I finished The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown and, as promised, here's my review! My apologies for the lateness of this review. Last week was pretty crazy, but I'm back now. Anyways, I really enjoyed this book and gave it a 5 out of 5 stars!
The sequel to Angels & Demons, we are reunited with Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon in Paris, France. This time, he has become involved in the investigation into the murder of the Louvre curator, Jacques Saniere. Together with Saniere's granddaughter, Sophie, the investigation leads them into an age-old hunt for the Holy Grail. On their journey, they delve into the rich history of the Knight's Templar and the Priory of Scion, a secret society that has endured for over a thousand years. But the closer they come to the truth, the more dangerous their road becomes.
The Da Vinci Code was everything I expected it to be - interesting, entertaining, and fast-paced. Over the past few days I just couldn't put it down. I can totally understand the hype over this book.
I really enjoyed Dan Brown's writing. It wasn't very emotional, but it was descriptive and had good pacing. It gave just the right amount of detail and information, and the mystery kept me guessing right up until the big reveal. I, for one, love a good conspiracy theory and this one was not a disappointment. I also enjoyed the information about the art and historical places. Although some of it was exaggerated and made up, there was a lot of real-life history lessons in it as well. If you care for art or history, you might really like this book!
As for the characters, they were mostly believable. Our main character, Robert Langdon, is likable and realistic, although it is slightly convenient that he just happens to know exactly the information they need all the time. Other than that, though, I had no problems with his character, or Sophie's. She was a good character as well, and I liked that the book didn't centre around a romance between the two of them. I'm not saying the attraction wasn't there, but it was very subtle and didn't distract from the story itself, which was a plus.
Some people have problems with the book because they find it to be too 'anti-Catholic'. However, I didn't feel that way at all. The thing you have to remember is that it is a work of fiction. It was written purely as a work of fiction, not a history textbook. Either way, I thought Dan Brown did quite a classy job with it. I didn't find it 'anti-Catholic' at all. He gave the facts (mixed with fiction, mind you) in a very informative sort of way, but never took it too far.
Overall, I thought it was a very good book, and I will be continuing to read Dan Brown's books. If you like conspiracy theories, symbolism, or art history, then you might find this an interesting read. Or, if you like mysteries / adventures, and you want to try something a little bit different, give this a try. I don't think you'll be disappointed.
Compared To The Movie
I've seen the movie quite a few times, but it had been a few years since I saw it last, so while I knew a lot of the main plot points, I didn't remember all the details. In my opinion, the book was much better. They changed some things for the movie, and took out quite a bit of their adventure, the symbology and the historical information. The book explains things in much more detail than in the movie, obviously because they have to cut things down due to time constraints in a movie. But personally, one of my favourite things about the book was the art history and the details about the places they went to, so I would definitely recommend reading the book to get that. In this case, the book is better.
"History is always written by the winners. When two cultures clash, the loser is obliterated, and the winner writes the history books-books which glorify their own cause and disparage the conquered foe."
Goodbye for now,