Blurb: (Video Trailer)
When world-renowned Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon is summoned to a Swiss research facility to analyze a mysterious symbol — seared into the chest of a murdered physicist — he discovers evidence of the unimaginable: the resurgence of an ancient secret brotherhood known as the Illuminati… the most powerful underground organization ever to walk the earth.
The Illuminati has surfaced from the shadows to carry out the final phase of its legendary vendetta against its most hated enemy… the Catholic Church.
Langdon’s worst fears are confirmed on the eve of the Vatican’s holy conclave, when a messenger of the Illuminati announces he has hidden an unstoppable time bomb at the very heart of Vatican City. With the countdown under way, Langdon jets to Rome to join forces with Vittoria Vetra, a beautiful and mysterious Italian scientist, to assist the Vatican in a desperate bid for survival.
Embarking on a frantic hunt through sealed crypts, dangerous catacombs, deserted cathedrals, and even to the heart of the most secretive vault on earth, Langdon and Vetra follow a 400-year old trail of ancient symbols that snakes across Rome toward the long-forgotten Illuminati lair… a secret location that contains the only hope for Vatican salvation.
An explosive international thriller, Angels & Demons careens from enlightening epiphanies to dark truths as the battle between science and religion turns to war…
Review: (Video review)
This is another highly controversial and very intriguing novel involving the Catholic Church by Dan Brown. This time we follow Langdon and Vittoria Vetra, as they try to unveil clues that will lead them to priests that have been kidnapped during Vatican Conclave, as well as a bomb that needs disarming. Finding it hard to stay ahead, they find some of the priests too late, each marked by one of the illuminati branding irons. In the spirit of Langdon he is chased across Rome and solves riddles with religious facts, which I found very intriguing and kept my focus until the end.
Message & Moral
The moral of the story is to save the Vatican, which is a good message, however it didn’t feel as grand as saving an ideology or the entire world, or fated love. It was an exciting race against time so that Langdon could disarm the bomb, but I couldn’t get myself to feel too excited about the outcome. I found the facts of the story, fictional or real, more exciting than my desire to know how the story was going to end.
Creatures & Environment
Langdon is a well explained and much loved character, however he didn’t have any extra quirks after having gotten to know him in The Da Vinci Code. Vittoria was also a straightforward character who you would expect to meet in this situation and wasn’t very exciting. However, saying that, their personalities were well thought out and explained. The best performance I believe is from Silas, who is the albino man with his innocent mind, manipulated to kill Langdon in the name of the Lord. He is well explained and you can feel his every agony.
Captivation & Continuity
The chase was captivating and the fact that it didn’t end happily ever after for all of the priests added to the seriousness of Langdon’s task. At one point I was not sure if Langdon would also join them in death, when he got locked up in the Vatican Secret Archives. The symbolism also adds to the depths of the story and keeps you hooked to the last page.
Language & Flow
The language is as in The Da Vinci Code, factual and not very inventive, yet well-formed.
T.M. Caruana’s Philosopher’s Stone Award