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The Da Vinci Code [Hardcover]

Dan Brown
3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,529 customer reviews)

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Book Description

31 Mar 2003
While in Paris on business, Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon receives an urgent late-night phone call: the elderly curator of the Louvre has been murdered inside the museum. Near the body, police have found a baffling cipher. While working to solve the enigmatic riddle, Langdon is stunned to discover it leads to a trail of clues hidden in the works of Da Vinci -- clues visible for all to see -- yet ingeniously disguised by the painter.

Langdon joins forces with a gifted French cryptologist, Sophie Neveu, and learns the late curator was involved in the Priory of Sion -- an actual secret society whose members included Sir Isaac Newton, Botticelli, Victor Hugo, and Da Vinci, among others.

In a breathless race through Paris, London, and beyond, Langdon and Neveu match wits with a faceless powerbroker who seems to anticipate their every move. Unless Langdon and Neveu can decipher the labyrinthine puzzle in time, the Priory's ancient secret -- and an explosive historical truth -- will be lost forever.

THE DA VINCI CODE heralds the arrival of a new breed of lightning-paced, intelligent thriller…utterly unpredictable right up to its stunning conclusion.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 454 pages
  • Publisher: Doubleday Books; 1st Edition edition (31 Mar 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385504209
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385504201
  • Product Dimensions: 23.9 x 16.3 x 3.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,529 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,358,481 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Amazon Review

In The Da Vinci Code, Dan Brown masterfully concocts an intelligent and lucid thriller that marries the gusto of an international murder mystery with a collection of fascinating esoterica culled from 2,000 years of Western history.

A murder in the silent after-hours halls of the Louvre reveals a sinister plot to uncover a secret that has been protected by a clandestine society since the days of Christ. The victim is a high-ranking agent of this ancient society who, in the moments before his death, manages to leave gruesome clues at the scene that only his daughter, noted cryptographer Sophie Neveu, and Robert Langdon, a famed symbologist, can untangle. The duo become both suspects and detectives searching for not only Neveu's father's murderer but also the stunning secret of the ages he was charged to protect. Mere steps ahead of the authorities and the deadly competition, Neveu and Langdon embark on a breathless flight through France, England and history itself.

Brown has created a page-turning thriller that also provides an amazing interpretation of Western history. Brown's hero and heroine embark on a lofty and intriguing exploration of some of Western culture's greatest mysteries--from the nature of the Mona Lisa's smile to the secret of the Holy Grail. Though some will quibble with the veracity of Brown's conjectures, therein lies the fun. The Da Vinci Code is an enthralling read that provides rich food for thought. --Jeremy Pugh,


assuming there are people left on the planet who haven't read the Code, maybe the audiobook is the medium for you.... a superbly structured conspiracy thriller that tears through ideas and information, and feeds on speculation and intrigue. (Natalie Bushe THE HERALD) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
116 of 126 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Abridged 18 Mar 2005
Format:Audio CD
Very enjoyable. However it should be noted that this is an abridged version. It dosen't tell you that in the details.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
The story: OK, after some grisly murders the main characters are thrust into a situation where they are desperately trying to work out the true meaning and the true location of the Holy Grail by decoding clues and "symbology" (that is apparently hidden almost everywhere in every day life). It takes them from Paris to London and back again. The Police are after them, the "bad-guys" are after them and "the Church" are most definitly involved too.
The basis of this Holy Grail novel is that the history of Jesus Christ's life was changed by "the Church" to suit their own means and the "real story" was kept hidden by a secret society made up of many well known and/or well respected people throughout history. The good-guys are trying to work out the secret ... the bad-guys don't want the secret revealed. It's fiction based on a fairly well known conspiracy theory .... that's all.
Not being from a religious upbringing but instead just being made aware that a lot of ideas/religions exist and we can make up our own minds about what we choose to believe and what we don't - I read this with an open mind.
To be honest, I took the "based on fact" statement at the beginning with a pinch of salt... the book is classed as "fiction" after all. If you read it as fiction but also understand that the theories behind it are real (note I say "theories"!!!) then I believe that you can enjoy this book the way it should be enjoyed.
It certainly had me quite intrigued most of the way (although I did work quite a few things out by myself). I wanted to find out who the bad-guy (Teacher) truly was and who was setting-up the lead characters, Sophie Neveu & Robert Langdon. Was Bezu Fache (the nasty French copper) really as bad as he appeared? Or maybe worse?
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A rough sketch rather than a masterpiece 26 Dec 2004
By A Customer
I read this book on the recommendation of a couple of friends, where the wife thought it was a good airport novel and the husband loathed it so much he could not bring himself to finish it. I tend to agree with the wife: the Da Vinci code is something that will keep you busy on a plane or a train, particularly if it is a Friday evening flight and you are tired. The book will keep you awake, and you will want to finish it the same night, but at the same time you will not want to keep it for you library, so you can throw it away as soon as you arrive at destination. Basically the author strings together a series of interesting ideas and facts, but does not attempt to construct real characters- it feels like you are reading a film script- no introspection, unidimensional sterotyped characters (just one character sums it up: the English female librarian wearing a cardigan and speaking like Bertie Wooster's aunt), long factual speeches/lectures for the readers who did not take Art History at school (one such speech is in fact a reminescence of an Art History lecture given by the main character- how lame can you get??) and some gimmicks that remind you of the puzzles you used to do when you were a child.
Still, on the whole a pleasant way to spend a few hours. Would recommend it because it offers many leads for further reading. !
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Mediocre, at best. 22 Sep 2013
I did not enjoy this at all. Whilst the plot is vaguely interesting; the characters are terrible, very transparent and just there to propel the story along, there was no depth to any of them, you don't feel any emotion towards the characters, and the only person I did feel any sort of sympathy towards is the villain! The writing is terrible, and there are Biblical and 'arty' facts are just thrown in there for the sake of sounding impressive. Please do not waste your time reading this.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fast paced but predictable 28 Mar 2004
By Christine L HALL OF FAME
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
If I'd never read anything by Dan Brown before I would have been tempted to give this book 5 stars (despite his poetic licence when it comes to European geography and law). I did however read Angels and Demons first, and The Da Vinci Code follows the same pattern, making it a bit predictable at times.
I did enjoy the fast pace of the story and I found the subject matter incredibly interesting (enough to warrant hours of research on the Internet), but since it followed the same "recipe" as Angels and Demons it was obvious not only who the bad guys were, but also how it was going to end. I also have to admit to feeling that the neat and tidy ending was just a bit too far-fetched for me to swallow.
Nevertheless, it's a highly enjoyable book that, apart from entertaining you, makes you think about religion and your perception and acceptance of what you've been taught. From this point of view it's a masterpiece.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Agonising 23 Mar 2014
This is a foetid mess of a book spewed by accident from the substandard brain of one Dan Brown. It is possible that the following review contains spoilers, although since the book has already been thoroughly spoiled in the writing process it's hard to see how I could make it worse.

Essentially, the lead character, Robert Langdon, is a symbolologist who is called in to investigate a peculiar murder in the Louvre. Symbolololology, incidentally, is I think one of those subjects they only teach at former polytechnics, like Klingon or horse studies.

Anyway, from this bloody beginning, Langdon is gradually drawn into a vast conspiracy which implicates the entire Catholic church but oddly involves no paedophelia whatsoever. Along the way he meets a Frenchwoman and a cripple who is English (and therefore evil). He also spends a great deal of time spaffing on about symbololololology, all of which finally comes to a head when the grand secret - that people have sex - is finally spilt.

Brown's prose is so apocalyptically awful that my eyelids nearly glued themselves shut in self-defence. You know the story behind The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, in which tragically-paralysed author Jean-Dominique Bauby was forced to blink out every letter as he dictated the manuscript? Well, Brown appears to have written Code in a similarly laborious manner, by banging his head against the keyboard for fourteen billion hours and then deleting anything he didn't recognise as a word while still concussed.

The characters, despite what is supposed to be a burgeoning romance between the leads, are as bland and uninteresting as a magnolia urinal.
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