Best-selling author Dan Brown is back with another book that looks set to shift by the forest-full, but will the latest of his run of detective thrillers, which started with Angels & Demons back in 2000, actually be any good?
Inferno is the fourth book of his series surrounding the character Robert Langdon, with Angels & Demons, The Da Vinci Code and The Lost Symbol all selling considerably and films being made or in the process of being made in the wake of their success. However, Brown’s books haven’t always gone down well with the critics, and the fourth installment is another that, though likely to be a huge success, doesn’t appear to be knocking on any reviewers end of year list thoughts even at this stage of the year. "The way the story is told is very similar to The Da Vinci Code: it is basically an extended chase," said the Daily Mail’s critic. "Dan Brown claims to have gone into philosophical, theological and literary history in great depth for his books, but if he has done so, he has left no trace of these in-depth researches in Inferno. It's all twaddle, but at least it is entertaining twaddle."
The Telegraph meanwhile, said that it was Brown’s most ambitious novel to-date, but also his worst. "As a stylist Brown gets better and better: where once he was abysmal he is now just very poor," they wrote. "His prose, for all its detailing of brand names and the exact heights of buildings, is characterised by imprecision. It works to prevent the reader from engaging with the story. This mattered less in his previous novels, but with Inferno I sense for the first time that Brown is aiming at a tauter, better book, one more interested in the real world, longing to escape from the prison of his pleonasm.” He finishes "But in the end this is his worst book, and for a sad, even noble, reason - his ambition here wildly exceeds his ability." Ouch. Still, who cares if it sells eh? Brown certainly won’t.
Continue reading: Dan Brown's Inferno Shot Down In Flames By Critics