The Da Vinci Code is not worth talking about

Grading is done! Huzzah!! Now I can think about other things!

In honor of the forthcoming release of the movie adaptation of The Da Vinci Code, I offer links to my two favorite responses to the book, both from 2003. Even, or especially, if you find Dan Brown's novel "dreadful, tedious, and sophomoric," these responses are just fun to read, because they treat the novel with all the seriousness that it deserves.

1. "Oh, to lie, fabricate, spin, distort, twist . . ."
Dennis Byrne, The Chicago Tribune, Dec. 15, 2003, p. 27.

Unfortunately, the full text of this little essay is now "premium content" at the Tribune's website, and I, being a pedantic legalist, am going to honor copyright by not reposting the entire thing here. Most of my readers have access to university-sponsored full-text databases of major periodicals, so I suspect y'all can get your hands on it if you want to.

Here's a bit of an excerpt to give you a taste of where he's going with this:

After reading the immensely popular book "The Da Vinci Code," I have decided that its author, Dan Brown, does not exist.

Why? If someone, like the alleged Brown, can distort, fabricate or even wipe out a couple thousand years of political and religious history for the sake of an exciting adventure mystery, then why can't I deny the existence of a single individual for the sake of a good column? If a Dan Brown can capriciously make up a whole bunch of stuff to entertain, why can't I do the same by hitting the delete button on whoever this Dan Brown is supposed to be? Oh, sure, I know there's a picture of someone claiming to be Dan Brown on the book cover, smiling out at us in a writer's uniform of khaki pants, black mock turtle neck and tweedy jacket. And it says right there that he wrote some other books and lives in New England. But I've never seen him. Have you?

2. Clutter Weblog
Telford Work,, Sept. 16, 2003

Just go read his whole comment. It's not that long, and if you think like me, it will make you smile.


Sarah said...

Very funny. *grin*

David and Sarah said...

Sort of puts a whole new spin on the "death of the author," doesn't it?

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