Review

The Body Of David Hayes

by Ridley Pearson

Read an
Excerpt


Author
Talk





THE BODY OF DAVID HAYES is the ninth of Ridley Pearson's novels
featuring Seattle Police Detectives Lou Boldt and Daphne Matthews.
Pearson has infused these books with a number of interesting
elements and has reached the point where he can pick and choose
among them so that each new offering in the series is familiar yet
never predictable. The series is set in Seattle, one of the more
fascinating cities in the United States, so that Pearson can build
his story around a point of interest (as he did so brilliantly in
THE ART OF DECEPTION, for example). He can feature either Boldt or
Matthews as the focal point of the story, or alternate between the
two. Given the longevity of the series, Pearson can also reach into
the past and use it as a propellant for a story set in the
present.

THE BODY OF DAVID HAYES is primarily a Boldt book. Actually, that's
not quite accurate, as a great deal of the novel concerns Boldt's
wife Liz. Lou and Liz hit a rough patch several years previous to
the events in THE BODY OF DAVID HAYES. It was during this period
that Lou had a brief fling with Daphne Matthews and Liz had an
affair with David Hayes, a brilliant computer specialist at
Seattle's WestCorp Bank, where Liz is an executive. Lou and Liz
were each aware of the other's infidelity; neither of them knew the
identity of the other's partner. After Liz ended her affair with
Hayes, he embarked on a scheme at the behest of the Russian Mafia
wherein he used his computer skills to steal 17 million dollars
from WestCorp. The money was never recovered.

Hayes is now out on parole and is seeking to recover the money, and
with good reason: he has been put on notice by the Russian mob that
his life is in danger if he cannot retrieve it. His intrusion back
into Liz's life is sudden and dramatic. Hayes cannot recover the
money without access to the inner computer workings of the bank,
and Liz is his only way in. What is worse from Liz's standpoint is
that her affair with Hayes will be revealed if she does not assist
him. Liz, torn between protecting the bank and keeping her family
safe, goes to Lou and confesses her prior involvement with Hayes as
well as the potential for blackmail, which, of course, will affect
Lou as well.

Pearson sets up a neat and interesting dichotomous situation here,
whereby Lou has to compartmentalize his feelings as a jealous
husband from his job as a law enforcement officer. Complicating
matters is the Russian Mafia, who is squeezing Hayes physically and
Liz emotionally, and Danny Foreman, a Washington State BCI
investigator who is an old friend of the Boldts but whose
investigation into Hayes's activities puts him at odds with Lou.
The story races to a conclusion in which Lou attempts to
orchestrate several different scenarios that take place
simultaneously, all with the aim of preventing the recovery of the
money while attempting to protect Liz from the terrible danger she
is in.

Pearson in THE BODY OF DAVID HAYES has once again worked his unique
magic, creating a plausible high-tech tale that never gets bogged
down in the minutiae of computer jargon while playing his
characters' emotions off of each other. The ultimate effects on Lou
and Liz Boldt of the events that take place in THE BODY OF DAVID
HAYES are left ambiguous at the end of the novel and will
undoubtedly unfold in later installments of this series, providing
both an expectation for the future and a realistic touch upon the
personal lives of the characters. One is left truly caring about
what will happen to these people; the ability to instill this
emotion in his readers is, perhaps, Pearson's greatest strength in
his formidable literary arsenal.

Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub on January 7, 2011

The Body Of David Hayes
by Ridley Pearson

  • Publication Date: April 6, 2004
  • Genres: Fiction, Mystery
  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Hyperion
  • ISBN-10: 0786867256
  • ISBN-13: 9780786867257