American Lit · Books that have film Adaptations · Thrillers

Inferno by Dan Brown

“I’ve got to stop being such a snob about leather-bound books, he reminded himself. E-books do have their moments.”

I’m not too sure what to think of this book.

I bypassed Lost Symbol and remember reading both de Vinci Code and Angels and Demons for their very renowned reputations in the media. I picked this one up only vaguely aware of the film adaptation. However, to begin with I felt that this edition (c. 600 pages) was far too long.

Of course perhaps Dan Brown book enthusiasts probably might enjoy it but I just wasn’t all that enthralled by it. It’s plot narrative was too messy to be interesting, zigzagging all over the place and many times I asked myself if I was supposed to care. Characterisations were also too flat and bland. I think readers are supposed to fall for Dr Sienna Brooks for her beauty and intelligence but all in all the characters were too bland to be interesting.

Also, I think Brown is trying to make his characters appear hip and relevant, with constant references to iPhones, ebooks, apps and online web video content. It doesn’t help at all, even though I think its supposed to be funny. However, in that regard it doesn’t really succeed.

As happens in Dan Brown books, there is far too much exposition and yet it could survive without it. It was interesting to learn about Dante Alighieri and they referenced one of my favourite quotes of his. However, many times I wanted to throw in the proverbial towel with this book but I hate giving up on finishing books so I ploughed on through to the end.

The underlying idea of the book was interesting enough but at times the book came across like a mad man ranting on a street corner, shrieking about the end of the world. However, there was another plot element which I disliked which was not dissimilar to ‘it was all a dream’ and I hate those sorts of plots in books. Its not clever or interesting. It was just incredibly boring.

So, if you are a Dan Brown book enthusiast then read this by all means but aside from that I’d not really recommend this book to anybody. Having read the book now it really doesn’t make me all that enthusiastic to watch the film, either.

MY RATING: *** / *****

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