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The Seville Communion

3.67  ·  Rating Details ·  4,673 Ratings  ·  257 Reviews
Her name is Our Lady of the Tears. She's a small, crumbling Baroque church in the heart of Seville, Spain. And at least one person -- a computer hacker nicknamed Vespers -- believes that she kills to defend herself. In Arturo Perez-Reverte's stylish and entertaining iThe Seville Communion/i, Rome sends handsome Father Lorenzo Quart to investigate. He meets a feisty parish ...more
Paperback, 392 pages
Published June 7th 2004 by Mariner Books (first published 1990)
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Aug 02, 2012 Algernon rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2012

I may prefer Arturo-Perez Reverte when he writes his historical adventures featuring Captain Alatriste, but his contemporary thrillers are not without merit. The Seville Communion is my second one, after The Club Dumas , and I had some issues with it, but overall it was quite a memorable journey, one that I intend to retrace by visiting the location soon.

As a thriller set in the clerical world and dealing with mysterious murders, church politics, high finance and crises of faith, the book re
Aug 24, 2011 Jord rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 20, 2016 Ms.pegasus rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Ms.pegasus by: browsing the shelves of my local bookstore
The set-up is intriguing. A hacker, dubbed “Vespers,” breaks into the Pope's personal email and leaves a cryptic plea to save an obscure historic church in Seville. Political and financial interests including the archbishop of Seville want the church demolished to exploit the value of the real estate. The hacker has been careful to conceal his tracks, and the security breach seems to disturb the Vatican hierarchy more than the contents of the message, despite the disclosure that recently, two de ...more
Chrissa Vasileiou
Ένα ακόμα από τα βιβλία του Ρεβέρτε που αποτελούν την ιερή μου "Αγία Τριάδα" των βιβλίων του! Μία παλιά εκκλησία στη Σεβίλλη,που "σκοτώνει" όποιον προσπαθεί να τη γκρεμίσει. Ένας ειδικός απεσταλμένος-ιερέας του Βατικανού που καλείται να εξιχνιάσει την υπόθεση.Άνθρωποι που επιδιώκουν το γκρέμισμα ή τη σωτηρία του ναού,ο καθένας για τους δικούς του λόγους.Κι όλα αυτά με περιτύλιγμα τη μοναδική ατμόσφαιρα της όμορφης Ισπανίας,με την ώρα της σιέστας και τα έθιμά της,τα μυστικά και τη μουσική της,του ...more
Jun 04, 2008 Jane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This brilliant story has a surprising ending. The scenes of Sevilla and the dialogue are so vivid. By the way I read it in Spanish where the title is "La piel del tambor." I think this is his best of the so-called mysteries, although they are much more than that. His mastery of all aspects of the Spanish languages, from the 17th-century dialogue in the Capitan Alatriste series, to the Mexican street language and Spanish drug slang to the 19th-century Franglish in "Trafalgar" have earned him a pl ...more
Jul 29, 2012 Judi rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-1999
A hacker breaks into the Vatican's computer to leave a message for the Pope that says that there i's a church in Seville that "kills to defend itself." It turns out that there is a church that some want to tear down and to be replaced with a more profitable adventure. And two people have died accidentally. Abhorring any kind of scandal, the Catholic Church gets the IEA (Institute of External Affairs) to look into the matter. They send Father Lorenzo Quart to impartially gather information about ...more
Sep 09, 2015 RK-ique rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
2.5 stars. Poor writing. Weak plot. Conceptually okay - a few ideas to contemplate.


I am travelling and was given this book on my first day away from home by someone I was staying with. Given that my time has been broken up by a constant flow of social encounters, I have had difficulty reading anything more serious. Hence this review.


I have often been curious about the novels of Pérez-Reverte. I no longer am. I found much of my reading experience to be spoiled by stereotypical characters, sti
Apr 20, 2015 Margarida rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Este poderia ser um livro excelente. Um padre do Vaticano, um templário do século XX, é enviado a Sevilha, incumbido de uma missão: descobrir o pirata informático, denominado Vésperas, que conseguiu penetrar no computador do Papa.
Parecem, quase, dois romances diferentes. De um lado, temos a parte séria, Lorenzo Quart, o padre, a filha da duquesa, Macarena Bruner, uma história romântica e trágica, a fé, um pároco obstinado em defender uma pequenina igreja no centro de Sevilha; do outro lado, gru
Jul 09, 2007 Kelly rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: mystery fans, spanish lit fans
The end is disappointing. He falls into the dark lady cliche trap. But the book is beautifully written, with a touch of Marquez swirling around in there amongst the rest of his wonderful writing. The mystery's concept and development are mostly wonderful. I just think he couldn't decide to what to do with the ending, and he made the wrong choice. But again, great book. Loved it. I will read it again.
Apr 20, 2015 Miguel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Primeiro há Lorenzo Quart, o padre enviado de Roma para saber o que se passa em torno da igreja de Nossa Senhora das Lágrimas. E há mais dois padres, Príamo Ferro, o velho cura que se defende a golpes de mau feitio, apaixonado pela astronomia, e o seu jovem acólito, Óscar Lobato, que vai ser transferido por castigo. E Gris Marsala, a freira americana, arquitecta dos andaimes.
E há Macarena Bruner, a duquesa jovem de olhos cor de mel, que guarda o isqueiro na alça do soutien. E Maria Cruz, a velha
Lynn Abbey
Okay, so I bought this book thinking it was part of the author's Captain Alatriste series and almost returned it when I realized it was a technological thriller, set in 1995-vintage Seville, with a Vatican priest as the main character. I'm very glad I kept it.

For me, it was less a thriller (though the mysteries are intriguing), more an intense character-study of a very different sort of man. Lorenzo Quart, the priest and protagonist, characterizes himself as "the last Knight Templar," obedient a
Jan 13, 2016 Eduardo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Leída una segunda vez y difrutada doble.
Si algo no pueden criticarle a APR es su amenidad.
Les da tres vueltas y media a muchos escritores españoles en ese aspecto
Alexis Vélez
Jul 27, 2011 Alexis Vélez rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excelente narrativa y completo dominio del diálogo entre personajes hacen casi imposible soltar este libro. El personaje de Macarena Brunner es uno de los más sexys que he leído y su relación de flirteo con el padre Quart te hacen olvidar el tema principal de ésta novela. Otra novela bien escrita y entretenida de mi escritor favorito, recomendada.
Jim Fonseca
Sep 06, 2015 Jim Fonseca rated it really liked it
Shelves: spanish-authors
A mystery with great local color of Seville, Spain. A handsome young priest works for the Vatican’s, let’s call it “Internal Affairs Division.” He is called to Seville to look into the mess surrounding a potential church closing. It’s a tiny parish and the diocese can make a lot of money by demolishing the church and selling the land. The problem is that a few diehards want to keep the church open: a crotchety old priest and his young protégée; a glamorous young woman whose antics get her in cel ...more
At first I wasn't sure I liked this book, but I'm glad I kept reading anyway... I have a tendency to like books about priests, probably because I nearly became one. The seminary puts an indelible mark on even a man who got thrown out as quickly as I did (I prefer to think it was my questions about the mis-translation of Song of Solomon chapter 7, verse 2; on the other hand, it probably had something to do with several fistfights, breaking a poolstick over someone's head in the commons area, and ...more
Dean Kauffman
Mar 02, 2013 Dean Kauffman rated it it was amazing
This the the first of 4 books by Perez-Reverte I have read and I have liked them a lot. This one may be especially appropriate right now in that takes place partially in the Vatican. The story starts with a hacker gaining accessed the Pope's personal computer to put a message about a small Seville church that is going to be demolished. A very unusual priest - very snappy dresser - who seems to specialize in defusing difficult situations, is sent to investigate what has become a very muddled mess ...more
Jan 21, 2011 Rick rated it really liked it
THE SEVILLE COMMUNION starts when someone hacks into the Pope’s personal computer to plead for saving a small church, Our Lady of the Tears, in central Seville.

The church is small and dilapidated and is led by an elderly and old fashioned priest, Father Ferro. It is also slated for demolition, as Bank Cartujano and its greedy vice chairman, working in cahoots with the local archbishop, want to make a fortune by buying the property at a fraction of its true value.

The Vatican dispatches Father Lor
Dec 26, 2012 Cynthia rated it really liked it
It's funny (well, funny to me) that I read this right after reading Daniel Silva's Fallen Angel. Both are about Vatican "hit men," sent out to intervene in crimes that involve priests, churches, art, death. If you ever find yourself wondering what sets a good thriller apart from a literary thriller, those two books (fallen angel and seville communion) kind of sum it up. In fallen angel, the action is fast, the dialogue is fairly minimal, there is some soul searching but it's fairly clipped. The ...more
C. Bennis
Dec 09, 2013 C. Bennis rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: spanish
The Seville Communion is arguably one of Perez Reverte's best books. The narrative is about a small chapel in Sevilla that is scheduled to be razed because the mayor has plans and investors for the site occupied by the church. There is only one problem: the church is killing the very workers that are trying to destroy it. The city government is livid, so they present the problem to a higher authority: the Vatican, and solicit intervention and resolution of their problem. Their plea goes all the ...more
My Inner Shelf
Étrange roman que celui-ci. Tout y est pour faire un parfait roman foisonnant et passionnant. Pourtant ça n’a pas pris avec moi. Bizarrement j’ai eu du mal à y entrer. Le style est toujours aussi distingué, raffiné, (même si j’ai trouvé un peu longues et superflues les digressions en plein dialogues qui font perdre le fil), les descriptions de Séville sont envoûtantes, l’atmosphère est parfaitement rendue, les personnages sont eux aussi assez fouillés. Malgré toutes ces indéniables qualités, je ...more
I had pretty high expectations of this book & though I liked some elements of it (Vatican politics, Templar metaphor for the hero, the description of Seville, and the setup of the plot), I was quite disappointed. I think the book was a bit rambling (especially for a mystery/thriller), the investigator didn't seem to be as good as his rep (view spoiler) ...more
Apr 08, 2010 Jamie rated it it was ok
If I described the plot to someone it would sound like a good story. But instead of just telling the story, the author tries too hard, in my opinion, to be mysterious and steer the reader down the wrong path. This is not how a good mystery is written. Trust me, I have read good mysteries.

If your argument is the author isn't trying to write a mystery, then tell me the purpose of the novel? I think it would have been more enjoyable if a simpler plot had been devised and all the unnecessary tangen
Nov 19, 2009 Hilary rated it it was ok
I really enjoyed Club Dumas and Flander Panel, also by Perez-Reverte, but his other books that I've read really don't compare. Seville Communion is relatively entertaining, but it's pretty obvious what's going to happen next. A character leaves a gasoline-soaked rag in an ashtray (a fact that's mentioned repeatedly) and, shockingly, someone uses the ashtray for its intended purpose and the place goes up in smoke. Club Dumas and Flanders Panel had flaws, but they had a subtlety that Seville Commu ...more
Aug 20, 2011 Ken rated it liked it
This is a book that I could put down and did because it was fairly predictable. But I stayed with it because the story was interesting and there were some interesting characters...though not always believable. A Vatican priest/agent with a clouded history is sent to investigate a situation in Seville that hardly seems worth the effort. Instead, He is inticed into a secondary plot that involves several deaths and a 100 year old love story.

Arturo Pérez-Reverte has written better than this and I w
Carlos Alonso-Niemeyer
Jan 12, 2011 Carlos Alonso-Niemeyer rated it really liked it
Anything by Perez-Reverte is good. I found this at an airport. I usually read him in Spanish, but I needed a book for my flight.
I loved the part where he goes to a fine tailor and buys himself a very expensive priest outfit. He is asked why he spends so much money for his clothes. His answers is that his clothes are an uniform. If he is going to be dealing with very powerful people, he needs to wear the correct uniform.
The book has intrigue and action.
Highly recommended.
This could easily be ma
Gergana Karadjova
Aug 22, 2016 Gergana Karadjova rated it liked it
Имаме класическа история, красив език и мисъл. Имаме и "Бонд" от Ватикана. Би станала красива екранизация, може би има?
May 01, 2016 Paul rated it it was amazing
Loved it!
Oct 17, 2015 Ann rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: spanish
La Piel Del Tambor

A hacker who calls himself “Vespers” has hacked into the Pope’s email and sent him a message about a parish church in Seville that is in danger of being closed down, and which, so the message goes, “kills in order to defend itself”. So the Vatican sends out their own version of Agent 007, Father Lorenzo Quart. This unusual priest specializes in dealing with delicate matters involving the Church and its priests. Once arrived in Sevilla, he hears that the church of Our Lady of th
Fco. Salvador
Jun 08, 2015 Fco. Salvador rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: pérez-reverte
Se trata de una novela de medio millar de páginas, que aunque se aparta de los usos habituales del género negro podríamos calificar de detectivesca.

La trama se centra en Quart, un sacerdote que el Vaticano envía a Sevilla para investigar un par de muertes relacionadas con una pequeña iglesia "de barrio", que se debate contra el estado de ruina. El desarrollo es pausado, con un ritmo que sólo se acelera un tanto cuando queda un tercio para el final (aunque vuelve a su cauce poco después) y una na
May 04, 2008 eric rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
perez-reverte's writing style is fluid, elegant and relaxing. the mildly interesting story about the conflicts between religion, politics, and all the individuals who get caught in between is set in a beautifully described local. the main thing that i took from reading the seville communion is that i would really like to visit seville.
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Spanish novelist and ex-journalist. He worked as a war reporter for twenty-one years (1973 - 1994). He started his journalistic career writing for the now-defunct newspaper Pueblo. Then, he jumped to news reporter for TVE, Spanish national channel. As a war journalist he traveled to several countries, covering many conflicts. He put this experience into his book 'Territorio Comanche', focusing on ...more
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“Always that damned discipline that you wear like chain mail ... You would have got on well with Bernard de Clairvaux and his gang of Knights Templar. If you'd been captured by Saladin, I'm sure you'd rather have had your throat cut than renounce your faith. But not from devotion, from pride.” 0 likes
“There had been three priests, proponents of so-called liberation theology. They had opposed the reactionary tide from Rome. And in all three cases the IEA had done the dirty work for Iwaszkiewicz and his Congregation. Corona, Ortega, and Souza were prominent progressive priests working in marginal dioceses, poor districts of Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paolo. They believed in saving man here on earth, not waiting for the Kingdom of Heaven.” 0 likes
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