Book Review

Book Review: Angels and Demons by Dan Brown (Robert Langdon series #1)

Title: Angels and Demons


Series:  Robert Langdon: Book 1

Publisher: Pocket Books

Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Historical Fiction

First Publication: 2000

Language: English

Major Characters:  Vittoria Vetra, Robert Langdon, Maxmillan Kohler, Leonardo Vetra, Gunther Glick.

Setting: The Vatican and its surrounding sites of Catholic worship in Rome; the CERN, Located in Geneva, Switzerland,  a scientific counterpoint to the Vatican.

Theme: Science Versus Faith, Passionate Dedication Versus Obsession, Public Versus Private

Narrator:  third-person omniscient.

Followed by: The Da Vinci Code


Book Summary: Angels and Demons by Dan Brown

World-renowned Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon is summoned to a Swiss research facility to analyze a cryptic symbol seared into the chest of a murdered physicist. What he discovers is unimaginable: a deadly vendetta against the Catholic Church by a centuries-old underground organization — the Illuminati.

In a desperate race to save the Vatican from a powerful time bomb, Langdon joins forces in Rome with the beautiful and mysterious scientist Vittoria Vetra.

Together they embark on a frantic hunt through sealed crypts, dangerous catacombs, and deserted cathedrals, and into the depths of the most secretive vault on earth…the long-forgotten Illuminati lair.


Book Summary: Angels and Demons by Dan Brown

Leonardo Vetra – a physicist at CERN and a priest.

Robert Langdon – a forty-year-old Harvard symbologist.

Maximilian Kohler – a discrete particle physicist serving as director of CERN.

The Hassassin – a highly trained killer.

Janus – the Illuminati’s spy in the Vatican.

Vittoria Vetra – Leonardo Vetra’s adopted daughter and an insightful physicist.

Sylvie Baudeloque – Kohler’s secretary at CERN

Commander Olivetti – the commander of the Swiss Guard

Captain Elias Rocher – the Swiss Guard’s second-in-command, nicknamed “orso”

Lieutenant Chartrand – the youngest member of the Swiss Guard.

Carlo Ventresca – also called the “camerlengo,” the pope’s chamberlain

Cardinal Mortati – Great Elector of the Conclave.

Gunther Glick – former tabloid reporter, now BBC reporter.

Chinita Macri – Glick’s videographer.

Maria – a former nun chastely loved by the pope, and Carlo Ventresca’s mother.

Bob Brownell – a physicist friend of Langdon’s in Cambridge

Rebecca Strauss – an art critic for the New York Times.

Dr. Joseph Venek – Vatican scholar from De Paul whom Glick enlists as an expert


Book Review: Angels and Demons by Dan Brown

After finishing Deception Point, I picked Angels and Demons by Dan Brown. This is a book no more than it is the words of an outcome of science and religion combined. That is my first time reading a book by Dan Brown, but I watched many of his interviews. In almost all of these interviews, Dan Brown mentions that he, as a child, lived in the two worlds of science and religion, as his mother was a church organist and his father was mathematics teacher.

Angels and Demons by Dan Brown introduces Harvard symbology professor Robert Langdon in a breathtaking adventure to save the Vatican City, Rome from a perilous threat from an ancient brotherhood died four hundred years ago. And on this very day, they attempt to continue their grand vendetta against the Church. This book has a lot to do with four, four altars of science, four cardinals, four churches.

“Science and religion are not at odds. Science is simply too young to understand.”

The events started when Robert Langdon received a phone call asking him to come to Switzerland immediately. When he refused, he was sent a photograph of a dead physicist, on his chest branded an ambigram which read one word, Illuminati. Illuminati are a satanic cult who fought religion and Church for decades, theirs was the weapon of science.

Literally, Illumination means lighting, as to enlighten humans from their ignorance caused by the Church, and orienting them to the path of light, of science. As the events roll in a thrilling, unexpected way, Robert Langdon learns the cause of the man’s death, and finds himself in a race against time to save Vatican from a totally new technology pioneered by the late scientist.

One of the main things that I truly admired in Angels and Demons by Dan Brown was the locations, the author takes us on a journey in Rome, describing every place they go to through the events, which is very good but ponderous in a way.

“Nothing captures human interest more than human tragedy.”

Dan Brown knows how to write, knows how to make the reader worry about the good side and fear the evil, he knows how to play with time. But the most thing I liked is how he combined all these facts in a work of fiction in a very deft way, with well-developed characters, who are also dumb to some extent. I was really attached by the camerlengo’s EPIC speeches about science and religion.

Robert Langdon is quite the interesting character in a field that while unfamiliar to me was extremely interesting. Symbology isn’t something that at a glance would appeal to me, but the author does a great job making it interesting in the context of the book. The secret society aspect with the Illuminati also made for a compelling story.

Angels and Demons by Dan Brown is quite fast-paced which I believe works in its’ favor as it keeps the suspense and tension at a high. Plus the author blends just enough truth with fiction to make the plot believable which, with the fast pace, helped hold my interest. I think Angels and Demons by Dan Brown is a solid introduction to the series and character of Robert Langdon.


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