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****Book Review---The Da Vinci Code****

To: alt.magick
From: (Gnome d Plume)
Subject: ****Book Review---The Da Vinci Code****
Date: Sun, 21 Sep 2003 06:06:52 GMT

****The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
Doubleday, N.Y. 2003

Okay Indiana Jones fans, strap-in for the e-ticket ride. This best
seller has more plot twists, hooks and double crosses than three 
Dean Koontz books shuffled together (Brown has obviously studied
Koontz's bible on how to plot, pace and pivot in this genre). We start
off with a grizzly murder inside the Paris Louvre museum--the curator
no less---who arranges his dying body in the first of nearly fifty
secret symbols and codes our American professor hero and a French lady
police agent have to unravel. Not the least of the complications is
the lady agent herself who turns out to be the late curator's
granddaughter. The villains in this epic are a shadowy gang of loyal
Roman Catholics apparently working for Opus Dei. The secret "good
guys" are our old friends from *Holy Blood, Holy Grail* "The Priory of
Sion* who are desperately trying to save the old documents proving
Jesus and Mary Magdalene's Merovingian progeny. After 200 pages of
hairbreadth escapes in a scavenger hunt from one cryptic clue to the
next (like the *Celestine Prophecy* but more fun) we finally come to
the unveiling of the ultimate secret: The Holy Grail!
     Which turns out to be very similar to the ultimate revelation in
*Foucault's Pendulum*---although a bit more modern it is absolutely,
super-nationally French!
     Now all this is great fun and very skillfully hung together. But
Dan Brown hasn't made any friends in the Catholic Church with his very
negative take on Opus Dei. He even puts his story in a 'post John Paul
Holy See' where Opus Dei is about to lose its charter. He doesn't
disconnect Opus Dei from the psycho albino assassin Brother Silas
until the last few chapters of the book. On the other side of the
fraternal fence, he provides another *Holy Blood, Holy Grail*
promotional accolade for the French right-wing political cult that
calls itself "The Priory of Sion,* giving the strong impression that
all of their claims of ancient  linage and a succession of Grand
Masters (including da Vinci) from the Crusades to today are true.
If Dan Brown researched his book as well as he claims, why didn't he
read the Spring 1999 issue of *Gnosis* article by Robert Richardson
titled *The Priory of Sion Hoax*? He would have realized that the
Priory (1938) is actually more recently founded than Opus Dei (in
1928). Ah, well, it makes for a good story---and, in spite of the
Priory of Sion's political agenda, the probability of Jesus being
properly married is not at all far-fetched, and a line of secret Grail
Kings is also a possibility.
      These ideas and the mixture of fact and fiction Brown blends in
his thriller make *The DaVinci Code* more just an entertainment. It is
hoped that readers with more a casual interest in these themes will do
their own homework after reading the novel. ****

Good Magick!

Gnome d Plume

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