He who kills from afar knows nothing at all about the act of killing. He who kills from afar derives no lesson from life or from death; he neither risks nor stains his hands with blood, nor hears the breathing of his adversary, nor reads the fear, courage, or indifference in his eyes. He who kills from afar tests neither his arm, his heart, nor his conscience, nor does he create ghosts that will later haunt him every single night for the rest of his life. He who kills from afar is a knave who commends to others the dirty and terrible task that is his own. He who kills from afar is worse than other men, because he does not know anger, loathing, and vengeance, the terrible passion of flesh and blood as they meet steel, but he is equally innocent of pity and remorse. For that reason, he who kills from afar does not know what he has lost.
The translated-to-English titles in this series, in order, are:
Purity of Blood
The Sun Over Breda
The King's Gold
The Cavalier in the Yellow Doublet
Pirates of the Levant
(Hoping the seventh volume will be available in English soon; despite their popularity there tends to be a 3-4 year lag after the original release in Spain because Pérez-Reverte writes this series in 16th century Spanish rather than modern)