing home should be without it * The Times *
It brings to life a horse that has left behind a matchless legacy. For the casual reader, it is an enjoyable romp through a period knee-deep in fops, fools and fraudsters * Independent on Sunday *

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