I first met Ridley Pearson in 1988 on his tour for Undercurrents, as he, along with Lou Boldt and Daphne Matthews, made there way to Tower Books in east Portland. It was my first author signing and I was electrified as I stood in line waiting for him to sign my lone copy of Undercurrents. I still have that book. He inscribed it, “To John, watch out for The Angel Maker, Ridley Pearson.” From that day forward I have been a book collector, and as such have every book he has written since.
Boldt and Matthews became regular visitors to my house each year. In off years they would send others in their place, sometimes Chris Klick and more recently Walt Fleming. There was even an odd visit one year by Ellen Rimbauer.
The excitement grew to a fever pitch when Peter and the Starcatchers reached our home. Mitchell was 7 at the time and Evan had just turned 4. Every evening we would read from “Starcatchers.” The conclusion of each night’s reading you could hear the echo of young boy voices “one more chapter dad!” We read the sequels in the same way, as Peter and the Shadow Thieves, Peter and the Secret of Rundoon, and Peter and the Sword of Mercy finally arrived.
The boys are older now, but still wait and insist we read together all future books in the series. Their anticipation grew during a recent visit we had with Ridley. When Mitchell asked him if the dreaded Ombra was down for the count, Ridley wouldn’t commit indicating that the series was not over, and that Ombra might again challenge Peter and his friends.
Ridley has also written novels set inside the Disney theme park in Florida. The Kingdom Keepers: Disney after Dark, The Kingdom Keepers: Disney at Dawn, and Kingdom Keepers: Disney in Shadow are followed this month by Kingdom Keepers IV: Power Play.
Ridley’s collection of bestsellers continues to grow. What follows is a current list of Ridley’s books:
Boldt and Matthews Series
1. Undercurrents (1988)
2. The Angel Maker (1993)
3. No Witnesses (1994)
4. Beyond Recognition (1997)
5. The Pied Piper (1998)
6. The First Victim (1999)
7. Middle of Nowhere (2000)
8. The Art of Deception (2002)
9. The Body of David Hayes (2004)
Never Look Back (1985)
Blood of the Albatross (1986)
The Seizing of Yankee Green Mall (1987) aka Hidden Charges
Probable Cause (1989)
Hard Fall (1991)
Chain of Evidence (1995)
Parallel Lies (2001)
The Diary of Ellen Rimbauer: My Life at Rose Red (2002) (writing as Joyce Reardon)
Cut and Run (2005)
Ridley’s Youth Titles
Peter Pan Series (with Dave Barry)
1. Peter and the Starcatchers (2004)
2. Peter and the Shadow Thieves (2006)
3. Peter and the Secret of Rundoon (2007)
4. Peter and the Sword of Mercy (2009)
5. The Bridge to Never Land (August 2011)
Science Fair (2008) (with Dave Barry)
Young or old, or young and old together, hours of pleasure are yours for the asking . . . as long as you are asking for something by Ridley Pearson!