by the Spanish
author Arturo Perez-Reverte
. It is about a small medieval church
in Seville that is in danger of being torn down to serve the interest of a powerful bank. However, two strange deaths, both ruled accidents, in the church have raised suspicions. There are even whispers that the church is defending itself. All this is brought to the attention of the Vatican
when someone breaks into the Pope
's personal computer and leaves a message imploring them to save this small church. The Vatican dispatches a priest
to investigate the church, the politics surrounding it, and determine who may be involved in the computer break in. As in all of Reverte's books it is filled with interesting characters: the priest who sees himself as a Knight
fighting for his pride, regardless of whether the King
is still alive, the priest
and duchess who defend the church not out of their faith
, but simply because they have chosen this as the place they will make their stand. It also has his ever interesting twists of the plot, which I shall not reveal. All of this is layered on the rich history and interesting world of the city of Seville, which the author quite obiously loves.
The opening inscription: "Clerics, bankers, computer hackers, duchesses and scoundrels- The characters in this novel are all imaginary. And any resemblance to real events is entirely coincidental. Only the setting is true. Nobody could invent a city like Seville."