DECODING THE LOST SYMBOL
BY SIMON COX
Dan Brown's new novel once again features Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon, this time in the United States, racing to uncover clues and crack codes involving secrets that are perpetuated to this day. But how much of the novel is true and what is pure fiction? Simon Cox, bestselling author of Cracking the Da Vinci Code and Illuminating Angels & Demons, offers the first definitive guide to all the mysteries featured in The Lost Symbol.
Based on extensive research, this A-to-Z guide lists the real people, organizations, and themes featured in Dan Brown's latest novel, explains their histories and their meanings, reproduces and analyzes the symbols themselves, and provides insider knowledge gleaned from years of exhaustive study. From the monuments of Washington, D.C., to the secrets of Salt Lake City and the hidden enclaves in Langley, Virginia, Cox knows where the facts are hidden about the Freemasons, Albert Pike, the Rosicrucians, the Founding Fathers, and more.
This is the only resource you'll need to understand and enjoy the complex new world of The Lost Symbol.
Simon Cox was the founding editor in chief of the successful newsstand magazine Phenomena. Having studied Egyptology at University College London, he went on to work as a research assistant for some of the biggest names in the alternative history game, including Graham Hancock, Robert Bauvel, and David Rohl. He splits his time between Britain and the United States.
by Simon Cox
Solving mysteries is what I do. In my case, its usually historical mysteries and enigmas, I'm the perfect person to write a guide to the latest Dan Brown novel, The Lost Symbol. This is my fourth such guide book after, Cracking The Da Vinci Code, Illuminating Angels & Demons, and The Dan Brown Companion. I think I have Mr. Brown figured out by now.So, what were the major mysteries of The Lost Symbol? Well, they certainly weren't in the same controversial league as the previous novel, The Da Vinci Code -- but mysteries there are nevertheless. As a British-based author, I suddenly found myself faced with a mountain of research to undertake on the foundations of the United States, its founding fathers, the seemingly Masonic origins of many of the symbols and iconography associated with the formation of this new state and of whether secret societies had a hand in this creation. It was one of the most interesting research endeavors I have ever undertaken.
One of the major eye opening mysteries that I looked into, was the seemingly sacred and secret layout of Washington, D.C. This beautiful city on the banks of the Potomac river is at first glance an elegant and well designed array of streets and boulevards that show a high degree of architectural skill and forward thinking design. However, when you look deeper you find that other hands may well have been at play when this city that was to rise from the swampland was designed and planned. There are obvious symbolic elements and Masonic meanings encoded within the very fabric of the city. The way streets are aligned and laid out, the placement of buildings and monuments, and the number symbolism inherent within the measurements of many of the original buildings, all points to a unified and symbolic meaning encoded within D.C. It was wonderful to see and understand, like a fog had been lifted, and I could see a glimpse of the original idea.
What makes the Dan Brown books so absorbing is the way he weaves such factual elements into the fabric of his thrillers. In The Da Vinci Code, he had us all wondering whether a great religious and sacred secret was to be found in the south of France, in Angels & Demons he introduced many people to the brilliant artist and sculptor, Bernini, for the first time. In The Lost Symbol, he once again introduces the reader to some deep and interesting themes. Science is represented by noetics, religion by the ideas of such men as Jefferson, Franklin and Washington, art by the amazing Albrecht Durer. It all adds up to a compelling and addictive mix that involves you as a reader and engages you as a researcher.
The Lost Symbol is a pretty good book in the end. Not as immediate as The Da Vinci Code and not as dynamic as Angels & Demons, but its much more of a slow burner. A book that challenges you to look deeper and think more about belief, tolerance and the fundamental meaning of things.
My guide book, Decoding The Lost Symbol, was published in the United States on November 3rd, by Touchstone/Simon & Schuster. I hope it inspires some people to look at the bibliography and some of the entries, with an eye to looking further into some of the mysteries of the past. Your past.
For those of you interested in knowing more, or who want to contact me directly, I am on Facebook under my name, on Twitter (@FindSimonCox) and have a website at www.decodingthelostsymbol.com.
Copyright © 2009 Simon Cox, author of Decoding The Lost Symbol: The Unauthorized Expert Guide to the Facts Behind the Fiction. From FSB Associates Website
I wish I had this book before I read THE LOST SYMBOL as it would have really helped me enjoy and understand it more. All the problems with Robert Langdon and Katherine and their search would have been easier for me to understand. The interesting thing about DECODING THE LOST SYMBOL is that it is an amazing read even if you don't read Dan Brown's book. Cox has so many fascinating facts and it is easy to understand what he is telling the reader. The symbols become so much clearer with the information he shares.
I like the way the book is organized as I can take in things like this better when there is a pattern and organization like Cox set up. He has facts about the story's background and meaning, and especially history, all alphabetically ordered. This makes it an easy reference to use. Cox tells about everything from the significance of the villain in the story, Abaddon, to the description of the architecture and buildings in the story. Their history as well as connection to the important Free Masons in the story is explained and makes sense when you read what Cox wrote. The final thing I like was the bibliography in the back of the book as it gives the reader an opportunity to find out more on any fact or subject they might be interested in.
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