Abandon hope: Dan Brown is back

January 15, 2013

We had been enjoying the respite, but it now seems that Mr. Dan Brown has gone and written another book:

Brown, one of the world’s bestselling authors, will publish his fifth novel on 14 May, his publishers announced this morning. Langdon, a Harvard professor of “symbology” who sports a “charcoal turtleneck, Harris Tweed jacket, khakis, and collegiate cordovan loafers”, will be adventuring through the “heart of Europe” this time round, where he will be “drawn into a harrowing world centred on one of history’s most enduring and mysterious literary masterpieces”.

This ought to be good. And just what is the masterpiece that has had the misfortune to attract Mr. Brown’s attention? None other than Dante’s Inferno.

It is a canny (though, naturally, unhappy) choice: Inferno has an imposing reputation and a certain allure, though relatively few people have actually read it. Thus Mr. Brown gets them in the door, after which he can pretty much do what he wants. And I’ve no doubt he will, on both counts.

It is a hard thing to see a beloved book disfigured by a nincompoop, and quite a few mean-spirited witticisms occur to me. I am going to resist. It is probably too much to hope that the book will be a flop, so I content myself with this: I hope this is not the first volume in a trilogy.

6 Responses to “Abandon hope: Dan Brown is back”

  1. Filia Artis Says:

    Abandon all hope all ye who pass through these gates…or something to that effect.
    You should have used verse in your description, what you wrote was almost poetic and would have reminded me of the Divine Comedy.
    Which circle would we find Brown in? Would he be eating his own writing hand for all eternity?

    • cburrell Says:

      Well, Filia, a few possibilities for Brown’s punishments occurred to me, but they were all uncharitable, and I’ll keep them to myself.

      I like your suggestion though.


  2. I saw a mention of this a few days ago by someone who expressed the hope, bordering on expectation, that it would lead people to read Dante. Now there’s an optimistic man.

    • cburrell Says:

      I’ll say. I could see it leading to a bump in sales of Dante — if only by accident! (Brown’s book is actually titled Inferno). But I wouldn’t expect too much.

  3. esther Says:

    Unfortunately… yeah, Dan Brown is back. Here in the Philippines, a lot of young readers who are pagans believe in what he says… though his books are in the fiction section of bookstores. I hope they realize and discern well.

  4. cburrell Says:

    I hope so too. And however much I may complain about him messing with Dante, it is not half so noxious as when he meddled with the Gospels.


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