Thursday, April 13, 2006

"The Da Vinci Code" - Dan Brown

So as some sort of penance before Easter I decided to read this amazing book. When done I was struck by the similarity between it and something a retarded monkey might have done stuck in front of a typewriter.

First off, it's fundamentally anti-Christian and specifically anti-Catholic. I can handle that. My faith is not dependant on someone elses. However, if you're going to write a thriller you claim is based on true historical theories and events you should actually do so.

His theory that the holy grail (and I'm not really giving anything away. His great secrets are pretty much disgorged in the first few chapters. In fact they're portrayed as things everyone already knows) is really the bloodline of the descendants of Jesus and Mary Magdalene are based on deliberate frauds that only conspiracy theorists maintain are valid. Brown holds up the Priory of Sion as an ancient secret society bent on protecting the true grail when it was founded by several French conmen in the forties.

He claims that the Templars worshipped an androgynous fertility deity called Baphomet (which seems to simply have been a French corruption of Mahomet) when it was just one of the charges brought against them to destroy them. And it goes on. There are dozens of little errors and bunches of big ones. I want to track down all the reviewers who mention Brown's tremendous historical research and smack them. Can't they spend ten minutes on Google to at least get a glimpse of the nonsense he's claiming historical verity for?

Finally, the book simply stinks. If all his goofy theories were true "The Da Vinci Code" would still count as one of the absolute worst pieces of crap I've ever read. I like junky pulp thrillers. They're a great way to turn off the brain and take a quick thrill ride. Not here. There's little real suspense despite every chapter ending with a cliffhanger and there are no real characters. Everyone exists to spout exposition and make claims that don't bear up to the light of day.

Heck, he even claims radicals bear the epithet leftist because the feminine (and therefore outcast) things were characterized as being left (sinister). No. No. That came from the Estates General during the French Revolution where radicals sat on the left and royalists on the right. If something so basic and elementary is wrong what else is?

Am I taking this all too seriously? Probably, but I couldn't help it. It's so miserably bad a book I couldn't help myself from ranting.

1 comment:

PDarcy said...

I read this book about two years ago (my mother-in-law gave it to me) and thought that it was the biggest piece of crap I ever read since Grisham's "The Firm".

This book was the equivalent of sitting behind an obnoxiuos music critic during a classical music concert. The condiscending tone (How can you not know this?!?), and the awful "action". You could not pay me to go see the film. Yeech.