Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Angels and Demons

I was always taught to avoid giving the oxygen of publicity to poor material. If something bad comes in for review don't review it unless the fact that it is bad will surprise the constituency and they need to be warned to avoid it.

I enjoyed the Da Vinci Code. It was my first Dan Brown book and the fact that every chapter ended with a sentence such as, 'What he saw made him scratch his eyes out with incredulity,' or words to that effect, didn't put me off what was a page-turner and a fun plot. It will make a great movie. Sort of Bond-lite.

But my friends who had been there before and said, 'Dan Brown only has one plot, they're all the same, leave it at that...' were ignored and I bought Angels and Demons and they were right. I award it the prize for being the worst written book I have ever finished. I turned the pages only in order to be certain that the mind-numbing tedium of the hero (a symbologist who can parachute using only a tarpaulin) getting the girl and saving the world was achieved with the maximum offence to the Catholic Church.

Favourite moment. There were so many but I did enjoy the observation that in one part of the Vatican the marble-floored corridors were covered in wall-to-wall carpet. A narrator who checks under the flooring has to be worth listening to.

By the way the book I've most hated which wasn't badly written was either:

Brown Out on Breadfruit Boulevard by Timothy Mo which began with a scene in which a man enjoyed a prostitute defecating on a glass table while he lay under it watching. Nice.


Murther and Walking Spirits by Robertson Davies in which the narrator dies on page one and spends the rest of the book being shown his life from three different points of view none of which passed very speedily.

1 comment:

Darren said...

mmm, nice layout, but it seems you've been spammed in some of the comments - u may want to change the comments thing to registeredt users only ;-)

My little boy read Angels first and then the Da Vinci code and liked them in that order. Although I was shocked at the way he matter-of-factly put in historical stuff in the fiction that wasn't historical, or at best getting dates way of line. Still led to a good conversation about 'reading' with my boy and how you should 'test' waht is written and not just accept it.