The Da Vinci Code

Yes, I am halfway through the Dan Brown bestseller-recently turned box office flop. Before you cross your fingers in front of your face and hiss at me for reading a book by a heathen, I would like to expand on a few of my observations on the book:

1. Dan Brown is not a good writer. He writes like I imagine Michael Crichton would after a bad stroke. There are too many "surprises", too many attempts at cliffhangers, not enough down time for the reader. The dialogue, as my older brother says, "makes me want to vomit." I think the only reason Brown's book is "The #1 Worldwide Bestseller" (as the cover of the book purports) is because of the controversial contents, which brings me to my second point.

2. The ideas of the book are not really that controversial. Every couple of years, usually around Easter, another report about secret documents containing information that Christ's bones are hidden in Pittsburg or Pakistan try to overshadow the true reason for the celebration of Easter. Brown sensationalizes Indiana Jones-esque myths about the Holy Grail and secret societies that we have already heard, for crying out loud. His motive seems to be a contempt for the church, but that's another thing I have noticed:

3. Brown doesn't really understand the Christian faith. In one section of the book, the main character, Robert Langdon, muses over the use of a cross symbol as odd in the Christian faith. "Langdon was always surprised how few Christians who gazed upon 'the crucifix' realized their symbol's violent history was reflected in its very name: 'cross' and 'crucifix' came from the Latin verb cruciare-- to torture" (Brown, 157). Duh. The reason Christians celebrate a symbol of torture is because we should have been the tortured ones, but instead "He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed" (Isaiah 53:5). So Christians rejoice in Christ's brutal and bloody death, just as we rejoice in His ressurection.

I'm only halfway through the book now, and when I'm finished I'll try to write a little more on the book if anything else comes to mind. Have any of you read the book or seen the movie? What did you think?

written by Ruthie @ 1:04 PM  
3 thoughts:
  • At 7/17/2006 5:42 PM, Anonymous Betsy said…

    I read the book....I thought it ended badly as well - as if he got sick of writing it. I do agree with you though, that he tried to pack in too many surprises, like he was trying to keep us interested. The movie was slightly better than the book, but only b/c they changed the ending. Overall, Jordan and I thought it was a waste of our time (we read it together and then saw the movie) the book did make us want to finish it to see what else he would try to throw in and see how he was going to wrap it up, but in the end we didn't see what all the hype about. We also didn't see why this was such a "big" thing to the Christian society. It seemed like every youth pastor etc was like "we need to really be able to defend our faith against this" however it just seemed ridiculous. it'd be like someone believing that the movie national treasure was true. Anywho. Those are my few thoughts on the book/movie.

  • At 7/22/2006 12:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Going on what betsy said about the hype in the Christian community-- having to defend our faith against this: that is only because a lot of people form opinions without really knowing the other side. i would bet that very few of those Christians who were very worried about this book & movie have actually read and analyzed the book or movie. i thought it was an interesting read-- i couldn't put it down because i wanted to know what would happen next. but it's a novel. it says that clearly on the cover. [novel: A FICTIONAL prose narrative of considerable length, typically having a plot that is unfolded by the actions, speech, and thoughts of the characters.] i have never read a novel and thought, hmm, this is true...i should believe in it. i like your observations though. the movie-- i think it's retarded that they give the ending away right at the beginning (if you've read the book anyway). i found that frustrating.

  • At 7/30/2006 1:26 AM, Blogger aubrey said…

    I disagree. He wasn't trying write accurately about the Christian faith, he was trying to write a story. The edition I read actually had a disclaimer at the beginning that essentially read, "Don't take this book too seriously! It's a fictional novel, not trying to be anything more than that..." blah blah. The truth is that some people actually think that about, say, the crucifix, and I didn't get the impression that the author was agreeing or disagreeing with it, just presenting it as part of the plot. I thought the book was interesting, not by any means the best book I've ever read, but it was obvious to me that Brown is a convincing author just by how much his writing caused people to think. And I think that happened because his writing is believable enough to make them question things, dig deeper, prove that what they already knew/believed to be true is right or wrong. That, to me, should be the biggest objective of writing. But, I could be wrong:) I love ya dear.

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Name: Ruthie
Home: Japan
About Me: I want to know who God is and what his truth is. I love getting lost in beautiful music and cloudless star-filled skies, especially in the fall. I hate being bored. I like big cities. I want to travel the world.
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