Book Review – The Da Vinci Code

The Da Vinci Code

STORYLINE:  Robert Langdon, distinguished symbologist is called to a crime scene while in Paris. The murder of the curator of the Louvre plunges Langdon into a game of cat-and-mouse with an unknown enemy intent on finding out the location of the Holy Grail and keeping all the related history and secrets buried forever.
PLAYERS: 
Robert Langdon – is puzzled by the code the curator wants him to unravel when he scrawls Langdon’s name in his final moments. Langdon has to prove himself worthy of the task set before him, even as his mental and professional skills are tested and his life is in danger.

Sophia Neveu
– is granddaughter to the slain curator and a cryptologist by profession. Her knowledge and skills are critical when she joins forces with Langdon to uncover the clues that have been kept secret for thousands of years by the Priory of Sion.
I LIKED: the way in which the book was structured. The chapters were short and the writer kept the story moving forward through the eyes and action of different characters.  Brown is an amazing writer to cram so much activity into the time span of a day.
Then there was information about codes that are supposedly in Leonardo Da Vinci’s art, so now I’ll be occupied poring over all I can find on the internet.
I also enjoyed the understated romance between the two main characters and found it refreshing. The little hints were there, so when it was clear Langdon/Neveu liked each other it wasn’t a surprize.
I COULD HAVE LIVED WITHOUT: the length of the book. While the pacing of the story was good, the relentless chase tired me out. By the time the mastermind behind the murders was caught, I was ready for the end of the story. However, the business of locating the secret documents still had to be completed, as well as restoring Sophia’s family to her and wrapping up the romance.
OVERALL COMMENTS: I like a fast paced story and a plotline that keeps me reading. I found both in The Da Vinci Code. I also enjoyed all the historical details about the ‘sacred feminine’ and how pagan symbols were incorporated into religion that has filtered down to us today. Some of the ciphering slowed me down, but I won’t complain. I learned much about pagan symbols, as well as the original meaning/s of words we use today.  I noted the deep involvement of Opus Dei – a Catholic organization – in the plot. I remember that there was quite a brouhaha surrounding the material in the book.  I took The Da Vinci Code for what it is – fiction, with a more-than-generous –helping of research. However, I am fully aware that many of the details are the genuine article.
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