After 5 years of silence, Dan Brown re-appears on the shelves of every book store. If you’ve been an avid fan of Robert Langdon’s impossible adventures, hold tight, because this new novel features our beloved American professor. And yeah, he finds himself in another pickle. But this time it is different. The title ‘Inferno’ is closely linked with Dante’s epic creation – ‘The Divine Comedy’. Maybe it wasn’t a bad idea to read the mandatory literature from school. Well, better late than never.
Not reading Dante’s Inferno is not a problem. There are little hints that may be overlooked but the most of the book, Dan Brown explains all of the connections between his story and the decent in hell of the Italian poet. After all it is the antagonist who is a passionately obsessed with ‘The Divine Comedy’ and its supposed message to the world. But let’s start from the beginning of Robert Langdon’s problems.
The Harvard professor wakes up in a hospital with a near fatal head wound with no memories of the past two days. There he is thrown in a hex in which a hit man – or in this case hit woman – is desperately trying to kill him. Thanks to the quickly thinking Sienna Brooks, a doctor who happens to be around Langdon when all hell breaks loose, he manages to escape, for now. But the most shocking discovery the professor makes is that he has miraculously teleported in Florence. Not only is he in the wrong time, but he is also in the wrong place. He has no recollection of leaving America but then again his brain draws a blank of the last two days. And if you think he can sit back and relax and think about the mess he has found himself in, think again.
A madman who believes that Dante’s work is a near future prophecy is set out to release a plague that in his head will cure the biggest problem humanity has – overpopulation. And it is up to Robert Langdon to save the day. But it’s not that easy. Even though the professor has his brain filled with knowledge of history, art and symbols he is confronted with a series of problems he can not overlook: the loss of his memories and a whole group of very influential and powerful enemies who seem to do everything to get their hand on Robert and his unusual possession. And help doesn’t seem to come from nowhere. Trust becomes a serious issue and the lost American doesn’t know who he can believe. Will he manage to be on time to save the world? Only one way of finding out – read the book.
Dan Brown has a very respectful look on the surroundings. As our heroes run and hide in the heart of Italy, the author never fails to attract attention to the historical and art monuments the intense action passes by. And when your protagonist is a writer of books on symbols and their different meanings, the reader receives all the information needed without looking up things on Wikipedia. It’s all part of the story and that makes the novel even more breathtakingly interesting.
’Inferno’ not only makes you want to travel the whole of Florence and retrace the steps of Langdon and Sienna but it also puts forward a lot of controversial questions. The problem with overpopulation is very real and it makes you re-think the values of humanity. Because, let’s face it, when a crisis in this degree appears it is human nature to hide behind denial. But as Dante said it is the darkest places in hell that are reserved for people who maintain their neutrality in times of moral crisis.
But don’t be scared. Even if the book is serious it only adds to its value as good literature. Dan Brown gives you an action-packed, sit-tight-and-hold-your-breath, makes-you-want-to-scream novel that will leave you pondering after you’ve turned the last page. And as always there is a plot twist which is just like a lightning bolt from a clear sky. So don’t try to guess what’s going on – you have no chance. So don’t waste any more time and grab ‘Inferno’. Also if you haven’t read Dante’s classic, it is high time to do it.