“The human mind has a primitive ego defense mechanism that negates all realities that produce too much stress for the brain to handle. It’s called Denial.”
I promised myself wasn’t going to read any Dan Brown novels anymore, mostly because the general plot is becoming repetitive and with so many great books out there I prefer staying away from possible disappointments. But when I was given a copy of Inferno, I decided I was going to give the Robert Langdon series another try. I was told this fourth book is slightly different from the first three and thus refreshing… Although now I’ve read it, I’m not completely positive I agree. Sure, Dan Brown is able to write an entertaining story with a fast pace and easy-to-read prose, but somehow I constantly had a feeling of a deja vu. I enjoyed the setting in Italy and learning more about the architecture in Florence and Venice, but the general plot itself is quite similar to the previous books. Professor Robert Langdon with his life in danger and a beautiful woman helping him trying to solve the puzzle before it’s too late, people chasing them continuously… This could be a short summary of any of the three books I’ve read in this series. (The only one that’s missing is The Lost Symbol, of which I actually own a copy but I’m not sure if I end up reading it.) I guess Inferno ended up being exactly what I feared; entertaining, but too commercial and repetitive.
Robert Langdon is back, and it doesn’t start of well for him. He wakes up in a hospital without knowing where he is and how he got there… Instead of at the Harvard campus back home, he finds himself now far away and in the middle of Italy. Robert doesn’t have much time to think about his situation, as a mysterious woman shows up at the hospital and tries to kill him. The beautiful doctor Sienna Brooks ends up saving him and soon she is helping him on his quest as well. It turns out that Robert was in Italy on a mission, and the answers he is looking for are found in the city of Florence where he woke up. He now both has to try and escape the people who are trying to hunt him down and try to solve the puzzle at the same time. A nearly impossible mission… What has Dante’s masterpiece to do with all of it? And can Robert really trust the people around him? The professor soon has to race to find the answers on time before it’s too late…
This book seems to be extremely popular and very successful commercially, but I don’t think I would end up recommending it to someone. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I hated reading Inferno. I was just expecting something better and not the same old general plot I’ve read before. The threat of a virus or an epidemic disease makes for a nice twist, but in the end it is yet again Robert Langdon trying to save the day. Dan Brown‘s prose is easy to read, but unless he starts writing a novel with a different plot, I think I will stay away from his other novels.