For some reason, Dan Brown has now (9/2016) released a "young adult adaptation" of his best-selling novel The Da Vinci Code .
The puzzle is that it is not as if the original novel was written at a particularly high level. Middle school kids could easily read and understand it. In addition, the DVC moment was quite a few years ago now, and perhaps you have sensed a pulsing demand for a YA version of an over decade-old novel...but I haven't.
Nonetheless, given that this new edition might indeed bring a few new readers into the DVC world, for their benefit, I'm making my own response, originally published by Our Sunday Visitor in 2004, available at no cost out here on the Internet. It's a pdf file - just click and download.
The book offers help in answering questions like....
- Did Leonardo Da Vinci really use his art to communicate secret knowledge about the Holy Grail?
- Is it true that the Gospels don’t tell the true story of Jesus?
- Were Jesus and Mary Magdalene married?
- Did Jesus really designate Mary Magdalene as the leader of his movement, not Peter?
What seems to intrigue readers is that the characters in The Da Vinci Code have answers to these questions, and they are expressed in the book as factually based, supported by the work and opinions of historians and other researchers. Brown even cites real books as sources within the novel. Readers - especially teens encountering this new version - are naturally wondering why they’ve not heard these ideas before. They’re also wondering, if what Brown says is true, what the implications for their faith could be. After all, if the Gospels are false accounts, isn’t all of Christianity as we know it a lie?
This book is intended to help you unpack all of this and to explore the truth behind The Da Vinci Code. We’ll look at Dan Brown’s sources, and see if they’re really trustworthy witnesses to history. We’ll ask if his characterization of early Christian writings, teaching and disputes – events that are widely documented and have been studied for hundreds of years by intelligent, open-minded people – are accurate. We’ll look at Jesus and Mary Magdalene – the people at the center of this novel – and see if anything at all The Da Vinci Code has to say about them is based on the historical record. And along the way, we’ll find a startling number of blatant, glaring errors on matters great and small that should send up big red flags to anyone reading the novel as a source of facts, rather than just pure fiction.