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Topic: The Lost Symbol- discussion for those who have FINISHED the book

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Subject: The Lost Symbol- discussion for those who have FINISHED the book
Date Posted: 9/21/2009 9:15 PM ET
Member Since: 10/30/2006
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Last Edited on: 10/21/09 7:36 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/22/2009 9:25 AM ET
Member Since: 9/8/2009
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You mean the ending, or the whole book in general?

To me, the ending was like, um, the Masons went to great lengths to protect the secret location of.... a regular Bible?  Which has probably crumbled to dust by now anyway?  And cannot possibly be retrieved even if you know what/where it is?  The "secret" was actually not the Bible itself, but that the Masons interpreted the Bible to mean "man is Godlike" -- but that interpretation wasn't what was hidden in the cornerstone.  I thought, "Langdon is swallowing this?"   (Idea for next book: Robert Langdon vs. the Gideons.)    Maybe I'm not getting it either!

Have to say I enjoyed the book a lot, and there were some great, "I did NOT see THAT coming!" moments.

Date Posted: 9/22/2009 10:51 AM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2005
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Last Edited on: 1/9/11 8:49 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/22/2009 11:17 AM ET
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OK, then- that makes three of us. I missed the father/son thing until it was revealed, but I got the Washington Monument as soon as it came up. I felt like there was so much that was forced and contrived in this one. The liquid oxygen? The back ups of the research? A CIA special ops pilot can't control the helicopter which gives a way for the bad guy to die without anyone doing it? I also kept comparing it to the DaVinci code in that there were puzzles that you had to solve but in the DVC, a normal human being could solve them with a little push. In this one, every puzzle had to be explained why a certain solution was a solution. The whole thing felt like "I'm smarter than you and let me show you how stupid you are for not knowing enough to solve this puzzle".

Cindy, do you remember the comment I made in the other thread that I then asked you to delete just in case it was a spoiler? Now that we can talk about it, back when DVC came out, there was a scavenger hunt of sorts on Dan Brown's website that used clues from the dust jacket of the DVC to solve a teaser about the plot of his next book. The book was to be called The Solomon Key and was to have focused on the sculpture in front of the CIA called Kryptos that no one has ever been able to crack. As soon as I saw the character's last name in this as Solomon and the CIA turned up, I figured it was the same book and the title had been changed. Now I'm not so sure. It almost seems like there was a different plot involving the CIA and Washington DC and a Mason named Solomon but somebody somewhere decided that THAT book couldn't be published and we got this pieced together make no sense thing instead. Wouldn't it have been much more fun if it had indeed revolved around the CIA and their sculpture and secrets they were hiding from the world? Instead we get some crap about infinite wisdom and then..... murkiness.

And here's some other things that bothered me: traffic in DC is hell. You're telling me a CIA helicopter couldn't catch up with a cab 5 blocks away? What was the whole point of going to the Botanical Garden? Thermal imaging that detects a heat presence 7-10 minutes after and it detects it on the conveyor belt? C'mon! What was the purpose of the whole dome of the Capitol at dawn?

I was very disappointed. I want to read the book he wanted to write and somebody wouldn't let him. There's no other explanation why 6 years ago he had the clues for the next built into the DVC dust jacket and then it takes 6 years to publish and this is what we get. Hmm...

Date Posted: 9/22/2009 11:30 AM ET
Member Since: 9/8/2009
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> I'm not sure I really bought all the son's anger

I didn't really get the "choose wealth or wisdom" deal.  There was no question of actually giving up his wealth, as I understood it.   Then he went on to plot for years how to get his hands on a pyramid that had already been offered to him outright.  It seems like it would have been a lot easier to go home and say, "Look, it's me!  I don't know who that guy was killed in prison, I escaped in the confusion but I was too scared to come forward!  And good news, I changed my mind about that whole pyramid thing, I'll take it now, thankyouverymuch!"  I guess you just have to go with psycho dude / roid rage.

I also expected Noetic Science to play into the latter part of the plot at some point.   I kept expecting Katherine to use the power of her mind to free herself or rescue Langdon, which might have been silly, but I expected it to do something after all the build-up in the early part of the book.

Date Posted: 9/22/2009 12:09 PM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2005
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Last Edited on: 1/9/11 8:49 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 9/22/2009 3:30 PM ET
Member Since: 9/8/2009
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Oh my, I though Digital Fortress was just awful.  He should not write about computers.

Every mention of computer mumbo-jumbo in this book made me cringe, because he doesn't know the difference between an IP address and a firewall and a database.  WHY throw these terms around when it just makes you look stupid?  WHY not ask some average IT guy to read it and point out your mistakes?  I almost laughed out loud that we were supposed to be impressed with Sato's high-tech laptop because it was enclosed in a shiny briefcase, and it  was "complicated-looking". 

Date Posted: 9/23/2009 8:18 PM ET
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Last Edited on: 1/9/11 8:48 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/23/2009 8:53 PM ET
Member Since: 12/11/2008
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I just finished it today and had to force myself to finish.  I was overall pretty disappointed.  Most of my issues have been mentioned in previous posts so I will not rehash them.  However my biggest pet peeve was the fake "killing" of Langdon.  It seemed manipulative and overly dramatic just for drama's sake.  I hate being manipulated and overall the plot seemed sort of formulaic.  I am glad I got it form the library!  Jordan

Date Posted: 9/24/2009 6:41 AM ET
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Last Edited on: 1/9/11 8:48 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/24/2009 9:21 AM ET
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Last Edited on: 11/2/09 5:38 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/24/2009 10:21 AM ET
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>  However my biggest pet peeve was the fake "killing" of Langdon.


I actually really liked this.  Partly because I was worried there was going to be some nonsense about Langdon's soul hovering around, and instead it turned out to be a plausible explanation (plausible within the context of the book anyway).  It made sense for him to have this contraption sitting around, because he had used it on Solomon; and it made sense that some sort of extraordinary experience would have been needed for Solomon to reveal his secrets; and also that he was willing to kill langdon even before everything was solved, because he knew he could bring him back if he needed to.

I also felt it was very formulaic, and it seemed like every character in TLS had a direct counterpart in Da Vinci Code.  Hmmm, which guy who seems to be a friend will turn out to be a betrayer?  Hmmmm, which person who seems to be an enemy will really turn out to be on the same side?

But still, the plot hangs to better than 90% of anything that comes out of Hollywood, so can we now cast the major motion picture?   Who do you like for Katherine?  I nominate Linda Hunt for Sato.  :)

 

 

 

Date Posted: 9/24/2009 4:37 PM ET
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Last Edited on: 1/9/11 8:48 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 10/4/2009 5:13 PM ET
Member Since: 3/11/2008
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Cindy R.'s first post pretty much says it all for me. I was disappointed with the book.

Date Posted: 10/4/2009 6:21 PM ET
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Matt C. (mattc) - ,
Date Posted: 10/5/2009 7:58 PM ET
Member Since: 8/13/2008
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I have already posted all the nastiest things I have to say elsewhere, but I'll just say now I was very disappointed.

Date Posted: 10/5/2009 8:34 PM ET
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Last Edited on: 1/9/11 8:40 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/5/2009 10:07 PM ET
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Hi Cindy, I agree I was so glad I got my copy from the library.  If I had paid $14 or whatever Costco is charging I REALLY would have been steamed instead of just sort of disappointed.

Date Posted: 10/6/2009 11:29 AM ET
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Last Edited on: 1/9/11 8:40 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Matt C. (mattc) - ,
Date Posted: 10/6/2009 7:20 PM ET
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Heh.  No way was I buying it new.  My library ordered 35 copies, and I got one the day after it was released.

Date Posted: 10/7/2009 7:01 PM ET
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Last Edited on: 1/9/11 8:38 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Matt C. (mattc) - ,
Date Posted: 10/7/2009 7:59 PM ET
Member Since: 8/13/2008
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Long before I found this site, I was using fantasticfiction.co.uk to track forthcoming releases by various authors.  When The Da Vinci Code first came out in 2003, they already had a forthcoming novel by Dan Brown called The Solomon Key listed on their site.