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bloated and boring
le 5 octobre 2009
[Cross-posted to LibraryThing and LivingSocial]
Oh Dan Brown. What happened? You had such momentum from The Da Vinci Code and Angels & Demons, neither of which were fantastically written but that had interesting stories and fast-paced plots. You had a good premise, expanding on the Masons that you'd touched on in Angels & Demons. You even had lots of time - The Lost Symbol didn't exactly get rushed to the printers. So what happened? Did you have a fight with your editor? Was your 'delete' key not working? Something must have happened because I can't think how else The Lost Symbol became so bloated and boring.
The focus in this instalment of Robert Langdon's adventures is on the Freemasons and there is a lot of information about their rituals, their symbols, and their legends. Most of it is interesting and relevant to the plot. But Brown also insists on adding extra information throughout the novel that serves no purpose other than to show how good Brown is at research. Instead of a tight storyline, where the information comes in as needed to develop characters or drive the plot forward, we get little bits of action broken up by long passages of information, much of which gets really repetitive after a while. By the last hundred pages or so, I couldn't care less what happened to Langdon or anyone else. I just wanted to be done with it and move on.
A common complaint in other reviews is that the novel reads more like a screenplay. I didn't really feel that way, although it did seem like Langdon's character was written as Tom Hanks much more than in the previous two books. Everyone else just felt like the same person, they all blended together with no distinct personalities. Another reason why I didn't care what happened at the end.
Overall: a disappointment, even for Dan Brown.