Angels & Demons

Mass Market Paperback | April 1, 2006

byDan Brown

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The explosive international thriller from Dan Brown, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Da Vinci Code.

Angels & Demons careens from enlightening epiphanies to dark truths as the battle between science and religion turns to war. This is the book that started it all: we meet Robert Langdon for the first time, caught up in a race against time to find an apocalyptic time-bomb, planted by an ancient secret society that has surfaced to carry out its ultimate threat: to destroy the Vatican.
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From the Publisher

The explosive international thriller from Dan Brown, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Da Vinci Code.Angels & Demons careens from enlightening epiphanies to dark truths as the battle between science and religion turns to war. This is the book that started it all: we meet Robert Langdon for the first time, caught up in a r...

Dan Brown is the bestselling author of Digital Fortress, Angels & Demons, Deception Point,and The Da Vinci Code.He lives in New England with his wife. Visit the author's website at www.danbrown.com.

other books by Dan Brown

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The Lost Symbol
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see all books by Dan Brown
Format:Mass Market PaperbackDimensions:736 pages, 7.5 × 4.12 × 1.5 inPublished:April 1, 2006Publisher:Pocket BooksLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1416524797

ISBN - 13:9781416524793

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Reviews

Rated 3 out of 5 by from Angels & Demons Every time the action picked up in this book, I had a serious adrenaline rush. My heart raced, my eyes frantically read line after line, and my hands automatically went to my mouth. I was totally engrossed in the story Dan Brown told, even though I had already seen the movie. Watching the movie before the book is very uncharacteristic of me, but I'm glad that it happened that way in this case. Reading the book cleared up a lot of unanswered questions for me, and the book was different enough from the movie to keep me gasping out loud at plot twists. For me, I was hooked along for the ride, and even though some might find his twists unbelievable or even predictable, I was just in it for the story and found myself completely absorbed. I appreciated the facts (or "facts") throughout the story that were presented to the reader about the Illuminati, Vatican City, etc. and I loved the feeling of being on the inside of solving a puzzle while racing against time. I appreciated Robert Langdon's character, and I'm so glad they cast Tom Hanks to play his character because even when I read The DaVinci Code years ago, Tom Hanks is always how I pictured Robert Langdon. Pretty damn intelligent, resourceful, and witty. Dan Brown can be pretty witty, too, and I found myself chuckling from time to time. I even enjoyed the general mechanics of this book--I liked the short chapters that kept me coming back for more. They made it easy to fly through the pages. I would look down maybe after a half hour or so into reading and be 150 pages further in the book. The "dun-dun-dunnn" moments at the end of pretty much each chapter had me flipping, too, even though I could understand how some might find that worthy of an eye-roll or two. My favorite part of the book, besides the adrenaline rushes, was how he bounced from one point of view to another without leaving the reader feeling disoriented. Rather, it had the opposite effect for me, clarifying everything by being able to watch the story unfold from all angles.
Date published: 2012-07-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Incredible I read the Dan Brown novels backwards instead of this one frist I decided on reading The Da Vinci Code first. The ending of this book really shocked me well I did have a few hints but always brushed it to the side. This book is a thrill ride for the reader with the different symbols and all the politics within the vatican. I enjoyed this book but I still feel that The Da Vinci Code is my favorite of the ones I have read so far.
Date published: 2011-06-14
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Pretty good... Found some of the science stuff a little hard to swallow. The ending went on for forever and a day, but not bad, as books go.
Date published: 2011-05-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Nice! I was looking for a fictional book which involved physics and my English teacher suggested it. I would have to say that it did not disappoint and I recommend everyone to read it at least once.
Date published: 2011-04-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Even more Brilliant!!! Once again Dan Brown does not disappoint! Like I wrote for The Da Vinci Code this story is great for those who enjoy conspiracy theories, as well as books with the thriller or mystery genre. It is also captivating, suspenseful and brilliant once again! I would have to say that I enjoyed reading this one more than The Da Vinci Code. There’s more action, more problems to solve and you’ll love it, trust me.
Date published: 2010-06-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Next time you're at the book store, and you think to yourself "I could never read a book like this," you're wrong. You'll love it. Trust me.
Date published: 2010-02-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Illuminating book The Illuminating book Angels and Demons by Dan Brown is a terrific action pact book. Robert Langdon, the main character, Harvard symbology professor who is sent on a wild journey to modern day Europe. On this adventure he faces the challenges of stopping an ancient cult armed with modern technology. This novel is full of violence and suspense. It truly displays a modern day battle between Catholicism and science. It is packed full of facts and theories about everything from religion to the creation of Earth. Brown is a genius with words. This book is perfect for all who love suspense and thrills. It is amazing! By: Thomas
Date published: 2009-11-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great! Angels and Demons, by Dan Brown is an amazingly interesting book. When someone is murdered from a Swiss Research facility, Robert Langdon is called from the United States to examine the symbol found. He discovers there is more to this mystery that meets the eye. The future of Vatican City lies in the hands of the Swiss Guard, Robert Langdon a Harvard symbolist ,as well as a scientist named Vittoria. Will they be able to stop everything before it is to late? It is a story readers will not be able to put down until the very end. Brittni
Date published: 2009-11-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely great! Words cannot describe how I felt about this book by the time I finished reading.
Date published: 2009-11-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So intense! kept you in suspence!! Wow, this was really really really great read! I could not put it down! Some of the parts were amazingly written, really wanted me to explore rome and find out more about the city and the art, I actually found myself on google trying to get a image on some of the churches that were described in the book. Honestly you must read this book! I cant wait till Dan Brown comes out with the lost symbol, his style of writing is amazing!!
Date published: 2009-07-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Enjoyable. I have not had the pleasure of reading the Da Vinci Code as of yet, but I must admit i really enjoyed Angels and Demons. Granted it wasn't a great literary masterpiece nor will it earn a place in history aside from being 'the other book the Da Vinci author wrote.' But it was well paced, the characters were enjoyable, and the story was creative and intriguing and I loved the twist at the end. All in all, a good, enjoyable read.
Date published: 2009-07-10
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Far-fetched but fun Sometimes if you are really hungry, even McDonald's tastes great. Reading this book was a little like eating at Mac's. It is filling but not quite tasty or satisfying. The book begins at a fast pace with Langdon being summoned in the middle of the night by a secret Swiss organization that dabbles in cutting edge scientific research. The book is quite a page-turner with many twists and turns as Langdon discovers more and more facets to the crisis. However, halfway through the novel, the events become ridiculously far-fetched to a point where it starts to resemble a comic book. Hey, I love comics but that's not why I am reading this. This had the immediate effect of destroying any of the suspense - anything could happen to rescue our heroes, right? A wandering UFO? The sudden appearance of Sasquatch? You get the picture. A bit of a surprise at the end is not enough to save the plot as you will see. Anyways, I am hoping the movie is better.
Date published: 2009-04-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Entertaining Move over The Da Vinci Code, this novel blows that one out of the water. Wish I would have read this one first since it actually takes place before. Couldn't put it down and was sad when it was over!
Date published: 2009-04-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it. I could not put this book down, loved it from the start.
Date published: 2009-03-05
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Ok The prequel to Da Vinci Code was okay. It was slow in the middle but was suspenseful in the beginning and the end. Overall it was ok . It was very similiar to Da Vinci Code but not as good.
Date published: 2009-01-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Hard to put down Everything written in this book was like, "zing, zing, zing' Every time you read past a chapter you'll be like, 'Holy ...." Awesome book to read.
Date published: 2008-08-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely Fantastic! I didn't want to put the book down! It was just great!
Date published: 2008-07-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from "A one-hit wonder!" The storyline and mix of action, thriller, science, religion, and romantic ingredients of a superb soup of a book!
Date published: 2008-03-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved it This book is a real nail bitter full of plots, thrilling chases and descriptive clues found in the colourful architecture of Roman Churches. I really enjoyed reading it and couldn't put it down.
Date published: 2007-11-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Could Not Put Book Down! Wow, this was an amazing book! Always keeps me wanting to read more, especially midway though when I literally could not put the book down! This has also heightened my interest in the history and culture in much of Rome and the rest of Europe. Definitely a good thriller!
Date published: 2006-10-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Read! Although this book took me a little bit to get into once the hunt started I was hooked! I would definitely recommend this book to anyone!
Date published: 2006-08-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from simply stunnung... wow!!! this book was probably the best book i ever read!!!!!!!!!! i will recommend this book to everyone.
Date published: 2006-08-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing!!! This book, is like I so aptly said before, amazing. I am not a very religious person, myself, and I absolutely loved it. It had me glued in chapter one. The book is filled with suspence, and there are suprises on basically every page. It may be a larger read, but i didn't give a dang. I had to pace myself, because i would read about 50 pages or more and thought I have to slow down.. It was so good that i even slowed down at the end, because i didnt want it to end.. I recomend it to anybody
Date published: 2006-08-11
Rated 4 out of 5 by from It was awesome! "Angels & Demons" dealt with issues that don't generally appeal to the public. Some may find it boring, some may find it offensive -- and others just simply don't take an interest. It was almost a like a history textbook entwined with art, science, and religion all in one. Opening with a terrific, attention-grabbing illustration, the pages following it only grab hold of your curiosity more and more as the story progresses. With the introduction of two main characters after the conflict is established, readers chase after them as they themselves race across Vatican City searching for a long-thought disbanded secret cult of scientists
Date published: 2006-08-10
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Pretty good. Having not read anything else by Dan Brown, I can't tell you how it compares to his other works. But I can tell you that this book was very good for the first three quarters, but then it seemed to go downhill fast. The writing style is hard to take for the length of the book. And by the three quarters mark, you're just waiting for the book to end because you've had enough of the story. But it keeps going. And going. And going. I think I was caught up with the fact that I had visited a lot of the locations mentioned in the book. If I didn't have that connection, I wonder if I might have put it down halfway through. It is an entertaining read, but that entertainment wears a bit thin by the end.
Date published: 2006-08-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Very Good I really liked Angels and Demons because I found it trilling and suspenseful. I think that Angels and Demons has a really good adventure that any adventurous person who loves books would really like. I think that Angels and Demons is better than The Da Vinci Code.
Date published: 2006-08-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from The best book by Dan Brown The first book I read by Dan Brown was the Da Vinci Code, and honestly I did not like the writing style very much. I was not wanting to read Angels and Demons, but my uncle gave me a copy for my birthday. I began to read it, and I was very surprised. It was significantly better than the Da Vinci Code. It was well written, full of great ideas. It was amazing and Im looking forward to reading more of Dan Brown's books
Date published: 2006-08-02
Rated 3 out of 5 by from A good summer read at the beach. Dan Brown writes a very interesting novel, once again working with the conspiracy theory and the church. The character Robert, is once again thrown into an almost unbelieveable situation where his involvement might determine whether good or evil wins. I was kept interested throughout the book, but honestly thought many parts were a bit too unrealistic. I knew that Dan Brown went a little to far with this one when I found no problem believing Da Vinci Code, but had a few problems with this one. Not so much the facts of the book, since there are not that many conspiracies like Da Vinci, but the believability of how the character's live through some of their experiences. If he had simply made the situation a bit more believable, a couple more maple leaf's would have been added to my review.
Date published: 2006-08-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Better then davinci code If you loved da vinci code, you'll love this book. Sends you on a non stop race with clues to the next part of the trail. Great book! Only the helicopter part in the ending was somewhat questionable.
Date published: 2006-07-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Couldn't put it down!! Was definitely one of the best books I have ever had the pleasure of reading. The character development is awesome and it kept me wanting more every time I finished a chapter. Can't wait for his next novel to come out!
Date published: 2006-07-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Tremendous (Better than Da Vinci This book was great. As a Christian reader, this book did not offend me at all so that should not be an excuse not to read the book. The book has a lot of action, suspense, and is a real page turner. It is highly recommended to any reader. A must read.
Date published: 2006-07-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Racing to the finish! This novel is a tour-de-force of heart-pounding action and ultimate twists and turns. After the first 20 pages, the reader is completely drawn into a world that seems to have deception at every turn. With the protagonist, the reader must race to figure out what will happen next, as many will die otherwise. Tastefully handled, and gripping in its description of action, this novel is a must read!
Date published: 2006-07-22
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Just change around a few names and presto... the d I read the da vinci code first, and found that this story (replace the names and locations) was exactly the same. I predicted the end based on my having read the Da vinci Code. Could easily have gone on living without reading this book.
Date published: 2006-07-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Read Dan Brown hits another one out of the park. His plot structure and ability to thrill and suspend your senses through descriptive storytelling leaves us not only satisfied with a great book but with questions about the history we take as a fact. The one reason I did not "Love It" was because the general plot seems like a template used in every one of his ficticious thrillers. If you liked "The Da Vinci Code" and other works from Dan Brown, this is the book for you.
Date published: 2006-07-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from AWESOME!!!!!!! THIS IS BETTER THAN THE DA VINCI CODE!!!! I couldn't put it down! It explains the war between religion and science in this fast-paced thriller.
Date published: 2006-07-17
Rated 3 out of 5 by from not great the story line was a bit over the top with too many twists for my liking,, but it did read easily and kept my attention, i was just dissappointed at the end becuase it didnt leave me feeling like i'd just read a great book,,
Date published: 2006-07-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Intense!...Very Intense! As most readers, I turned to Angels & demons after finishing the DaVinci Code, looking for that continuance. It was definately more than I had expected! Although I enjoyed the DaVinci Code, this book allowed me to experience what Dan Brown is really made of. I found it more intense, faster paced and way more descriptive! Truely a 5+ Star read, and a great way to move on from the Da Vinci code...Bravo Dan! Now I just need to find the Encore!!
Date published: 2006-07-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent Book With such vivid discriptions, Dan Brown makes it easy to visualize. His story is intriging and really makes you think.
Date published: 2006-07-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best I've read in quite some time! This book really captured something in me that kept me entangled from beginning to end! I travelled to Italy a few years ago and it was neat to see all of the landmarks again in a new light (I read the illustrated version).
Date published: 2006-07-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from another great read This was the second book i ready by Dan Brown, after the Da vinci Code. I just could not out it down. the story was very rich with details and could visualize the images to the very last detail. I read this book every moment i had. sadly i was done in 2 days...
Date published: 2006-07-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely amazing! A must read! A non-stop, action-packed journey with all the thrills and chills. Dan Brown is a master at holding your attention and not letting go. If you liked the Da Vinci Code be prepared for another unbeliveable adventure as you travel to Rome in the making of Angles and Demons!
Date published: 2006-07-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Can't put down! I could not put this book down. It is almost as good as The Da Vinci Code. I've recommended it to everyone!
Date published: 2006-06-21
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good Solid Read If you like the Da Vinci Code, you will reall like Angels & Deamons. More detail, more suspense, more guessing "who is it?". The end of the is a little over the top however and takes away from what else is a good relaxing read.
Date published: 2006-06-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Couldnt put it down The book was glued to my hands, as my eyes were glued to the words. Non stop action from the very first page to the very last, when you think it just could not get any better, you read the next chapter.
Date published: 2006-06-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely loved it! I've had the pleasure of reading Angels and Demons and the Da Vinci Code and I can say without a doubt that I enjoyed Angels and Demons better. Although, the first 100 or so pages are a bit slow the book gains full momentum and doesn't slow down one bit. I thought this book contained much more detail and allowed the reader to envision each detail as Langdon and Vetra race against time to save Vatican City and the Cardinals. If the rumours are true, I cannot wait to see this book make it to the big screen!
Date published: 2006-06-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely Great! Book was great, could not have asked for better and would tell everyone to read it go now lol just great!
Date published: 2006-06-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Hooked Until The Very End! A great book, full of adventure, suspense and fun facts. A great page turner for those of us who can easily get lost in a good book. Made me want to go back to Italy and explore the culture all over again. I highly recommened it.
Date published: 2006-06-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Superb!!!! Awesome!!!!! Angels and Demons is one of the most breath taking books that I have ever read. The plot is simply great and everything something unexpected happens, which is the beauty of this book. Infact I think that this book is better than the DaVinci Code.
Date published: 2006-06-07
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Disappointed After reading The Da Vinci Code, this book did not hold the same power. It seemed to drag on to long. I think if I had read this first, I would not have read The Da Vinci Code.
Date published: 2006-06-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Highly recommended reading I thouroughly enjoyed this book. I couldn't put it down. The only time I got a tiny bit disappointed was at the very end. After non stop action, the last chapter just seems to die. I still think it is worth reading. The descriptions that Dan Brown gives in the story makes you feel like you are actually in Rome right along with him.
Date published: 2006-06-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Two Thumbs Up, And A Big Toe!!! Personally i have never really been into thriller books, they have always seemed to bore me. But this book. It was so captivating. It is basically suspense throughout. It keeps you guessing. It makes you think. Everything isn't what you expect it to be. The way Dan Brown develops and evolves the characters to reveal more about themselves and add an interesting slant onto some things just make you want to keep reading. And the way he incorporates the artwork and sculptures into the story make it all that much more real. All in all it was a pleasure to read this book!
Date published: 2006-06-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing This book had to have taken a ton of hours thining up the concept and all the twists and turns you take just reading it. I couldn't put it down. You think you've got the storyline pegged but in just a few pages your taken through a maze with so many turns and curves. It was a well thought and written book. Recommend it as a great read to others.
Date published: 2006-06-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Better than the DaVinci Code This book was fantastic. The DaVinci Code was an excellent read, but in my opinion Angels & Demons was a far more entertaining thriller. The action never slows down, and it keeps you guessing right until the very end. Nothing is what it seems, I couldnt put it down. Well done Mr. Brown, two thumbs up.
Date published: 2006-05-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Exciting Read This is one of the most exciting books I have read for a while. It is interesting and exciting from beginning to end. It is really worth the read.
Date published: 2006-05-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I couldn't put it down! Dan Brown's "Angels & Demons" is as fast-paced and exciting as his "The Da Vinci Code". The intricacy of his plot and his attention to detail make for a thrilling, riveting read. Unexpected events, and twists and turns in the story keep you on your feet. This book is unstoppable!
Date published: 2006-05-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from THE BEST BOOK EVER This is the best book I have ever read in my life. And I Read A lot. I think that anyone that would like a thriller would love this book. Dan Brown has you guessing until the last moment at what will happen. Nobody could have guessed who the bad guy is until the end. I have recommened this book to my friends and they love it as well. I RECOMMENED THIS BOOK TO EVERYONE IN SEARCH OF A GREAT BOOK. Have Fun Reading!
Date published: 2006-05-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Couldn't put it down!! A fantastic read - what a brilliant author!
Date published: 2006-05-27
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Don't waste your money If you have read Da Vinci Code, then you have already read this book. The names may have changed, but the plot, characters and setting for the most part are the same. Not worth your time and money.
Date published: 2006-05-19
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Disappointed After reading The Da Vinci Code, this book did not hold the same power. It seemed to drag on to long. I think if I had read this first, I would not have read The Da Vinci Code.
Date published: 2006-06-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Highly recommended reading I thouroughly enjoyed this book. I couldn't put it down. The only time I got a tiny bit disappointed was at the very end. After non stop action, the last chapter just seems to die. I still think it is worth reading. The descriptions that Dan Brown gives in the story makes you feel like you are actually in Rome right along with him.
Date published: 2006-06-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Two Thumbs Up, And A Big Toe!!! Personally i have never really been into thriller books, they have always seemed to bore me. But this book. It was so captivating. It is basically suspense throughout. It keeps you guessing. It makes you think. Everything isn't what you expect it to be. The way Dan Brown develops and evolves the characters to reveal more about themselves and add an interesting slant onto some things just make you want to keep reading. And the way he incorporates the artwork and sculptures into the story make it all that much more real. All in all it was a pleasure to read this book!
Date published: 2006-06-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing This book had to have taken a ton of hours thining up the concept and all the twists and turns you take just reading it. I couldn't put it down. You think you've got the storyline pegged but in just a few pages your taken through a maze with so many turns and curves. It was a well thought and written book. Recommend it as a great read to others.
Date published: 2006-06-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Better than the DaVinci Code This book was fantastic. The DaVinci Code was an excellent read, but in my opinion Angels & Demons was a far more entertaining thriller. The action never slows down, and it keeps you guessing right until the very end. Nothing is what it seems, I couldnt put it down. Well done Mr. Brown, two thumbs up.
Date published: 2006-05-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Exciting Read This is one of the most exciting books I have read for a while. It is interesting and exciting from beginning to end. It is really worth the read.
Date published: 2006-05-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I couldn't put it down! Dan Brown's "Angels & Demons" is as fast-paced and exciting as his "The Da Vinci Code". The intricacy of his plot and his attention to detail make for a thrilling, riveting read. Unexpected events, and twists and turns in the story keep you on your feet. This book is unstoppable!
Date published: 2006-05-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from THE BEST BOOK EVER This is the best book I have ever read in my life. And I Read A lot. I think that anyone that would like a thriller would love this book. Dan Brown has you guessing until the last moment at what will happen. Nobody could have guessed who the bad guy is until the end. I have recommened this book to my friends and they love it as well. I RECOMMENED THIS BOOK TO EVERYONE IN SEARCH OF A GREAT BOOK. Have Fun Reading!
Date published: 2006-05-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Couldn't put it down!! A fantastic read - what a brilliant author!
Date published: 2006-05-27
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Don't waste your money If you have read Da Vinci Code, then you have already read this book. The names may have changed, but the plot, characters and setting for the most part are the same. Not worth your time and money.
Date published: 2006-05-19

Extra Content

Read from the Book

Chapter 1High atop the steps of the Great Pyramid of Giza a young woman laughed and called down to him. "Robert, hurry up! I knew I should have married a younger man!" Her smile was magic.He struggled to keep up, but his legs felt like stone. "Wait," he begged. "Please..."As he climbed, his vision began to blur. There was a thundering in his ears. I must reach her! But when he looked up again, the woman had disappeared. In her place stood an old man with rotting teeth. The man stared down, curling his lips into a lonely grimace. Then he let out a scream of anguish that resounded across the desert.Robert Langdon awoke with a start from his nightmare. The phone beside his bed was ringing. Dazed, he picked up the receiver."Hello?""I'm looking for Robert Langdon," a man's voice said.Langdon sat up in his empty bed and tried to clear his mind. "This...is Robert Langdon." He squinted at his digital clock. It was 5:18 A.M."I must see you immediately.""Who is this?""My name is Maximilian Kohler. I'm a discrete particle physicist.""A what?" Langdon could barely focus. "Are you sure you've got the right Langdon?""You're a professor of religious iconology at Harvard University. You've written three books on symbology and -- ""Do you know what time it is?""I apologize. I have something you need to see. I can't discuss it on the phone."A knowing groan escaped Langdon's lips. This had happened before. One of the perils of writing books about religious symbology was the calls from religious zealots who wanted him to confirm their latest sign from God. Last month a stripper from Oklahoma had promised Langdon the best sex of his life if he would fly down and verify the authenticity of a cruciform that had magically appeared on her bed sheets. The Shroud of Tulsa, Langdon had called it."How did you get my number?" Langdon tried to be polite, despite the hour."On the Worldwide Web. The site for your book."Langdon frowned. He was damn sure his book's site did not include his home phone number. The man was obviously lying. "I need to see you," the caller insisted. "I'll pay you well."Now Langdon was getting mad. "I'm sorry, but I really -- " "If you leave immediately, you can be here by -- ""I'm not going anywhere! It's five o'clock in the morning!" Langdon hung up and collapsed back in bed. He closed his eyes and tried to fall back asleep. It was no use. The dream was emblazoned in his mind. Reluctantly, he put on his robe and went downstairs.Robert Langdon wandered barefoot through his deserted Massachusetts Victorian home and nursed his ritual insomnia remedy -- a mug of steaming Nestlé's Quik. The April moon filtered through the bay windows and played on the oriental carpets. Langdon's colleagues often joked that his place looked more like an anthropology museum than a home. His shelves were packed with religious artifacts from around the world -- an ekuaba from Ghana, a gold cross from Spain, a cycladic idol from the Aegean, and even a rare woven boccus from Borneo, a young warrior's symbol of perpetual youth.As Langdon sat on his brass Maharishi's chest and savored the warmth of the chocolate, the bay window caught his reflection. The image was distorted and pale...like a ghost. An aging ghost, he thought, cruelly reminded that his youthful spirit was living in a mortal shell. Although not overly handsome in a classical sense, the forty-year-old Langdon had what his female colleagues referred to as an "erudite" appeal -- wisps of gray in his thick brown hair, probing blue eyes, an arrestingly deep voice, and the strong, carefree smile of a collegiate athlete. A varsity diver in prep school and college, Langdon still had the body of a swimmer, a toned, six-foot physique that he vigilantly maintained with fifty laps a day in the university pool. Langdon's friends had always viewed him as a bit of an enigma -- a man caught between centuries. On weekends he could be seen lounging on the quad in blue jeans, discussing computer graphics or religious history with students; other times he could be spotted in his Harris tweed and paisley vest, photographed in the pages of upscale art magazines at museum openings where he had been asked to lecture.Although a tough teacher and strict disciplinarian, Langdon was the first to embrace what he hailed as the "lost art of good clean fun." He relished recreation with an infectious fanaticism that had earned him a fraternal acceptance among his students. His campus nickname -- "The Dolphin" -- was a reference both to his affable nature and his legendary ability to dive into a pool and outmaneuver the entire opposing squad in a water polo match. As Langdon sat alone, absently gazing into the darkness, the silence of his home was shattered again, this time by the ring of his fax machine. Too exhausted to be annoyed, Langdon forced a tired chuckle.God's people, he thought. Two thousand years of waiting for their Messiah, and they're still persistent as hell.Wearily, he returned his empty mug to the kitchen and walked slowly to his oak-paneled study. The incoming fax lay in the tray. Sighing, he scooped up the paper and looked at it. Instantly, a wave of nausea hit him. The image on the page was that of a human corpse. The body had been stripped naked, and its head had been twisted, facing completely backward. On the victim's chest was a terrible burn. The man had been branded...imprinted with a single word. It was a word Langdon knew well. Very well. He stared at the ornate lettering in disbelief.Illuminati"Illuminati," he stammered, his heart pounding. It can't be...In slow motion, afraid of what he was about to witness, Langdon rotated the fax 180 degrees. He looked at the word upside down.Instantly, the breath went out of him. It was like he had been hit by a truck. Barely able to believe his eyes, he rotated the fax again, reading the brand right-side up and then upside down. "Illuminati," he whispered.Stunned, Langdon collapsed in a chair. He sat a moment in utter bewilderment. Gradually, his eyes were drawn to the blinking red light on his fax machine. Whoever had sent this fax was still on the line...waiting to talk. Langdon gazed at the blinking light a long time. Then, trembling, he picked up the receiver.Copyright © 2000 by Dan Brown

Editorial Reviews

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