The Siege – Arturo Perez-Reverte

Sometime ago I provided a review of The Flanders Panel by Arturo Perez-Reverte. This time I bring you a review of another of his wonderful books, The Siege, which again comes with a five star rating.

The Siege is based in Cadiz in 1811. Cadiz is under siege by the French army but as central as this siege is to the story, there is also a serial killer on the loose and the fortunes of a famous shipping family are on a knife edge. Rogelio Tizon, the hardened police commissioner and accomplished chess player weaves his way through this story, and it is through his eyes one is given a glimpse of the seedy side of this besieged town as he seeks out the killer, and the pattern he sees emerging which he believes will lead him to the killer. Adding to this claustraphobic atmosphere is an intriguing shipping heiress and her family, a corsair, a taxidermist as well other characters of note occupying the city.

The novel is, as in The Flanders Panel, grippingly multi-layered. The characters are startlingly real and the reader is drawn into the pages of the novel as if you were there, hiding in the shadows, anticipating discovery and wary, if not afraid, of what that discovery may mean. Will you be wrongly accused, or just under suspicion, and what will that mean for your future, if you have one? Perez-Reverte lurches you stumbling and falling across the cobbled streets, taking you deep into each scenario but leaving you wondering and wanting more, yet unsure of what it is you want.

For those with a love of shipping tales, there is much here for you to love. For the crime thriller lover, this is a must. For the romantic, yes, there is much here for you as well.

If you haven’t experienced the works of Arturo Perez-Reverte, as in some immortal words, do yourself a favour and find yourself a copy. This will keep you gripped from beginning to end, and believe me, the ending will not be as it may seem.


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