The art of deception

by Ridley Pearson

Paper Book, 2002




New York Hyperion cop. 2002


Seattle police psychologist Daphne Mathews has her hands full with a pregnant, addicted, runaway teenager, a murder victim's brother whose strange behavior unnerves her, and a deputy sheriff she once treated who's now stalking her. She's frightened enough to move in with Detective John LaMoia, a development that doesn't exactly thrill Lou Boldt, their boss and Daphne'sex-lover. But Lou's too busy with his own cases to brood over John and Daphne: the recent disappearances of two local women, and the death of Billy Chen, the nephew of Mama Lu, an old friend and a powerful figure in Seattle's Chinese community, which appeared to be an accident but turns out to have been murder.The only thing the disappearances and murder have in common is location; all three victims were last seen in a part of downtown built over the Underground, a dark and dangerous warren of buildings abandoned after the fire that leveled Seattle more than a hundred years ago. While Seattle's Underground has been the setting for several mysteries by other authors (Earl Emerson, J.A. Jance), Pearson makes the most of its creepy-crawly atmosphere in a gripping thriller whose solid plotting pulls all of Daphne's, LaMoia's, and Boldt's cases together. It also wisely reconfigures the personal relationships among the three central characters, which bodes well for their future adventures in this long-running series (Middle ofNowhere, The Pied Piper). --Jane Adams… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member nbmars
Setting: Seattle

Lou Boldt: Seattle Police Lieutenant, strong yet gentle
Daphne Matthews: Seattle Police psychologist, strong yet fragile
John LaMoia: macho cowboy Seattle Police Sargeant ("he doesn't walk, he swaggers")
Ferrell Walker: psycho brother of murdered girl whose case Daphne
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Mama Lu: mysterious Asian power broker and friend of Lou Boldt (she calls him "Mr. Both" and he calls her "Great Lady")

First Line: "She lay on her side, her head ringing, her hair damp and sticky."

Main Theme: Everything seemingly disparate is connected! Daphne tries to solve a crime of a murdered girl without help, and almost gets herself killed. Boldt is trying to find two missing women. There has been a murder in Seattle's Chinese community.

Subtheme: Daphne and LaMoia discover feelings for one another [viz: "She wanted to get naked. She wanted him inside her, right here on the kitchen counter."]

Main Action: All roads lead to the Underground, a dark and dangerous warren of buildings under downtown Seattle abandoned after the fire that leveled Seattle more than a hundred years ago.

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LibraryThing member Flirty
This is a book that is VERY difficult to put down. I love that it is unpredictable as well. A great murder mystery,not for the faint of heart.
LibraryThing member gwnsad
Another terrific crime thriller from Mr. Pearson. This is part of the Lou Boldt/ Daphne Matthews series but the Daphne features as the main character in this gripping tale. A suspected suicide, a suspicious boyfriend, an unwanted allied brother who becomes more and more erratic. The whole story
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keeps you on the edge of your seat wondering what is going to happen next. Great work as usual, Mr. Pearson.
I would like to see more with Daphne as the main character.
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LibraryThing member gopfolk
Not a bad book but too many cliches in it for my taste. It held my attention and went by pretty quick.
LibraryThing member jamespurcell
Too much introspection and not enough action.
LibraryThing member susandennis
I live in the historic part of Seattle. Originally the city was built one story below the sidewalk level of today. There is an old city underground in this neighborhood. Some of it you can tour and most of it is blocked off and full of stories. This one is one of those. Lou Bolt, John LaMoia and
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Dauphne Matthews share another good story but this time right here in my own neighborhood!
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