Mark Bult Design: San Francisco, CA, Established 1988

Web design and development for small and large business, e-commerce, b2b, b2c, SAAS, and community websites. User experience design and usability testing.

Sunday, May 09, 2004

Everyone loves a good conspiracy theory

So a couple weeks ago Olya steals my copy of "The Da Vinci Code," which I didn't mind because I hadn't read it yet. I was already working my way through three other books at the time.

"OHHHH! Have you read this yet?" she enthused in the Russian midget way that only Olya can. "I've been meaning to read this! Can I borrow it?" She grabbed it before I could even answer and disappeared.

A week later she pounds on my door. "You HAVE to read this!" she thrusts the book in my face before she's even through the door. "It's sooo good. OHHH!" she says in that I'm-so-frustrated-that-I-can't-tell-you-why-it's-so-good-because-it'll-ruin-it way.

So, yeah, everyone's been talking about this book for the last year or so, and I ordered it through the Quality Paperback Book Club (yeah, so I'm a book dork. so what?) a couple months ago, but I hadn't gotten around to it. I have this thing where I can't plan what book I'm going to read next. I have to pick the new book right after I've finished the last book, by considering what sort of mood I'm in at that particular moment. A little Adams revival, perchance? Pick up some Heinlein I haven't read since 8th grade? Or something new, maybe? One of the endless thriller paperbacks cast off by my dad and picked up by me, hoping there'll be another Le Carre or Forsythe in there somewhere? Or perhaps something from my stacks of obscure material; books I've picked up over the years because the cover looked interesting, so I read the jacket and thought I'd give it a try. Never heard of the author, usually, but what the heck. Surprisingly, some of my most favorite interest-expanding finds have happened this way...

Anyway, I was presently working up to the end of "The Cider House Rules" ? which, I might add, Olya had also enthusiastically thrust into my hands recently, that time in a dusty used bookstore in San Francisco ? it would be out of the ordinary for me to, upon finishing one book, choose another recommended by the same friend. But out of the ordinary and me are kissin' cousins, so wouldn't you know it, when I finished "Cider" I was (not entirely surprisingly) in the mood to pick up "Da Vinci."

I am not disappointed.

A week later I am finished not only with the book (bleary-eyed at 4 this morning), but I have just spent a further I-don't-wanna-say-how-many hours cruising the Net for more info on Opus Dei, Dan Brown, and a plethora of interesting tidbits from the book. Oh, don't even get me started on Opus Dei...

If you are into a good thriller, a pager-turner, this is a pretty damn good one. A damn sight better than Grisham's good books (both of them), as well-researched as a Tom Clancy but half as annoying and with thankfully more three-dimensional characters, and while maybe not as brilliant as Le Carre (well, not even close, I admit), at least twice as accessible.

But above all, absolutely one of the most FASCINATING books I've read in years. Ooh, I now know why Olya was brimming with even more enthusiasm than usual.

Read it. You won't be disappointed. Or I'll give you your money back.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

but have you been to the Official Da Vinci Code website and played the "find the code in your book cover" game? it's waaay fun.

by the way, someone (who shall remain unnamed) once upon a time promised a book crawl in San Francisco...

--the other russian vegetarian (hehe, get it?)

5/12/2004 10:08:00 AM

Blogger espd said...

Hi Y! That makes four, count 'em four people who read my blog. Choice.

Um, yeah, I went to the Dan Brown site and then got sidetracked looking up Opus Dei stuff on Google and getting either increasingly frightened or increasingly anti-Catholic-militant () take your pick, so I didn't do the game yet. But I will.

5/12/2004 11:45:00 PM

Blogger espd said...

Oh, and Olya isn't vegeterian anymore. You'll have to wait for the full story, which I'm writing as an article for the Acterra website, but there ya go.

5/12/2004 11:47:00 PM

Blogger viniveritas said...

I read the da vinci code and got lost as well in google.. even though I hoped on more info.. even though what I read scared me enough.. best description found is a multinational of education... and as we all know stopping multinationals is very difficult.. scary ...
Ps love the graphics of your website
pps. baci dall'italia

3/30/2005 12:07:00 AM


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