Friday, September 9, 2011

"The Da Vinci Code" by Dan Brown

Yes, I realize I'm about 10 years behind on this book, but better late than never, right? I tried to listen to this book about 7 years ago. Our landlord asked if I liked to read, and when I admitted that indeed I do, she gave me this book to listen to. I had a hard time getting into it, however, and four years later I found tape 2 still in the cassette player. Yes, I did say cassette. I did not make it very far into the book. This time, however, sitting at work listening to this, I could not get enough! The narration was a little hard for me at first, but after a couple hours, and I was hooked on the story, I didn't mind it so much. For those of you who are like me and did not read the book when it came out and did not see the movie and know nothing or very little of the story, this is the plot, as written on Dan Brown's official web site.

While in Paris on business, Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon receives an urgent late-night phone call: the elderly curator of the Louvre has been murdered inside the museum. Near the body, police have found a baffling cipher. Solving the enigmatic riddle, Langdon is stunned to discover it leads to a trail of clues hidden in the works of da Vinci…clues visible for all to see…and yet ingeniously disguised by the painter.
Langdon joins forces with a gifted French cryptologist, Sophie Neveu, and learns the late curator was involved in the Priory of Sion—an actual secret society whose members included Sir Isaac Newton, Botticelli, Victor Hugo, and da Vinci, among others. The Louvre curator has sacrificed his life to protect the Priory's most sacred trust: the location of a vastly important religious relic, hidden for centuries.
In a breathless race through Paris, London, and beyond, Langdon and Neveu match wits with a faceless powerbroker who appears to work for Opus Dei—a clandestine, Vatican-sanctioned Catholic sect believed to have long plotted to seize the Priory's secret. Unless Langdon and Neveu can decipher the labyrinthine puzzle in time, the Priory's secret—and a stunning historical truth—will be lost forever.
In an exhilarating blend of relentless adventure, scholarly intrigue, and cutting wit, symbologist Robert Langdon (first introduced in Dan Brown's bestselling Angels & Demons ) is the most original character to appear in years. The Da Vinci Code heralds the arrival of a new breed of lightening-paced, intelligent thriller…surprising at every twist, absorbing at every turn, and in the end, utterly unpredictable…right up to its astonishing conclusion.

I thought I had the bad guy all figured out about half-way through. It turns out I was really wrong! I love it when that happens. =) I loved the ending and how everything came together and Sophie gets some answers. I loved the characters, too. I didn't have a hard time relating to any of them, although I will admit I had some difficulty remembering which foreign name went with which character at the beginning, but that could just be me. By the end I had a picture of everyone with their own name. I can see how this book would stir up controversy because it uses very real things - the art and the landmarks - so it made me feel like all the information is true, and if I were to go to these places and study symbology, then I would come to the same conclusion the author did. But it is a work of fiction. Brown's interpretations may not be my interpretations of the same thing. Overall, it was fun, the characters likeable, a bad guy that's not the one you think it should be, and an eye opener to how the world could be. I would recommend the book to anyone, I think, even if you did already read it. =)


Heather said...

Awesome! I did read it a few years ago and really enjoyed it. (I didn't read it when it first came out, though. I'm not very good at keeping up with what is popular!) I understand what you mean about it being hard to separate the fact from the fiction though! And I don't know why it was so hard, but it kinda was. It was a great book! I might just have to go read it again! :) Thanks for the review!

Misty Moncur said...

The movie ends differently than the book, I think. Both good, though. I also listened to this and liked it.