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Synopsis

The German Cardinal Karl Richter, the Vatican’s most talented theologian, politician and apologist, has been invited to spend some days with Professor Matthew O’Keefe at his home on the Gulf of Mexico.
O’Keefe nurtures one ambition – to become The Moral Voice of America. He has a particular hatred for Hypocrisy, Absence of Accountability and Deceit. In order to get national attention he needs a major cause, and the Catholic Church becomes his target. There are two other guests: the alluring and formidable Hannah Mitchell and the enigmatic novelist Angelo Vargas.
Held prisoner by his manipulative host, the Cardinal finds himself in a deadly dialogue with Vargas. Richter realises that what is at stake is not only the integrity and validity of the Catholic Church, but also the fate of innocent people.
All goes according to O’Keefe’s plan except – a potential situation overlooked by himself and Mitchell – rapport develops between the learned and genteel Richter and the irreverent Vargas with his penchant for black humour.
In this taut psychological thriller the author raises questions of personal morality and universal ethics. He dissects the human condition to show that what truly, matters is compassion and honesty, not ambition or mere intellect. We may all be victims of our past but we do not have to become its prisoners.

About the Author
Ivar Rivenaes was born in Norway and grew up during the WWII occupation 1940-1945.
His two novels in Norwegian The Man Who Walked Backwards (1968) and The Story Of Richard Kahn (1973) got rave reviews and became bestsellers. Instead of pursuing a career as a writer he continued travelling during the decades before he settled in Hampshire in 1995. THOSE WHO LEAVE was his first novel in English.
He and his wife now divide their time between England, New Zealand and Norway.

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