Tuesday, 31 August 2010
Angels and Demons by Dan Brown
After reading Emma, which required a bit of concentration at times, I decided I wanted something a bit more easy-going & face paced. I read The Da Vinci Code a few years ago when everyone was going crazy for it, so when I saw this for £1.50 in a charity shop I couldn't resist.
Rating: 4 out of 5
Synopsis: Harvard Professor Robert Langdon is called to the CERN scientific research facility when a scientist is murdered in a gruesome way linked to the Illuminati. He uncovers a plot against the Vatican and must work against time to stop the worst from happening.
I very much enjoyed this book. It was easy to read, and although I guessed who the 'bad guy' was about half way through, there were so many twists and turns that there were still surprises. It was obviously well researched and quite complex things were explained clearly (especially to do with CERN). While Langdon was a bit bland, lots of the more minor characters just leapt off the page and were both interesting and well written.
As with The Da Vinci Code, I thought it got a bit silly/unbelievable towards the end, but that's OK because I was enjoying the book. The plot was better than the writing style, which was a bit corny at times (my favourite was: "Langdon didn't need to be a symbologist to interpret the signs Vittoria was giving him" - smooth!).
My only real issue with the book was the main female character, Vittoria. She was just too perfect to be believable - beautiful, best physicist in the world, randomly knows lots about the Vatican & the Illuminati, tough, never gets tired etc. I thought that about the Da Vinci Code too, that the female characters Dan Brown writes are just too amazing to exist and despite of all Vittoria's intelligence, she's still just a side-kick.
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I'm not a fan of Brown's writing (for many of the reasons you mentioned) but of the three of his that I have read, this was probably the one I enjoyed most. It would be interesting to reimagine the book with Vittoria as the lead and Langdon as the side-kick!ReplyDelete
Brown definitely does have his flaws, but I like how easy to read & fast paced it is.
I hadn't thought about Vittoria being the lead, but that would be awesome! I have a sneaking suspicion that "Langdon" is Brown, because there's not too much characterisation.
I tried to read the Da Vinci Code when it was hyped several years ago. I think it broke the speed of sound when I threw it in disgust against the wall after I read about 50-75 pages.ReplyDelete
I've only read the Da Vinci Code, and only because it was so controversial in my country (because of the religious overtones). I didn't really care that much for it. And with your review, at least in terms of writing style, I don't think I'll like his other books either. Oh well. Thanks for the heads up anyway!ReplyDelete
@Man of la BooksReplyDelete
Yeah, you definitely have to suspend belief to enjoy the Da Vinci Code. I loved it in a 'so bad it's good' kind of way - like brain candy.
Hi fickle cattle,
The controversy was the reason I picked up the Da Vinci Code too. Angels and Demons is very similar in style and there is some overlap of content too - so I would steer well clear if I were you!
I'm following you on your blog now :)
I liked the book, but I have not seen the movie yet. I don't mind Dan Brown at all.ReplyDelete
Angels and Demons provides many pages of good reading fun, with a few incredible devious twists thrown in. You won't want it to end.ReplyDelete
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