Tag Archives: angels and demons

Dear Dan Brown…I Have a Storyline for You!


Dear Dan Brown,

Since your Vatican mysteries, Angels and Demons and The DaVinci Code, are such great novels, I have a new storyline for you.  This is full of Vatican mystery, conspiracy, Mafia…all the elements of a great Dan Brown mystery!  But this story is a real life drama…a mystery that’s been unsolved since 1983…when the young 15 year old daughter of a lay Vatican employee vanished on her way to music lessons.  Her name was Emanuela Orlandi.  Her disappearance has been unsolved for all these years, but perhaps may finally be figured out.  Her kidnapping was at one time linked to the assassination attempt on Pope John Paul II, but nothing had ever been proven.

In 2008, a new chapter was opened in the case when a woman came forward to claim ther her ex-boyfriend, a mobster by the name of Enrico De Pedis and his gang, the Magliana’s, kidnapped the girl.  The order for the kidnapping had come from Archibishop Paul Marcinkus, the late U.S. prelate responsible for heading up the Vatican bank and who had been linked to a huge Italian banking scandal in the 1980’s.  At the time, the Archbishop and the Vatican said that the claims were absurd and they did not pursue the investigation.   There were allegations that the Vatican did not fully cooperate with the investigation – were they hiding something?

Enrico De Pedis was murdered in 1990 and was buried in the Sant’Apolinare Basilica, adjacent to Piazza Navona…and near some very important Catholics…a rather unusual resting place for a reputed mobster!

Over the years, stories have surfaced that the young Emanuela was buried alongside of him. In 2005, an anonymous caller said that the answer to her disappearance lay in De Pedis’ tomb.  Just today, with the approval of the Vatican and the De Pedis’ family, the mobster’s tomb was  opened.  In it lay only one body….but nearby in the ossuary lay about 200 containers containing bones.  These bones were removed and will be tested over the next few weeks to see if they belong to the missing teenager.  The Vatican has given its full authority to exhume the bones and to carry out this investigation in the hopes that the mystery of the girl’s disappearance may finally be solved after all these years.

Mr. Brown…I have no question that you can make this real life story into another great novel and one that would be a page turner like all the others that you have given us!  I hope that you consider my suggestion for your new book!


Il Mio Tesoro

God’s Spy – A Book Review


God’s Spy, the first novel by Juan Gomez-Jurado, is a fast moving and exciting read about a serial killer that is stalking the cardinals before the conclave to elect a new pope after the death of John Paul II. 

It’s setting is Vatican City at a time when thousands of faithfuls have gathered for the funeral of John Paul II. 

We know, early on, the identity of the killer, but trying to catch him before he strikes again is the key!  The Vatican secret police, as well as special investigators from Italian intelligence work together, while at times butting heads.   A special priest, trained by the CIA, is also dispatched to figure out the case.   The characters in the book are well described and exciting – they each have a story to tell!  The book ends abruptly, without answering all the questions that arose while reading the story.  Perhaps it was leaving the door open for a sequel!!

If you enjoyed Dan Brown’s Angels and Demons, you will enjoy this thriller as well.

I have read this book as part of the Italy in Book Challenge 2011.