Thursday, October 15, 2009

Dan Brown thrills Da Vinci Code formula in The Lost Symbol

After six years of waiting, Dan Brown certainly doesn't disappoint with his latest Robert Langdon adventure, The Lost Symbol. This time around, Mr. Langdon finds himself involved in a whirlwind of Masonic symbols, rituals, conspiracies, legends, etc., all within one of the greatest Masonic monuments in the world, which also happens to serve as the capital of the U.S., Washington, D.C., turning what might be construed as a beautiful, yet ordinary capital city (at least to a lot of americans accustomed to seeing it often) into a sprawling temple dedicated to the elevation of men and women to their maximum spiritual potential.

Though often criticized by his peers for the low quality of his writing, or for the inaccuracies of his facts by detractors against the theories and ideas his novels portray, eighty million readers of The Da Vinci Code have given their approval to Dan Brown's style and capacity to weave an interesting story. If nothing else, Dan Brown can bring complex philosophical ideas, throw them together in a highly entertaining way, and create a thriller that is accessible to the masses, yet intriguing enough for the knowledgeable. He has a way of stimulating learning and the exploration of subjects that are often unknown or inaccessible to the majority of the populace. He entertains and informs in the most spectacular and thrilling of ways, with twists and turns that will both shock and delight while simultaneously moving readers to explore the subject matter, locations and overall details presented throughout the story. Let's just say that you'll be immediately searching for Noetic science upon finishing this wonderfully fun story.

The Lost Symbol is not high art, but it's not supposed to be. It's a highly entertaining page turner, an engrossing thriller that will keep you glued to it from cover to cover. When it seems it might be predictable (and truthfully, I must say that it doesn't stray too far from his previously established formula from The Da Vinci Code and Angels & Demons), it changes, it surprises, it shocks, making it a worthwhile read and a welcome addition to Robert Langdon's collection of adventures. The story accelerates at a dizzying pace all the way to its revealing end (Sorry, that's about it. You'll find no spoilers here), and as in his other books, his research and references make you want to seek out more information about the subjects presented. There are many wonders in Washington, D.C., as it has always been an intriguing and fascinating city, but after reading The Lost Symbol, you'll certainly want to look at it again, but through the new eyes that Brown has given you. Like the cities presented in his previous books, a new world is revealed beneath the simple tourist attractions we've all come to think we know so well. The U.S. capital has never looked this mystifying. and it's all been there all along for the world to see.

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In essence, Dan Brown has written yet another easy to read, highly intriguing, hugely fascinating, and absolutely engaging thriller. If you are looking for something interesting and entertaining to read, The Lost Symbol will certainly not disappoint (Da Vinci Code fans will most certainly be satisfied), but if you're looking to read Shakespeare, you're better off reading the master himself. The Lost Symbol, like The Da Vinci Code and Angels & Demons before it, follows along the line of the fast moving thriller novel, but also pushes it beyond with its mesmerizing, real world details and complex and mysterious subject matter. I for one thoroughly enjoyed it, and highly recommend it.

Enjoy! :)

Related links:

Dan Brown: The Official Website of Author Dan Brown.
Washington D.C.: This link takes you to a reader's guide to Washington D.C. from Dan Brown's official site.
The Lost Symbol (U.S. Version): Amazon's The Lost Symbol product page where you can buy the book.
The Lost Symbol (UK Version): The Lost Symbol product page on Amazon UK where you can buy the book.
Criticism: a Telegraph news article about Dan Brown's 20 worst sentences and other criticisms.
Freemasonry: Wikipedia article on Freemasonry.
Noetic Science: Institute of Noetic Sciences website.

Keywords: Dan Brown, The Lost Symbol, The Da Vinci Code, Angels & Demons, Freemasonry, Masons, Rosicrucian, Rose Croix, Symbology, Novel, Book, Review, Thriller, Formula, Story, Washington, D.C., Freemason, Noetic Science
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TBGUY said...

I have to disagree on this one. I won't debate that Dan Brown can weave a suspenseful tale. He can. Unfortunately though, he has forever ruined himself for me with conspiracy theories when he admitted actually believing the theories behind the DaVinci Code. Knowing that, I ended up cringing through the last 30% of this book as Peter Soloman preached the supposed "truths" known only to him and the masons. It would have been. Lot better if I didn't feel like Dan Brown was using the book just to convince the masses of what nutty theories he happens to subscribe to at the moment.

Franco Esteve said...

Some of the stuff is definitely outlandish, and some things are definitely ridiculous and out there (in all of Dan Brown's books), but it didn't detract from my enjoyment of the novels. Whether or not he believes the theories in his works of fiction is irrelevant to me. I don't read it for his ideas, but to be entertained by the fictional story which thrills in such a great way. I find the subject matter is usually very interesting, and though I may not necessarily agree with some of his character's ideas or conclusions, they certainly stimulate thought and interest in further study and research. I think he shines in this last area particularly and the simplicity with which he communicates certain topics, though at times he becomes a tad too academic and didactic (a criticism Dan Brown has often received).

A lot of authors peddle their theories and personal ideas in their novels, but Dan Brown's happen to touch a very particular chord in a lot people due to the religious nature and historical controversy arising from them. The Masonic "truths" revealed at the end definitely seemed more like an apology for the Da Vinci Code than the truly controversial nature one would expect considering the Masons versus the Catholic Church historical debate. And Considering the fact that members are technically, automatically excommunicated by the church, I definitely expected a much more controversial ending, but the peddling didn't detract from my really enjoying the experience.

Thanks for stopping by and for your comment. :)