Soon after reading Moodie's Tale I ran across Death by Degrees (Doubleday), which features Wright's Inspector Charlie Salter, a middle-aged detective just as perplexed by the ironies of life as the rest of us. Death by Degrees takes place at a community college in Toronto which bears a striking resemblance to the Van Horne Institute in Moodie's Tale. Not only that, but we learn that Charlie Salter himself spent a summer in the bush of northern Ontario working as a fire-fighter and at a hunting and fishing lodge. So Charlie must have given Wright the background for the second part of Moodie's Tale, right? Death by Degrees was a satisfying story, with good pacing and lots of detail about the characters. But Moodie's Tale let me down in the end. The refreshing serendipity of William Moodie's life is lost and the person he has become is unrecognizable.