"SAVE OUR LADY OF THE TEARS," READS the message a crafty hacker has left on the Pope's computer. The Vatican is not amused. Father Lorenzo Quart, a prelate and investigator who helps maintain the security of the Holy See, including the Pope, is dispatched to unmask the hacker and report on the church in question. The crumbling edifice in the ancient and romantic heart of Seville, Spain, is slated for demolition, and two of its staunch defenders have been killed in mysterious circumstances. Quart is soon confronted with a tangle of possible miscreants—including an obstinate parish priest, an avaricious banker, a seductive Castilian aristocrat and a hapless trio of alcoholic con artists.
With a vivid eye for place and personality, and an ability to provoke deeper questions than most whodunit scribes, Perez-Reverte, a former TV journalist and Spain's bestselling author, weaves an indelible tale of love, faith and greed that will keep readers shouting !ole! (Harcourt Brace, $24)