Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Welcome back to myself! I do apologize I spent such a long time away from here, but my life went topsy turvy for a while and I finally just got it back on track, though it seems that another loop or down is coming on this rollercoaster.

Back in July I talked about Dan Brown's four books: Deception Point, Digital Fortress, Angels and Demons and The Da Vinci Code. Today, I would like to talk about his last installment: The Lost Symbol.

I bought it as an unabridged audiobook because I do a lot of driving, and this helps me pass the time to and from work. I found myself taking the long way home and driving slower than I usually would just to buy time and finish listening to a crucial chapter.

This book is set in Washington, D.C. rather than in Europe as was the case with the two first Robert Langdon books, and I liked the change. I have never been to the country's capital, and I wanted to go very badly after I finished listening to it. I want to go to all those places Brown describes with a very precise accuracy which I infer from the accuracy he presented on Angels and Demons--the only one I can testify because I have been to Rome and could navigate through the streets he described and knew exactly where the characters were going. Now, I want to see the Library of Congress, the Capitol Building, etc.

As always, Robert Langdon is lovable and involved in a lot of trouble. All other characters are quite well developed, as if they could actually be real people. The villain is quite evil--probably my favorite villain of his so far. The final product, or better yet, the stuff Robert Langdon must risk his life to save, disappointed me a little, but such is life. Besides that, what really captured me in this book was the sickness of the villain's mind. He made Silas from the The Da Vinci Code seem like quite a nice guy. He is brutal, scrupulous, bent on revenge, thirsty for blood, completely demented and does not have a single drop of scrupulousity: the perfect recipe for a great villain. He is by far my favorite character, as much as I loathe him.

All in all, as long as Brown took to release this novel (around four years), I was expecting the next great American novel, and did not get it. I was somewhat disappointed, but not entirely. There is only so much you can make one character go through following the same basic plotline before it gets old. I think it is time to retire Landgon and go back to writing about more technological stuff. However, this book did capture my attention, and would have made me lose some nights of sleep had I acquired it in paper.

I highly recommend it for people who are die hard Dan Brown fans and for people who have never read any of his works before. If you have read some of his work and not fallen in love with it, you won't like it. Also, I recommend it for people who are taking long flights. You will not get bored with this book.

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