I confess. I didn’t know who Methuselah was. Or why his legacy was important. A Google search quickly informed me that he was the longest living man in Biblical history. Without the assistance of modern medicine, he lived to be seven hundred plus years old. Who wouldn’t want to avoid the shackles of death and live “forever”? Certainly, Detective Sergeant Ian Waddle, the main character in Methuselah’s Legacy does. The man is scared to death of death. He’s facing his own mid-life crisis while solving the puzzles behind the Moorhen murder, among other cases.
We know that Rodney Moorhen is going to die from the first sentence in the book: “The last hour of Rodney Moorhen’s short and brilliant life began during a sudden and torrential downpour.” We don’t actually find out how or why until later. Moorhen, though dead, becomes central to the story as the Seattle PD and his sister, Alice, unravel the mysteries surrounding his work, and his death.
We’re introduced to Ian Waddle in his doctor’s office. He’s been in to see the doctor twenty-three previous times in two years. The doctor is not coming right out and saying he’s a hypochondriac, but it’s discussed. Every little ache and pain causes Waddle to wonder if it’s a symptom of something bigger, something that might end his life. Can you name your biggest fear? For Ian Waddle, it’s dying.
He just can’t shake the feeling that something is wrong with the Moorhen case, that it’s a murder, and not kinky sex gone wrong. The Brass are getting pressure to put the case to bed, but Waddle just can’t do it. We follow Waddle through the ins and outs of the police investigations he’s assigned to, as well as the stories of those behind, and involved in, the Moorhen murder.
In the end, Waddle faces his greatest fear and learns how to live again.
This is an excellent book, very well crafted. As a writer and an editor, I really liked it. The author does an excellent job of weaving plots and subplots; it’s a veritable spider’s web. I couldn’t put it down, which was hard since I was reading an e-book on my computer. I had to get a more comfortable chair just to keep reading so I could finish! The characters are very real, and have their own foibles. The setting seems to be accurately depicted (being as I’ve never been to Seattle, I couldn’t tell you for sure, but I recognized the pictures of the different locales the author has posted on his website), and I felt like I was in the different locales, not just reading about them. Mr. Musgrove did an excellent job suspending reality and I was able to get lost in Methuselah’s Legacy. High praise indeed, as I’ve been slogging through too many books lately. This was no slog, but an absolute joy. I want to read his other books now.
Reviewed by Susan
© June 2006
Wings ePress, Inc.
General Fiction, mystery, detective
Electronic ISBN 1-59088-191-5 Paperback ISBN 1-59705-951-X
© January 2005
Note: This review was originally published at Novelspot.