Dan Brown: Inferno
Thrilling, compelling and exhilarating.
A captivatingly entertaining novel gripping the reader with Brown’s identifiable burning hot pace, following Langdon in his quest through Florence, Venice and Istanbul in his attempts to prevent a scientist’s world-altering plan to deal with global overpopulation.
Langdon awakes in a hospital bed suffering from amnesia with several days missing from his memory. With his most reliable tool and a part of his psyche gone, he has to trust Sienna Brooks, a blonde doctor with a brilliant mind and equally brilliant acting ability. The only clues they have to go on is Langdon’s fleeting visions of a grey-haired woman remonstrating to “seek and ye shall find” and a digitally altered faraday pointer of Botticelli’s Map of Hell.
The villain is a reckless scientist, Bertrand Zobrist, who has a staggering intellect and he has grown tired of the powerful refusing to act on the exponential growth of the human race, which leads to Zobrist taking on the role as the saviour of humanity. The book opens with his death leaving behind his gifts to the world. A mystifying video and his invention to tackle overpopulation.
In the vivid and changing landscapes, Langdon is once again an impeccable guide in these historic cities with his close analysis of a plethora of: paintings, literature, buildings and sculptures which provides crucial information that help to decrypt clues on the location of Zobrist’s unknown invention. The Map of Hell and Divine Comedy are used as inspiration in Zobrist’s work and they also hold the clues to help Langdon’s attempts to unravel his plan.
Langdon’s questions his trust in everyone the deeper the story cascades into a hellish nightmare, ominously similar to Dante’s path in Inferno, as he tries to uncover how to locate Zobrist’s invention through deciphering clues hidden in works that fascinated the antagonist. Brown seamlessly brings several characters together as everyone’s differing roles in the story are brought to light and the consequences of their actions and inaction are pivotal in building to a scintillating crescendo as the climax to this thrilling journey nears its conclusion.
Readers of Brown’s books will no doubt enjoy his continued use of conspiracy theories to create a riveting novel as well as Langdon demonstrating his expertise encompassing: art history, iconography and symbology. Langdon uses all of his skills to decipher cryptic messages in artwork and literature in another difficult quest. Inferno is skilfully written and there are twists, turns and unexpected revelations which leaves its readers glued to this fiery fast adventure until the finale.