Inferno – Book Review

Dan Brown's Inferno - Cover Page

Dan Brown’s Inferno – Cover Page

With Dan Brown’s ‘Inferno’, I set a new personal record – it has taken me about 6 months to read through the novel. This beats my previous record of over 3 months for ‘The Lost Symbol‘ which, not surprisingly, is again a Dan Brown novel. The point is his novels are not longer the fast paced, page turners any longer.

This latest novel featuring Professor Robert Langdon starts off with the usual premise – A violent death, followed by a cryptic message/object with the professor in an exotic foreign location. There is one change though in the novel structure – Professor Robert Langdon is affected with short-term memory loss, complicating the whole scenario. Then follows the chase, that we are so used to by now, that goes through Florence, Venice and climaxes at Istanbul. Dan Brown throws in the usual dose of cryptic messages, symbols, paintings and old monuments generously. There is also the usual damsel in distress helping our protagonist in the race to save the world from a new megalomaniac who has devised some sinister plan of his own. Unfortunately, the book isn’t a page turner. The reading gets strenuous and the likeness of the plot progression to the author’s earlier works does not help either.

It’s hard but to ignore that Dan Brown has created this structure for his ‘Robert Langdon’ novels which has become monotonous. What was a novelty with ‘Da Vinci Code‘ and ‘Angels & Demons‘ has become a bore with ‘The Lost Symbol‘ and ‘Inferno’. It would be best for Dan Brown to come out of this ‘Da Vinci Code‘ structure, at least for a while, and give a novel in a different setting with different characters; Robert Langdon too needs a long overdue vacation.

The novel is available only in the hardcover edition in the Indian subcontinent with a cover price of INR 750, but widely available at a discounted price of around INR 300!   I don’t get the rationale behind not bringing out a lower priced paperback edition which has a bigger market in here.

This novel is strictly for die-hard Dan Brown aficionados who can read through a novel which has a plot similar to his previous books and not feel disheartened by it. It would not be a miss if you give this novel a skip. Just pray the next Dan Brown novel is different and would be worth waiting for.


~ by Jayanthan Ravi on September 30, 2013.

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