The Angel Maker (Boldt and Matthews Series #2)

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At The Shelter, no one judges the runaway teens who come in off the rainy Seattle streets. Volunteers, like police psychologist Daphne Matthews, want only to rescue and rebuild lives. Being a cop, Daphne thinks she's seen it all. But, as best-selling author Ridley Pearson's latest edge-of-the-seat thriller opens, what she encounters in a sixteen-year-old girl chills her in a way she thought a case no longer could. Daphne turns for help to the best cop she knows, a man with creative instincts and an appreciation ...
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The Angel Maker (Boldt and Matthews Series #2)

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Overview

At The Shelter, no one judges the runaway teens who come in off the rainy Seattle streets. Volunteers, like police psychologist Daphne Matthews, want only to rescue and rebuild lives. Being a cop, Daphne thinks she's seen it all. But, as best-selling author Ridley Pearson's latest edge-of-the-seat thriller opens, what she encounters in a sixteen-year-old girl chills her in a way she thought a case no longer could. Daphne turns for help to the best cop she knows, a man with creative instincts and an appreciation for forensic lab techniques - Lou Boldt. Boldt isn't a cop anymore; he's playing jazz piano in a downtown club and doing his best to forget the past. When Daphne puts her evidence on the table, Boldt is hooked. By all appearances someone is illegally harvesting human organs for transplant. Soon the two cops - and former lovers - are drawn into the dark vortex of a high-tech, highly profitable underground industry - and into the mind of its founder, a doctor gone very very bad ... a man who began by trying to save patients unable to get donor organs through legitimate channels ... a healer who let ambition, or something more sinister, turn him into a killer. The case gets personal when Daphne's friend and fellow Shelter volunteer Sharon Shaffer is abducted, and evidence left behind indicates she's about to become the killer's next organ donor. Daphne and Boldt have only days, hours, minutes to save Sharon from a killer about to make one final, unforgettable contribution to humankind. Meanwhile a woman caught in a nightmare of captivity rattles the bars of a secret makeshift prison, too far from civilization for anyone to hear her scream. Written with a researched realism so convincing that the story could have come from today's headlines, Ridley Pearson's The Angel Maker will hold the reader spellbound as it explores the passion to create life, and the power to destroy it - a novel so shattering, so bizarre, so terrifying that it raises the specter of a f
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In his latest forensic suspense thriller, Pearson ( Probable Cause ) brings maverick Seattle police sergeant Lou Boldt out of early retirement to help solve an especially gruesome crime: the black market ``harvesting'' of human organs. Police psychologist Daphne Matthews, volunteering at a shelter for runaways and drug abusers, sees 16-year-old Cindy Chapman stagger in one night, dazed and hemorrhaging from just-completed surgery. Perplexed to discover that no hospital has any record of the teen, Daphne contacts her ex-partner (and onetime lover) Lou, who now spends his days caring for his baby boy and playing jazz piano at a local club. The grisly evidence suggests that someone has stolen Cindy's kidney and used electroshock to erase her memory. Lou is lured back to his old job, and he discovers with Daphne three other cases of runaways who died after botched surgery, with evidence pointing to a ``harvester'' who uses veterinary techniques. The two must race to catch this medical monster before he makes his next fatal extraction. Pearson's engaging forensic detail--he makes complicated, potentially disgusting facts almost entertaining--and brisk prose will have readers racing to the cliffhanger climax. Literary Guild selection. (Apr.)
Kirkus Reviews
Potent blend of medical thriller and police procedural that resurrects the cop-hero of Pearson's Undercurrents (1988) and pits him against—of all things—a maniacal veterinarian. Lou Boldt has been off the Seattle force for two years, tending his infant son and playing jazz piano at a local dive, but his extraordinary empathy for murder victims won't let him refuse the request of police shrink and ex-lover Daphne Matthews (whose throat was slashed in Undercurrents) to help with her new case—a series of street kids found dead and missing a kidney, liver, or lung. Immediately suspecting that a transplant surgeon is "harvesting" the organs and selling them at great profit, Boldt rejoins the SPD and pushes for advice from the medical examiner (the narrative bristles with the sort of forensic detail that informed Undercurrents). Meanwhile, Pearson bares his villain—sociopathic society vet Elden Tegg—as we see him snatching social-worker Sharon Shaffer with an eye to selling her heart to a mobster whose wife is dying from heart disease. Unlike Undercurrents, then, where suspense derived from "whodunit," the tension here is strictly—and tightly—time-wound: Can Boldt i.d. the killer and rescue Sharon—or can Sharon herself escape from the remote dog kennel where Tegg's imprisoned her, naked and terrified—before the vet wields his scalpel? Thriller fans will note that this setup strongly echoes Thomas Harris's The Silence of the Lambs—but Pearson matches Harris's pace as the hours tick down, marking off twists (a hiker chancing on the kennel) and hot suspense sequences (a pawnshop sting to break into Tegg's computer) until the cathartic, brutalclimax. Exceptionally gripping and full of amazing forensic lore (e.g., that Band-Aids emit low-level radioactivity from being sterilized): a top-flight offering from an author who's clearly found his groove.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780440216322
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 6/9/1994
  • Series: Boldt and Matthews Series , #2
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 464
  • Product dimensions: 4.15 (w) x 6.86 (h) x 1.33 (d)

Meet the Author

Ridley Pearson
Dave Barry is a Pulitzer Prize - winning author of more than a dozen books, including Dave Barry's History of the Millennium (So Far); The Shepherd, the Angel, and Walter the Christmas Miracle Dog; Dave Barry's Money Secrets; Dave Barry's Complete Guide to Guys; Dave Barry Slept Here; Big Trouble; and Dave Barry Hits Below the Beltway. Along with Ridley Pearson, he is the co-author of Peter and the Starcatchers, Peter and the Shadow Thieves, Peter and the Secret of Rundoon, Escape from the Carnivale, and Cave of the Dark Wind. Ridley Pearson is the best-selling author of eighteen novels, including The Kingdom Keepers; Killer Weekend; Cut and Run; The Body of David Hayes; The Diary of Ellen Rimbauer; Beyond Recognition; Parallel Lies; and No Witnesses. He was the first American to be awarded the Raymond Chandler/Fulbright Fellowship in Detective Fiction at Oxford University.

Biography

Crime may not always pay, but crime fiction always sells, and Ridley Pearson is one of the stars of the genre, the kind of writer whose royalties keep his family fed and cover a few extras as well (like, say, his own airplane). Yet Pearson didn't spend his youth dreaming of bestsellerdom. His first ambition was to be a musician, and he spent most of his twenties writing and performing folk-rock songs. The idea that he might become a novelist came later. As he explained in a Barnes and Noble interview, he was reading a Robert Ludlum novel when "a voice spoke up from inside me and said, 'I can do this.'" (Once he began writing and discovered firsthand the skill involved in crafting a cohesive thriller, he realized how much he had presumed!)

Pearson is renowned for fast-paced, thrill-a-minute suspense novels that include "a rare humanism and attention to detail" (Publishers Weekly). In a Greenwich Magazine interview he called his work "aerobic fiction, because I hope to get your heart pounding and get you turning pages." Entertainment Weekly dubbed him "the thinking person's Robert Ludlum."

As his fans know, Pearson works hard at nailing the details of forensic investigation and police procedure. In Undercurrents (the first novel in his Seattle-based Lou Boldt mystery series) his research was so thorough—he consulted an expert in oceanography—that the book helped convict an actual murderer. A Washington state prosecuting attorney happened to be reading it while working on a case similar to Pearson's fictional one: A woman's body had been found in a bay, and at first it appeared that she had committed suicide by jumping off a bridge. The oceanographer mentioned in Pearson's acknowledgments was called in as an expert witness to help prove that, based on tidal currents, the woman must have been dead before the time her husband claimed to have last seen her. Due largely to the expert testimony, the victim's husband was convicted of second-degree murder.

Of course, there's more to a Pearson novel than research. "Just what is it about Ridley Pearson that makes him the best damn thriller writer on the planet?" mused Bill Ott in BookList. "We've celebrated the forensic detail, the taut plotting, the multidimensional characters, and the screw-tightening suspense, but lots of fiction writers do all that. Here's a theory: Pearson is a master at manipulating opposites. His stories are forever jumping from high concept to small scale, from positive to negative charges, manipulating our emotions and minds with their polar hip-hopping."

When he's not writing, Pearson still makes music—he's the bass guitarist for the Rock Bottom Remainders, an amateur rock band made up of professional writers including Stephen King, Dave Barry, Amy Tan, and Mitch Albom (the group's motto, coined by Barry: "We play music as well as Metallica writes novels").

It was while Pearson was in Miami to play with the Rock Bottom Remainders that he told Barry about his idea (actually, daughter Paige's idea) for a prequel to Peter Pan. The two authors had such a good time hashing out possibilities over breakfast that Pearson asked Barry to write the book with him. Published in 2004, their clever collaboration Peter and the Starcatchers became a huge bestseller, spawning two sequels (Peter and the Shadow Thieves in 2006 and Peter and the Secret of Rundoon in 2007) and a series of spin-off children's chapter books.

Even though Pearson thoroughly enjoys crafting juvenile fiction, his adult fans need not worry that he's abandoned his high-voltage crime novels. Indeed, he has said that writing gives him the same "adrenaline rush," no matter which audience he is targeting: Readers of all ages appreciate the imagination, suspense, and an impeccable eye for detail he brings to all his fiction.

Good To Know

Pearson calls himself a workaholic, "not so much by desire as out of necessity," since he reserves a lot of time for his two young daughters. His hobbies, which he now defines as "something you once did and no longer have the time for," include recreational tree climbing, fly-fishing, backyard volleyball, snow boarding—and, of course, bass guitar in his rock band. An avid reviser, Pearson says, "I'm said to have a nervous, worrying disposition, but rarely feel I live up to that description—perhaps internal calm is expressed as external nervosa."

Pearson loves to travel, especially to southern France, with wife Marcelle and second child Storey, who is adopted from China. We're certain to do a good deal of international travel in the years to come. He also attends local symphony and theater. But his "favorite avocation is to spend an evening around our dining table with two or three other couples. This, I feel, is where many of the world's ills are solved, and many souls restored. Mine, especially."

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    1. Also Known As:
      Wendell McCall; Joyce Reardon
    2. Hometown:
      St. Louis, Missouri
    1. Date of Birth:
      March 13, 1953
    2. Place of Birth:
      Glen Cove, New York
    1. Education:
      Kansas University, B.A., Brown University
    2. Website:

Table of Contents

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 7 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2013

    Can't put it down!!

    Can't put it down!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 11, 2007

    Fantastic

    This book like most of Ridley Pearson's books was just plain great. Full of suspense and a bit of intrigue. I just like his writing style more and more each book I read. I was moved a few times which rarely happens to me while reading a book. I experienced sadness, worry and actually was scared at one point. Terrific. Its brilliant how the writer can twist your thoughts and how you feel. I think its a true talent. A gift Pearson has... A great read in my opinion. 5 of 5

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 28, 2007

    As with all his books, this one is also a one night stand,

    Being a dog lover,this was a rough book to read, especially with all that's going on with 'killer' Michael Vick presently. And, whom I'm afraid will get off with just a slap on the wrist. Oh how I hope I'm wrong about that. I'd like to see him fed to the fighting dogs he mistreated. 'There are 9 books in the Lou Bolt/Daphne Matthews series amd they should be read in order of publication to watch the characters grow.'

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2006

    An incredible story

    I was introduced to Ridley Pearson thru Parallel Lies, which I thought was fantastic. I also read Art of Deception as well as No Witness and Blood of the Albatross, which were also great reads, but this book is the best yet. His story is compelling and horrifying. It took me about a day to run thru this book, and wish it never ended.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 19, 2000

    truly intriguing

    As I read this book it kept me enthralled i couldn't put it down. Every fact they discovered through the forensic procedures to the basic spine tingling chills were total and complete entrapment. It inspired me to read several other pearson books.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 16, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 17, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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