Tuesday, October 13, 2015

A Fantastic Novel ~ The Methuselah Project

My husband sweetly offered to review this book when he saw the subject of it. Here's what he thought of it.

Before I opened this book, I turned it over and glanced at the description of its contents. Roger Greene, an American soldier presumed dead in a plane crash during World War II, actually survives and, as a result of a secret scientific project designed to maximize human potential, returns many years later to our modern world. His amazing abilities leave him a man out of his own time: he must cope with technology and culture unfamiliar to him, while facing enemies with roots in Naziism.

So, before opening this book, I reacted to its back cover. This sounds like a Captain America rip-off! 

I learned that the old adage is true. Don't judge a book by its cover.

This isn't a superhero story. Roger Greene is a basically decent guy, as was Steve [Captain America] Rogers, and a dedicated soldier. But his physical transformation occurs after his plane is shot down over Germany and he is captured and used as a subject of a Nazi program to radically lengthen the human lifespan. When he escapes, circumstance do not make him a colorfully costumed crusader. Instead, he must go on the run from both his enemies and the authorities.

Barry does not surprise the reader with gratuitous violence or high-stakes drama – in other words, this isn't paced or plotted like a comic book. He does present characters and situations which make sense, placing his unusual hero in a very believable world. Some of the Nazi characters are surprisingly “human” instead of being shallow representations of unmitigated evil.

I found the sequences which take place in Indiana especially enjoyable, because I have visited some of the places described in this book and could tell that the author [who lives in Indianapolis] has experienced first-hand the settings he deftly describes. But the scenes set in Atlanta, Georgia, seemed very convincing as well, and while I've not been there, they seemed every bit as real as the “local Italian eatery . . . along Highway 31 in Kokomo” where I've actually dined.

After the opening chapter there is not much action in the first two-thirds of the book, but I found that the slow pace did not become boring. I was also surprised at how certain Nazi characters were presented as misguided but reasonable, rather than shallow monsters. [another contrast with the tales of Captain America].

One trait shared by Roger Greene and Steve Rogers is a basic old-fashioned morality. Greene's values are presented in an unapologetic way that make his stereotypically “boy scout” displays of virtue, perseverance and loyalty seem at the same simultaneously outdated and laudable.

Read this book. With all the similarities to the adventures of one of my favorite comic book characters, this is no rip-off. It is a well-written story, and I finished hoping that the future holds more tales of its hero.

By the way, if you're a die-hard superhero fan who remembers the 1990 Captain America film, there's a moment on page 219 that will surprise and delight you.

About the Book:
The Methuselah Project (Kregel, September 2015) Nazi scientists started many experiments. One never ended.
Roger Greene is a war hero. Raised in an orphanage, the only birthright he knows is the feeling that he was born to fly. Flying against the Axis Powers in World War II is everything he always dreamed—until the day he’s shot down and lands in the hands of the enemy.
When Allied bombs destroy both his prison and the mad genius experimenting on POWs, Roger survives. Within hours, his wounds miraculously heal, thanks to those experiments. The Methuselah Project is a success—but this ace is still not free. Seventy years later, Roger hasn’t aged a day, but he has nearly gone insane. This isn’t Captain America—just a lousy existence only made passable by a newfound faith. The Bible provides the only reliable anchor for Roger’s sanity and his soul. When he finally escapes, there’s no angelic promise or personal prophecy of deliverance, just confusion. It’s 2015—and the world has become an unrecognizable place.
Katherine Mueller—crack shot, genius, and real Southern Belle—offers to help him find his way home. Can he convince her of the truth of his crazy story? Can he continue to trust her when he finds out she works for the very organization he’s trying to flee?
Thrown right into pulse-pounding action from the first page, readers will find themselves transported back in time to a believable, full-colored past, and then catapulted into the present once more. The historical back-and-forth adds a constantly moving element of suspense to keep readers on the edge of their seats.

Learn more and purchase a copy HERE!

Rick BarryAbout the Author:
Rick Barry is the author of “Gunner’s Run,” another World War II novel, “Kiriath’s Quest,” and more than 200 articles and fiction stories. In addition to being a World War II buff, he is the director of church planting ministries at BIEM, a Christian ministry operating in Eastern Europe. He holds a degree in foreign languages, speaks Russian, and has visited Europe more than fifty times. Rick lives in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Find out more about Rick at http://rickcbarry.com or on Facebook or Twitter.

This reviewer has been compensated with receiving the product free in order to bring you an honest review. All opinions are those of the reviewer.

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