Recently (right before the new year actually), I renewed my monthly Audible subscription, knowing I wanted to read more books. Sure listening isn’t reading, but hey, I’m consuming the book right?! With that, I got a couple books that I wanted to have in my library (once you get them through the subscription, you have them even if you cancel or suspend your membership, which is really cool).
One book I had found, was from the author Dan Brown. I’ve read some of his work already, “way back when”, about a decade ago now. It was right before Angels and Demons (the movie adaptation) came out that I last read his work. I loved reading that book and watching the movie then. After that, I watched the Da Vinci Code. I loved it, and moved on, thinking nothing of it.
Some time later now, I stumbled upon his name again in the Audible library, with the latest Robert Langdon novel, released in 2017. I saw that character’s name and went gawkingly wide eyed. The middle schooler in me went “OMG I can’t even right now!”
You know I tapped that “buy now for 1 credit” button so fast, I don’t even recall seeing the “confirm purchase” deterrent- yes, there WAS NO DETERRING THIS GIRL!
Maybe it was the cold meds, maybe it was the book (in the Maybe it’s Maybelline slogan)
Come to find out, while letting the book download over LTE (I was on my way to work, okay! And no, I wasn’t driving- babe was…thanks babe!), there was 2 WHOLE OTHER BOOKS THAT I DIDN’T EVEN KNOW HAPPENED.
“Buy 3 more credits for …” GIVE ME THOSE CREDITS DAMN IT!!! Haha…I was literally an irrational 8 year old with $20 to spend at the toy store, with too much sugar in her system.
So yea, I bought extra credits so that the other two books that I missed were technically cheaper, and have one extra credit to spare, when in all good reality, I’d be able to wait (if I had the patience…lol) until next month, where I could pick them up without coughing out this extra money, but oh well….Christmas money right?! (Thanks grandma’s)
Anyway, now that I have more books to listen to, due to my impatience, ya’ll in turn will get more reviews of books! Hopefully you like these reviews!
I’m reviewing each book as I listen to them, for reference. This is more for my end, since (1) I kind of went out of order and (2) it’s easier to review as I go, then upload this post, as I feel doing it out of order and individually wouldn’t be fair to you guys/wouldn’t be enough content for one post, each, while leaving you wanting to read the books.
Angels and Demons (Book 1) (Movie)
Obviously this is the series starter book. The nice thing about these books, is that it doesn’t really matter what order you read them in. Each book is it’s own adventure, kind of like the multiverse in comics.
This book does set up some character development on Robert Langdon though, the main character that is throughout this series. Picture him as the fit, attractive, while also dad-aged sub you had in high school.
Yes, this is that Angels and Demons that got a feature film. So did the next book. Yes, they did it backwards.
Assuming you’re not familiar, or it’s been clearly too long since the film was relevant (same boat girl, same boat. I read it right before the movie came out and watched the movie. I couldn’t tell you the actual plot to save my life, without googling it to see what the gist was. Hence why I’m re-reading it!), let me give you some info to lure you in!
So some major science guy is murdered, in Switzerland. But he’s not just murdered, he’s murdered by a group that is thought of as long dead. He’s branded and his one eye has been torn out, and the eyeball itself is eventually found in his lab, where only him and his daughter are the only ones who can get in.
What’s in that lab? The only thing that is 5-8 times more deadly, ounce for ounce, than the atomic bomb: anti-matter. What’s also missing? The anti-matter.
Since Langdon is a professor of symbology, especially religious ones, he’s called in, to decipher the branding initially, until they discover that the anti-matter was stolen. So there’s less than 12 hours for them to find this anti-matter tube, before it’s battery that keeps it stable, runs out of battery juice.
To make matters worse, it’s the day that clergy is voting on the next Pope, as the late Pope had just suffered what is thought to have been a stroke (no formal autopsies are done on any Pope). Why is this bad? 4 of the most prominent clergymen are missing…then there’s the call.
The caller is the one who will be killing one of the clergy, on the hour, starting at 8pm (20:00), and the big show of the anti-matter explosion, taking out Vatican City, occurs at midnight.
Each clergymen is murdered in a different way: Earth, Air, Fire, Water. Each clergymen is killed in a different location. They must figure it out: Langdon, the scientist’s adopted daughter, and the higher ups in the Vatican City, that aren’t voting for the next Pope.
It’s a hot mess, which will keep you on your toes and wanting to keep on reading!
Da Vinci Code (Book 2) (Movie) (finished approx. 1/26/2019)
Oh boy! A murder one! It starts with Robert Langdon on a business trip in Paris, and a desperate call to his hotel room. He told the main desk to let it wait till morning, but they insisted otherwise.
Langdon gets dragged into a murder scene at the Lurve. As a symbolgist who now has some extra notoriety after the incident in Vatican City, on top of his regular work as a professor and a writer, he gets called in to help with this shit.
Everything points to the works of Da Vinci, and the murderer uses hidden things in the art work that is in the area.
*Please be nice to me, I didn’t write this right after finishing it, so I’m doing the best I can here*
Lost Symbol (Book 3) (finished 1/27/2019)
This book takes Langdon to the DC area, and he has a brief thing to deal with his mentor. This is the shortest book in the series, so this will be the shortest book review.
So Langdon is offered to do a speech in DC, from his mentor, but once he arrives, he quickly learns that the inventation was not set up to be a speech, but was a kidnapping to get more information.
He’s given the hand of his mentor, tatto’d with symbols (previously not a tattoo’d hand), and that’s only the start of the journey. He’s accompanied by security to figure this guy out, and see if his mentor is still alive.
Thanks to his fitness and swimming routine, Langdon survives being waterboarded even, in the process, because he wants to protect those he loves, and he doesn’t actually know the answers, which the kidnapper doesn’t believe to be true.
Inferno (Book 4) (Movie)
If this isn’t a direct reference to Dante’s Inferno, I don’t know what is. Basically a creative way to introduce someone to the Divine Comedy. Good recommended read for those in school.
This is a read and a half. 3 hours away from the end, and I still need answers. You’ll become lost about 5 hours away from finish, whatever that is in pages. It’s a journey and a half leading up to there, but then it takes another twist, and makes you reconsider investing in the book, because it’s half not worth it. BUT IT’S ALL WORTH IT! Really, I swear, even with the extra WUT there, as you’re nearly at the end.
Langdon wakes up in a hospital, with no recollection of what has happened over the last 2 days, nor how he landed up in Florence. He has a believable head wound, and a nurse telling him it’ll be okay. But is she a nurse? Is she even a legal resident of Italy?
The last thing he remembers is getting an invitation and him being back home in Cambridge. Now since he’s in a hospital, he doesn’t know what to make of anything.
Moments after gaining consciousness, he gets told that he had a head wound, and had amnesia, and had an odd thing in his internal pocket of his coat. But he doesn’t have an internal pocket on his infamous coat.
He also doesn’t have his Mickey Mouse watch that he’s had since childhood. So what’s really going on? He doesn’t know.
Until shots are fired right in front of him, and him and a nurse flee the scene, since he was told he had a guest just moments prior.
He’s been told that he’s being hunted. Or is he? Is it the nurse? Is it all just a ploy?
Someone wants to spread the 21st century version of the black plague, and wants to stay anon about it. Was Langdon involved and couldn’t recall? What did he even do? No one really knows.
No one knows until he gets saved, after his nurse friend flees, and he finally gets some answers. Now, is her fleeing, allowing him to get the answers he wants? Will this save the planet from the plague?
Origins (Book 5) (finished 1/6/2019)
This was the 2nd book I personally read, and third story/adventure I had with Langdon’s character. Reading this book made me want to go back and read through the whole series properly, and impatiently got more credits on Audible just to have all 5 right away.
Origins is a journey that Robert Landgon takes, when he is invited to a non-disclosed party/announcement launch that no one knows what this thing is all about. The host is a former student of his, that he’s kept in touch with, but through life and the student’s projects, they stopped keeping in touch until this invitation.
This announcement was brought through technology, and was about the two key questions we have as a species: “Where did we come from?” and “Where do we go?”. The student/host gets assassinated mid-presentation, and it’s a hot mess for the next not even 12 hours, like always.
Ugh, I hope there’s more adventures! I love it all. I plan on exploring more of Dan Brown’s work over the next while.
Have you read any of Dan Brown’s work? Have you read anything of his outside of these 5? Let me know how you liked them (and which ones you read, so I know!).
If not, what are you planning to read in 2019? What have you read already this year?
What are some good reads I should look into?