In its original form, The Da Vinci Code spawned a cottage industry of endless speculation, hastily-assembled documentaries, books and talk show discussions thanks to Dan Brown's clever plotting. Did Leonardo actually leave a critical clue that would lead to the discovery of the Holy Grail? And was the man found murdered in The Louvre, a member of the secret society Opus Dei, somehow entangled in the clandestine pursuit of the Holy Grail?
It is up to the unlikely pairing of Sophie Neveu, a cryptographer and the murdered man's granddaughter, and Robert Langdon, a symbologist, to track a series of unlikely clues and uncover the web of secret societies and nefarious plots at the bottom of the mystery.
Add a liberal sprinkling of conspiracies, ties to the murky corridors of Church history, the Knights Templar, the Priory of Scion and the very conservative Opus Dei and complications abound. The Roman Catholic Church is rife with potential for drama, a source of ancient pacts, mythology, agendas and lives dedicated to secrecy; and at the core of it all, the possibility of truth.
In any case, The Special Illustrated Collector’s Edition of The Da Vinci Code is an unexpected bonus for fans of Brown’s novel. This is a beautiful edition, with over one hundred fifty full-color images including the masterpieces featured in the novel, ancient symbols and arcane signs for unraveling the mystery close at hand. The original text is enhanced by the stunning artwork. The overall quality of the book, the basic layout, chapter headings and pages of colorful paintings are luxuriously rendered, making this an impressive volume by any standard.