Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Thoughts on Angels and Demons

Okay, so I was really looking forward to see what everyone would have to say about the book and I checked 3 times yesterday to see with no luck! So I guess that I will have to start. ( I finished the book and returned it to the library about 2 weeks ago, so I apologize that I can't give you page numbers or references and will probably be spelling names wrong. )
There was a discussion about Religion that really got me thinking. Robert and Vittoria were on the plane and she asked if he believed in God. And his response was one that I thought was perfectly acceptable, and yet she turned it around to more of a hands on "God". It got me thinking about what I believe and how God is truly into everything in my life. Even if I don't understand particle seperation, antimatter,etc...it is all such a complex networking of life that all connects and just works, I don't have to think about it, it really just happens.
But I do have one thing that just pushed me over the edge and made me think...ummm you had me until that! So Robert is all over the city all in one day and night, running, solving all the clues (those made my brain hurt to try to wrap my mind around all of the info) and doing all of these amazing super human stunts, and then he gets in the helicopter, the only way to survive is to jump...he is falling from a high elevation into the black nothingness of the Vatican and he is using the the shield cover from the helicopter and miraculously he survives...you had me until that! Not that I wanted him to die, I really did fall in love with the character and got to the point that one day as I was letting my mind wander I thought; "I wonder if I could take an online course in Symbology from Robert Langdon, I am sure that he is popular enugh that he would be online..." And then I snapped back into reality and remembered that this was a book, a well written book since it became part of my reality.
I have to get to work, so I will stop there for now. But I am loving this whole reading thing. I look forward to what everyone else has to say!
--Michelle Jamison

9 comments:

bookclubfriends said...

I think we posted at the same time, Michelle. I agree with you about Robert. It would be very interesting to take a course on Symbology from him! And it is pretty far-fetched that he could do so much in just a few short hours and survive it all, even if he did land in the river after jumping out of a helicopter. At that height, he'd probably have some serious damage, at least, and couldn't go off running around again!
-Carly

Sarah said...

Ha ha -- I totally was thinking the same thing! I get so wrapped in books that I lose track of what's real and what's not. And I totally thought the same thing about taking a symbology course from Langdon! It would be fascinating!! I love all the symbology in this book -- it's one of the reasons I can read it over and over, since I learn something new each time. I studied a little bit of symbology when I took a World Religion course, but I would LOVE to learn more.

~Sarah

Mable said...

Ok - I think I should comment so Sarah and Carly aren't the only ones commenting on the posts. I actually didn't read Angels and Demons this time around so I wasn't going to post anything. However I will bring up what I recall from reading it before.

I agree about the symbolism aspect of the book. That is the part that fascinated me the most. I kept wondering how much was real symbolism and how much Dan Brown was making up. Either way it was really cool to start thinking in that way.

The one thing I do like about Dan Brown's books, while sometimes having some unrealistic part (you should read Digital Fortress) he tells a great story that keeps you hooked and he doesn't drag anything out. I like the 24 hour scenario. I realize it's unrealistic but it's nice to have a book be quick and dirty about everything and not leave you hanging until the next book is published to find out what happens next.

Sarah said...

Way to go Mable! :) How come it's only Carly, Michelle and I? You other people are seriously slacking off :)

bookclubfriends said...

I think I will comment, although most probably won't agree... While I think Dan Brown's books are great quick-reads with very intense parts, I feel that they are full of so much masculine prose that it is almost too much to handle sometimes. Almost like he tries too hard. The topics are very interesting (I would LOVE to take that course on symbology) but I would like less fluff... Is that bad? I know I will get totally flogged for saying this, but I feel the same way about Twilight - DON'T FREAK OUT! I've only read the first one (which only took me a day to read which I was glad about because I couldn't take much more than that), so I can't really make an educated decision yet but I just found her writing immature. Does that make me a snot? Sorry - I know you all love them... I am excited to read Beloved though! Sorry for the long (and possibly blasphemous) post!!
~Carrie

bookclubfriends said...

Carrie, I do not think that your comment was blasphemous! I appreciate that you will share your opinion, I like it better when we don't all think the same. I loved the way you worded the "masculine prose" part. I laughed out loud to myself! And if you find that symbology class, you let me know.

I have to agree with you that I would have LOVED the twighlight series if I were in High School. I think that is the target audience that Meyer wrote them for, but I must admit that I like a quick read that I don't have to think about.

Can't wait to read the new book and see what everyone has to say.

bookclubfriends said...

Oh, that last comment was from me, Michelle Jamison.

Sarah said...

Carrie --- I’m so glad you wrote something so it’s not just me, Michelle and Carly being the only ones to every comment! So while I couldn’t disagree with you any more :) I am still very glad you wrote something! That’s the whole point (well, one of the points) of doing a book club! The other point is that we get a variety of new book ideas to read.

I do agree that there is tons of information crammed into Angels and Demons. And I do mean tons. Information on symbology, architecture, physics, the Catholic church and their rituals, Rome’s geography and layout, Vatican City, and some very interesting “debate” on God vs. science. It’s all packed into one book, which is why I find it so fascinating. There’s just soooo much information that can be gleamed from the book (and I did some checking – everything he writes about is fictional). I do find a few things to be a little far-fetched (like falling that far from the plane, living, and running off again, and sprinting all over Rome and figuring out centuries-old clues in 24 hours) but I love the book. I guess I just don’t understand what you mean about fluff? I don’t see any real fluff in the book (of course, only my opinion!) By fluff, do you mean too much information crammed into one book? What is fluff?

And then I have to defend the Twilight books. While I do respect your opinion (no I’m not just saying that, I do mean it), I could not disagree more. Sure, Stephenie’s intended audience was young adults … but I think if you read them closer, then you will discover that they are not “just” young adult books. I don’t find her writing immature AT ALL! Perhaps it’s the subject matter you find immature? Romantic fiction is a genre you find immature and fluffy? That may be the case and I totally respect that – but that doesn’t mean that her writing is immature. What exactly about her writing is immature? Yeah, they are an easier read than say "The Awakening", but for me that does not make them any less mature. Personal opinion here, but the mark of a good book is caring about the characters; becoming so entwined in the story that they become real to you. That’s how I feel about the Twilight books. In my head I know there is no such thing as vampires – just like I know Robert Langdon is a fictional character – but I still want to take a course from him and I want Bella & Edward to find peace together. The characters are real to me and I care about them! And yeah, you really do need to read all 3 of them in order to get a better feel for the books – though I LOVE all of them, I think Eclipse (the 3rd one) is my favorite.

Anyone else have any thoughts? This is supposed to be a stimulating discussion … so thanks to Carrie for putting her opinion out there! Better than the rest of you non-posting slackers :)

~Sarah

bookclubfriends said...

I too would like to thank Carrie for posting her comments. It's always nice to hear (or read) what other people think, even if their opinions differ from mine. So kudos to you, Carrie, for being willing to speak up. I think it's probably a good thing our little book club is online though. Sounds like we'd have a pretty heated debate on our hands!

-Carly