White Smoke by Andrew M. Greeley

Set in Vatican City
ANDREW M. GREELEY, a Catholic priest and a sociologist, is the author of such bestsellers as ‘Angel Fire’,’Irish Gold’, and ‘Happy Are the Poor in Spirit’ with over 15 million copies of his books in print. He divides his time between teaching at the University of Chicago and the University of Arizona.

Andrew M. Greeley

White Smoke

JACKET NOTES:  The cardinals of the Roman Catholic Church have gathered in Rome for the papal election following the death of the incumbent pope. Torn h' internal conflict and with man of its members alienated, the Church faces one of the most serious crises in its history. A coalition of cardinals favors a more moderate and pluralistic style of papal governance, but must contend with shadowy Vatican forces that oppose change and loss of their own power. These forces are determined to destroy the coalitions candidate, a gentle and brilliant Spanish scholar. The leader of the coalition is Chicago's wily Sean Cardinal Cronin, aided h his patently' indispensable sidekick. Bishop John Blackwood "Blackie" Ryan. Ryan in turn enlists the aid of a ‘New York Times’ reporter, lapsed Catholic Dennis Mulloy, and Mulloy's fiery ex-wife Patricia McLaughlin, now a reporter for CNN. Their marriage ended in hitter anger--but Blackie's clever guidance leads them toward a renewal of their love.
However, Mulloy's investigations into international crime threaten to end their new happiness just as it begins. Someone is afraid that Mulloy will uncover and expose a new and tremendous Vatican banking scandal before the election can take place, and they'll go to any lengths to stop him. Including murder. Meanwhile a lone assassin stalks the Vatican, his crazed mission: to destroy the next pope as soon as the traditional white smoke issues from the cardinals' meeting room--the Sistine Chapel-followed by the ancient words Habermus papam.
Can politics--Chicago style--turn the Catholic Church around? What will happen when the next pope must be chosen? Only Andrew M. Greeley, priest, bestselling novelist, and respected sociologist, could have written this blockbuster tale of the forces actually ripping the Church apart and of the next papal election, when the fate of the entire Catholic Church itself may well hang in the balance.
(© Tom Doherty Associates, Inc.)