Angels & Demons (Robert Langdon, #1)

ISBN: 1416524797
ISBN 13: 9781416524793
By: Dan Brown

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About this book

When world-renowned Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon is summoned to a Swiss research facility to analyze a mysterious symbol—seared into the chest of a murdered physicist—he discovers evidence of the unimaginable: the resurgence of an ancient secret brotherhood known as the Illuminati ... the most powerful underground organization ever to walk the earth. The Illuminati has now surfaced to carry out the final phase of its legendary vendetta against its most hated enemy—the Catholic Church. Langdon’s worst fears are confirmed on the eve of the holy conclave, when a messenger of the Illuminati announces they have hidden an unstoppable time bomb at the very heart of Vatican City. With the countdown under way, Langdon jets to Rome to join forces with Vittoria Vetra, a beautiful and mysterious Italian scientist, to assist the Vatican in a desperate bid for survival. Embarking on a frantic hunt through sealed crypts, dangerous catacombs, deserted cathedrals, and even the most secretive vault on earth, Langdon and Vetra follow a 400-year-old trail of ancient symbols that snakes across Rome toward the long-forgotten Illuminati lair ... a clandestine location that contains the only hope for Vatican salvation.

Reader's Thoughts

Dan Schwent

When a physicist/priest is murdered, the word Illuminati branded into his chest, and a quarter-gram of antimatter stolen, it's up to renowned symbologist Robert Langdon to find the goods and the murderer. But can he stop someone from using the antimatter as a weapon, even with hot physicist Vittoria Vetra in tow?After all the hype, I managed to dodge this bullet for over a decade but when my girlfriend caught me in a vulnerable moment between books, I knew the time had come. Overall, it was a fun read. It reminded me of a high tech Indiana Jones a lot of the time. However, at the end of the day, it was pretty much a by the numbers thriller, complete with forced sexual tension.Like I said, it's pretty Indiana Jones-ish, except instead of an archaeologist who has crazy globe-trotting adventures, Langdon is a symbologist who has crazy globe-trotting adventures.As much as I want to hate on this book, it's a page turner; Short chapters, nearly all of them ending on a cliffhanger. However, even for a thriller of this type, the plot seems a little overly complicated. A centuries old secret society is going to use some stolen antimatter to blow up the Vatican? Wouldn't it be easier to get a surplus nuke from the former Soviet Union?The writing is so cheesy and over-dramatic I can't help but be amused. It's really pulpy but not in the good Raymond Chandler way. More like an early Doc Savage. Seriously, Langdon could have said "I'll be super-amalgamated" and it wouldn't have felt that out of place. It almost feels like Brown was trying to do a Black Dynamite-style commentary/spoof on conspiracy thrillers.One thing I didn't enjoy is that the book suffers from "I did a bit of research so I'm going to cram it all in the dialogue" syndrome. There are infodumps galore and lots of redundant information, mostly about symbology. I'm not going to touch on the things that weren't researched and are erroneous since most movies have equally shitty fact checking.I guess I'll rate it 3 stars. It's not well written or to any degree believable but it's a fun and exciting read, like a pack of Skittles for your brain. Not good but definitely entertaining. Not only that, Dan Brown's milkshake brings all the boys to the yard. Any book that gets so many non-readers reading gets a little slack from me.


A fun but implausible romp. Falling out of a helicopter from 10,000 feet and receiving just a few bruises??? Really?


I picked up this book because I wanted some mindless action with a fast-moving plot. This book was exactly the opposite: political, too much dialogue, and slow moving. At first the politics of the book intrigued me because Brown attempts to take on the clash between science and religion, however he seems to be completely ignorant about science and religion in the very ways that feed the clash between them. For example, he talks about cutting edge scientists studying the big bang. (Cutting edge scientists dismissed the big bang as unlikely several years ago.) He presents religious scientists as being motivated only by a desire to prove scientifically that God exists by showing that the big bang and Genesis are consistent. (Not all religious scientists feel the need to prove God exists. Why would any scientist, religious or not, think of the Bible as a scientific text book?) He shows religious people as fairly fanatical. (Which is sometimes the case, but usually not.) At first I thought that this book was going to try to bridge the cultural perceptions that science and religion aren't compatible, but by the end, I think the book only deepened the problem.Aside from that, the perspective in the book changes between at least 10 different characters who rehash material that has already been covered. It slows the book down whenever it seems to pick up even a little momentum. 150 pages could be cut easily without altering the plot even a little.Also, the horrific violence in this book, which should be shocking, never really is. I haven't thought about it enough to figure out why that is. Hmmm... poorly described...too many coincidences....overdone...hmm. Something along those lines. Overall, not a good read.

مشاري العبيد

أفضل ما كتب دان براون من وجهة نظري الشخصية .. تجربة سينمائية فريدة على الورق .. و تفوق إثارة كلماتها مشاهدَ الفيلم الذي تم انتاجه في 2009 ..يُرجى ربط الأحزمة فور قراءتك الصفحة الأولى منها .. و تمتع بـ رحلة "تاريخية - مليئة بـ الرموز"..


"Angels and Demons" is the prequel to the well-known "Da Vinci Code". Although the main character, Robert Langdon, appears in both novels, the plot is basically completely different. In Angels and Demons Robert is awakened in the middle of the night by a mysterious caller who tells him that a CERN scientist has passed away. Not just passed away, but murdered and branded on the chest as well. The man branded was named Leonardo Vetra, and he had just invented the substance "antimatter", which is basically an antimatter particle thing that is super powerful. Anyway, around the same time the antimatter goes missing, four cardinals from the Vatican church are abducted, and a bizarre murderer is on the loose. As you can see, there is a lot going on in this book.It is difficult to read two books that like "Angels and Demons" and the "Da Vinci Code", and not compare them, simply because they are so similar. It almost seems that Dan Brown was using Angels and Demons as a roughdraft for the Da Vinci Code, because the characters are oddly reminicsent, the plot follows the same formula, and the twist I predicted since the beggining. However, this book held my attention better than the Da Vinci Code, probably because there was less religious rambling and more action. My only real complaint is that the author seemed to twist time. The entire book took place in a timeset of four to five hours, and some places it uses 100 pages to describe 20 minutes worth of action, and then it took 10 pages to describe 45 minutes. What I'm trying to say is that it didn't flow as smoothly as I wanted it too. Probably worth a 3.5 rating... but not a 4.

Mike Philbin

Angels and Demons is one of the most insidiously-constructed page turners I’ve ever read and unlike other such efforts (Richard Laymon’s IN THE DARK) I actually raced to the end of it rather than throwing the thing half-finished against the wardrobe in rage. Think of Hercules Poirrot. Think of Inspector Morse. Think of Agatha Christie. Once you strip all the character and soul from these genre writers you have Dan Brown. They all have in common the one writer trick, etirwer (the backwards rewrite). I don’t mean check a book for spelling and grammar. I mean write a basic plot line. Then go back. Adding in detail that will drive the narrative relentlessly towards what you sketched. Stuffing the book with glimpses of false trails and dead ends to keep the reader in the dark, so to speak. Confounding the reader in a way that will make him feel insignificant and meaningless.This, for me, is the worst of all genre writing tricks.Professor of Symbology Robert Langdon in his tweed and nuclear physicist Vittaria Vetra in her Lara Croft gear go in search of the thieves who killed Vittaria’s dad and stole the anti-matter from CERN and find themselves in what appears to be a travelogue of the more obscure bits of Vatican City. It reads just like that, a Treasure Hunt type of book. The reader is dragged along with teasing glimpses of THE TRUTH behind the religion and the war with science that has waged through the ages. But it could have all taken place in a virtual world like the internet or a library with mischievous librarians swapping cards around so old ladies can no longer find their Mills and Boons.Any good book should involve, include, confront or enrage the reader – this book cored out the reader’s personality so that by the end you didn’t care if there were 30 more pages yet to go as the final threads of the convoluted narrative finally unravelled.This book (maybe all Dan Brown books) should come with a mental health warning: At no point in the reading of this book was the reader in danger of thinking.An ultimately vacuous exercise in Franchise Management D.B. even sneaked in an early reference to the following Professor Langdon mystery The DaVinci Code. Enough already!


** spoiler alert ** About a year and a half ago I was group-travelling across western Europe and in the interest of saving money, we forfeited airfares for rail and coach. This meant aching backs, exploding bladders, and as much sleep as fifteen teenagers can muster while sitting bolt-upright on a coach driving up a clay-soil hillside with no crash barrier and overzealous air conditioning.Driving up from Rome to Paris, intent on salvaging as much daylight as possible, we took the night train. The night train! Doesn't that sound like fun? Doesn't that sound like a huge adventure?"Best sleep I ever had," I was told. "You'll love the night train."I was lied to. The night train was like a bad mood on rails. In fact, just replace the word "train" with "mare" because that's pretty much what it was. We were stacked four to a room the size of a coat closet and forbidden to open our suitcases until we left the train. The bathrooms were like coffins with no toilet roll and seats that kept falling off, and doors that didn't lock, and the queues for the ladies' were like the fucking Danube. It was worse than the hole-in-the-wall showers with the saloon doors in Normandy two years earlier.When we got on the train in Rome, it was boiling hot. Even in pajamas, I was sweating. There were four duvets in our four-person room, but I was so unbelievably overheated that I donated mine to one of the other girls who complained about being freezing. The train rattled to a start, and I figured I'd get a great sleep. I'd be cool, and comfortable, and this would be the brilliant rest I was promised. Suddenly, the night train didn't seem so bad after all.I woke up halfway though Switzerland with feet like ice and rug burn from the carpet covering on my bunk. I sat up to try to grab a sweater from my suitcase but it was stowed where I had no hope of reaching it. The window had been left open, but I didn't know how to close it.I lay back on the bunk, sure that this was truly the worst sleep I had ever had. It was a non-sleep. It was worse than a non-sleep. It was a non-sleep with goosebumps and rug burn on my elbows, and what's more, afterwards, we spent an entire day zipping around Paris trying to keep our eyes open long enough to appreciate a dozen excruciatingly boring tour guides and hard, endless European rain (it has this cruel, cold quality to it, and it leaves your hair feeling filthy). Dan Brown is that person; the one who told me I'd have a great sleep on the night train. Though instead, he told me I'd really enjoy this book and that it was a complex, mysterious thriller.He lied, like the night train person lied. This book is the literary equivalent of rug burn on your elbows and trying to sleep in Switzerland with no fucking socks on.This book wants you to think that it's really adventurous and spiritual and intelligent when in actual fact it's like giving your duvet away, except your duvet is money, and trying to sleep on the bottom bunk on a rickety-sounding train with a bladder full of pee and a quiet certainty that the person on the bunk above you is going to break it and you're going to be crushed to death with no bra on in a foreign country, except the person above you is Dan Brown.Picture this: Robert Langdon, Harvard "symbologist" (let's put a pin in that one) is called to CERN to investigate the murder of a scientist, and then discovers that the murder is connected to an ancient secret society threatening to destroy the sacred Vatican City and murder four cardinals in the name of science.Then picture this: a bishop falls in love with a nun and they really want to bump uglies but they're supposed to be chaste so instead of having sex they decide to conceive a child (because having a child is supposedly the only alternative to sex in proving one's love for another person) by IVF and then the nun gives birth to a boy who goes on to become the Pope's camerlegno, all the while unaware that he is in fact the Pope's illegitimate son but not through sex.One of those scenarios sounds like a bestselling novel worthy of praise. The other one sounds like an episode of Nip/Tuck dreamed up by an intern doing pails. Both of them, however, are true components of this garbage dump of a commercial novel that wants to think it's so clever and edgy but is in actual fact nothing but Europorn Indiana Jones fanfiction with a side of racism and just a sprinkling of good old fashioned bullshit - because we love when certain authors twirl their mustaches and tell us all about how much stuff they know when in actual fact they can barely stumble through a single sentence without using the word "awkward" or describing someone's physical appearance with intensely invasive and sexual terms.Can we just take a moment to discuss Vittoria? Vittoria is the daughter of the murdered priest/scientist from CERN who was creating the antimatter that went into the bomb that intends to blow up the some end. I'm not 100% sure if there was even a point to all of this but let's roll with that.Vittoria as a character just kills me because not only does she constitute this massive book failing the Bechdel test, but she's this terrible walking trope of a character whose every single action is punctuated with "...the woman." Vittoria has a gun...and she's a woman. Vittoria is mad about something...and she's a woman. Vittoria is a scientist...and she's a woman. There is not a single moment wherein Vittoria's womanness is not commodified, ogled, fetishized or taken advantage of by the plethora of male characters surrounding her and patting her on the head while simultaneously noticing her tanned legs and cleavage as subtly as a baboon rubbing its bright red buttcrack up against a window at the zoo. Vittoria's only purpose as a character is to make Robert, our sanctimonious, self-righteous and highly overrated protagonist look like a hero. Is nobody else finding this insulting? Vittoria is sexualized to within an inch of her life and is then punished for it by a racially problematic villain who tries to rape her but doesn't succeed because Langdon, our plucky hero, swoops in and saves her. He is of course ultimately rewarded for this with sex because obviously, fellas, that's what's supposed to happen when you help a girl out. Held the door for her? You earned a blowjob! Helped her push her car in the snow? Expect sex! Chased away a leering predator who's making her uncomfortable? You ought to get your shot! You won, after all! Fair and square!And if she says no? Bitch! You're in the friendzone now. You'd better cry about it because she's being so ungrateful.We also have this terrible image of the "Hassassin" - a brown guy who's obviously evil and a sexual predator and totally perverted and twisted because he's brown and brown guys are the worst because...well, they're brown?Look, we all knew this character was going to be a terrible rehash of racist Muslim stereotypes. At the same time as fetishizing eurocentric women's lib we have Muslim women being scoffed at for their generally more reserved culture. They're literally called "livestock" and don't try to tell me that this is all part of the evil character of the Hassassin because (a) the portrayal of the Hassassin is racist in an of itself because he is one of only two characters of colour and he is evil (the other character of colour is a reporter for the BBC who has absolutely no moral compass whatsoever) and he is not invested at all in the cause, thus his involvement is for no reason but to critique Arab people in the whitest way possible, and (b) the majority of people in the west actually believe that Muslim female culture is like that and that feminism involves charging into their country, ripping their niqabs off while screaming "I'M WHITE AND I'M LIBERATING YOU" which is only perpetuated by this supposedly wordly, well-traveled and suave killer. Bonus points for suggesting, with this huge stereotype of a character, that Muslim men have absolutely no respect for their female counterparts and are inherent abusers. Um, yay?(I absolutely love the lack of any research that went into portraying the BBC as the main body of press. We have these two BBC reporters looking for "scoop" and being generally tacky and invasive and this is just such an awful misunderstanding of everything that is characteristic of the BBC. British news networks are not like American news networks; they aren't jokey and cute and funny. They don't mutter about Syria for five minutes and then run a half-hour story about raccoons in Ontario. They're serious and somber and they cram as much world news as possible into about an hour of programming, which almost always includes some stony-faced reporter standing in the middle of a war zone delivering a status report. BBC reporters have been killed out on the field before. The thing about the BBC is that it doesn't need to be gimmicky to attract ratings because it's comfortably funded by TV licensing. The BBC do not look for "scoop" or sensationalize breaking news or act on anonymous tips from assassins or send two clueless idiots to an event as big as a papal conclave. It's so painfully obvious that, disregarding any cultural differences between America and Europe, of which there are hundreds, Brown simply googled "British news networks" and search-replaced the BBC into this laughable, lovable brick of a novel.)In between Vittoria being a sexy Mediterranean and the Hassassin being a Big Bad Brown Man we have this dreadful hokey plot with more holes than, ironically, Swiss cheese - considering that one of the most prominent Swiss characters' surnames is "Olivetti" and our hero survives a fall from three miles up with nothing but a small tarp as a parachute, and real-life CERN is graciously putting up with this total crusade of slander and misinformation involving the shape of pillars, their teaching facilities, and the purpose of the Large Hadron Collider. Look, people were irrationally mad enough about the LHC without Dan Brown pulling out his copy of National Geographic and fanning the flames. Robert and Vittoria go on this bullshit quest across Rome to locate the Church of Illumination, for some reason, which leads to all sorts of insane conspiracy claims and both of them jumping to the most ridiculous conclusions in order to find the path that ultimately leads to a painfully obvious location that, after years of preservation, study and reconstruction, someone should have already found inside the Castel Sant'Angelo. They then kill a person, and nobody follows up on this - doesn't the person who found the Hassassin's body lying crumpled on a pile of cannonballs think there's maybe something fishy going on? - and there's a huge twist at the end that is so utterly ridiculous and predictable that it brings up the taste of yesterday's lunch. Where exactly does Dan Brown get off creating books like this one? Books with no integrity, no soul, and no finesse? There is nothing good about this book, and yet it's constructed in such a way that it's virtually impossible to abandon. The constant cliffhangers give this extremely convoluted and silly novel a crack-like quality that is unmatched by any other. I've read some seriously addictive books, but this one takes the fucking cake.I'm not sure why I'm dignifying this awful book with three stars. It amused me, I suppose. That's probably why. By the end, I was literally shouting at the book. I kept thinking, "this needs to end. This fucking book needs to be gone from my life." And yet...I continued to read? Like a madwoman? Well, then. A book marketed and constructed with that much psychological witchery deserves a pat on the back. Never have I ever been so sucked in by something so filled with pompous crap.I have a warm place in my heart for books about special snowflake Americans arriving on their white horses to rescue the rest of the world from themselves. I find them cute. They're certainly entertaining, like a preteen diary, and this one in particular; Brown wants so desperately to be Langdon that it hurts. But where's the harm in all that? Sure, this book is filled with racism and sexism and ethnic stereotyping and pretentious philosophical twaddle but it's not starting any wars. It's no worse than anything on television or anything written for a YA audience of late. I let myself get lost in it for an hour or two, and that was kinda nice. And for all the book's faults, it inspired an absolutely awesome movie. Seriously - the movie was excellent and they cut almost all of the bullshit tumors out for the screenplay which made for two hours of pretty painless entertainment. No mean feat considering the source material.I guess how much you'll enjoy this book depends on how many cheesy yoga jokes you're willing to put up with. Let that be a lesson to you all: when in doubt, or when licking lightbulbs seems like a worthier pastime, leave it out.

Jess Michaelangelo

Wow. Before I begin my review, I want to preface it by saying a few things. I know a lot of people think Dan Brown is a crappy writer who writes crappy books about crappy stories with crappy characters and crappy, unbelievable plots. I know a lot of people think Dan Brown is one of the best at the "cheese factor" and roll their eyes at his stories. I know a lot of people out there know more about European history, etc. etc. than I do, and therefore, I might not be the appropriate judge of this story. And I'm also aware that this is not the next literary classic. HOWEVER. I loved this book. Every time the action picked up in this book, I had a serious adrenaline rush. My heart raced, my eyes frantically read line after line, and my hands automatically went to my mouth. I was totally engrossed in the story Dan Brown told, even though I had already seen the movie. Watching the movie before the book is very uncharacteristic of me, but I'm glad that it happened that way in this case. Reading the book cleared up a lot of unanswered questions for me, and the book was different enough from the movie to keep me gasping out loud at plot twists. For me, I was hooked along for the ride, and even though some might find his twists unbelievable or even predictable, I was just in it for the story and found myself completely absorbed. I appreciated the facts (or "facts") throughout the story that were presented to the reader about the Illuminati, Vatican City, etc. and I loved the feeling of being on the inside of solving a puzzle while racing against time. I appreciated Robert Langdon's character, and I'm so glad they cast Tom Hanks to play his character because even when I read The DaVinci Code years ago, Tom Hanks is always how I pictured Robert Langdon. Pretty damn intelligent, resourceful, and witty. Dan Brown can be pretty witty, too, and I found myself chuckling from time to time. I even enjoyed the general mechanics of this book--I liked the short chapters that kept me coming back for more. They made it easy to fly through the pages. I would look down maybe after a half hour or so into reading and be 150 pages further in the book. The "dun-dun-dunnn" moments at the end of pretty much each chapter had me flipping, too, even though I could understand how some might find that worthy of an eye-roll or two. My favorite part of the book, besides the adrenaline rushes, was how he bounced from one point of view to another without leaving the reader feeling disoriented. Rather, it had the opposite effect for me, clarifying everything by being able to watch the story unfold from all angles. After reading The DaVinci Code a few years ago, I was a little hesitant to pick this one up...would I love Dan Brown as much (or more)? Or was The DaVinci Code a one-time deal? Well, I'm here to say that I can officially consider myself a fan of Dan Brown, however crappy others might want to declare him.


So I honestly want to give the book three stars. What I enjoy about Brown is how he can write almost 600 pages of a book and I get almost to the end and realize that it has taken place all in the space of one day. As a writer, I would love to be able to do that. The weaving of religious and scientific themes into an adventure set in European locales is also right up my alley. What I don't like... and why I am forced to drop down to two stars (just a few examples): That same time stretching often results in a parceling of time that is terribly irritating - most of the book actually isn't just in less than one day but in about four to five hours. Unfortunately, in one part of the book, given twenty minutes, the protagonists can, say, drink tea and eat scones, talk at length about their theories about what's happening, run from one location to another, save someone, and research an important historical fact. But during another twenty minutes, they don't seem to have enough time to, say, run the length of a block and enter a building. It must be difficult as an author to keep track of this sort of incongruity but this is Brown's special trick and it's irritating that he can't follow his own rules. It needs to be either one way or the other but not both. Every few chapters, he seems to feel the need to reintroduce his main protagonist by first and last name, "Robert Langdon stood in front of the church..."; like we haven't met this character yet for every single paragraph for the last 126 chapters (and no, I'm not exaggerating on the numbers of chapters). This really, really frustrating thing where the protagonist, Langdon, is this brainy professor that can supposedly figure out these relatively obscure, secret messages hidden by other brainy men hundreds of years ago in order to save the world... and yet he can't figure out the REALLY obvious things right in front of his face. I was listening to this on audiobook and I SWEAR, I kept expecting a three year old child to pipe up from somewhere in the back of the crowd, saying, "Oh, come on, mister! You can't see that? Seriously? Aren't you supposed to be the hero? Even I can see that!!And, finally, lines like, "The silence that followed might as well have been thunder." Um, what... honestly, what? Is this Brown's version of "A thunderous silence followed..."? It's really rather frustrating because I honestly think that in many ways Brown is rather talented; in some of his plotting, the details, the ideas he pulls together. I just wish that in other ways - the writing, some characterization, he could catch up with his other abilities. After reading The Da Vinci Code, I was going to read both this and Digital Fortress but I do believe I will stop here... wishing I could tip it over to the three stars.

أحمد نفادي

دعوا الملائكة ترشدكم في بحثكم ...تلك هي عبارة المفتاح لذلك اللغز لغز كبير وحله عصيّ علي الجميع فماذا يحدث ؟؟يبدو ذلك بأنه برومو لأحد أفلام الأكشن :Dالرواية رائعة جدااااا قد أستعمل عبارة مستهلكة من نوعيةإنه عالم دان براونولكنه عالمه فعلا ما في ذلك من شكالوتيرة السريعة والقصة التي تحدث وتنتهي في أقل من يومالألغاز الصعبة والطريقة الذكية في الحلوكمية المعلومات الرهيبة التي تحصل عليهاهي ليست برواية بقدر ما هي كتاب تخصص بها قدر هائل من المعلومات تدل بوضوح علي كم الجهد المبذول من دان براون في كتابتهاإنه يجعل كتبه تأكل لك الوقت بل تلتهمه التهاما فلم أشعر بالوقت مع تلك الرواية خصوصا إذا كنت أقراها مع مذاكرة صيدلة المستشفياتمزيج هو لوز اللوز :D :D


Oh dear God please do not read this book. You don't notice what a bad writer Dan Brown is when you read the Da Vinci Code because it is so exciting, but you read this and you want to kill yourself for ever liking Da Vinci Code. Really.


This was Brown's book before the infamous "The Da Vinci Code." In many ways, this book was like a rough draft for "The Da Vinci Code", same character Langdon, same other characters, same basic start, same concepts, same bad research passed off as fact, same trick of having nearly every chapter end in cliffhanger, the same in so many ways.Sadly, I think he did a better job the first time around. I recommend you have a computer handy so you look up what Brown is talking about, and that way you can have a better idea of what it really looks like. Added bonus too, you can have a laugh over how Brown had to forced it into his world to make the plot somewhat cohesive. Look, if you want to write fiction, do so but please own up to it being fiction! Trying to pass off the Ecstasy of St. Theresa as being so pornographic in nature that the Vatican had it exiled to a small church, is, well, wrong as wrong as gets.Brown throws out a number of stunningly stupid statements, like asserting that since Christianity is syncretic, God-eating (the Holy Communion) was taken from the Aztecs. How, Brown never explains, since the practice was established by Christ himself during the Last Supper around 33 A.D. and the Aztecs didn't show up until 1248 A.D. I figure Brown left it open so he could write some sort of time travel book, involving a long lost secret that the Aztecs built their pyramids as sort of a dry run, traveled back in time and were actually behind the pyramids in Egypt. And, of course, were the sect that created the Christ-myth due to a poorly thought out plot.Thanks to the internet, you too can have fun poking holes in the book. See, for example, CERN's site on the book. And if that doesn't do it for you, here's a good site looking into all the errors.A sample from the last site:"While walking around the CERN campus, Langdon notices a marble column incorrectly labeled Ionic. Langdon points the mistake out to Kohler: "That column isn't Ionic. Ionic columns are uniform in width. That one's tapered. It's a Doric -- the Greek counterpart." (26) The problem is that Ionic columns are themselves Greek. The three orders of classical columns, Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian, are all Greek in origin, so it's impossible for the Doric order to the be the Greek counterpart of the Ionic. It's also much easier to distinguish the Doric from the Ionic based on their capitals; Doric columns have plain capitals, while Ionic columns are topped by volutes or scrolls."That irked me when I read that passage, because not only is a poor joke, it doesn't make sense! Let's ignore the bad, the erroneous, and the ugly, and you have decent little thriller zipping around Rome looking at art. Of course, it has to zip along, slow down long enough to think about it, and a host of questions start to swarm up. Like how Langdon has a whole theory on who the bad guy is and how Langdon was involved in these rather preposterous circumstances. Of course, the premise is wrong, so that that whole house of cards fall down. Not bad in of itself, but then Brown doesn't ever provide any reason Langdon was involved after that.Of course, you aren't supposed to notice while reading it, and preferably not afterwards, either. Doing so reveals how badly Brown writes. He can't provide a single decent reason why his hero is there, aside from a vague "Because" and a shrug.I'm envious of Brown, he can't write well, has plot holes big enough to drive the Popemobile through, bad research and "facts" that aren't, and yet still is entertaining, popular and, most galling perhaps, published.Caveat lector.


I liked this book. In as much as a person can like, say, cotton candy. It tastes good at first, but after a bit the taste starts to lose some of its sugary goodness and just becomes a sticky mess that you hope doesn't get in your hair or on your shirt. The premise was interesting: I liked the whole Illuminati and church conspiracy. The suspense of the novel kept me engaged. But like I said, too much of a good thing just becomes problematic. To be honest, after a few hundred pages, the writing really started to annoy me. I wasn't expecting Dan Brown to give me something as well written as say a John le Carre novel, but I wanted more originality. I wanted sentences to pop and zing as they should in a thriller novel. I guess it comes down to this: ANGELS AND DEMONS was good brain candy, and I'll read other Dan Brown books. In time, of course. RECOMMENDED (a great three to four hour killer of time)


Angels and Demons by Dan Brown was one of the best page-turners I have ever read. From the very beginning I couldn’t put it down. I did not know where Dan Brown would take the story next. Following the main character Robert Langdon, a Harvard symbologist on his first great adventure was breathtaking. I wanted to learn more, to know the secrets of the Illuminati and the only way to do it was to let the story naturally unfold as I read. I can usually guess what is going to happen in thrillers, but Dan Brown did a wonderful job keeping everything a mystery until absolutely necessary to reveal the secrets. I first read the book on a flight from Seattle to Rome, with a few places in between. Never having read the Da Vinci Code before hand I didn’t have as high of expectations as most people do when going to read Angels and Demons. I have often heard that the Da Vinci Code is much better than Angels and Demons but I disagree. Angels and Demons is Dan Brown at his best. I love how he took historical events, places, art and turned them upside down into a thriller that left me wanting more. Dan Brown not only wrote a good novel but he also brought up the old argument of Science vs. Religion. Both sides of the argument are thoughtfully brought up in Angels and Demons and in the end it is up to the reader to decide which side they believe is the right path for them. I love that he didn’t try and persuade the reader of his view on the subject but instead put the evidence and arguments out there for us to make up our own minds. Having traveled to Rome and seeing the places talked about in the novel Dan Brown did a wonderful job putting the readers in the places talked about. As I walked the path of Robert Langdon it seemed even more real to me that events as radical as the illuminati pulled off in the book could have actually happened, giving more power to the fast paced adventure.


Granted, my family owns this both in print and as an audio book- so I can't deny the entertainment I gather from this sad excuse for a detective novel on a regular basis- but I still refuse to call it a good book in any respectable sense of the word.Not unlike The Da Vinci Code, Angels and Demons is made up of archetypal characters thrown into unfathomably implausible situations in which facts tend to be sort of twisted or thrown aside for the sake of a good, pulpy read. Sure, our hero falls two miles from a helicopter with nothing but a tarp as a parachute, landing in a river thanks to his "diver's body," and yes, he uses his Mickey Mouse watch to light the way in the subteranneous vaults underneath the Vatican, but I was laughing from page to page and really did enjoy mocking Brown's attempts at dramatic pause. Granted, I'm not sure that that's the reception he was going for in writing this but to each their own.In summary, I defy you to resist a book that ends with the line: "You've never been to bed with a yoga master, have you?"Classy.-C

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