I love a good mystery and although I will keep reading Dan Brown, I find the Robert Langdon series a little two formulaic. Inferno, the fourth of the series, follows the same recipe as the other three: some mystery involving religious symbolism needs to be resolved quickly so someone calls Robert Langdon, the Harvard art history professor, resolving the problem involves a chase through some famous landmarks, some mysterious underground organizations are involved, a madman is on the loose, along the way Robert meets a beautiful and exceptional woman who helps him and there mild (but I mean mild) sexual tension, and Robert is instrumental in resolving the mystery. Oh, and I think he gets flown around on private jets in all the books. With this volume, the chase takes us through parts of Florence, Venice, and Istanbul, features of world famous artwork , religious buildings and monuments are described in detail. Solving the mystery also involves delving into Dante’s Divine Comedy and related artwork. This is, to me, the most interesting part of the book. My knowledge of Dante, or lack of it, does not enable to judge whether the references to his work were used judiciously. It may be interesting to try to read some of it. Dan Brown’s writing, as with previous volumes, is average (some people have called it horrendously clichéd) and the dialogue often is awkward.
Brown, Dan, Inferno, Doubleday, 2013.
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