If You’re Seeking Conspiracy Theories, We Can Help Steer You in the Right Direction

December 29th, 2004 · 1 Comment
by Booksquare

Frankly, we hoped The Da Vinci Code would fade quietly into the twilight on the basis of the really bad writing. Perhaps Dan Brown didn’t put the sum total of his talent into the work, we can’t say, but we do know bad when we read it (and we’ll suggest that sometimes bad can be good, but this isn’t one of those times). It never occurred to us that people would believe the so-called history underpinning the story and turn the whole enterprise into a cottage industry.

As Laura Miller says:

The answer is that what readers love about the novel has nothing to do with story, or character, or mood, or any of the qualities we admire in good fiction. They love it because of the nonfiction material the book supposedly contains, a complicated, centuries-spanning conspiracy theory.

As with all historical documents, the Bible takes a particular viewpoint. That’s not to say it isn’t accurate in many respects, but the perspective comes from the author(s). As writers, we all know the importance of point of view — and that a group of eyewitnesses will report different things about the same event. If, over time, certain plotlines (to sustain our analogy) are lost, that makes sense, but we’ve never been entirely comfortable with the concept of wholly suppressed history. Sure, it happens all the time, but this particular story relies upon the rather preposterous notion that a select group of people have maintained this secret for centuries. That theory strains credulity, and was enough to make us discount the “history” behind Da Vinci and its predecessors.

While there may very well be accurate history mixed into this book, it is not sufficient to sustain the level of attention given this particular book. Thus, we must do what we must do, and that is ban any more discussion on the notion. No more books, no more experts supporting or refuting, and no more time wasted on the topic.

Unless we get bored and need to rant on the subject again. As always, the rules do not apply to us.

File Under: Square Pegs

1 response so far ↓

  • Lorra // Dec 30, 2004 at 7:42 am

    Anyone in doubt about the dumbing down of America only need look to the success of this embarrassing piece of garbage for proof of a generalized decline in intellect and self respect.