Brown's 'Inferno' puts Langdon through his paces
By Brian Truitt
Published: Saturday, May 18, 2013, 6:21 p.m.
Dan Brown's globetrotting symbologist, known for his tweed jacket, Mickey Mouse watch and penchant for getting into international incidents, is back for a matter of life, death and Dante.
“Inferno” throws Robert Langdon into the fire for an Italian adventure inspired by Dante Alighieri's “The Divine Comedy.” The heroic effort is a better one than Brown's last novel, “The Lost Symbol,” and comes close to the mega-popular “The Da Vinci Code” in terms of entertaining tension.
The new novel is probably the closest Brown will ever get to his version of “The Hangover”: Langdon wakes up in a Florence hospital with a bad case of retrograde amnesia after a gunshot wound to the head and a strange object connected to Dante's Inferno. The cops, a private security firm and an assassin are targeting him, so, with the help of a secretive female doctor, Langdon goes on the run to figure out the missing two days of his life.
After three books — and two Tom Hanks movies — readers know Langdon, his smarts and his personality well, and Brown takes the opportunity to focus on building up the hero's supporting cast, which is the strongest yet in the series. Dante himself even gets some face time.
Don't know much about Dante? Brown has you covered, giving a rundown of important aspects of the Italian poet and his works.
Brown has a definite formula in place for putting Langdon through his paces, but watching him go through hell is about as close as a book can come to a summertime cinematic blockbuster.
Brian Truitt is a staff writer for USA Today.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Oppression prompted writer to leave Iran
- Hoffman’s latest is vivid love story
- ‘Thirty Girls’ author looks at tale’s origin
- Novel in verse pits memory versus chronology