Saturday, March 14, 2015

Dan Brown - The Lost Symbol

The Capitol Building, Washington DC: Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon believes he is here to give a lecture. He is wrong. Within minutes of his arrival, a shocking object is discovered. It is a gruesome invitation into an ancient world of hidden wisdom.
When Langdon's mentor, Peter Solomon - prominent mason and philanthropist - is kidnapped, Langdon realizes that his only hope of saving his friend's life is to accept this mysterious summons.
It is to take him on a breathless chase through Washington's dark history. All that was familiar is changed into a shadowy, mythical world in which Masonic secrets and never-before-seen revelations seem to be leading him to a single impossible and inconceivable truth...

Comment: I borrowed this book from someone I know - she offered - because this is the type of book that I don't buy but eventually look for at my local library. Thankfully, this person had it and I was able to read it a few days ago.

This is the third adventure of Robert Langdon, the hero from Brown's other successful novels, Angels and Demons and The Da Vinci Code. This time Robert Langdon is invited by a long time friend, Peter Solomon, to help him with something, but he finds out his friend has been kidnapped.
Someone is after Robert's knowledge to reach an important goal and only Robert's ability to uncover hidden and ancient clues about the task in hand will allow him to help his friend and stop the evil to destroy the world as we know it.

As always, this book is full of adventure and interesting historical facts.
I think the readers' opinions of the books by Dan Brown are usually separated into two; those who liked them and those who criticize the writing.
I think everyone knows Dan Brown doesn't write as the great American novelist, but I also understand that the way people see books and writing can be very different. While I enjoy these books I am aware the way they are told is easy, fluid and not very literary. Does this make them bad books? I guess opinions can change and who knows exactly which little detail is the one that influences people the most, but I like his books, overall.
I'm guilty too, of seeing books with a certain intent through my own personal eyes and that might be the wrong POV to see things, but it's still the way I saw them. So, can I really criticize those who see these simplistic, teaching/adventure books in a more serious level rather the one they were aimed at and being disappointed or annoyed?

Nevertheless, for me his books usually work. Because, for me, it's not exactly the way things are told that matters, not even exactly the story itself which, I assume most readers agree, is always the same more or less. No, for me what really interests me in Dan Brown's books is how he inserts so many things, knowledge and information and real facts and details that, despite not always as fluid as they could be, still makes me really eager to learn something, to end up knowing some detail, some information that I didn't before reading and, who knows, might be fascinating.

This book is pretty much the same as usual. Robert Langdon has to save the day, he teaches us and the other characters many things, while we see the plot develop and we learn things even when Langdon isn't speaking or in the spot. Many things, in terms of plot development are, obviously, too far fetched and unlikely to happen, but I already think of those things as his need to make it easy for any film producer to eventually bring his books to the cinema. In this book's case, the ideas that there is so easy to access the sub caves of the Capitol or that a cube can be hidden in the dark of a huge room are a little bit to imaginative, but well, any author has to use imagination, right?

I think his books are highly entertaining and even the most unusual and almost impossible things to envision can look interesting. This is something not all authors can do, so well done for him when we speak about this characteristic of his books. The way this book ended is slightly more believable than the others I've read but the book is full of memorable scenes and for the entertaining factor alone, I think it's worth out time to read it.

It's also interesting to picture how things could happen, how things in reality might be a part of all the ideas and theories he develops. So, for me, despite not being even close to a masterpiece, this books does reach its goal in entertaining me and if one thinks about it as a goal, then it was achieved.
Grade: 7/10

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