The Da Vinci Code

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Overview

PREMIUM MASS MARKET EDITION

#1 Worldwide Bestseller—More Than 80 Million Copies Sold

As millions of readers around the globe have already discovered, The Da Vinci Code is a reading experience unlike any other. Simultaneously lightning-paced, intelligent, and intricately layered with remarkable research and detail, Dan Brown's novel is a thrilling masterpiece—from its opening pages to its stunning conclusion.

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Overview

PREMIUM MASS MARKET EDITION

#1 Worldwide Bestseller—More Than 80 Million Copies Sold

As millions of readers around the globe have already discovered, The Da Vinci Code is a reading experience unlike any other. Simultaneously lightning-paced, intelligent, and intricately layered with remarkable research and detail, Dan Brown's novel is a thrilling masterpiece—from its opening pages to its stunning conclusion.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Robert Langdon is a Harvard professor of symbology who can't stay out of trouble. Last seen in Angels and Demons (2000), this mild-mannered academic finds himself entangled in a deadly conspiracy that stretches back centuries. Visiting Paris on business, he is awakened at 2:00 a.m. by a call from the police: An elderly curator has been murdered inside the Louvre, and a baffling cipher has been found near the body. Aided by the victim's cryptologist granddaughter, Langdon begins a danger-filled quest for the culprit; but the deeper he searches, the more he becomes convinced that long-festering conspiracies hold the answer to the art lover's death.
From the Publisher
"Read the book and be enlightened."
The Washington Post Book World

“A pulse-quickening, brain-teasing adventure.”
People

“Thriller writing doesn't get any better than this.”
The Denver Post

“Blockbuster perfection.”
The New York Times

USA Today
A murder mystery set against a religious conspiracy theory involving Leonardo Da Vinci's paintings, Jesus, Mary Magdalene, their child and the Holy Grail, The Da Vinci Code mixes page-turning suspense with art history, architecture and religious history. — Ayesha Court
The Washington Post
Brown keeps the pace fast, the puzzles that lead to the Grail are exceedingly clever, and there is a flurry of surprises and betrayals before the mystery is finally solved. Whatever the reader makes of the religious theories put forth, Brown has a great deal of interest to say about the early days of Christianity, the influence of pagan religions on it and the legend of the Grail. He says the revelations about Jesus — not to be revealed here — have been whispered about for centuries, but have never overcome the opposition of organized Christianity. How much of this is fact and how much is fiction? Read the book and make up your own mind. — Patrick Anderson
The Boston Globe
'The Da Vinci Code' is a dazzling performance by Brown, a delightful display of erudition. Though his mini-lectures sometimes hijack the narrative, they're necessary to keep us informed and occasionally permit us to try to unravel puzzles with Langdon and Neveu. Brown delivers a crackling, intricate mystery, complete with breathtaking escapes and several stunning surprises. It's challenging, exciting, and a whole lot more. — Jim Fusilli
Patrick Anderson
Brown keeps the pace fast, the puzzles that lead to the Grail are exceedingly clever, and there is a flurry of surprises and betrayals before the mystery is finally solved. Whatever the reader makes of the religious theories put forth, Brown has a great deal of interest to say about the early days of Christianity, the influence of pagan religions on it and the legend of the Grail. He says the revelations about Jesus — not to be revealed here — have been whispered about for centuries, but have never overcome the opposition of organized Christianity. How much of this is fact and how much is fiction? Read the book and make up your own mind.
— The Washington Post
Ayesha Court
A murder mystery set against a religious conspiracy theory involving Leonardo Da Vinci's paintings, Jesus, Mary Magdalene, their child and the Holy Grail, The Da Vinci Code mixes page-turning suspense with art history, architecture and religious history.
— USA Today
Jim Fusilli
The Da Vinci Code is a dazzling performance by Brown, a delightful display of erudition. Though his mini-lectures sometimes hijack the narrative, they're necessary to keep us informed and occasionally permit us to try to unravel puzzles with Langdon and Neveu. Brown delivers a crackling, intricate mystery, complete with breathtaking escapes and several stunning surprises. It's challenging, exciting, and a whole lot more.
— The Boston Globe
Janet Maslin
… riddle-filled, code-breaking, exhilaratingly brainy.... In this gleefully erudite suspense novel, Mr. Brown takes the format he has been developing through three earlier novels and fine-tunes it to blockbuster perfection. Not since the advent of Harry Potter has an author so flagrantly delighted in leading readers on a breathless chase and coaxing them through hoops.
— The New York Times
Publishers Weekly
What if Jesus Christ had a tryst with Mary Magdalene, and the interlude produced a child? Such a possibility-yielding a so-called royal bloodline-provides the framework for Brown's latest thriller (after Angels and Demons), an exhaustively researched page-turner about secret religious societies, ancient coverups and savage vengeance. The action kicks off in modern-day Paris with the murder of the Louvre's chief curator, whose body is found laid out in symbolic repose at the foot of the Mona Lisa. Seizing control of the case are Sophie Neveu, a lovely French police cryptologist, and Harvard symbol expert Robert Langdon, reprising his role from Brown's last book. The two find several puzzling codes at the murder scene, all of which form a treasure map to the fabled Holy Grail, where proof of the Jesus bloodline supposedly can be found. As their search moves from France to England, Neveu and Langdon are confounded by two mysterious groups-the legendary Priory of Sion, a nearly 1,000-year-old secret society whose members have included Botticelli and Isaac Newton, and the conservative Catholic organization Opus Dei. Both have their own reasons for wanting to ensure that the Grail isn't found. Brown sometimes ladles out too much religious history at the expense of pacing, and Langdon is a hero in desperate need of more chutzpah. Still, Brown has assembled a whopper of a plot that will please both conspiracy buffs and thriller addicts. (Mar. 18) Copyright 2003 Cahners Business Information.
VOYA
When French police discover Harvard professor of symbology Robert Langdon's name hidden in a strange cipher found next to the body of a Louvre museum curator, he becomes their prime suspect for the brutal murder. The only person who believes that Robert is innocent is French cryptologist Sophie Neveu, who helps him escape from the police. While trying to elude capture, the two struggle to unravel the curator's mysterious message, only to find themselves caught between a centuries-old, secret European society and an extremely conservative, controversial branch of the Catholic Church, each of which is determined to possess the curator's secret, even if it means killing Robert and Sophie to get what they want. Brown's best-selling book, which features the hero from his earlier novel, Angels and Demons (Pocket Books, 2000), is an absolutely addictive thriller that blends fact and fiction with wonderfully creative results. The fascinating references in the plot to Da Vinci, the Knights Templar, the early history of the Catholic Church, and the Holy Grail might push some teens into researching these topics just to see what, if any, possible real historical basis there might be to Brown's story. Suspense-loving older teens, especially those with an interest in history or art, will definitely find this fast and furiously plotted thriller to be superior reading entertainment. VOYA CODES: 4Q 5P S A/YA (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses; Every YA (who reads) was dying to read it yesterday; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12; Adult-marketed book recommended for Young Adults). 2003, Doubleday, 454p., Ages 15 to Adult.
—John Charles
Library Journal
Robert Langdon, the Harvard symbologist from Brown's Angels and Demons, is back in this amazing sequel. In Paris for a lecture, Langdon is summoned in the middle of the night to meet the head of the French police at the Louvre. The museum's curator has been found dead in a secure section of the gallery, with a message by his body leading to a baffling series of clues hidden in the works of Leonardo da Vinci. In addition, the curator left a specific message to find Langdon. While the police think Langdon is their culprit, he teams up with a French cryptologist to uncover the truth about the hidden messages. The answers lead to discovery of a shocking historical fact, and certain people will do anything to keep it a secret. Brown solidifies his reputation as one of the most skilled thriller writers on the planet with his best book yet, a compelling blend of history and page-turning suspense. This masterpiece should be mandatory reading. Highly recommended for all public libraries. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 11/1/02.]-Jeff Ayers, Seattle P.L.
The New York Times
...riddle-filled, code-breaking, exhilaratingly brainy.... In this gleefully erudite suspense novel, Mr. Brown takes the format he has been developing through three earlier novels and fine-tunes it to blockbuster perfection. Not since the advent of Harry Potter has an author so flagrantly delighted in leading readers on a breathless chase and coaxing them through hoops. Janet Maslin
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780307474278
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 3/31/2009
  • Series: Robert Langdon Series , #2
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 608
  • Sales rank: 28,466
  • Product dimensions: 4.42 (w) x 7.36 (h) x 1.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Dan Brown
Dan Brown is the bestselling author of Digital Fortress, Angels & Demons, and Deception Point. He lives in New England.

Biography

Novelist Dan Brown may not have invented the literary thriller, but his groundbreaking tour de force The Da Vinci Code -- with its irresistible mix of religion, history, art, and science -- is the gold standard for a flourishing genre.

Born in Exeter, New Hampshire in 1964, Brown attended Phillips Exeter Academy (where his father taught), and graduated from Amherst with a double major in Spanish and English. After college he supported himself through teaching and enjoyed moderate success as a musician and songwriter.

Brown credits Sidney Sheldon with jump-starting his literary career. Up until 1994, his reading tastes were focused sharply on the classics. Then, on vacation in Tahiti, he stumbled on a paperback copy of Sheldon's novel The Doomsday Conspiracy. By the time he finished the book, he had decided he could do as well. There and then, he determined to try his hand at writing. His first attempt was a pseudonymously written self-help book for women co-written with his future wife Blythe Newlon. Then, in 1998, he published his first novel, Digital Fortress -- followed in swift succession by Angels and Demons and Deception Point. None the three achieved commercial success.

Then, in 2003, Brown hit the jackpot with his fourth novel, a compulsively readable thriller about a Harvard symbologist named Robert Langdon who stumbles on an ancient conspiracy in the wake of a shocking murder in the Louvre. Combining elements from art, science, and religion, The Da Vinci Code became the biggest bestseller in publishing history, inspiring a big-budget movie adaptation and fueling interest in the author's back list. In 2009, Brown continued Robert Langdon's esoteric adventures with The Lost Symbol, a tale of intrigue that, like its predecessors, takes readers on a wild ride into the sinister mysteries of the past.

Good To Know

  • Brown revealed the inspiration for his labyrinthine thriller during a writer's address in Concord, New Hampshire. "I was studying art history at the University of Seville (in Spain), and one morning our professor started class in a most unusual way. He showed us a slide of Da Vinci's famous painting "The Last Supper"... I had seen the painting many times, yet somehow I had never seen the strange anomalies that the professor began pointing out: a hand clutching a dagger, a disciple making a threatening gesture across the neck of another... and much to my surprise, a very obvious omission, the apparent absence on the table of the cup of Christ... The one physical object that in many ways defines that moment in history, Leonardo Da Vinci chose to omit." According to Brown, this reintroduction to an ancient masterpiece was merely "the tip of the ice burg." What followed was an in-depth explanation of clues apparent in Da Vinci's painting and his association with the Priory of Sion that set Brown on a path toward bringing The Da Vinci Code into existence.

  • If only all writers could enjoy this kind of success: in early 2004, all four of Brown's novels were on the New York Times Bestseller List in a single week!

    In our interview with Brown, he shared some of his writing rituals:

    "If I'm not at my desk by 4:00 a.m., I feel like I'm missing my most productive hours. In addition to starting early, I keep an antique hourglass on my desk and every hour break briefly to do push-ups, sit-ups, and some quick stretches. I find this helps keep the blood -- and ideas -- flowing.

    "I'm also a big fan of gravity boots. Hanging upside down seems to help me solve plot challenges by shifting my entire perspective."

  • Read More Show Less
      1. Hometown:
        New England
      1. Date of Birth:
        June 22, 1964
      2. Place of Birth:
        Exeter, New Hampshire
      1. Education:
        Phillips Exeter Academy 1982; B.A., Amherst College, 1986; University of Seville, Spain
      2. Website:

    Read an Excerpt

    1

    Robert Langdon awoke slowly.

    A telephone was ringing in the darkness--a tinny, unfamiliar ring. He fumbled for the bedside lamp and turned it on. Squinting at his surroundings he saw a plush Renaissance bedroom with Louis XVI furniture, hand-frescoed walls, and a colossal mahogany four-poster bed.

    Where the hell am I?

    The jacquard bathrobe hanging on his bedpost bore the monogram:

    HOTEL RITZ PARIS.

    Slowly, the fog began to lift.

    Langdon picked up the receiver. "Hello?"

    "Monsieur Langdon?" a man's voice said. "I hope I have not awoken you?"

    Dazed, Langdon looked at the bedside clock. It was 12:32 A.M. He had been asleep only an hour, but he felt like the dead.

    "This is the concierge, monsieur. I apologize for this intrusion, but you have a visitor. He insists it is urgent."

    Langdon still felt fuzzy. A visitor? His eyes focused now on a crumpled flyer on his bedside table.

    THE AMERICAN UNIVERSITY OF PARIS
    proudly presents
    An evening with Robert Langdon
    Professor of Religious Symbology, Harvard University

    Langdon groaned. Tonight's lecture--a slide show about pagan symbolism hidden in the stones of Chartres Cathedral--had probably ruffled some conservative feathers in the audience. Most likely, some religious scholar had trailed him home to pick a fight.

    "I'm sorry," Langdon said, "but I'm very tired and--"

    "Mais monsieur," the concierge pressed, lowering his voice to an urgent whisper. "Your guest is an important man."

    Langdon had little doubt. His books on religious paintings and cult symbology had made him a reluctant celebrity in the art world, and last year Langdon's visibility had increased a hundred-fold after his involvement in a widely publicized incident at the Vatican. Since then, the stream of self-important historians and art buffs arriving at his door had seemed never-ending.

    "If you would be so kind," Langdon said, doing his best to remain polite, "could you take the man's name and number, and tell him I'll try to call him before I leave Paris on Tuesday? Thank you." He hung up before the concierge could protest.

    Sitting up now, Langdon frowned at his bedside Guest Relations Handbook, whose cover boasted: SLEEP LIKE A BABY IN THE CITY OF LIGHTS. SLUMBER AT THE PARIS RITZ.

    He turned and gazed tiredly into the full-length mirror across the room. The man staring back at him was a stranger--tousled and weary.

    You need a vacation, Robert.

    The past year had taken a heavy toll on him, but he didn't appreciate seeing proof in the mirror. His usually sharp blue eyes looked hazy and drawn tonight. A dark stubble was shrouding his strong jaw and dimpled chin. Around his temples, the gray highlights were advancing, making their way deeper into his thicket of coarse black hair. Although his female colleagues insisted the gray only accentuated his bookish appeal, Langdon knew better.

    If Boston Magazine could see me now.

    Last month, much to Langdon's embarrassment, Boston Magazine had listed him as one of that city's top ten most intriguing people--a dubious honor that made him the brunt of endless ribbing by his Harvard colleagues. Tonight, three thousand miles from home, the accolade had resurfaced to haunt him at the lecture he had given.

    "Ladies and gentlemen . . ." the hostess had announced to a full-house at The American University of Paris's Pavillon Dauphine, "Our guest tonight needs no introduction. He is the author of numerous books: The Symbology of Secret Sects, The Art of the Illuminati, The Lost Language of Ideograms, and when I say he wrote the book on Religious Iconology, I mean that quite literally. Many of you use his textbooks in class."

    The students in the crowd nodded enthusiastically.

    "I had planned to introduce him tonight by sharing his impressive curriculum vitae, however . . ." She glanced playfully at Langdon, who was seated onstage. "An audience member has just handed me a far more, shall we say . . . intriguing introduction."

    She held up a copy of Boston Magazine.

    Langdon cringed. Where the hell did she get that?

    The hostess began reading choice excerpts from the inane article, and Langdon felt himself sinking lower and lower in his chair. Thirty seconds later, the crowd was grinning, and the woman showed no signs of letting up. "And Mr. Langdon's refusal to speak publicly about his unusual role in last year's Vatican conclave certainly wins him points on our intrigue-o-meter." The hostess goaded the crowd. "Would you like to hear more?"

    The crowd applauded.

    Somebody stop her, Langdon pleaded as she dove into the article again.

    "Although Professor Langdon might not be considered hunk-handsome like some of our younger awardees, this forty-something academic has more than his share of scholarly allure. His captivating presence is punctuated by an unusually low, baritone speaking voice, which his female students describe as 'chocolate for the ears.''

    The hall erupted in laughter.

    Langdon forced an awkward smile. He knew what came next--some ridiculous line about "Harrison Ford in Harris tweed"--and because this evening he had figured it was finally safe again to wear his Harris tweed and Burberry turtleneck, he decided to take action.

    "Thank you, Monique," Langdon said, standing prematurely and edging her away from the podium. "Boston Magazine clearly has a gift for fiction." He turned to the audience with an embarrassed sigh. "And if I find which one of you provided that article, I'll have the consulate deport you."

    The crowd laughed.

    "Well, folks, as you all know, I'm here tonight to talk about the power of symbols . . ."

    *
    • *

    The ringing of Langdon's hotel phone once again broke the silence.

    Groaning in disbelief, he picked up. "Yes?"

    As expected, it was the concierge. "Mr. Langdon, again my apologies. I am calling to inform you that your guest is now en route to your room. I thought I should alert you."

    Langdon was wide awake now. "You sent someone to my room?"

    "I apologize, monsieur, but a man like this . . . I cannot presume the authority to stop him."

    "Who exactly is he?"

    But the concierge was gone.

    Almost immediately, a heavy fist pounded on Langdon's door.

    Uncertain, Langdon slid off the bed, feeling his toes sink deep into the savonniere carpet. He donned the hotel bathrobe and moved toward the door. "Who is it?"

    "Mr. Langdon? I need to speak with you." The man's English was accented--a sharp, authoritative bark. "My name is Lieutenant Jerome Collet. Direction Centrale Police Judiciaire."

    Langdon paused. The Judicial Police? The DCPJ were the rough equivalent of the U.S. FBI.

    Leaving the security chain in place, Langdon opened the door a few inches. The face staring back at him was thin and washed out. The man was exceptionally lean, dressed in an official-looking blue uniform.

    "May I come in?" the agent asked.

    Langdon hesitated, feeling uncertain as the stranger's sallow eyes studied him. "What is this is all about?"

    "My capitaine requires your expertise in a private matter."

    "Now?" Langdon managed. "It's after midnight."

    "Am I correct that you were scheduled to meet with curator of the Louvre this evening? "

    Langdon felt a sudden surge of uneasiness. He and the revered curator Jacques Saunière had been slated to meet for drinks after Langdon's lecture tonight, but Saunière had never shown up. "Yes. How did you know that?"

    "We found your name in his daily planner."

    "I trust nothing is wrong?"

    The agent gave a dire sigh and slid a Polaroid snapshot through the narrow opening in the door.

    When Langdon saw the photo, his entire body went rigid.

    "This photo was taken less than an hour ago. Inside the Louvre."

    As Langdon stared at the bizarre image, his initial revulsion and shock gave way to a sudden upwelling of anger. "Who would do this!"

    "We had hoped that you might help us answer that very question. Considering your knowledge in symbology and your plans to meet with him."

    Langdon stared at the picture, his horror now laced with fear. The image was gruesome and profoundly strange, bringing with it an unsettling sense of deja vu. A little over a year ago, Langdon had received a photograph of a corpse and a similar request for help. Twenty-four hours later, he had almost lost his life inside Vatican City. This photo was entirely different, and yet something about the scenario felt disquietingly familiar.

    The agent checked his watch. "My captain is waiting, sir."

    Langdon barely heard him. His eyes were still riveted on the picture. "This symbol here, and the way his body is so oddly . . ."

    "Positioned?" the agent offered.

    Langdon nodded, feeling a chill as he looked up. "I can't imagine who would do this to someone."

    The agent looked grim. "You don't understand, Mr. Langdon. What you see in this photograph . . ." He paused. "Monsieur Saunière did that to himself."

    2

    One mile away, the hulking albino named Silas limped through the front gate of the luxurious brownstone residence on Rue la Bruyere. The spiked cilice belt that he wore around his thigh cut into his flesh, and yet his soul sang with satisfaction of service to the Lord.

    Pain is good.

    His red eyes scanned the lobby as he entered the residence. Empty. He climbed the stairs quietly, not wanting to awaken any of his fellow numeraries. His bedroom door was open; locks were forbidden here. He entered, closing the door behind him.

    The room was spartan--hardwood floors, a pine dresser, a canvas mat in the corner that served as his bed. He was a visitor here this week, and yet for many years he had been blessed with a similar sanctuary in New York City.

    The Lord has provided me shelter and purpose in my life.

    Tonight, at last, Silas felt he had begun to repay his debt. Hurrying to the dresser, he found the cell phone hidden in his bottom drawer and placed a call to a private extension.

    "Yes?" a male voice answered.

    "Teacher, I have returned."

    "Speak," the voice commanded, sounding pleased to hear from him.

    "All four are gone. The three sénéchaux . . . and the Grand Master himself."

    There was a momentary pause, as if for prayer. "Then I assume you have the information?"

    "All four concurred. Independently."

    "And you believed them?"

    "Their agreement was too great for coincidence."

    An excited breath. "Excellent. I had feared the brotherhood's reputation for secrecy might prevail."

    "The prospect of death is strong motivation."

    "So, my pupil, tell me what I must know."

    Silas knew the information he had gleaned from his victims would come as a shock. "Teacher, all four confirmed the existence of the clef de voûte . . . the legendary keystone."

    He heard a quick intake of breath over the phone and could feel the Teacher's excitement. "The keystone. Exactly as we suspected."

    According to lore, the brotherhood had created a map of stone--a clef de voûte . . . or keystone--an engraved tablet that revealed the final resting place of the brotherhood's greatest secret...information so powerful that its protection was the reason for the brotherhood's very existence.

    "When we possess the keystone," the Teacher said, "we will be only one step away."

    "We are closer than you think. The keystone is here in Paris."

    "Paris? Incredible. It is almost too easy."

    Silas relayed the earlier events of the evening . . . how all four of his victims, moments before death, had desperately tried to buy back their godless lives by telling their secret. Each had told Silas the exact same thing--that the keystone was ingeniously hidden at a precise location inside one of Paris's ancient churches--the Eglise de Saint-Sulpice.

    "Inside a House of the Lord," the Teacher exclaimed. "How they mock us!"

    "As they have for centuries."

    The Teacher fell silent, as if letting the triumph of this moment settle over him. Finally, he spoke. "You have done a great service to God. We have waited centuries for this. You must retrieve the stone for me. Immediately. Tonight. You understand the stakes."

    Silas knew the stakes were incalculable, and yet what the Teacher was now commanding seemed impossible. "But the cathedral, it is a fortress. Especially at night. How will I enter?"

    With the confident tone of man of enormous influence, the Teacher explained what was to be done.

    *
    • *
    When Silas hung up the phone, his skin tingled with anticipation.

    One hour, he told himself, grateful that the Teacher had given him time to carry out the necessary penance before entering a house of God. I must purge my soul of today's sins. The sins committed today had been Holy in purpose. Acts of war against the enemies of God had been committed for centuries. Forgiveness was assured.

    Even so, Silas knew, absolution required sacrifice.

    Pulling his shades, he stripped naked and knelt in the center of his room. Looking down, he examined the spiked cilice belt clamped around his thigh. All true followers of The Way wore this device--a leather strap, studded with sharp metal barbs that cut into the flesh as a perpetual reminder of Christ's suffering. The pain caused by the device also helped counteract the desires of the flesh.

    Although Silas already had worn his cilice today longer than the requisite two hours, he knew today was no ordinary day. Grasping the buckle, he cinched it one notch tighter, wincing as the barbs dug deeper into his flesh. Exhaling slowly, he savored the cleansing ritual of his pain.

    Pain is good, Silas whispered, repeating the sacred mantra of Father Josemaria Escriva--the Teacher of all Teachers. Although Escriva had died in 1975, his wisdom lived on, his words still whispered by thousands of faithful servants around the globe as they knelt on the floor and performed the sacred practice known as "corporal mortification."

    Silas turned his attention now to a heavy knotted rope coiled neatly on the floor beside him. The Discipline. The knots were caked with dried blood. Eager for the purifying effects of his own agony, Silas said a quick prayer. Then, gripping one end of the rope, he closed his eyes and swung it hard over his shoulder, feeling the knots slap against his back. He whipped it over his shoulder again, slashing at his flesh. Again and again, he lashed.

    Castigo corpus meum.

    Finally, he felt the blood begin to flow.

    From the Hardcover edition.

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    Introduction

    The following questions are intended to enhance your discussion, spotlight memorable passages, and make your reading experience of The Da Vinci Code even livelier.

    Read More Show Less

    Foreword

    1. As a symbologist, Robert Langdon has a wealth of academic knowledge that helps him view the world in a unique way. Now that you’ve read The Da Vinci Code, are there any aspects of life/history/faith that you are seeing in a different light?

    2. Langdon and Teabing disagree as to whether the Sangreal documents should be released to the world. If you were the Grand Master of the Priory of Sion, would you release the documents? If so, what do you think their effect would be?

    3. What observations does this novel make about our past? How do these ideas relate to our future?

    4. Other than his fear of being framed for murder, what motivates Langdon to follow this perilous quest? Do his motivations change?

    5. The novel’s “quest” involves numerous puzzles and codes. Did you enjoy trying to solve these puzzles along with the characters? Did you solve any of the puzzles before the characters did?

    6. If you could spend a day in any of the places described in this novel, where would it be, and why? The Louvre? Westminster Abbey? Rosslyn Chapel? The Temple Church? Somewhere else?

    7. Historian Leigh Teabing claims the founding fathers of Christianity hijacked the good name of Jesus for political reasons. Do you agree? Does the historical evidence support Teabing’s claim?

    8. Has this book changed your ideas about faith, religion, or history in any way?

    9. Would you rather live in a world without religion…or a world without science?

    10. Saunière placed a lot of confidence in Langdon. Was this confidence well-placed? What other options might Saunière have had? Did Saunière makethe right decision separating Sophie from the rest of her family?

    11. Do you imagine Langdon should forgive Teabing for his misguided actions? On the other hand, do you think Teabing should forgive Langdon for refusing to release the Sangreal documents?

    12. Does the world have a right to know all aspects of its history, or can an argument be made for keeping certain information secret?

    13. What is interesting about the way this story is told? How are the episodes of the novel arranged and linked? In your discussion, you might want to identify where the turning points in the action are where those moments are after which everything is different. Did you anticipate them?

    14. What is the novel's theme? What central message or idea links all the other components of the novel together?

    15. For most people, the word “God” feels holy, while the word “Goddess” feels mythical. What are your thoughts on this? Do you imagine those perceptions will ever change?

    16. Will you look at the artwork of Da Vinci any differently now that you know more about his “secret life?”

    Read More Show Less

    Reading Group Guide

    1. As a symbologist, Robert Langdon has a wealth of academic knowledge that helps him view the world in a unique way. Now that you've read The Da Vinci Code, are there any aspects of life/history/faith that you are seeing in a different light?

    2. Langdon and Teabing disagree as to whether the Sangreal documents should be released to the world. If you were the Grand Master of the Priory of Sion, would you release the documents? If so, what do you think their effect would be?

    3. What observations does this novel make about our past? How do these ideas relate to our future?

    4. Other than his fear of being framed for murder, what motivates Langdon to follow this perilous quest? Do his motivations change?

    5. The novel's "quest" involves numerous puzzles and codes. Did you enjoy trying to solve these puzzles along with the characters? Did you solve any of the puzzles before the characters did?

    6. If you could spend a day in any of the places described in this novel, where would it be, and why? The Louvre? Westminster Abbey? Rosslyn Chapel? The Temple Church? Somewhere else?

    7. Historian Leigh Teabing claims the founding fathers of Christianity hijacked the good name of Jesus for political reasons. Do you agree? Does the historical evidence support Teabing's claim?

    8. Has this book changed your ideas about faith, religion, or history in any way?

    9. Would you rather live in a world without religion or a world without science?

    10. Saunière placed a lot of confidence in Langdon. Was this confidence well-placed? What other options might Saunière have had? Did Saunière make the right decision separating Sophie from the rest of her family?

    11. Do you imagine Langdon should forgive Teabing for his misguided actions? On the other hand, do you think Teabing should forgive Langdon for refusing to release the Sangreal documents?

    12. Does the world have a right to know all aspects of its history, or can an argument be made for keeping certain information secret?

    13. What is interesting about the way this story is told? How are the episodes of the novel arranged and linked? In your discussion, you might want to identify where the turning points in the action are where those moments are after which everything is different. Did you anticipate them?

    14. What is the novel's theme? What central message or idea links all the other components of the novel together?

    15. For most people, the word "God" feels holy, while the word "Goddess" feels mythical. What are your thoughts on this? Do you imagine those perceptions will ever change?

    16. Will you look at the artwork of Da Vinci any differently now that you know more about his "secret life?"

    Read More Show Less

    Customer Reviews

    Average Rating 4.5
    ( 3885 )
    Rating Distribution

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    (170)

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    See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 3897 Customer Reviews
    • Posted February 21, 2009

      more from this reviewer

      A real page turner!

      There's nothing more I like about a book than its ability to make me want to keep reading and reading. Honestly, there was no good stopping point. I would stop then quickly skim the first line of the next chapter and before I know it, I've read into two more chapters. Very entertaining and enjoyable from beginning to end. Loved it!

      44 out of 53 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Posted March 11, 2009

      The Da Vinci Code: The truth behind the code

      When I took the decision of sitting down and read the book it was because of the high recommendations that it had received from all my friends and teachers. I myself am not much of a reader, but as soon as I started reading the book I just couldn't let go of it. After reading this book I can certainly say that Dan Brown is a true genius.
      The Da Vinci code is a masterpiece. It's one of those books that are unique and that are always going to be a must read. It starts out with a murder case, but it isn't your typical case of finding out who it is, Dan Brown is sure of leaving more than evidence towards the true secret behind this murder case that has more behind it than just a guilty assassin. I assure you that throughout the whole journey that the protagonist Robert Langdon and Sophie Nevue undergo you will feel the tension and the passion for finding out the secret that Da Vinci has left for us. You will feel nervous, you will feel sad and disappointed when you can't find out the secret and you will utter satisfaction, you will end up with an open mouth. It has all the characteristics of a mystery/adventure novel that will make you enjoy this book as if you're Robert of Sophie themselves. I'm certain that you won't be able to think about anything else when you're not reading the book. Besides all this incredible characteristics it also has a small dose of love between the 2 main characters, that throughout the whole book you can see the obvious chemistry that exist between them.
      So for all those readers who like the unexpected, this is your book, when you're sure that that's the guy, or that they have solved the mystery, I assure you, you will be wrong, the truth will blow your mind. One of the things that I most enjoyed was the fact that several things were happening at the same time with different characters, the author gives you just the amount of information about what's happening with one character to leave you hooked, and then will go and tell you in the next chapter what's happening with the other characters and ALSO LEAVE YOU HOOKED! so you won't be able to stop reading you will read faster and faster, holding your breath to the sudden twists the book takes, and be breathless by the end of it. Although Dan Brown's literature as a whole may not be very good, it is apt for many ages and great to be read as a fictional fun book that will leave you with a sweet taste of mouth. When finishing the Da Vinci code you will want to read more of Dan Brown, The Da Vinci Code is an amazing book and I dare rate it without a doubt a 5 star book. What's great about Dan Brown is that he doesn't stop his masterpiece here he continues his extravagant writing in books like Angels and Demons, Digital Fortress, and Deception point, so I can say without a doubt that Dan Brown is one of top authors of this age with a creativity that is worth being turned into a book.

      30 out of 40 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Posted January 6, 2012

      Totally Unexpected

      To be honest, reading a book in my free time never hit the top of my "to do" list. The DaVinci Code by Dan Brown made me want to read more. From this one book, I realized that Dan Brown could transport you to the world of the Holy Grail.

      The way the book flowed made it seem like the story took place over a few days. In reality, Dan Brown has written a 489-page book over the course of 24 hours.

      Honestly, there weren't many times when I could say, "I should stop reading if I want to get enough sleep." Every page was filled with action-packed scenes, puzzles, and interesting insights.

      There were some things I didn't like about the book, however. Throughout the book, Dan Brown used French words in the dialogue. He doesn't include a glossary--well, not in the paperback edition, at least--and sometimes I have to skip over the French words or use my imagination to figure out what they mean. Also, the descriptions of the Louvre, for instance, seem like they come out of a travel brochure. Honestly, I didn't need to know every single detail of the Louvre because I saw it on the Internet before.

      You should read The DaVinci Code if you have an interest in codes and puzzles, conspiracies, and mystery. Dan Brown does an excellent job of explaining his ideas, up to the point where a teenager can understand. This is what I like about Dan Brown. He is able to captivate his audience with controversial topics while reminding us that his books are fiction.

      I highly recommend this book to people of all ages, and I hope that you'll enjoy this book as much as I did.

      22 out of 26 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted February 23, 2004

      The best thing about this book.....

      isn't even the book!!!! its these funny reviews! thankyou to the people who've softly criticized brown's misrepresentation of fact, and then providing names to books that may reveal some facts. I dont know the facts, and i may never, but ill do some reading. As for the few that broke blood vessels in their heads writing reviews, who i noticed wrote more than one review, sometimes with less words or more words, who totally blasted brown, get over it. The book is fiction and should be treated so, just like your friggin bible. If brown believes the speculations he brought forth in this book to be true, then let him be. who are you to criticize him, especially you religious people who believe in god. the idea of god is a speculation. oh yea, thats right, its all about faith. Yea, and Rand al'Thor IS the Dragon Reborn and the Millenium Falcon DID blow up the Death Star, in a galaxy, far, far away!! and the Matrix has you!

      16 out of 48 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Posted June 12, 2012

      I Also Recommend:

      Great Book, Great Movie. I love this story.

      Great Book, Great Movie. I love this story.

      14 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Posted June 6, 2012

      I Also Recommend:

      This book is awesome! Couldn't put it down.

      This book is awesome! Couldn't put it down.

      14 out of 19 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Posted August 14, 2010

      more from this reviewer

      I Also Recommend:

      amazing book

      this book trilogy aka known as the robert langdon trilogy seriously is amazing from the very begining to the very end dan brown blows that evil twilight author outta the water

      14 out of 19 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted April 9, 2007

      Dan Brown Doesn't have the right facts!

      An enjoyable book but Dan Brown has twisted the facts about Christianity in this book. If you look at the real evidence, you would find that the New Testament is true and that Jesus was never married.

      14 out of 37 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted August 23, 2009

      I Also Recommend:

      The hoax from the 50's

      I don't know which is worse, Brown's writing or the fact that he based the book on something that was proven to be a total hoax. It boogles the mind that Brown stands behind the material as factual when there is direct evidence that story was a hoax. If you do any real background research, you'll find out quickly that the Priory of Scion was an organization created by 3 Frenchmen in the 1950's. The individuals who pulled this prank freely admit they did this as a joke and never expected it to go so far. Enter Dan Brown, a second class writer who falls for a previously disclosed hoax. I cannot believe that so many people (mainly Americans) bought right in to an openly fabricated story. On top of the story being completely fictional, the writing style is dreadful. Do yourself a favor and read something by a legitimate writer, you'll be better entertained.

      12 out of 32 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted August 28, 2007

      Mindless and misleading, but addictive,

      This book is a page turner. But: ... As you read this nonsense, you'll feel more and more like an idiot. You'll go on because of cliff-hangers at every chapter close, and intertwining story lines at key moments. ...Unfortunately, many, maybe most, of Brown's 'facts' and 'history' are inventions or half-truths. So there is absolutely zero learned from this read.... In fact, there's less than zero, because you'll walk off with wrong ideas..... Brown needn't parade fiction as fact. That's a disservice to the reader and also to Brown's profession, which should not add to the world's misconceptions, even where the goal is entertainment.

      10 out of 37 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Posted January 5, 2013

      Too many error information in this book. Please clarify that yo

      Too many error information in this book.
      Please clarify that your book is just a fiction so it will not mislead as historical facts by readers.
      For a fictional novel, it's a nice story.

      5 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted March 17, 2013

      Bad

      Boring, sacreligious, nonsensical, blasphemous crap.

      4 out of 20 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Posted April 7, 2011

      Could not put it down!

      This novel was very well written it was so intruiging that i would find myself staying up late at night reading it. Its quite enjoyable to attempt to solve the puzzles before the characters do in the book, if one is into that sort of thing. Also many twists and turns in the plot line i did not see coming. Over al, highly recommended!

      4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Posted December 8, 2009

      more from this reviewer

      The Da Vinci Code

      This book was recommended to me and I thought that Dan Brown created a genius story. THE DA VINCI CODE had a very good flow in literature and had many twists that were unpredictable. One of the twists that I loved was when Remy was really working with Aringarosa. Brown showed interesting detail and the main topic was very addicting and I found it hard to put the book down. At first, I thought this novel was boring, but then the conflict came up and I was caught up in the action. Brown has a way to describe things very efficiently. He changes the point of view to show how each character feels about what is going on. There was a point in the story when I thought that it had been concluded, but action started to pour out and I soon realized I was wrong. What really caught my attention in this book was that it never seemed to drag on with only one topic. Events kept happening right after each other and that seemed to make THE DA VINCI CODE so amazing. Brown probably shouldn't recommend this story to religious Christians because it really was against it almost too much. I wouldn't recommend it to younger kids because of the maturity level. I, however still found it very captivating and I felt lost in the words in THE DA VINCI CODE. Overall, I could honestly say this has been one of my favorite books of all time.

      4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted December 8, 2009

      THE DA VINCI CODE. BY DAN BROWN

      The Da Vinci Code is a gripping adventure story. I especially enjoy how Dan Brown starts the book. I was recommended to read this book by a friend of mine. Brown goes very in-depth and doesn't miss a single detail. Quite frankly, I wish he had written more. I also must say this. If you read this book, you must read the prologue. It sets up the entire story. When I first heard of this story, I was skeptical about reading it. Then one of my friends recommended it to me and I decided to read it. I am now glad that I did. It made me feel smart and even want to study some of Da Vinci's artwork a little harder each time I see it. He did drag on in some parts, so it's not one of those books where there's a shooting or fight every other page. But there's still plenty of action. I very highly recommend reading The Da Vinci Code.

      4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted February 25, 2013

      I've never read a book quite this good. I never wanted to put th

      I've never read a book quite this good. I never wanted to put this book down when reading it. I would always try to put it down, and then
      i'd end up reading forty more pages. A lot of people disagree with the facts that are in this book, but the book is still amazing. I don't care 
      who you are, you will definitely enjoy this book

      3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Posted February 22, 2013

      Highly Recommend.

      He has done it AGAIN!!!! Congrats.

      3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Posted March 3, 2010

      It's ok.

      I might be one of the few who didn't like this one too much.


      It started out great, but then devolved into a bunch of boring-ness. I wanted to gouge my eyes out or finish the book ASAP by the end.

      3 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Posted December 8, 2009

      more from this reviewer

      Da Vinci Code

      Do not judge THIS book by its cover!

      When I started The Da Vinci Code I was pulled in from the instant action. Exciting sequences and twists kept me attached most of the time. Mixed with descriptive words, details, and great dialouge, I, at times, felt like I was in the book. Although the book was suspenseful and exciting, sometimes the pages dragged on leaving me confused. I like the characters Brown used. They were creative and witty. The Da Vinci Code has a great plot and an interesting climax.
      This book is not recommended for religious christans who would be offended by its content or young children because of its content/maturity level. This book would leave some hanging while leaving others with confusion and wonder.
      Overall, The Da Vinci Code is a great book for anyone. :)

      3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted November 29, 2006

      Lukewarm about 'Da Vinci'

      Is it possible to give this book a middling rating rather than go to one extreme or another? Sure. Here's why: For starters, the book is in fact a page turner. Once I started reading it I didn't want to stop. Why? Because every chapter leaves you hanging on the edge waiting for the next step in the adventure. While that is effective at keeping a reader involved, it also left me feeling like I was being strung along and that the pay-off couldn't measure up to the expectation. I was right. It didn't. 'The Da Vinci Code' is altogether entertaining, and subsequently altogether forgettable. It's actually been over a year since I read the book and if it hadn't been for the movie refreshing my memory a bit, I would have forgotten most of the major plot points by now. The only parts that stuck with me were Dan Brown's antagonistic flogging of Christian doctrine without any real basis for the wild claims he was making, and the image of an ascetic albino murderous monk. Silas was much more memorable than any of the protagonists. Oh, I also enjoyed the descriptions of Rosslyn Chapel, although that is mostly because I am interested in anything dealing with Scottish history. That's about it. The characters are mostly forgettable because Brown moves so quickly through the story that there is no time for development. If you MUST read something by Dan Brown, 'Angels and Demons' is better. Better plot progression, more vivid locations, more exciting climax, more bewildering plot twists, and a little less sacrilegious, although even more abrasive toward Catholicism, particularly the Vatican. Characters remain on the shallow side. If you choose to buy either of Brown's Langdon series books, get the illustrated editions. I might not have even bothered to read them without the pictures...they add to the story immensely. Having said all that, I will probably read Brown's next Langdon novel. I am curious what he is going to do with Freemasonry. Perhaps he will also take time to give Robert Langdon some backstory and provide him with a few friendly human links that extend beyond the scope of the manic plot and his arcane life of academia.

      3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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