The Da Vinci Code
by Dan Brown
I did enjoy reading this book; I enjoyed all the history, the religion, the "reveals." The action was okay, but I wouldn't have read this book for just the action. (Brown is really kind of a hack when it comes to that sort of thing--his characters offer nothing in particular, the action is pretty run-of-the-mill--it's the information that gets me.)
Not that most of the information was new to me. For pity's sake, I took a senior course in college entitled "Arthurian Legends" so of course the Grail was covered, and the professor told us about most of the stuff that was in here: how the quest for the Grail was really a quest for Christ's bloodline; what the Knights Templar were really up to; how the Catholic church perpetuated sexism and why; symbolism up the yin yang. (Especially symbolism. I wrote a twenty-page paper just on archetypal numbers in Arthurian legend, so of course the pentagram came up.)
And of course, it leaves me wondering just how much of this book is based upon solid research, and how much is Brown's fancy, but it still opens up all kinds of possibilities to me. It was cool for me to get his perspective on the Nicean council, for example. But how much of it is true? I almost wonder enough to actually go research it. Almost.
And the thing that bothers me the most: Brown can take the plunge to consider that Christ was married, that he had at least one child, that he was a feminist. But how can being married and having a child prove that you are not divine? Brown was very clear in proving everything else, so how could he leave that one fallacy unexplored and untested, making some assumption on some belief of the old Catholic church somewhere: sex is evil, and having children makes you mortal? Ridiculous, considering the rest of the book. Oh well.