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Angels and Demons Paperback – 18 Jun 2001

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Product details

  • Paperback: 624 pages
  • Publisher: Corgi Books (18 Jun. 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0552148717
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552148719
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 11 x 3.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (758 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,629,230 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Dan Brown is the bestselling author of Digital Fortress, Deception Point, Angels and Demons, The Da Vinci Code and The Lost Symbol. He is a graduate of Amherst College and Phillips Exeter Academy, where he has taught English and creative writing. He lives in New England. Visit his UK website at

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Amazon Review

The Illuminati were, allegedly, a secret society of artists and proto-scientists suppressed by the Church during the Counter-Reformation; they have featured in paranoid theories and thrillers ever since. Art historian Langdon is called in when a leading nuclear physicist is robbed, murdered and mutilated; along with the scientist's beautiful adopted daughter Vittoria, he finds himself involved in a treasure hunt against time. A lethal assassin has kidnapped four cardinals to torture them to death, and has planted an anti-matter bomb in the Vatican--at midnight, the Papal Conclave and the Sistine Chapel and the whole of Vatican City will go up in a flash of light, the vengeance of the Illuminati. Full of loopy conspiracy lore and some radical reinterpretations of the history of art and architecture, Angels and Demons is a switchback ride whose occasional absurdities never for a second reduce its high-adrenaline intensity. The bookish, brave Langdon, the clever Vittoria, the saintly young papal chamberlain who becomes their principal ally, the venal and yet oddly savvy BBC stringer who starts getting the killer's communiqués--all of these are involving and attractive characters who make us care about people and issues as much as we do about an ingenious plot. --Roz Kaveney


'A breathless, real-time adventure...Exciting, fast-paced, with an unusuallu high IQ' -- San Francisco Chronicle

'Part thriller, part mystery, and all action. A highly entertaining, page turning thriller' --

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Iain R. Wear on 21 Feb. 2015
Format: Paperback
Before there was the huge sales success that was “The Da Vinci Code”, there was “Angels and Demons”. Although “Angels & Demons” only came to prominence thanks to the attention and sales “The Da Vinci Code” generated, it had been written and published first. Strangely, I find it to be the best of the three (including his latest, “The Lost Symbol”) Robert Langdon novels thus far, perhaps because it was written without the same weight of expectation hanging over it.

In Switzerland, a prominent scientist who is working on anti-matter is found murdered, with a strange symbol burned into his chest. His recent experiment, which is capable of blowing up an entire city if not taken care of, has been stolen and has been hidden somewhere in Vatican City. The symbol is noticed by Robert Langdon as being the calling card of a group known as the Illuminati, long thought to have died out.

The Illuminati are traditional enemies of the church and so the trail leads to Vatican City where four senior cardinals have vanished on the eve of conclave, which will select a new Pope. Robert Langdon must follow the clues left by former scientists and artists around Rome to try and stop the cardinals being murdered and to try and locate the anti-matter before it destroys the Vatican.

As with all of Dan Brown’s Robert Langdon books, the pace of things is kept very high. Here, with a cardinal due to be killed every hour, there are a number of clues that need to be followed before each deadline and this keeps the story moving very quickly. The main characters dash around the city of Rome following the clues, whilst others dash around Vatican City looking for the anti-matter bomb. Even the arguments held in conclave and among the Swiss Guard seem to move quite quickly.
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Format: Paperback
It might be, but barely. The Da Vinci Code also gets a well deserved 5 stars, too.
A breathless adventure, a tour of Rome, some Science, some Art, some Religion, all meticulously pitted against each other. The reader learns some lessons about all three, learns how these things are so integral to the story, but is never patronised.
The best thing about Brown's books, especially the books with Robert Langdon, are that before you start the story he basically writes "this is true, that is true, all Art mentioned is fact, all technology mentioned exists, all the history is true, all I've done is made woven a story around FACT". Sure, Brown has his critics, maybe he is a bit of a drama queen at times, but prove to him, prove to the reader, that this story couldn't happen. You can't, and THAT's what makes it such a ride! Despite all the seemingly far-fetched goings on, there is always a niggle in the back of your mind saying "this is true, that is true (etc)...". Again, tell me why this story couldn't happen in real life?
Special mention goes out to what he does with the map of Rome. He makes a trail for Langdon to follow and the way he does it is genius, absolute genius. This trail is what makes the story for me; what he is describing (without revealing any of the story) are statues that Roman churches have, and how they relate to each other. It is quite incredible how he has managed to weave a 500 year old trail out of this but it is all believable because, like he says at the start, "everything described in this book is fact". The result of this trail is pure fiction - or is it? If you went to Rome today you could see the exact trail that Langdon took and follow it. You would see everything Brown describes, exactly as he describes it, it's unnerving. Magic!
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Format: Paperback
I watched the movie of this first, and didn't really enjoy it that much. However, I've just read the book recently, and I think it's probably his finest story yet. Is it hokum? Well yes, pure hokum in fact, but good pure hokum! He manages to weave a wonderful story, with epic twists and turns, through all sorts of places, I mean come on, the Hadron collider AND the Vatican(!) and then on top of it a handsome American symbologist who just happens to get in on the story because he knows his stuff so well.

This is one of those books that once you pick up, you don't want to put down. It's populist literature at its finest, it's brain-food because it's so well written, and because I was reading it at the end of the night, I didn't want to stop reading it and then go to bed; it's that good!

I won't go over the plot, basically because it's so complicated; yes, there's a dodgy assassin, a handsome American professor, the glamorous Italian female scientist, popes, Swiss guards, official police types, loads of extras, Rome; you know, a typical Dan Brown novel!! I really rate Dan Brown as a writer and if he can be accused of being a populist writer, which he is, so can Charles Dickens and Conan Doyle and even Shakespeare. So, I really rate his books and I've read them all and enjoyed them all, but this one is for me the best because it has a fantastic twist in the tale... read it and find out!!!
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By Saturnicus VINE VOICE on 28 Jun. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is the first book I have read of Dan Browns and I have to admit I found it entertaining.
The late Cardinal Hume wrote that science is not the enemy of the church. Wonder if DB knew this, because that is the book's plot.
It never ceases to amaze me how ubiquitous university lecturers such as Indiana Jones and Robert Langdon get into these fixes and come out squeakily unscathed at the other end.
On the negative side, it is far too long. 200 dry pages of physics before we get into the story for real. The idea of a scantily clad damselle physicist running around the Vatican made me cringe a bit. She must have been freezing in all those underground passages. And he did drag out the adventures of the Camarlengo, who was a wonderful character and who at one point moved me to sobs - the writing was so beautful. 100 pages before the end, I thought the book was finished, but no, he dragged it out a bit further.
In all fairness, Mr Brown does his research thoroughly, but then he changes it to suit himself. This of course necessitates endless debate and TV documentaries pointing out the true stories after the controversy Mr B. has created.
However, it is a good book and I am told the movie is brilliant - better than DVC.
At least in has convinced me that I must visit Rome some day. It will do wonders for tourism.
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