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Publisher's Summary

The Lost Symbol, the stunning follow-up to The Da Vinci Code, is a masterstroke of storytelling - a deadly race through a real-world labyrinth of codes and unseen truths...all under the watchful eye of a terrifying villain. Set within the unseen tunnels and temples of Washington, D.C., The Lost Symbol accelerates through a startling landscape toward an unthinkable finale.

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

Critic Reviews

"[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)

What members say

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  • Overall
  • Rob
  • Phoenix, AZ, United States
  • 09-25-09

compelling plot but painful listening experience

I've read and enjoyed every other Dan Brown book and was looking forward to this one. I have strong mixed feelings - the plot is enormously compelling. While the story is contrived and requires some strong suspension of disbelief, the result is really a great, fast-paced page turner. I am half-way through the book and will finish it in the next day or two because the mini-cliffhangers at the end of each small chapter are so addictive.

But like most addictions, this one feels unhealthy. I had to turn the book off numerous times because the dialog and narration were so terrible. I don't blame the narrator - Dan Brown's language gives him so little to work with. I don't expect Nabokov, but Brown's sentence structure and word rhythm, especially when heard aloud, is so graceless that it borders on ugly. Worse than that the author repeats distracting cliche phrases so often that after a while it sounds like a terrible running joke. For example, it sounds as if the editor and author are playing a game to see how many times they can hammer the phrase "stopped short" into the narration. These characters "stop short" on every other page of the book! It's amazing they get anywhere. I don't even know what that phrase means - does anyone use it in real life?

This book is like a super-sized order of french fries from McDonalds. You know they're not good for you and they don't even taste good going down, but for some reason you can't stop eating fry after fry till they're all gone. I'm going to listen to the ending now.

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

writing was okay, narrating was mediocre

The book was good, even gripping through the first half. Then it became redundant and very predictable. And the end sounded like an excited school child preaching to you you about the wonder of God. The last four chapters felt like they were never going to end; dragging on and on and going nowhere. I appreciate the insight Brown was trying to portray there, but it was done rather poorly.
As for the Narrater, Paul Michael, he would blend his voices into the narration and at times I felt like he completely forgot which character he was portraying. He wasn't terrible, and was certainly listenable. But he could have been much more consistent.
Overall, A good book, not great, but good. It won't become anybody's favorite book. Fan's of Dan Brown will more than likely enjoy it though I don't expect anyone to be terribly impressed.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Michaela
  • Unterumbach, Germany
  • 09-23-09

Very disapointing ...

Facts are probably all correct, but so are those of an encyclopedia.
Rather boring/similar to Da Vinci story line with a very unsatisfying ending, to which I had to wrestle myself up to.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

A Mix and not new

Although this latest book by Dan Brown is better than average regarding mystery it seems to be lacking any new plot subject. It is very similar to "The Da Vinci Code" without the Christian undertone, though there is plenty Religious reference. It lacks the religious moral friction from previous books by Brown which is what made them so interesting. Or perhaps I'm just not that interested in Washington DC characters.
If you have read "The Da Vinci Code" and have seen the movie, "National Treasure" you have already virtually listened to this audio.
It seems that Brown is resting on his previous success. You decide.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Bob
  • North Lauderdale, FL, United States
  • 10-26-09

A great read, but for a narrow audience

I can understand why there are such diverse views on this book. I'm also glad I took the time to read a bunch of reviews on here.

It very much reminded me of my childhood, upbringing and philosophies.

If you are expecting a plot like The Divenchi Code has, you won't find it here. This is more of a historical and philosophical narrative in story
format. If you are interested in ancient mysticism, and thoughts of how it ties into religion, you'll love this. I found it compelling and hard to put down. I read it in two days and thoroughly enjoyed every minute.

10 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Denny
  • sandy, UT, United States
  • 09-30-09

What a disappointment

Don't waste your credit. Most of the reviews I read were spot on. Implausible, predictable, too long. The characters were awful, even Robert L. I was actually relieved when the narrator finally reached the epiloge. I'm not even sure why I finished the book, it was a painful listen at times.

10 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Classic or Typical

Depending upon your view, this was either "classic" Dan Brown or "Typical" Dan Brown. Being a fan, I will say "classic", but definately not the best of Brown.

Robert Langdon was once again, after an early morning call, running around a large city with a beautiful, very smart, scientist; being chased by the authorities, and a scary, extremely creepy bad guy. Of course Robert has to decode something to save a life and once again it all has religious overtones. (Okay, overtones is an understatement.)

There were plot twists that I saw coming and a couple that caught me off guard. All in all, I did enjoyed the ride. But, as others have said, once the ride was over, it just kept going! Not only did the ending go on too long, but the behavior was not believable. All the people involved had just been through a harrowing, intense experience - The emotions or lack of, did not ring true.

17 of 23 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • C. Telfair
  • Shepherdstown, WV, United States
  • 06-26-12

Do Not Go There!

Please do yourself a favor and skip this. I rather enjoyed reading the books "DaVinci Code" and "Angels and Demons", but these books do not transfer well to audio. Endless, endless mediocre (and that's being kind) language! All Brown's weaknesses are amplified in audio (if you will!)
I'm not an anti-Brown snob, but there are so many better thrillers to listen to!

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Julia
  • Chicago, IL, USA
  • 12-14-09

Better than other Langdon books

As long as you take Dan Brown at face value - you will enjoy this book. Too many times, Brown gets criticized for his writing - whether it's historical inaccuracies or similar plot lines or political/religious incorrectness. I think sometimes people forget that he writes FICTION for ENTERTAINMENT purposes. If you keep that in mind, and can suspend your disbelief of certain plot manipulations and the like, this book is highly entertaining. It was fast paced, and I always like that his novels happen in "real time" with the reader being able to see the perspectives of various characters about the exact same event. I don't think this one was as predictable as his other Langdon books, although it does follow the same pattern. I was a bit disappointed with the ending, but the rest of the book made it a worthwhile listen.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall


Well, those are 18 hours of my life I'll never get back. That is one awful book. Overwritten, stuffed with all the usual Dan Brown nonsense. It's exactly like his previous works, except this one takes place in one night in Washington DC. I recommend you stay as far away as possible.

On the other hand, the narration is pretty good.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful