The Da Vinci Code
The Da Vinci Code, by Dan Brown, is a puzzling mystery. I love this book because I love puzzles. Unfortunately, the murder is only a half-mystery because the way Dan did it, we know who killed the murderee. Still, there’s a lot of things we don’t know, and there’s also some backstabbing…sometimes literally.
The story is tantalizingly good in most spots. The main plot is wonderful, and ultra-compelling. I want to know more about all the puzzle solving and The Priory. The sub-plot, however, kind of bores me. I know it’s needed for suspense, but I don’t care about Opus Dei. The way Dan patterns the story kind of annoys me. He makes the chapters run like this: Interesting people, cliffhanger, boring people, cliffhanger. Therefore, I excitedly read through the IP chapter, then skim the BP chapter until I get to the IP cliffhanger resolution, then read the BP. Not the most efficient way to read it. Fortunately, I decided to read it the right way after a few times of that.
The characters work well in this purpose, but some seem a bit stereotypical. Robert is definitely The Hero. He does very heroish (Yes, I should say “heroic”, but it doesn’t sound right.) things, like the escape-from-police-when-wrongly-accused move, or the classic sacrifice-your-treasure-instead-of-giving-it-to-Mr. Evil. Speaking of Mr. Evil, The Teacher (their capitalization, not mine) is quite the villain. He’s incredibly smart, great at backstabbing (literally and figuratively), and incredibly evil. Interestingly, when Monsieur Evil (it is set in Paris, after all) is locked up, he’s locked up for good. No prison breaks, no henchmen on the loose. Apparently, Dan thought he’d had enough villainy. Sophie, the heroine, is the only main character who’s completely original. Plenty of secrets are revealed about her past, while The Hero stays the same. Sophie’s a wonderful character, and I’m glad to have her.
The true greatness of The Da Vinci Code is in the puzzles. The codes are cool, the cryptex is simply genius, the mythology is awesome. I won’t give away the Bible stuff. You can find that out yourself, but it really is wonderful.
The Da Vinci Code is a great book for puzzle lovers. It’s also a great book for everyone else. Won ti daer tsum uoy!
Gross alert: Adult content and some violence. Remember, Lalalalalala.