Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon is summoned to deliver an evening lecture in the U.S. Capitol. Within minutes of his arrival, the night takes a bizarre turn. A disturbing object - artfully encoded with five ancient symbols - is discovered in the Capitol Building. The object is an ancient invitation, meant to usher its recipient into a long-lost world of hidden esoteric wisdom. And when Langdon's mentor Peter Solomon - prominent Mason and philanthropist - is kidnapped, Langdon's only hope of saving Peter is to accept this invitation and follow wherever it leads him. Langdon finds himself plunged into a clandestine world of Masonic secrets, hidden history, and never-before-seen locations...all of which seem to be dragging him toward a single, inconceivable truth.
The Lost Symbol is exactly what Dan Brown's fans have been waiting for...his most thrilling novel yet.
©2009 Dan Brown; (P)2009 Random House Audio
"[I]mpossible to put down....Mr. Brown was writing sensational visual scenarios long before his books became movie material. This time he again enlivens his story with amazing imagery....Thanks to him, picture postcards of the capital's most famous monuments will never be the same....In the end it is Mr. Brown's sweet optimism, even more than Langdon's sleuthing and explicating, that may amaze his readers most." (The New York Times)
"Thrilling, entertaining....Robert Langdon goes for another roller-coaster ride - this time in a hunt for a Masonic treasure in Washington, D.C." (Los Angeles Times)
This is a weak, boring and shallow throw-away excuse for a novel from a writer whose only reason for success is that he encouraged by us, the zombie readers who pic up his books. The only reason I am giving it any work at all (as if I can go below 1) is that this one, like its 2 predecessors, is at least well researched.
In this novel, I went from one abyss of boredom to another, and for a good reason: None of the characters was interesting, the writing style is amateurish and found no value whatsoever, entertainment/human/otherwise. At least the Da Vinci Code had an explosive story that generally redeems it. With this one, the writer borrows a pre-fabricated story line from his previous work (pick any), injects it with new material and old cliches (try listening to the word "double take" once per page), package it in a book and shoves it down the throat of unsuspecting readers (listeners)
Even narration was below standard. Not only the narrator had the most uninteresting, monotonous voice, but every so often narration tone changes for a word or a sentence indicating a cheap correction that was made ad hoc to some mistake.
Please don't waste your time and credits on this book. Try The Hunted by Brian Haig. Solid all around.
I remember reading on Dan Brown's web site that the next Robert Langdon novel would be out within a year or two from the Da Vinci Code. But I waited and waited and then last year the Wall Street Journal ran an article predicting when it would appear... they were over a year off...
I believe Dan Brown worked too hard at this novel and missed the boat completely. It was a great disappointment. I had to really work at finishing it...
The reader, Paul Michael, was great... he just didn't have a lot to work with...
I have read and/or listened to all Dan Brown's novels (and enjoyed all 4 of them) but after listening to "The Lost Symbol" I feel that I've lost yet another favorite author to commercialism. How sad... but luckily there are a lot of other (and new) authors to hitch my star to...
Goodbye Dan Brown
You were great while you lasted...
This book was slow, ponderous. The plot was predictable, as were the characters. This is writing by formula. The last 45 minutes or so were nothing but the author preaching on various topics of interest to him. They added nothing to the book and should have been edited out.
I couldn't wait to finish. I certainly won't preorder Brown's next book, as I did this one.
I, too, feel a little disappointed, but I wouldn't say it was a waste. I must admit, that it does seem to drone on and on, and does seem acutely familiar. But what I find most fascinating about Dan Brown's books is not the plot or the characters. Honestly, his characters are not really far from almost any of the dozens of action/adventure novelists' characters. What I find most entertaining is the imagery and history. I felt like I had been to Rome or in the Artic in his previous books. I have only been to Washington DC once, as a child, but I feel like I have just seen it again. I predict that Washington DC will see an increase in tourism in the next year as a direct result of this book. The historical sites he describes in this book will have a whole new audience, and a renewed look is always exciting. As for the Masonic connections to the founding fathers, I am not impressed, but I would expect it will cause a lot of controversy from both camps. The Masons and other similar ancient organizations may take a hit for this, as it does paint them in a ludacrous light, in some places, while making them sound enlightened in others. We'll be hearing more about the Masons as well on TV and in the news. A strong prejudice against the Masons could color your perceptions.
Don't get this book if it hasn't been long since your last exposure to Dan Brown's work. You will go into Robert Langdon overload, and may, like me, begin to wonder just which book your are in. This book is long, and I was looking for the ending by the time I had reached the 2nd downloaded part. I has its good points, and they may outweight the bad for you, while not for others. Only by listening to it can you say for yourself.
One last thought. Was I the only one that felt that Robert Langdon was just DENSE in this book? Dan, is Robert getting too old for all of this intensity?
I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this book. The story was classically Dan Brown engaging and the narrator was excellent. I love how the author challenges the reader to think about the world from different perspectives. He makes a great point, but really hammers it home a bit much at the end. Perhaps people will walk away with a different mindset. If so, he's done us all a great service with this book.
I looked forward to this book's release and purchased it immediately. The background (Washington/Masons), the main character, and the reader were all appealing. I had hoped that this Dan Brown book would be a worthy successor to The DaVinci Code and not a mediocre book like his earlier efforts. Unfortunately, not only was this not as good as DaVinci code, it was even worse than his others. VERY disappointing. VERY predictable. Don't waste your time.
Queen of UTEE
Well.....it really had me in the beginning. I couldn't put it down. I was gonna love this I was sure. But then...3/4 of the way through came the "big reveal' of one of main characters and the Lost Symbol was lost to me forever ! What a nonsense plot twist that was.
From there on it got ridiculous. It got wordy. It got boring. It got preachy.
It no longer had me. AT ALL.
If you have read The DaVinci Code and Angels and Demons, The Lost Symbol is a lot more similar to Angels. Those of us who like thrillers have an almost superhuman ability to suspend rational thinking and accept what the author is doing. Angels and Demons severly tested my ability to do that. The Lost Symbol just failed that test. The premise is so outrageous that even a confirmed thriller fan will shake his/her head and do enough eye-rolls to lead to a good size headache. But there is a big surprise and a double ending that help keep this book from being a total failure. If you start it, at least be sure to finish it.
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