Written by Dan Brown
Number of pages: 456
Average Rating: 3.76/5 stars
My Rating: 4.5/5 stars
Published on March 18th, 2003
Read in June 2016
Summary according to Goodreads
An ingenious code hidden in the works of Leonardo da Vinci. A desperate race through the cathedrals and castles of Europe. An astonishing truth concealed for centuries...unveiled at last.
While in Paris, Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon is awakened by a phone call in the dead of the night. The elderly curator of the Louvre has been murdered inside the museum, his body covered in baffling symbols. As Langdon and gifted French cryptologist Sophie Neveu sort through the bizarre riddles, they are stunned to discover a trail of clues hidden in the works of Leonardo da Vinci - clues visible for all to see and yet ingeniously disguised by the painter.
Even more startling, the late curator was involved in the Priory of Sion - a secret society whose members included Sir Isaac Newton, Victor Hugo, and Da Vinci - and he guarded a breathtaking historical secret. Unless Langdon and Neveu can decipher the labyrinthine puzzle - while avoiding the faceless adversary who shadows their every move - the explosive, ancient truth will be lost forever.
This is a book I have wanted to buy and read for quite some time, but never got around to it. Recently I spotted one of my coworkers reading it, and told him how I've been interested in this series - turns out this was not his first time reading it. He offered to lend me his beautiful illustrated edition, and I could not resist! Seeing as this was a series I had been wanting to get into, coming across an edition with pictures was an amazing opportunity.
This is the second novel in the Robert Langdon series, however I went into without reading the first and did not have any problems. There were a few references at the beginning of the novel to events that I imagine happened in Angels and Demons, but nothing significant enough to leave me lost and confused.
This plot was captivating from the very beginning, which surprised me since this novel was very outside of my comfort zone. Categorized as an adult historical fiction with elements of suspense and adventure, this novel was unlike anything I have ever read. I was constantly kept on my toes, because you are solving this mystery along with Robert Langdon. The reader does not have many advantages while reading this novel since even while seeing from different perspectives you do not know how each character will be related to the conclusion.
Speaking of the conclusion, there were hardly any twists that I had seen coming. The reveal of "The Teacher" I had been wrong about, how Sophie's story was going to end, and where Robert was going to go with his career. Overall I was wrong about everything in the end, but that made it so much better to read!
Although I was very connected to the plot and the characters, I would have to say that having the illustrations throughout the novel improved my reading experience. I do not have a lot of experience with religious history, so I found it very helpful to find images of symbols and places they were describing. Looking at the photographs of paintings and landmarks, made me want to travel so desperately I could not help but feel as though I was walking through the streets of Paris with Robert Langdon.
I have not decided if I will watch the film adaptation right away, because I haven't heard too much about it. I will likely watch it soon before continuing on with the series. Have you seen the movie? What did you think? If you are interested in this series I cannot say if I would recommend reading them one by one, but I would recommend reading one of them! I am quite looking forward to reading more from this series, and this author, in the near future.