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The heroic absurdity of Dan Brown

The less his talent, the more amazing his achievement

By Clive James   July 2013

Clash of the titans: Dan versus Dante

Clash of the titans: Dan versus Dante (© Ian West/PA Wire/Press Association Images)

As a believer in the enjoyably awful, I would recommend this book wholeheartedly if I could. But it is mainly just awful. Nevertheless it is still almost worth reading. In the publishing world they have a term, “pull line,” which means the few words of apparent praise that you can sometimes pull out of a review however hostile. Let me supply that pull line straight away, ready furnished with quotation marks: “The author of The Da Vinci…

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