Inferno: A Tepid Dan Brown Novel

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The fourth book from the Robert Langdon series, as you probably already know, has its plot anchored on the 1st part of Dante Alighieri’s 14th century epic poem. I have always been fascinated with The Divine Comedy. It’s a world lit staple that one cannot simply ignore especially if one likes to guess which part of hell she’ll most likely fit, hehehe! I know I still have a paperback of this Alighieri classic somewhere in my bookshelf back home, probably right beside my tarot books.

Inferno is your typical Dan Brown mystery-thriller. More thrilling than mysterious in my opinion. The book managed to get my undivided attention until it reached to half, from there I didn’t mind if friends just told me the rest of the story. I finished it anyway, but only because of the “gates of hell” controversy concerning Manila.

It follows the author’s formula of intelligent protagonist joined by an intelligent and beautiful female sidekick with a secret. They will have to solve a mystery within 24hours while avoiding and outwitting assassins sent by an evil group involved in ancient conspiracies. Mystery gets solved leaving a trace of ethical questions for the characters and the readers.

Inferno is predictable. No shocking twist of events. I can’t think of a scene that made my eyes widen. I can’t remember a part that made my heart race. Well… There was a part that made me cringe. It involves Dr. Sienna Brooks– for me, the weakest and most boring among the four female sidekicks in the Langdon series.

But hey. I still liked the book! I still managed to enjoy Brown’s Inferno because I have a crush on Robert Langdon of the facts and factoids about literature/geography/history, it’s my least favorite among the 4 Robert Langdon books. I know most agree that The Lost Symbol is the worst, but Brown’s storytelling of Masonic legends is much entertaining than his description of Dante Alighieri’s obra. And I think the female sidekick here is a sissy. There were times when I wanted to yank her blond ponytail until.her scalp bleeds. Still, Inferno is a good read if you are after educational and entertaining bits. Should Dan Brown decide to write another Robert Langdon novel, I hope the plot can be as exciting as Angels & Demons with characters as engaging as those in The Da Vinci Code.

I cannot end this entry without saying what I think about the whole issue on Manila being dubbed as “gates of hell” in one of the pages of Inferno. Dan Brown is an author, a best selling one at that, surely he has every right to use figures of speech. And hello? The part of Manila described in the book isn’t BGC or Rockwell. It’s a freaking poor neighbohood where criminals abound. We know that there are also places in Manila that are shining in beauty, call them portals to heaven if you want, but let’s not deny that there are indeed dirty and disguting, hideous and vicious places in our beloved Manila.

Whew. Moving on, the pre-production of The Lost Symbol film is expected to start this year. I am assuming that we will have to.wait for 3-4 years for the film adaptation of Inferno to be released. The novel may be getting lacklustre reviews but I have no doubt that the film version of it will rake in money just like the book.

// listening to Lana Del Rey – Blue Velvet

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