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The Secret Supper was written by Spanish writer Javier Sierra and translated to English by Alberto Manguel. The English version of The Secret Supper was published by Washington Square Press in 2007. The original version in Spanish was published in 2004. The book is 329 pages long including a cast of characters.

The story is set in the 1490’s in Italy during the papacy of the Borgia pope. Inquisitor Father Agostino Leyre is sent to Milan by his superior to investigate a crime against the Catholic church. Letters have been arriving at Father Agostino’s office from a mysterious informant in Milan who goes by the name of The Soothsayer. This informant tells of a conspiracy to take down the Roman church.

When Father Agostino arrives in Milan, he meets none other than Leonardo Da Vinci as Leonardo completes his masterpiece The Last Supper. Mr. Sierra then continues to tell the story of how a group of Cathars is trying to bring forth the true Christian church by advancing knowledge of the Gospel of John, an apocryphal gospel.

The story is reminiscent of Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code only in that both books allude to secrets hidden in the painting by Da Vinci. Mr. Sierra takes us on a completely different ride than Mr. Brown did. I really enjoyed the book. I would have preferred to read it in Spanish but since I bought this book several years ago, it felt in the category of “I have to read it as it is”. Someday I will give myself the pleasure of reading more of Mr. Sierra’s books in the original Spanish. I understand that by now he has written another book; The Woman In Blue.

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