Monday, July 1, 2013

Inferno

by Dan Brown
463 pgs

Dan Brown has a lot of detractors. Ever since The Da Vinci Code dominated the book world, they've been quick to point out the flaws with his writing abilities. They harp on his characters, and how he's so focused on his plots, that he never slows down enough to flesh any of them out. Even Robert Langdon, after appearing in four books, hasn't been written into someone that we know much about. And the plots themselves are too contrived, with distractingly convenient plot points that appear just in the nick of time. But there's a reason why his books are so enormously popular--they're thrilling, engaging, and they're enormously fun to read.

This time around, the fate of the world lies in Langdon's ability to decipher clues within Dante's Inferno. The book begins with Langdon waking up in a hospital in Florence, Italy, after someone tried to end his life. He can't remember the past few days, why he's in Italy, or how he came into possession of a sealed metal tube with the ominous bio hazard symbol on it. Minutes after waking, he barely escapes the assassin's second attempt on his life and he finds himself on the run with the young doctor who helped him escape.

I'm not ashamed of the fact that I enjoyed the book as much as I did. I'll admit to rolling my eyes more than once as Brown pulled the same rabbit out of his literary hat that he did in the previous Langdon books. And there was never any real fear that things wouldn't turn out okay for Langdon and of course, the rest of humanity. But the book was another page-turner and I'm ready to read whatever he writes next.

★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

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