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Publisher's Summary

Fatima, Portugal, 1917: The Virgin Mary appears to three peasant children, sharing with them three secrets, two of which are soon revealed to the world. The third secret is sealed away in the Vatican, read only by popes, and not disclosed until the year 2000. When revealed, its quizzical tone and anticlimactic nature leave many faithful wondering if the Church has truly unveiled all of the Virgin Mary's words, or if a message far more important has been left in the shadows.

Vatican City, present day: Papal secretary Father Colin Michener is concerned for the Pope. Night after restless night, Pope Clement XV enters the Vatican's Riserva, the special archive open only to popes, where the Church's most clandestine and controversial documents are stored. Though unsure of the details, Michener knows that the Pope's distress stems from the revelations of Fatima.

Equally concerned, but not out of any sense of compassion, is Alberto Cardinal Valendrea, the Vatican's Secretary of State. Valendrea desperately covets the papacy, having narrowly lost out to Clement at the last conclave. Now the Pope's interest in Fatima threatens to uncover a shocking ancient truth that Valendrea has kept to himself for many years.

When Pope Clement sends Michener to the Romanian highlands, then to a Bosnian holy site, in search of a priest, possibly one of the last people on Earth who knows Mary's true message, a perilous set of events unfolds. Michener finds himself embroiled in murder, suspicion, suicide, deceit, and his forbidden passion for a beloved woman. In a desperate search for answers, he travels to Pope Clement's birthplace in Germany, where he learns that the third secret of Fatima may dictate the very fate of the Church, a fate now lying in Michener's own hands.

©2005 Steve Berry; (P)2005 Books on Tape, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"Berry handles his thriller tradecraft skillfully: his descriptions are stellar, and of special interest, he offers a vivid re-creation of the majestic conclave, in which the College of Cardinals elects a new pope." (Booklist)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • 4.0 out of 5.0
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Story

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  • Overall
  • Jane
  • Birmingham, AL, USA
  • 07-03-05

Captivating and moving story!

I thoroughly enjoyed Berry's previous novel, The Romanov Prophecy, and so was very excited to see this release on Audible. Like his previous work, Berry puts his spin on a classic historical event with intrigue. As such, his work may remind readers of Dan Brown and such, but he truly is a unique author. He develops his character well, and the story is continually moving. My only critique of this novel was that the ending, that is the secret, seemed a bit convenient, and thus not credible. Oh well, the story is still great and definitely a must listen!

7 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • paul
  • nederland, TX, United States
  • 05-04-12

This one is ok

What did you like best about The Third Secret? What did you like least?

The writing was great and the constant interation between the characters was good. I thought the end was a bit of a letdown and Mr Berry was promoting his agenda. It is the book by him that I liked the least. The potenr\tial was great and then it just duds out

What about Paul Michael’s performance did you like?

He was great

Was The Third Secret worth the listening time?

up until the end

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

If you don't mind........

.........reading the author's personal religious beliefs disguisd as a suspense novel, be my guest. Not up to Dan Brown standards. Forgeting that the story line is very unbeleivable, I don't like my suspense novels being op-ed pieces. Sorry, I really was looking for another DaVinci code but got a 12 hour editorial instead and I probably agree wih most of what the author is preaching.

10 of 15 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

The priest takes a lover

Is it really plausible for a vatican based priest to lose faith as fast as the main character in this book? He is sent on a quest by a pope he respects and is his mentor and what does he do? He immediately includes his former lover. If you can set aside all common sense and just sit back and enjoy - it's a great summer read.

6 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

This one is ok

What did you like best about The Third Secret? What did you like least?

The writing was great and the constant interation between the characters was good. I thought the end was a bit of a letdown and Mr Berry was promoting his agenda. It is the book by him that I liked the least. The potenr\tial was great and then it just duds out

What about Paul Michael???s performance did you like?

He was great

Was The Third Secret worth the listening time?

up until the end

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Doug Lucas
  • South San Francisco, CA, USA
  • 06-07-05

a story to make red state Christians see red

Marian visions, apocalyptic prophecies, the politics of the Papacy, and tangible proof for the existence of God all add up to a new summer thriller in the genre of Dan Brown. This is a story that will make red state Christians see red. It will give conservative Catholics and the Christian right something new to scream about and condemn. For the rest of us it is a fast paced, fun and thought provoking read.

18 of 30 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Starts out slow....

This was my first Steve Berry book. I found it very slow to get started, but once it did I really enjoyed it. I am presently listening to another of Steve's books and it seems to be a trend to start out slow. Worth a listen!

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

My first and last Steve Berry Book

I like to read several books by an author and get to know their style and flavor. One Steve Berry is one too many.

I really enjoyed The Third Secret until it revealed the missing part of that secret. Then I realized that what had been something of a glittering box of a story contained a lame, unimaginative nugget inside. After hearing that part, I just turned it off and went on to my next listen without even finishing the story. Just think about all the controversial topics within today's Catholic Church, pick the position opposite the Church, and that's The Third Secret. The conservatives are bad guys who kill people? C'mon, Steve, get a life (and some imagination)!

9 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Not a Bully Pulpit

After listening to the other Steve Berry novels, I'd expected more of a proactive protagonist. Colin Michener is a wuss. The author uses Colin's crises of faith to proselytize endlessly and hint shamelessly towards the moral and "the Third Secret" of the book. The antagonists are more fully developed than the 2 primary whiny protagonists. Several times I was tempted to simply turn the book off during the lengthy proselytizing episodes.
The book is supposed to be plotted around the Marian apparitions, particularly those of Fatima and Međugorje, yet the manner of exposition is very clumsy, (and I am familiar with both)! Berry's use of other hooks has always been straight forward, (once one suspends disbelief), allowing the story to do the all the twists. Here the exposition is stretched out and padded with non-essential apparitions, (La Salette), that had nothing to do with the story. Then the extemporaneous proselytizing during those continuous crises of faith kept dragging the plot to a standstill.

7 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Is Steve Berry a prophet?

Great story. Wonderful characters plausible conclusions. I really enjoyed this book. Great performance by Paul Michael.

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  • Overall
  • Rachel
  • 07-04-07

convienient

A very enjoyable conspiracy story, although by the time you get to the 'third secrect' the revalation is a bit too convienient. Would love to know how accurate the portrayl of the workings of vatican city is, but fascinating none the less.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • Salter
  • 07-23-15

Berry at his best again....

Would you listen to The Third Secret again? Why?

Definitely. Steve Berry authors some fantastic stories, and this is no exception. Great insight into life within the Vatican. I just love the early religious based conspiracy theories and their development through the subsequent years.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

Some great portrayals of life in the Vatican.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

It made me want to research the various alleged sightings of the Virgin Mary. The subject matter was very compelling

Any additional comments?

Well worth a listen

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Samantha
  • 06-04-08

Fantastic story

I Loved this book, I am quite new to audible, but was desperate to listen at any opportunity. I found the insights to the Vatican fascinating..Loved it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Eileen Ferguson
  • 12-07-17

Sacrilegious

Catholics and those of Faith are likely to find The Third Secret as it is revealed in the novel to be sacrilegious. Despite this, the story itself by pace and tension was very good.