Gillian Flynn
August 16, 2002 AT 04:00 AM EDT

The Art of Deception

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Ridley Pearson
publisher
Hyperion
genre
Fiction

We gave it a B

It’s better than a guilty pleasure. But not by much. Pearson’s cops (introduced in earlier novels), Lou Boldt and forensic psychologist Daphne Matthews, unravel cases that may be related. A BTG (beautiful, troubled girl) is thrown from Seattle’s Aurora Bridge. Meanwhile, two women have vanished. The link lies under the city itself, where 22 blocks of buried buildings remain, paved over a century earlier. Of course, there are distractions aplenty, including BTG’s vengeful brother, a fish gutter who fixates on Daphne; threatening phone calls to poor Miss Matthews; and her burgeoning friendship (wink-wink) with former womanizer Sgt. John LaMoia. All topped off with lines like this: ”She leaned into him with that twin pair of headlights — her eyes and the ones in the sweater — and induced enough electricity to fry a pacemaker.” Whether Pearson was giggling when he wrote that may be the greatest mystery of all.

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