Ok, why am I even writing about this book? Because I started this blog to record the books I’ve read and my thoughts on them, so feel free to move along and read more insightful minds tear apart Dan Brown’s latest:)
Why should anyone read Inferno?
1–You have visited Florence and/or Istanbul and want to relive your trip through Robert Langdon’s run away from authorities and bad guys/girls.
2–You have not visited Florence and/or Istanbul, but have watched many travel shows about them and wish to expand your virtual touristing to novel reading.
3–You love Dante.
4–You hated Dante when forced to read excerpts from Inferno in high school and want to see if Dan Brown can make it interesting. Or give it a hatchet job.
5–You know Dante from a video game and thought you’d get your eyes off of the gaming screen and into some summer reading.
6–You have a secret lust for Robert Langdon/your humanities professor and his professorial sartorial know-how. Try not to picture Tom Hanks as Langdon if this is the case. Unless you’re into Hanks in that way, but, seriously, ew.
Confession: I loved Da Vinci Code. I did not love Inferno. So many have imitated Brown’s formula that his own work reads as an imitation of Dan Brown. I love Dante and Florence, want to visit Istanbul, secretly lust after Robert Langon and his professorial garb, and like a lazy read, but it took a bit for me to get into Inferno. I found myself paying attention to the writing and that’s always a bad sign–like watching for the microphone that keeps dipping into the shot during a suspenseful movie. That’s just not where the reader/viewer’s attention should be when a writer is trying to race you from one plot point to another. And there’s simply not enough Inferno in Inferno. Dante scholars may be relieved, but I expected more.
I skipped the Uffizi in Florence because I didn’t want to spend my limited time standing in line, but now I have a renewed pledge to go back and get my ticket in advance. My desire to visit Istanbul was increased, but with the events in Gezi Park last week, I’m nervous about the possibilities of such travel in the middle-range future.
On a related note (that will make more sense once you’ve read the book yourself), I heard a story on NPR this week about the US government using reproductive controls to manage the out-of-control mustang population out west. And today the New York Times confirmed that the Obama administration has the records of all phone calls from Verizon Business Services for a three month period. Cue the creepy music. Book your ticket to Florence. Get out your copy of Dante’s actual Inferno.