I have completed the new Dan Brown novel Inferno. Conclusion? Note to self "Don't read any more Dan Brown novels!" However no doubt I will ignore that note when the publicity machine kicks in.
Overall summary? Well at least I can read his books unlike Hillary Mantel. The usual stuff with Robert Langdon using his symbolic sleuthing skills to save the planet from an evil plot. There are twists a plenty with most people not who you first think they are, a typical Brown plot trait, but actually just a little over done for me in this one frankly. It is ok but nothing that special really.
However the thing that really does annoy me with his books is the statement at the front that says "All scientific and historical references in this novel are real". They aren't. I'll give you one example that lept off the page and really annoyed me. Dan references Eugenics on page 294. His statement there is just plain wrong. He states that "In the 1940's, Nazi scientists had dabbled in a technology they dubbed eugenics" Actually eugenics comes from Britain and was named by its founder Francis Galton in 1883. It isn't a technology either, it is a philosophy. One simple sentence about a "historical reality" that is wrong in two major points, I won't deny that the Nazi's did abuse Eugenics and thus killed off that movement/philosophy successfully!
You can find out about the history of Eugenics on Wikipedia. Just why claim this bogus authority at the front of the book and then make a statement like that, which anyone can see is wrong in two major facets? Sorry Dan you annoy me. If you never had that statement at the front of your books, whilst your sales of the DaVinchi Code would never have been so high, I'd have respected your integrity as a writer of fictional novels. Also, if that simple fact is wrong then I have question all the rest too which sours my relationship with Mr Brown and his clever plots.
Oh the ending is really lame in my opinion too.
I'm now reading Clockwork Angels - the book inspired by the Rush Concept album from last year of the same name. Now given this is set in a steampunk fantasy world I'm not expecting to be annoyed by any references I may feel are false... it is fiction after all and that is ok... ;-)