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Angels & Demons

by Dan Brown

Angels & Demons
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  • First Published:
    May 2000, 480 pages
    Jun 2001, 480 pages

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There are currently 56 reader reviews for Angels & Demons
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joe k (01/03/06)

i couldn't put it down... fast enough
I'm sure DB is an interesting guy and his passion for art must run deep... but I was truly embarrassed for him as I read Angels & Demons. This is not a novel a serious Catholic can respect. I'm not an expert on Rome, artwork or Galileo (heck, I'm not even sure if I spelled his name right), but I have a basic grasp of the Catholic faith, and a great respect for it. To earn a reader's willingness to suspend disbelief, an author has to have an inkling of how his characters might think. Brown clearly had no guidance from a Catholic clergyman -- or even probably from a knowledgable Catholic lay person, for that matter -- as he wrote.

The minimum amount of time priests-in-training spend studying philosophy, theology, Church history and other such subjects is six years. Those at the Vatican typically spend much longer. Brown, however, has them speaking at remedial levels of understanding, as though they just emerged from their first high school Catholic Moral Theology class. At one supposedly climactic point in the novel, he actually has a priest speaking "to" the very concept of science, as though it were some kind of being! At another, he has a Catholic priest having a supposed revelation from God that causes him to completely misinterpret the Scripture verse "thou art Peter, and on this rock I will build my Church." He calls the "most sacred" thing in the Basillica of St. Peter the tomb of St. Peter -- completely neglecting to mention Christ Himself in the tabernacle. Also, it doesn't help that Brown puts his story in a backdrop of half-truth, half-stuff-he-just-makes-up (e.g., only cardinals present in conclave can be elected pope). I could go on.

At least his recklessness in treating his subject matter didn't ruin good storytelling. There was very little of that, Brown uses a lot of cliches. He employs far too many predictable would-be "cliffhangers." And if a reader knows anything about foreshadowing, hardly anything in this book would come as a surprise.

Finally, I have a moral problem with the book, too, and would caution anyone serious about their relationship with God to consider it -- particularly my brothers and sisters in the Catholic Church. The book uses Christ (i.e. the Church) for strictly entertainment purposes, devoid of moral value -- so is a reader of the book using the notion of our Sacred Lord for a "cheap thrill," in a sense? Am I too serious? Think about it -- after all, God did take the initiative to, literally, write something in stone for mankind to look at. Is using God as a character in a suspense novel with scant or no moral value using God's name "in vein?" This thought did kind of make me squirm as I read, especially in light of the author's lack of both respect for and understanding of the Church. I'll offer you this comparison: C.S. Lewis first conceived the fine book "Screwtape Letters" to convey the thoughts of devils as they tried to tempt a man, and angels as they tried to guide him closer to God. After prayer, Lewis wrote the book only from the devils' perspective. His reason?: He had too great a respect for angels to even pretend he could know their wisdom. In other words, he had a sense that there was something too sacred to write about. In my own life, I would like to keep such a sense of the sacred, and that includes not (again) picking up a book that uses Christ (i.e. the Church) without a higher purpose than simply to entertain. Please, do think about it. May God bless!
Genora (07/25/05)

Dan Brown wishes he was Robert Langdon
I quite liked the DVC, but thought Angels and Demons was a pathetic, pedestrian, and basically stupid novel. The most glaring fault is that Langdon is constantly suprised, blown away, and struck dumb by the events of the book. It seems like every page he has a breakdown where his legs "turn to jelly" or he feels shock "in the pit of his stomach". If he really was a world-class scholar, he would have realised in the first stages of the story that he was going beyond his realm of experience. He is portrayed as reacting like a dim-witted fool.

Besides which, who else thinks that Brown desperately wishes he was Langdon?
ck (05/21/05)

deliver us from dan brown
"Angels and Demons" is possibly the worst book I've ever read. It's a work full of errors and misconceptions too numerous to mention. The dialog is stilted and unconvincing--does Langdon really have to explain to an Italian what the Swiss Guard are?

The villains are ethnic stereotypes and the supposed dichotomy or clash between science and faith is so outdated that it's hard to imagine Brown ever heard of quantum physics and the philosophers of the early 20th century. His character Langdon exists in a similar philosophical vacuum though we are expected to believe he teaches at Harvard.

Brown's lack of understanding of Catholicism and the Catholic Church and the farcical activities he imagines at the Vatican border on bigotry, as does his depiction of predictable stock villains, Middle Eastern assassins and terrorists, whom he describes as "dark and potent."

Then there's the plot--to say it is strained would be kind. Like the rest of the book, it's ridiculous (complete with gratuitous sex thrown in .....[text deleted by BookBrowse to remove plot spoiler].

The only good thing I can say about reading "Angels and Demons" is that it saved me from reading "The Da Vinci Code."
kimpete (04/13/05)

Angels & Demons
There were several things in the book that are a stretch to believe they could really happen (i.e., antimatter). Of course, this is what fiction is all about! It was fun to read - a great murder mystery - and, of course, timely given the recent event of the Pope's death. If you liked The DaVinci Code, there's no question you'll enjoy this as well.
Dave (02/24/05)

Probably one of the best books out there!

I don't think I put it down! It just keeps you on the edge of your seat all the way till the end... very well written and really gets the reader into the story! I loved it, I liked it more than the Da Vinci Code. So really if you wanna read a really good book read this one!
sarah (02/10/05)

Absolulty riviting book! Once I started reading it was non-stop. The sudden twists and turns of the novel leaves u "reading at the edge of your seat"!!!!!
luca (02/04/05)

I am reading Angels and Demons after the Davinci Code....and I found this book even more inaccurate and not well written than the code...

I am Italian, living in London, so I am reading the English version of Angls & Demons....It is my dtrong intention, once finished, to read it again and highlign line by line, sentence by sentece, in a exact way, all the rubbish of the book!

Few points to start and to make you think about, before sayinf that this book is a masterpice!

1) leonardo vetra is italian, he is a priest and he cannot adopt anyone...according to the italian law a singlle person cannot adopt...and according to the Roman Church laws a pries cannot be married and cannot have children...

2) Brown uses many times sentences in italian...95% of the time htey contain grammar ans spelling mistakes, or simpli they do not make sense at all......when Vittoria ask to her dad " Dad! Ask me what s the matter?" and once her dad aske the question, she answers " Atoms, Electrons, etc.!....." Well I assume that they speak to each other in italian,and if you traslate this in italian, it does not make sense! Mr Brown, for your next book could you please employ someone to check the exotic languages you make your characters speaking..... a simply disaster was made also in the Davinci code using the french!

3) Vatica City was born arond 1922 when Mussolini government reached an agreement with the pope! Before 1861 the Pope Kingdom extended for the hole centre italy! It is incredibly wrong when Robert Langdon excludes some of the monuments fro his search because they were outside Vatican the 17th century rome was all under the power of the pope!

4) Where is the italian police! THe swiss guards have not any power at all outside Vatican fact n too much power either inside!...they are pure ornament! In fact the italian police provides for most of the security of the Vatican and the pope! Try to look at some videos from S Peter can see only italian police! and it s totally unbeliveable that the italian police it s not used in the book! Mr borwn ! you cannot neglet this aspect just to make your story going!

5) as art expert Mt Langdon is very bad! I am not an art expert, but it took to me about 5 seconds to guess the 4 rivers fountain in Pzza Navona! Oh! btw i challange you to go to Pzza Navona at any time and find the square empty! When the 4th cardinal is killed is 11 pm....the square should packed with turists drinking and eating in the restaurant! But Mr Brown , after removing all the police from the plot, decides that even the turists can be an ostacle to his plot!

..Well I have s many other points but no too much time!

Readers! Open your eyes, do a bit of reserch if you want..

As a reader I m deeply annoied! This man is making a fortune writing books without bothering of do hte proper homeworks, his plots just doesnt work but he doesn t seem to care too much! But this is an offense to his public that are makeing him a rich men buying his books!..

If you disagree with me or want to discuss any aspect of the book!

Well is my email!

MS 32 (01/20/05)

This novel is a truly remarkable piece of literature. Mr. Brown simply knows what readers crave. He is a brilliant and inspiring author. I am young (14) yet I still enjoyed this book. Personally, I liked "Angels and Demons" moreso than "Da Vinci". It contains more adventure, less religious debate, and more mystery, in my opinion. I have finished reading three of Brown's four novels, and I am in the middle of the final one. Digital Fortress is equally as phenomenal of a story as "Da Vinci" and "Demons". The final book of Brown's four is "Deception Point" which is also awesome. I began the book last night, and could not put it down. I read approximately 65 pages when I surely should have been studying for my chemistry exam. Dan Brown is a great author. I can't wait for the third Robert Langdon novel to be released. He has dropped hints about the upcoming book. On his publisher's web site there is an amazing "treasure hunt/decoding/cryptology" task which ultimately gives another clue regarding the third Langdon novel. It takes plenty of time but is amazingly fun and grabbing. The internet is a necessity in the activity, to warn you.

Enjoy the site. Feel free to respond to this comment.

---MS 32

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