The Da Vinci Code: A novel
Book reviews and recommendations
The Da Vinci Code was released for sale during 2003-MAR. 1 Within two years, it became
available in 44 languages. Booksellers expect the novel to retain its best
seller status well into 2006.
Some reviews of The Da Vinci Code:
||Jeremy Pugh wrote: "With The Da Vinci Code, Dan Brown masterfully
concocts an intelligent and lucid thriller that marries the gusto of an
international murder mystery with a collection of fascinating esoteria
culled from 2,000 years of Western history."
"A murder in the silent after-hour halls of the Louvre museum reveals a
sinister plot to uncover a secret that has been protected by a clandestine
society since the days of Christ. The victim is a high-ranking agent of this
ancient society who, in the moments before his death, manages to leave
gruesome clues at the scene that only his granddaughter, noted cryptographer
Sophie Neveu, and Robert Langdon, a famed symbologist, can untangle. The duo
become both suspects and detectives searching for not only Neveu's
grandfather's murderer but also the stunning secret of the ages he was
charged to protect. Mere steps ahead of the authorities and the deadly
competition, the mystery leads Neveu and Langdon on a breathless flight
through France, England, and history itself. Brown (Angels
and Demons) has created a page-turning thriller that also provides an
amazing interpretation of Western history. Brown's hero and heroine embark
on a lofty and intriguing exploration of some of Western culture's greatest
mysteries--from the nature of the Mona Lisa's smile to the secret of the
Holy Grail. Though some will quibble with the veracity of Brown's
conjectures, therein lies the fun. The Da Vinci Code is an enthralling read
that provides rich food for thought."
||Product description from the book's inside flap: "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. While working to
solve 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 -- 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."
"In a breathless race through Paris, London, and beyond, Langdon and
Neveu match wits with a faceless powerbroker who seems to anticipate their
every move. Unless Langdon and Neveu can decipher the labyrinthine puzzle in
time, the Priory's ancient secret -- and an explosive historical truth --
will be lost forever."
"THE DA VINCI CODE heralds the arrival of a new breed of
lightning-paced, intelligent thriller…utterly unpredictable right up to its
||The book banning in Lebanon:|
||Father Abdou Abu Kasm, president of the Catholic Information Centre
in Lebanon described the book as "insulting." He told a BBC
interviewer: "There are paragraphs that touch the very roots of the
Christian religion... they say Jesus Christ had a sexual relationship with
Mary Magdalene, that they had children...Those things are difficult for us
to accept, even if it's supposed to be fiction....Christianity is not about
forgiveness to the point of insulting Jesus Christ." Security officials
told shop owners to remove the English, French and Arabic copies of the
||Roger Haddad, assistant manager at the Virgin Megastore's
bookstore department in Beirut, found the book to be successful in Lebanon,
where about 35% of population is Christian. He said: "It was definitely
one of our most popular books....This is censorship, people should be
allowed to read what they want...This book is fiction, everyone knows it's
fiction. It is not political or propaganda or history."
||Ahmed Fadlalla Assi, the head of Lebanon's Publisher's Union, was
also displeased at the censorship. He said: "Salman Rushdie [author of
the Satanic Verses] is forgotten in the annals of history, whereas Islam
stayed on and Dan Brown will go, too, and Christianity will stay on."
||Some book reviews by New York Times best
||Nelson DeMille: "Dan Brown has to be one of the best, smartest, and
most accomplished writers in the country. THE DA VINCI CODE is many notches
above the intelligent thriller; this is pure genius."
||Clive Cussler: "Intrigue and menace mingle in one of the finest
mysteries I’ve ever read. An amazing tale with enigma piled on secrets
stacked on riddles."
||Harlan Coben: "Dan Brown is my new must-read. THE DA VINCI CODE is
fascinating and absorbing -- perfect for history buffs, conspiracy nuts,
puzzle lovers or anyone who appreciates a great, riveting story. I loved
||Vince Flynn: "The Da Vinci Code sets the hook-of-all-hooks, and takes
off down a road that is as eye-opening as it is page-turning. You simply
cannot put this book down. Thriller readers everywhere will soon realize
Dan Brown is a master."
||Robert Crais: "I would never have believed that this is my kind of
thriller, but I'm going to tell you something--the more I read, the more I
had to read. In The Da Vinci Code, Dan Brown has built a world that is rich
in fascinating detail, and I could not get enough of it. Mr. Brown, I am
||Condemnation by the Roman Catholic Church:
||Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, bishop of Northern Genoa in Italy
attacked The Da Vinci Code and suggested that Catholic bookstores
remove it from their shelves. He branded the best selling novel as "a
sack full of lies" which insulted the Christian faith. He accused
author Dan Brown of "deplorable" behavior. He said in an
interview with Reuters: "Don't buy this. Don't read this because this
is rotten food...A lot of novels do good but this book is rotten
food...It does harm, not good. This book is a sack full of lies against
the Church, against the real history of Christianity and against Christ
himself." He regards the popularity of the novel as proof of "anti-Catholic
prejudice." He said: "The distribution strategy has been
absolutely exceptional marketing, even at Catholic bookstores — and I've
already complained about the Catholic bookshops which, for profit
motives, have stacks of this book....And then there's that strategy of
persuasion — that one isn't an adult Christian if you don't read this
book. Thus my appeal is: Don't read and don't buy" the book. He
concluded that the book sales are "...only further proof of the fact
that anti-Catholicism is the last acceptable prejudice...It's the
truth....There's a great anti-Catholic prejudice. I ask myself if a
similar book was written, full of lies about Buddha, Mohammed, or, even,
for example, if a novel came out which manipulated all the history of
the Holocaust or of the Shoah, what would have happened?. 3,4
Dan Brown, "The Da Vinci Code," Doubleday, (2003), Pages 93-96.
Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store.
"Da Vinci Code banned in Lebanon. Best-selling book 'The Da Vinci Code' has been banned in Lebanon after complaints it was offensive to
Christianity," BBC News, 2004= SEP-16, at: http://news.bbc.co.uk/.
"Catholics urged to shun 'sack-full-of-lies' Da Vinci Code," The Toronto Star, 2005-MAR-17, Page A20.
"Vatican cracks The Da Vinci Code," Associated Press, 2005-MAR-16,
Copyright © 2005 by Ontario Consultants on Religious
Originally posted: 2005-MAR-06
Latest update: 2006-JUN-12
Author: B.A. Robinson