November 02, 2014

Angels & Demons by Dan Brown

Never watched the movies, this is my first experience reading any of Brown's books.  I don't understand all the hype or the controversy.  It was mildly entertaining, and the "clue" format was interesting, but it was nothing outstanding or deplorable in my eyes.

Robert Langdon is minding his own business when he is contacted by an official at CERN to come look at some evidence and a dead man.  Nevermind that Langdon is a professor, not law enforcement, his expertise is needed.  It looks to be the work of the Illuminati, a cult made of scientists who has a very big vendetta against the Catholic church.  Can Langdon solve the Illuminati riddle in time?  The very future of the Vatican depends on it.

The characters were mostly unbelievable in this.  They had too many powers, too easily overcame obstacles, and apparently had super-human strength and healing properties.  There is no way, after some of the things that Langdon went through, that he'd want to be walking let alone want to have sex (and that's all I'll say on that).  Vittoria was a shallow character that seemed to be there in an attempt to have a "strong" female character.  But she neither added much, nor was very strong on her own.  She relied on Langdon's character quite a bit.  And the character and personality changes in some of the others were hard to follow and made it seem as if they weren't even the same character at all.

If you ignored the poorly written characters, the plot was actually fast paced and kept your attention.  There was always some kind of action or gruesome scene to read and the clues and mysteries kept the reader engaged.  I also liked that the entire book took place in the space of a day, but didn't seem too rushed.  It was an impressive way of writing the story.  I can't comment on historical accuracies, etc.  I know nothing about the Illuminati or Catholic church history, etc.  I'm going to assume some is accurate and some is not, as seems to be the case with most fiction works.

Certainly entertaining but by no means a work of art.  I'll read the next in the series just because it is a good way to spend a rainy weekend.

Angels & Demons
Copyright 2000
569 pages

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