April 26, 2004
Book Review: The DaVinci Code

The DaVinci Code
by Dan Brown
hardcover from Doubleday 2003

Everybody has been telling me to read this book. We bought it for Kevin, and once he got started he kept telling me I had to read it. Then Audrey read it, and *she* kept telling me.

So I started reading it. And yeah, they were right.

[spoilers behind the cut]

It isn't the writing that wowed me in this book. In fact, I had a real hard time getting into it at first because the writing is very simple, and had a sort of Dick & Jane feeling to it. Simple sentences, simple ways of speaking. I felt a little like I was being talked down to.

But the subject material. WOW. This is amazing. It isn't what he did wrong, but what he did right. And what he did right is fantastic.

I loved the story, loved the subject matter. The mix of Catholicism and paganism is totally up my alley. Looking at the Christian mythos from the point of view of history, and how religion worked to become what it is today. Seeing the different ideas, and the concept of how the grail is not necessarily a chalice, but a symbolic chalice instead. Absolutely lovely.

And he teaches the symbology throughout the novel so well that by the end you're picking it up and going right along with Langdon (the central character) so that as he's figuring it out, you're figuring it out. I loved it. I didn't feel cheated because I was starting to guess things, but I felt like I'd learned something. Learned a new way of thinking. A new way of looking at things.

This book isn't for everyone. It isn't always complementary to the church, and it's theories rock the foundation of Christ. It fit in beautifully with my own views, and rooted a centuries old religion into a reality I could sink my teeth into.

It makes me want to go read more on the history it evoked, and see which of the works mentioned were real (if any). I know the Priory of Sion is real, and I'd like to find out more about this particular grail mythos. It is rare that a piece of fiction can make me thirst for more information the way this does. It is the sign of a well-written novel.

Would I recommend it? Highly. It is a quick and easy read, and highly enjoyable, and the puzzles in it are entertaining and fun to work through. Add in tension and a dash of romance, and it has it all.

Posted by Deb Atwood at April 26, 2004 06:47 PM | TrackBack
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