This was a book which I read after reading a hilarious synopsis on Reactions to Reading. I thought it was brilliant!!! Please go check. He did give it a very low rating though and on that part we disagree.
Anyway to get back to this review. I have always been intrigued by the Catholic Church and its doings - mainly due to a convent education I think by Irish and Sri Lankan nuns. The book is quite a tome - 302 pages of heavy reading but I enjoyed it nevertheless.
A complicated story of a secret group known as P2 (somewhat similar to Freemasons and the Illuminati) controlling the governments of several countries and part of the hierarchy of the Vatican. Totally responsible for the death of the Pope John Paul I who was Pope for only 33 days. According to the author other than three characters of the story who form the main mystery/thriller part everything else in the story is true and that is what makes it rather frightening to know to what extent the Church and really the hierarchy within the church will go to protect what they think is "theirs" personally. What they wanted to protect was the reputation and standing of the church, not dogma or doctrine and that is rather sad as well.
The actions of the CIA and the Mafia are rather troubling. The author assures us that it is not so today but that it was so during a period of 1971 to 1981 in the financial sphere only and not the religious side. Nevertheless it strikes a jarring note. The author very specifically states that there are other organizations in the Vatican who are even more powerful today.
John Paul I did not want to be pope and prayed that he will not be elected. On his election he mentioned the fateful words "May God forgive you for what you have done to me". Who or what he meant remains a mystery todate.
John Paul I's death still remains a mystery. His body was embalmed within 24 hours so an autopsy was not possible. All those connected and those who worked with him were told to take a vow of silence on his death. The mystery remains.
I would give this book a 4 out of 5 but it is strictly for those who will enjoy reading about the Catholic church, the Vatican and the ramifications of the Papacy.