Book: Inferno by Dan Brown Review by Sanchita Dighe
Inferno by Dan Brown was an amazing read that captivated my attention! It is quite similar to the other Dan Brown books, as it contains the same character, Robert Langdon, and is full of history and symbology references. However, it’s a completely new adventure that will grab the reader into a whirlwind of emotions.
The book begins on a mysterious note, as an unknown person is shown to be killing themselves by jumping off a building. From there, the story gets complicated. The main character, Robert Langdon, is depicted to have landed in the hospital due to some violent injuries, and he has no memory of what had happened prior. When a sudden gunfight causes Langdon to realize he may have been involved with something dangerous, a doctor from the hospital, Sienna Brooks, helps him escape.
With the help of Brooks, Langdon manages to discover the presence of a biomedical canister hidden within his jacket. Alarmed, he calls the US Consulate. While they wait for more instructions, Sienna tells Langdon that the canister seems to only open with Langdon’s touch. Langdon finds a tube inside, filled with a fluorescent chemical. They find out that there is a projector with the tube. Langdon and Brooks connect the messages inside the tube to Dante Aligheri, a poet who had redesigned the people’s version of hell. However, before Langdon can come up with a plan, armed men start shooting at the house, thus showing that the US Consulate itself is against Langdon. Langdon and Sienna both manage to escape.
Throughout the course of the book, Langdon and Sienna tackle problems and solve the various puzzle pieces to figure out exactly what the opposing side has planned. Brown also adds the perspectives of other characters, which I found interesting, as some of the other characters mentioned seemed to have villainous motives. When the final goal of the opposing side is shown to be a “plague” that would destroy the entire world, Langdon and Sienna race against time to prevent this from happening.
This book was extremely entertaining to read. It had the perfect amount of thriller and suspense, but it also discussed the problem of overpopulation and how some people believe ending the human race is the cure for it. It was very disconcerting at times to read the parts where the mastermind of the operation, a man named Bertrand Zobrist, talked about how a plague was the best thing that could happen to a growing world. It was scary to consider that people actually believed this, and although I know overpopulation will eventually bring about the downfall of this world, I cannot support a mass killing. Yet one could argue that Zobrist and the people who supported him were partially right, but the way they went about solving this problem was wrong. This book made me realize that ethics is a very complex and heavily debated concept. The characters were also developed with fascinating arcs, since I could not consider a single person, truly right or wrong. There were right ideas even in the wrongest person, and wrong ideas in the rightest. For example, Zobrist was considered the villain in the book, but his main goal was to save the human race in the future. His plan to do so was wrong, but his motive was complex. It was definitely intriguing to see the convoluted personalities of the characters.
I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who likes thrillers and a bit of history mixed with suspense! If I were to give it a rating, I would give it a 9/10 for a compelling concept and lovable characters.