The King’s Gold

Written by Arturo Pérez-Reverte
Review by Jeff Westerhoff

King Philip IV, ruler of the Spanish empire in 1626, is expecting a large shipment of gold bullion from the West Indies. Swordsman-for-hire Captain Diego Alatriste and his aide, Iñigo Balboa, have just returned to Spain from the bloody siege of Breda during the war with the Netherlands. They are looking for employment and easy money. Alatriste is presented with an opportunity to help the Spanish crown protect the incoming shipment of gold when it arrives in Spain. He must then recruit a dozen mercenaries to assist him in protecting the king’s gold.

The King’s Gold is the fourth novel in the series recounting the adventures of Captain Alatriste as told by his confidant-in-arms, Iñigo Balboa, a man sworn to be loyal to his master. Many times he needs Captain Alatriste’s assistance to help him out of a jam. It is interesting to note that Diego Alatriste has very little dialog, and that the point of view is Balboa’s.

I have read all the books in the series and enjoyed them all. The novels are well-written with interesting characters. The author regularly puts his protagonists in harm’s way yet still manages to extricate them from danger. I highly recommend this novel, which can be read without reading the other books in the series. Fans of Bernard Cornwell’s Sharpe novels would also enjoy this book.