No Witnesses is Ridley Pearson's third novel, of 6 to date, featuring Seattle homicide detective Lou Boldt and police department phsychologist Daphne Matthews. It is a superb part of one of the must successful and enjoyable mystery/suspense series going today. I am amazed that Hollywood, ever-starved for good storylines, especially when it comes to action films, has yet to film any of the Boldt/Matthews novels.
Pearson's has two great strengths as a writer. First, he has the ability to weave a complex plot while sustaining tension. Second, he can present the details of police work, especially regarding forensic evidence, in a manner that is both realistic and attention-holding.
No Witnesses does not disappoint in either respect. Someone is blackmailing food conglomerate Adler Foods by threatening deadly contamination of their products. As Matthews (who is romantically linked to Adler's CEO) and Boldt begin a low-profile investigation, it becomes clear that the blackmailer has the means to carry out his deadly threats--he seems to be able to introduce poisoned products right onto grocery store shelves. While Boldt begins to build a chain of evidence that he hopes will lead him to the killer, deaths begin to mount, and some of those who are supposedly on Boldt's side reveal that they have their own agendas.
Pearson creates strong, three-dimensional characters, none more so than Lou Boldt himself. Boldt, along with Michael Connelly's Harry Bosch, ranks among the most interesting fictional cops of the 1990's.
Anyone who enjoys a good mystery, especially one centered on realistic police work, would enjoy No Witnesses. The Boldt/Matthews novels, while a series, can be read out of sequence, so if this one sounds good, don't hesitate to dive right in.