VATICAN by Malachi Martin was one of the more fun reads I have enjoyed of late. In this epic thriller, Martin relates the history of The Catholic Church from the close of World War Two to the end of Saint John Paul II’s reign. The decades-long struggle for the soul and future of The Church is depicted through a thin veil of fiction. The names of the players have been changed to protect both the innocent and not so innocent, but anyone who has even a passing familiarity with Rome’s history during the latter half of the twentieth century will have no trouble determining who Malachi Martin is portraying.
The story is told mostly from the point of view of a young American priest who arrives at the Vatican as the Nazis are fleeing Italy. We follow his rise through the ranks of the Curia even as we watch The Church crumble around him. The novel has all the cloak and dagger intrigue of any good spy novel, plenty of philosophical musings on the cultures of the world and The Church plus a climatic ending that might just get you cheering.
I know I did.
I can’t recommend it enough.