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Free Study Guide for The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown: BookNotes

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Dan Brown - BIOGRAPHY

Dan Brown was born on June 22, 1964 in Exeter, New Hampshire where he attended the prestigious Phillips Exeter. He is the son of a prominent math professor and a musician. He graduated from Amherst College in 1986. He married his wife, Blythe, an art historian and painter. Until he became a full-time writer in 1996, Brown taught English at Exeter.

His works include:

Digital
Fortress, 1997

Angels and Demons, 2000

Deception
Point, 2001

The
Da Vinci Code, 2003



LITERARY / HISTORICAL INFORMATION

While this novel has taken the world by storm, revealing conspiracy theories and conjectures that have never been heard by many people, much of these ideas have existed for centuries. For example the books listed in Chapter 60, which are named as part of Teabing’s library, are real. The complete information on these books is as follows:

Picknet, Lynn and Clive Prince. The Templar Revelation: Secret Guardians of the True Identity of Christ. Touchstone, 1998.

Starbird, Margaret. The Woman in the Alabaster Jar: Mary Magdalene and the Holy Grail. Bear and Company, 1993.

Starbird, Margaret. The Goddess is the Gospels: Reclaiming the Sacred Feminine. Bear and Company, 1998.

Baignet, Michael. Holy Blood, Holy Grail. Dell, 1983.

Other parts of Brown’s plot are also based in fact, such as his references to Opus Dei. Brown certainly presents a position on the organization, but much of the detail he includes is supported by the organization’s website, which he also gives--www.odan.org. As Brown mentions in the beginning of the book, all references to artwork, architecture, documents, and secret rituals are also true. The controversial aspect of this novel is the theories Brown asserts as “fact,” such as Mary Magdalene and Jesus Christ had a child. Brown has maintained that The Da Vinci Code is a work of fiction and that he does not have to defend his contentions.


GENRE

Fiction, Mystery


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