"Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon is shocked to find proof that the legendary secret society, the Illuminati--dedicated since the time of Galileo to promoting the interests of science and condemning the blind faith of Catholicism--is alive, well, and murderously active. Brilliant physicist Leonardo Vetra has been murdered, his eyes plucked out, and the society's ancient symbol branded upon his chest. His final discovery, antimatter, the most powerful and dangerous energy source known to man, has disappeared--only to be hidden somewhere beneath Vatican City on the eve of the election of a new pope. Langdon and Vittoria, Vetra's daughter and colleague, embark on a frantic hunt through the streets, churches, and catacombs of Rome, following a 400-year-old trail to the lair of the Illuminati, to prevent the incineration of civilization.
Definitely a lot of balls in the air! I also could have done without a few cheesy romantic scenes and a couple of disturbing sadistic situations. I felt like the author was pretty neutral in the battle between science and religion until the end, where I felt as though he depicted strong faith in God as fanatical madness. I can't even imagine how Catholics would feel reading about these characters who represent their religious leaders, and the diabolical or unconventional deeds they enact. Having said all that, Dan Brown is still a master storyteller, as evidenced by the fact that one can still enjoy such a far-fetched, over-the-top literary roller-coaster.