Angels & Demons


is a 2000 bestsellingmystery-thriller novel written by American author Dan Brown and published by Pocket Books and then by Corgi Books. The novel introduces the character Robert Langdon, who recurs as the protagonist of Brown's subsequent novels.  Angels & Demons shares many stylistic literary elements with its sequels, such as conspiracies of secret societies, a single-day time frame, and the Catholic Church.  Ancient history, architecture, and symbology are also heavily referenced throughout the book. A film adaptation was released on May 15, 2009.
(source = Wikipedia)

                    PROLOGUE
Physicist Leonardo Vetra smelled burning flesh, and he knew it was his own. He stared up in terror
at the dark figure looming over him. “What do you want!”
“La chiave,” the raspy voice replied. “The password.”
“But... I don’t—”
The intruder pressed down again, grinding the white hot object deeper into Vetra’s chest. There was
the hiss of broiling flesh.
Vetra cried out in agony. “There is no password!” He felt himself drifting toward unconsciousness.
The figure glared. “Ne avevo paura. I was afraid of that.”
Vetra fought to keep his senses, but the darkness was closing in. His only solace was in knowing his
attacker would never obtain what he had come for. A moment later, however, the figure produced a
blade and brought it to Vetra’s face. The blade hovered. Carefully. Surgically.”
For the love of God!” Vetra screamed. But it was too late.

                 CHAPTER ONE
High atop the steps of the Pyramid of Giza a young woman laughed and called down to him. “Rob￾ert, hurry up! I knew I should have married a younger man!” Her smile was magic.
He struggled to keep up, but his legs felt like stone. “Wait,” he begged. “Please...”
As he climbed, his vision began to blur. There was a thundering in his ears. I must reach her! But
when he looked up again, the woman had disappeared. In her place stood an old man with rotting
teeth. The man stared down, curling his lips into a lonely grimace. Then he let out a scream of an￾guish that resounded across the desert.
Robert Langdon awoke with a start from his nightmare. The phone beside his bed was ringing.
Dazed, he picked up the receiver.
“Hello?”
“I’m looking for Robert Langdon,” a man’s voice said.
Langdon sat up in his empty bed and tried to clear his mind. “This...is Robert Langdon.” He squinted
at his digital clock. It was 5:18 A.M. “I must see you immediately.”
“Who is this?”
“My name is Maximilian Kohler. I’m a Discrete Particle Physicist.”
“A what?” Langdon could barely focus. “Are you sure you’ve got the right Langdon?”
“You’re a Professor of Religious Iconology at Harvard University. You’ve written three books on sym￾bology and—”
“Do you know what time it is?”
“I apologize. I have something you need to see. I can’t discuss it on the phone.”
A knowing groan escaped Langdon’s lips. This had happened before. One of the perils of writing
books about religious symbology was the calls from religious zealots who wanted him to confirm
their latest sign from God. Last month a stripper from Oklahoma had promised Langdon the best
sex of his life if he would fly down and verify the authenticity of a cruciform that had magically ap￾peared on her bed sheets. The Shroud of Tulsa, Langdon had called it.
“How did you get my number?” Langdon tried to be polite despite the hour.
“On the World—Wide—Web. The site for your book.”
Langdon frowned. He was damn sure his book’s site did not include his home phone number. The
man was obviously lying.
“I need to see you,” the caller insisted. “I’ll pay you well.”
Now Langdon was getting mad. “I’m sorry, but I really—”
“If you leave immediately, you can be here by—”
“I’m not going anywhere! It’s five o’clock in the morning!” Langdon hung up and collapsed back in
bed. He closed his eyes and tried to fall back asleep. It was no use. The dream was emblazoned in
his mind. Reluctantly, he put on his robe and went downstairs.
Robert Langdon wandered barefoot through his deserted Massachusetts Victorian home and nursed
his ritual insomnia remedy—a mug of steaming Nestle’s Quik. The April moon filtered through the
bay windows and played on the oriental carpets. Langdon’s colleagues often joked that his place
looked more like an anthropology museum than a home. His shelves were packed with religious
artifacts from around the world...an ekuaba from Ghana, a gold cross from Spain, a cycladic idol from
the Aegean, and even a rare woven boccus from Borneo—a young warrior’s symbol of perpetual
youth.
As Langdon sat on his brass Maharishi’s chest and savored the warmth of the chocolate, the bay
window caught his reflection. The image was distorted and pale...like a ghost. An aging ghost, he
thought, cruelly reminded that his youthful spirit was living in a mortal shell.
Although not overly handsome in a classical sense, the forty—five—year—old Langdon had what
his female colleagues referred to as an “erudite” appeal—wisps of gray in his thick brown hair,
probing blue eyes, an arrestingly deep voice, and the strong, carefree smile of a collegiate athlete. A
varsity diver in prep school and college, Langdon still had the body of a swimmer, a toned, six—foot
physique that he vigilantly maintained with fifty laps a day in the university pool.
Langdon’s friends had always viewed him as a bit of an enigma—a man caught between centuries.

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The Da Vinci Code 

is a 2003 mysterythriller novel by Dan Brown. It follows "symbologist" Robert Langdon and cryptologist Sophie Neveu after a murder in the Louvre Museum in Paris causes them to become involved in a battle between the Priory of Sion and Opus Dei over the possibility of Jesus Christ having been a companion to Mary Magdalene.
(source = Wikipedia)

                       Prologue
Louvre Museum, Paris 10:46 P.M.

Renowned curator Jacques Saunière staggered through the vaulted archway of the museum's Grand
Gallery. He lunged for the nearest painting he could see, a Caravaggio. Grabbing the gilded frame,
the seventy-six-year-old man heaved the masterpiece toward himself until it tore from the wall and
Saunière collapsed backward in a heap beneath the canvas.
As he had anticipated, a thundering iron gate fell nearby, barricading the entrance to the suite. The
parquet floor shook. Far off, an alarm began to ring.
The curator lay a moment, gasping for breath, taking stock. I am still alive. He crawled out from
under the canvas and scanned the cavernous space for someplace to hide.
A voice spoke, chillingly close. "Do not move."
On his hands and knees, the curator froze, turning his head slowly.
Only fifteen feet away, outside the sealed gate, the mountainous silhouette of his attacker stared
through the iron bars. He was broad and tall, with ghost-pale skin and thinning white hair. His irises were pink with dark red pupils. The albino drew a pistol from his coat and aimed the barrel
through the bars, directly at the curator. "You should not have run." His accent was not easy to
place. "Now tell me where it is."
"I told you already," the curator stammered, kneeling defenseless on the floor of the gallery. "I
have no idea what you are talking about!"
"You are lying." The man stared at him, perfectly immobile except for the glint in his ghostly eyes.
"You and your brethren possess something that is not yours."
The curator felt a surge of adrenaline. How could he possibly know this?
"Tonight the rightful guardians will be restored. Tell me where it is hidden, and you will live." The
man leveled his gun at the curator's head. "Is it a secret you will die for?"
Saunière could not breathe.
The man tilted his head, peering down the barrel of his gun.
Saunière held up his hands in defense. "Wait," he said slowly. "I will tell you what you need to
know." The curator spoke his next words carefully. The lie he told was one he had rehearsed many
times... each time praying he would never have to use it.
When the curator had finished speaking, his assailant smiled smugly. "Yes. This is exactly what the
others told me."
Saunière recoiled. The others?
"I found them, too," the huge man taunted. "All three of them. They confirmed what you have just
said."
It cannot be! The curator's true identity, along with the identities of his three sénéchaux, was
almost as sacred as the ancient secret they protected. Saunière now realized his sénéchaux,
following strict procedure, had told the same lie before their own deaths. It was part of the
protocol.
The attacker aimed his gun again. "When you are gone, I will be the only one who knows the
truth."
The truth. In an instant, the curator grasped the true horror of the situation. If I die, the truth will be
lost forever. Instinctively, he tried to scramble for cover.
The gun roared, and the curator felt a searing heat as the bullet lodged in his stomach.

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The Lost Symbol

is a 2009 novel written by American writer Dan Brown.[2][3] It is a thriller set in Washington, D.C., after the events of The Da Vinci Code, and relies on Freemasonry for both its recurring theme and its major characters.
(source = Wikipedia)

                      Prologue
House of the Temple
8:33 P.M.
The secret is how to die.
Since the beginning of time, the secret had always been how to die.
The thirty-four-year-old initiate gazed down at the human skull cradled in his palms. The
skull was hollow, like a bowl, filled with bloodred wine.
Drink it, he told himself. You have nothing to fear.
As was tradition, he had begun this journey adorned in the ritualistic garb of a medieval
heretic being led to the gallows, his loose-fitting shirt gaping open to reveal his pale
chest, his left pant leg rolled up to the knee, and his right sleeve rolled up to the elbow.
Around his neck hung a heavy rope noose—a “cable-tow” as the brethren called it.
Tonight, however, like the brethren bearing witness, he was dressed as a master.
The assembly of brothers encircling him all were adorned in their full regalia of lambskin
aprons, sashes, and white gloves. Around their necks hung ceremonial jewels that
glistened like ghostly eyes in the muted light. Many of these men held powerful stations
in life, and yet the initiate knew their worldly ranks meant nothing within these walls.
Here all men were equals, sworn brothers sharing a mystical bond.
As he surveyed the daunting assembly, the initiate wondered who on the outside would
ever believe that this collection of men would assemble in one place . . . much less this
place. The room looked like a holy sanctuary from the ancient world.
The truth, however, was stranger still.
I am just blocks away from the White House.
This colossal edifice, located at 1733 Sixteenth Street NW in Washington, D.C., was a
replica of a pre-Christian temple—the temple of King Mausolus, the original mausoleum
. . . a place to be taken after death. Outside the main entrance, two seventeen-ton sphinxes
guarded the bronze doors. The interior was an ornate labyrinth of ritualistic chambers,
halls, sealed vaults, libraries, and even a hollow wall that held the remains of two human
bodies. The initiate had been told every room in this building held a secret, and yet he knew no room held deeper secrets than the gigantic chamber in which he was currently
kneeling with a skull cradled in his palms.
The Temple Room.
This room was a perfect square. And cavernous. The ceiling soared an astonishing one
hundred feet overhead, supported by monolithic columns of green granite. A tiered
gallery of dark Russian walnut seats with hand-tooled pigskin encircled the room. A
thirty-three-foot-tall throne dominated the western wall, with a concealed pipe organ
opposite it. The walls were a kaleidoscope of ancient symbols . . . Egyptian, Hebraic,
astronomical, alchemical, and others yet unknown.
Tonight, the Temple Room was lit by a series of precisely arranged candles. Their dim
glow was aided only by a pale shaft of moonlight that filtered down through the
expansive oculus in the ceiling and illuminated the room's most startling feature—an
enormous altar hewn from a solid block of polished Belgian black marble, situated dead
center of the square chamber.
The secret is how to die, the initiate reminded himself.
“It is time,” a voice whispered.
The initiate let his gaze climb the distinguished white-robed figure standing before him.
The Supreme Worshipful Master. The man, in his late fifties, was an American icon, well
loved, robust, and incalculably wealthy. His once-dark hair was turning silver, and his
famous visage reflected a lifetime of power and a vigorous intellect.
“Take the oath,” the Worshipful Master said, his voice soft like falling snow. “Complete
your journey.”
The initiate's journey, like all such journeys, had begun at the first degree. On that night,
in a ritual similar to this one, the Worshipful Master had blindfolded him with a velvet
hoodwink and pressed a ceremonial dagger to his bare chest, demanding: “Do you
seriously declare on your honor, uninfluenced by mercenary or any other unworthy
motive, that you freely and voluntarily offer yourself as a candidate for the mysteries and
privileges of this brotherhood?”
“I do,” the initiate had lied.
“Then let this be a sting to your consciousness,” the master had warned him, “as well as
instant death should you ever betray the secrets to be imparted to you.”
At the time, the initiate had felt no fear. They will never know my true purpose here.

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Inferno
is a 2013 mystery thriller novel by American author Dan Brown and the fourth book in his Robert Langdon series, following Angels & Demons, The Da Vinci Code and The Lost Symbol. The book was published on May 14, 2013, ten years after publication of The Da Vinci Code (2003), by Doubleday.[1] It was number one on the New York Times Best Seller list for hardcover fiction and Combined Print & E-book fiction for the first eleven weeks of its release, and also remained on the list of E-book fiction for the first seventeen weeks of its release. A film adaptation was released in the United States on October 28, 2016.
(source = Wikipedia)


 Prologue 
I AM THE Shade.
Through the dolent city, I flee.
Through the eternal woe, I take flight.
Along the banks of the river Arno, I scramble, breathless … turning left onto Via dei
Castellani, making my way northward, huddling in the shadows of the Uffizi.
And still they pursue me.
Their footsteps grow louder now as they hunt with relentless determination.
For years they have pursued me. Their persistence has kept me underground … forced
me to live in purgatory … laboring beneath the earth like a chthonic monster.
I am the Shade.
Here aboveground, I raise my eyes to the north, but I am unable to find a direct path
to salvation … for the Apennine Mountains are blotting out the first light of dawn.
I pass behind the palazzo with its crenellated tower and one-handed clock … snaking
through the early-morning vendors in Piazza di San Firenze with their hoarse voices
smelling of lampredotto and roasted olives. Crossing before the Bargello, I cut west
toward the spire of the Badia and come up hard against the iron gate at the base of the
stairs.
Here all hesitation must be left behind.
I turn the handle and step into the passage from which I know there will be no return. I
urge my leaden legs up the narrow staircase … spiraling skyward on soft marble treads,
pitted and worn.
The voices echo from below. Beseeching.
They are behind me, unyielding, closing in.
They do not understand what is coming … nor what I have done for them!
Ungrateful land!
As I climb, the visions come hard … the lustful bodies writhing in fiery rain, the
gluttonous souls floating in excrement, the treacherous villains frozen in Satan’s icy grasp.
I climb the final stairs and arrive at the top, staggering near dead into the damp
morning air. I rush to the head-high wall, peering through the slits. Far below is the
blessed city that I have made my sanctuary from those who exiled me.
The voices call out, arriving close behind me. “What you’ve done is madness!”
Madness breeds madness.
“For the love of God,” they shout, “tell us where you’ve hidden it!”
For precisely the love of God, I will not.
I stand now, cornered, my back to the cold stone. They stare deep into my clear green
eyes, and their expressions darken, no longer cajoling, but threatening. “You know we
have our methods. We can force you to tell us where it is.”
For that reason, I have climbed halfway to heaven.
Without warning, I turn and reach up, curling my fingers onto the high ledge, pulling
myself up, scrambling onto my knees, then standing … unsteady at the precipice.
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