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Secrets of the Code: The Unauthorized Guide to the Mysteries Behind the Da Vinci Code

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Draws on the works of theologians, art historians, and other experts to explore the sources, ideas, and major themes of the novel The Da Vinci Code..


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Draws on the works of theologians, art historians, and other experts to explore the sources, ideas, and major themes of the novel The Da Vinci Code..

30 review for Secrets of the Code: The Unauthorized Guide to the Mysteries Behind the Da Vinci Code

  1. 4 out of 5

    Carol

    So far this book is raising more questions than it attempts to answer & I'm really enjoying it. The author's intention to get people thinking about the origins of Christianity and its subsequent evolution is well designed. I look forward to finishing my reading of this book. So far this book is raising more questions than it attempts to answer & I'm really enjoying it. The author's intention to get people thinking about the origins of Christianity and its subsequent evolution is well designed. I look forward to finishing my reading of this book.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Sammy Sutton

    Seriously, I'm a little worn out with the whole Da Vinci Code 'Holy Vessel' controversy. Nevertheless, I still get a little caught up in the concepts surrounding it. Dan Burstein seems to be one of the more credible theorists. I enjoy his work a lot. Seriously, I'm a little worn out with the whole Da Vinci Code 'Holy Vessel' controversy. Nevertheless, I still get a little caught up in the concepts surrounding it. Dan Burstein seems to be one of the more credible theorists. I enjoy his work a lot.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Yana Rosli

    what i got from this book is HEADACHE~...

  4. 5 out of 5

    K Stott

    I have an almost flashbulb memory of reading The DaVinci Code– I was 20, backpacking Europe for six months and staying for a few days with my best friend at her live-in B&B job in London. After Tube delays caused me to miss my discount early morning flight out to Berlin, I headed back into the city and spent the day reading Dan Brown’s thriller. As a lapsed United Church churchgoer, I wasn’t heavily undone by any of the religious conspiracies in the novel, but I was thrilled to be reading the bo I have an almost flashbulb memory of reading The DaVinci Code– I was 20, backpacking Europe for six months and staying for a few days with my best friend at her live-in B&B job in London. After Tube delays caused me to miss my discount early morning flight out to Berlin, I headed back into the city and spent the day reading Dan Brown’s thriller. As a lapsed United Church churchgoer, I wasn’t heavily undone by any of the religious conspiracies in the novel, but I was thrilled to be reading the book in London, which features prominently. I was in one of the greatest cities in the world, and I remember not being sad at all about staying inside and reading all day. Fast-forward 15 years and Secrets of the Code, a fan’s non-fiction compilation companion to The DaVinci Code has been collecting dust on my bookshelves, given to me years ago by friends but since languishing unread. I’ve thought many times about just donating this book to Goodwill without reading it, but that The DaVinci Code memory was too good and I thought I should at least attempt Secrets before I donated. So here we are! As noted above, this book itself is a fan’s compilation of non-fiction pieces relating to the various ‘mysteries’ that Dan Brown based his novel on. It gives each ‘mystery’ its own section (ie: ‘Who Was Mary Magdalene?’, ‘Was there a Conspiracy to Hide the Gnostic Gospels?’, ‘What Were the Knights Templar Up To?’, etc.), and then gives a) a quick summary of what the DaVinci Code has to say about these topics; and b) some unfiltered critical/academic articles on the same. Unsurprisingly, and as a consequence of being largely excerpts from other critical non-fiction works, it is a fairly disjointed and uneven text. Although Burstein attempts to provide different perspectives (ie: some pro some con on the answers to these ‘mysteries’), he doesn’t weigh in to evaluate the different critical perspectives, and I would’ve appreciated hearing his take. He did all the legwork and likely read much more than what was excerpted here- what conclusions did he come to? All this being said, I am glad I read Secrets before I donated, as this book has kicked off some Wikipedia searches that make me feel smarter (ie: there are actually other ‘ancient gospels’ found in Egypt in modern times, although what they mean and how they relate to the established gospel is still up for debate) and other reading that I’ve always half wondered about but had never gotten around to actually doing.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Abhishek Kanna

    Dan Burstein puts together the book that anyone whose read The Da Vinci Code has always wanted. A book that breaks down all the issues, history, myths and riddles written about by Dan Brown and attempts to provide the facts. This book is fun with a capital F-U-N. It is, however, a very thick and acedemic book filled with excerpts and articles from published scholars. The Da Vinci Code is fiction, yes. This book makes that very clear. But what the novel did to its audience is simple and healthy. I Dan Burstein puts together the book that anyone whose read The Da Vinci Code has always wanted. A book that breaks down all the issues, history, myths and riddles written about by Dan Brown and attempts to provide the facts. This book is fun with a capital F-U-N. It is, however, a very thick and acedemic book filled with excerpts and articles from published scholars. The Da Vinci Code is fiction, yes. This book makes that very clear. But what the novel did to its audience is simple and healthy. It wet people's appetite for reading, and made them curious about a slew of conspiracy theories as well as Christian history. This book has a smattering of every topic readers might be curious about. Merely this book collected facts from fiction in Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code. Dan Burstein has indeed edited an extensive far reaching book about the most controversial figure in the Christian history. Burstein has rounded up some of the sources that Dan Brown used and either reprinted the crux of their works or interviewed them specifically for this book. It gives each ‘mystery’ its own section for example: 1. Who Was Mary Magdalene? 2. Was there a Conspiracy to Hide the Gnostic Gospels? 3. What Were the Knights Templar Up To? 4. Did really Da Vinci hid some secrets in his paintings? etcetera The author has even included a lenghty excerpt from the notirously un-scholarly "Holy Blood, Holy Grail". Beacuse, well, because its printed, published and read by many people including Dan Brown. I found this book very interesting and informative although at times it was a bit hard to read, but the book definitely makes one think about everything.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Nathan

    This was an odd book because it is essentially just a printed collection of short pieces that were published previously. That did make it easy to read the parts I was interested in, but it also made it incredibly scattered. Possibly my favorite part was a collection of verifications of claims made in "The Da Vinci Code," despite a rather substantial amount of those claims being inane verifications of the routes characters traveled and the times places they visited would have actually been opened This was an odd book because it is essentially just a printed collection of short pieces that were published previously. That did make it easy to read the parts I was interested in, but it also made it incredibly scattered. Possibly my favorite part was a collection of verifications of claims made in "The Da Vinci Code," despite a rather substantial amount of those claims being inane verifications of the routes characters traveled and the times places they visited would have actually been opened, which is absolutely *not* what anyone reading a book about "the mysteries behind the Da Vinci Code" is interested in, at least in my opinion. What most surprised me, however, was how small the stakes were re: Dan Brown's novel. It's incredibly difficult for me to imagine a (fiction!) book with a similarly "explosive" premise about Christianity published now having remotely the kind of impact that "The Da Vinci Code" did.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Graham

    My high hopes were dashed early on and I only made it to page 249 and even then I skipped over large parts where opinions took large amounts of space to say nothing. I really wanted to get more information about the many interesting aspects of The Da Vinci code, which, after all, is fiction, a novel, whose purpose is to entertain, not present history. Oh well, I'll continue to read Dan Brown's books for entertainment and continue to have an interest in Da Vinci, art, history and archeology. My high hopes were dashed early on and I only made it to page 249 and even then I skipped over large parts where opinions took large amounts of space to say nothing. I really wanted to get more information about the many interesting aspects of The Da Vinci code, which, after all, is fiction, a novel, whose purpose is to entertain, not present history. Oh well, I'll continue to read Dan Brown's books for entertainment and continue to have an interest in Da Vinci, art, history and archeology.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Deborah Carroll

    Lots of interesting info, long & dry in many places, could use additional editing, after having it around for a couple of years I finally got into the flow of it to finish it. I was definitely intrigued by the info.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Nicki

    Hard to get my head around, lost interest

  10. 4 out of 5

    Hugo Basson

    I found this book very interesting and informative although at times it was a bit hard to read. The book definitely makes one think. I loved it!!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Gloria

    very interesting book seeks to debunk some of the things in the DA Vinci code, a book that can be somewhat dry at times but well written and thought provoking.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Anita

    A collection of scholarly articles on The Davinci Code. Interesting and challenging.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Debi Emerson

    Interesting compilation of articles about various topics related to "The Da Vinci Code". A bit dry in spots, but mostly very relevant! Interesting compilation of articles about various topics related to "The Da Vinci Code". A bit dry in spots, but mostly very relevant!

  14. 4 out of 5

    Nivedita Shinde

    Hard to read, Very technical but enjoyed reading as I am the big fan of Da Vinci code so I have to read this one.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Cagajo

    This story is definitely great

  16. 4 out of 5

    Baba

    Dan Burstein puts together the book that anyone whose read The Da Vinci Code has always wanted. A book that breaks down all the issues, history, myths and riddles written about by Dan Brown and attempts to provide the facts. . This book is likely seen as somewhat un put downable as the reader is ready to eat up the truths raised by Dan Brown. However despite being a great idea for a book, it is pretty poorly executed.... as the facts don't really seem to emerge, it's more a presentation of the inf Dan Burstein puts together the book that anyone whose read The Da Vinci Code has always wanted. A book that breaks down all the issues, history, myths and riddles written about by Dan Brown and attempts to provide the facts. . This book is likely seen as somewhat un put downable as the reader is ready to eat up the truths raised by Dan Brown. However despite being a great idea for a book, it is pretty poorly executed.... as the facts don't really seem to emerge, it's more a presentation of the information to hand both for and against the ideas presented in The Da Vinci Code! . 3 out of 12, a One Star read.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Cat.

    Started this in July, put it away while on vacation and during the Great Vacation Readup, and now it's finally done. If you read and enjoyed The Da Vinci Code (which I did, two years ago, but it's only a thriller people!), this might pique your interest. Burstein has rounded up some of the sources that Dan Brown used and either reprinted the crux of their works or interviewed them specifically for this book. He then goes and finds a rebuttal for all this kooky stuff. :-) It's a bit boggy at time Started this in July, put it away while on vacation and during the Great Vacation Readup, and now it's finally done. If you read and enjoyed The Da Vinci Code (which I did, two years ago, but it's only a thriller people!), this might pique your interest. Burstein has rounded up some of the sources that Dan Brown used and either reprinted the crux of their works or interviewed them specifically for this book. He then goes and finds a rebuttal for all this kooky stuff. :-) It's a bit boggy at times, and if you're in a hurry you could get by with just reading the glossary. Had I know about it, I think I might have done just that. Especially regarding the bits I didn't care about at all. I scoured the pages pertaining to the Leonardo debate, and I find the Mary Magdalene arguments to be flat-out fun to observe. I so enjoy taking the piss out of Fundamentalists... heh. Again, however, I must say: The original book is a NOVEL. And Burstein generally keeps that pretty clearly in sight as he investigates the non-fictional possibilities that spring from Brown's book.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Keith Brough

    This book is fun with a capitla F-U-N. It is, however, a very thick and acedemic book filled with excerpts and articles from published scholars. The DaVici COde is fiction. Yes. This book makes that very clear. But what the novel did to its audience is simple and healthy... it wet peoples appetite for reading, and made them curious about a slew of conspiracy theories as well as Christian history. This book has a smattering of every topic readers might be curious about. Interviews with ELain Page This book is fun with a capitla F-U-N. It is, however, a very thick and acedemic book filled with excerpts and articles from published scholars. The DaVici COde is fiction. Yes. This book makes that very clear. But what the novel did to its audience is simple and healthy... it wet peoples appetite for reading, and made them curious about a slew of conspiracy theories as well as Christian history. This book has a smattering of every topic readers might be curious about. Interviews with ELain Pagels whose scholarship I don't hightly value is in the book. So are some things I find boring. But the editor has even included a lenghty excerpt from the notirously un-scholarly "Holy Blood, Holy Grail". Beacuse, well, because its printed, published and read by many people...including Dan Brown. So, buy this book and have fun reading it. Skip around or read bits in parts. Its incredibly fun for a scholarly smattering into real historical research.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Teycordero

    I read this book back in my high school days. I got curious from the graphic images of the famous painting Monalisa and the last supper of Leonardo da vinci. Did really Leonardo hid some secrets in his paintings? Merely this book collected facts from fiction in Dan Browns da vinci code. Dan Burstein has indeed edited an extensive far reaching book about the most controversial figure in the Christian history. It starts off with a promising note and urges you to recollect what you learned in the n I read this book back in my high school days. I got curious from the graphic images of the famous painting Monalisa and the last supper of Leonardo da vinci. Did really Leonardo hid some secrets in his paintings? Merely this book collected facts from fiction in Dan Browns da vinci code. Dan Burstein has indeed edited an extensive far reaching book about the most controversial figure in the Christian history. It starts off with a promising note and urges you to recollect what you learned in the novel. But as the pages wear on it gets increasingly complicated and confusing. I think you'll come to get the full impact only when you had read it more than three or four times. It didn't affect me at all. I won't and never believe that Jesus Christ married Mary Magdalene.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Shyam

    I have to admit that Dan Burstein has indeed edited a comprehensive book about the most controversial figure in the Christian history among other things. The book is especially enjoyable for it's extensive collection and distinction of the fact from fiction in Dan Brown's da Vinci Code. It starts off with a promising note and urges you to recollect what you learned in the novel. But as the pages wear on it gets increasingly complicated and confusing. I think you'll come to get the full impact onl I have to admit that Dan Burstein has indeed edited a comprehensive book about the most controversial figure in the Christian history among other things. The book is especially enjoyable for it's extensive collection and distinction of the fact from fiction in Dan Brown's da Vinci Code. It starts off with a promising note and urges you to recollect what you learned in the novel. But as the pages wear on it gets increasingly complicated and confusing. I think you'll come to get the full impact only when you had read it more than three or four times. But the book is not without it's highs. One who thinks of getting to the bottom of the novel won't have his shelf without this book.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Ernest

    Solid if a bit stodgy. The books title faithfully attempted to tell the secrets of the Code and did it in a largely non-point of view manner, inserting excerpts of other works and interviews. However, the book attempted to cover much material and this may have detracted from its impact. Additionally, the books length might put people off reading it.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Joy Marie

    This was a good book to get background information on the topics found in the book "The DaVinci Code". The author gave good information on both sides of several historical arguments highlighted by the book and allowed the reader to draw their own conclusions. This was a good book to get background information on the topics found in the book "The DaVinci Code". The author gave good information on both sides of several historical arguments highlighted by the book and allowed the reader to draw their own conclusions.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Emma Scholes

    I liked this book but it was very deep reading. It was hard to read sometimes as it got very technical. I still liked it. Most of the time I want to be entertained. I will finish reading this book but I think it is a better reference book.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Scott

    snarky and dismissive. Da Vinci code is a grocery store novel, for cryin' out loud! Settle down! Disinfo company's book is much much better; after all there is a lot of mystery behind Mr. Brown's book that is quite legitimate. snarky and dismissive. Da Vinci code is a grocery store novel, for cryin' out loud! Settle down! Disinfo company's book is much much better; after all there is a lot of mystery behind Mr. Brown's book that is quite legitimate.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Johanna

    The history behind the Da Vinci Code has always fascinated me more than the fictive story. This book gives many interesting viewpoints in an objective way that gets me to find my own conclusions and thoughts about what might really have been true.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Jovy

    Loved this! I watched the movie, read the book, saw the documentaries in the history and discovery channels and then this...I love the illustrated timetable, 'sacred feminine' and all about Leonardo. Loved this! I watched the movie, read the book, saw the documentaries in the history and discovery channels and then this...I love the illustrated timetable, 'sacred feminine' and all about Leonardo.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Alex Blance

    I began to realize and consider many things, It helps me to correct some of my misconceptions about the early christianity..and it open my eyes toward the Bible we are using now...very interesting book...I am satisfied!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Steven

    I did enjoy parts of this, however I was disappointed to find out it was just clippings from other books. I would have given it a better rating, but the page by page account from the da vinci code book was just terrible.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Nadim Khalil

    I did not read "The Davinci Code", but I watched the movie, this book has a lot of interesting ideas in it, it gives you a lot of conversation starters on religious ideas, old history and secret societies... I did not read "The Davinci Code", but I watched the movie, this book has a lot of interesting ideas in it, it gives you a lot of conversation starters on religious ideas, old history and secret societies...

  30. 4 out of 5

    Adih Respati

    The occult in the story is indeed old news and that Dan Brown probably genuinely believes the fiction he wrote.

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