Cardinal G. Foscolo misplaces the Apocryphal Judas Parchments but
informs the Pope they have been stolen. A ransom is demanded for
their return. The Catholic Church seeks the help of the New York
mafia and the big bosses front the money. A murderous trail follows
as a meeting is arranged to retrieve the invaluable parchments.
Everything falls apart as two men Cardinal's close circle of
associated are arrested. Days later a gruesome murder is discovered
and all believe it's Cardinal Foscolo- contained with the body are
the Cardinal's cardinaux d'ecarlate vestments and his signet ring.
In truth, Foscolo flees Europe and finds himself penniless in New
York. The Cardinal can't return to Europe and is unable to reach
his accomplice, Captain Carl Maximus Berlinguer, of the Swiss
Guards, who saves himself by revealing to investigators the
Cardinal's criminal activities. Enter Michael Lucas, the detective
hired by the Patriarch to solve the Cardinal's murder and return
the parchments to the Catholic Church. Will Lucas solve the case?
Where is the Cardinal -- still alive or has he met a dire fate from
the Mafia? Who is telling the truth and who are the people involved
in this treacherous web of deception? Duke writes a Gordian-knot
like plot filled with twists, turns and surprises. This one is a
page turner that will have you up to the wee hours of the night
reading until its dramatic conclusion.
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