Doubleday/Random House: NY, 2003.
This book created a sensation when it was published, as did the movie based on the book. I saw the movie first and wanted to know more. The movie follows the book closely with some changes nearing the end. The book is more clear about some points, such as the mastermind's reason for killing the leaders of the Priory of Scion and the reason why the suspicion of the police shifts away from the main characters. In the book, Sophie is truly the granddaughter of the Grandmaster of the Priory, but not in the movie. These things make the resolution of the book more clear. The movie is more fast paced, resulting in the monk's story being more clear.
The topic is, of course, sensationalistic. The Holy Grail and Mary Magdalene's bloodline. I do not have enough knowledge on the subject to know how much of the evidence is real. However, the story has been researched well. Bits and pieces are things I have heard speculation about for years, such as the difference between how the Church depicts Mary Magdalene and historical evidence. Also, it is true that medieval artists used pagan symbolism in their masterpieces. The story has a true ring to it, and enough is true to make it fascinating. How many fiction stories can you say prompt you to learn more? This one does.
The story is a strong and smart mystery. The symbolism and codes keep you hanging to the very end. I wanted to have more of a conclusion for the Priory, but it is fitting that there isn't. At least, we were given a glimpse of the Grail.
For those who don't already know the subject, I don't want to say too much. However, I suspect that those who are set in their religious beliefs and do now want to hear any conflicting ideas would hate the story. There is truth in it that would likely just anger them.
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