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Dan Brown: Author
by Asa Butcher
Issue 6
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Deception Point
Dan Brown
Pocket Books, 2001
Dan Brown, or Mr. Da Vinci Code, has written more than one book some of you maybe shocked to learn. In fact, this is the first Dan Brown novel I have read and that means that I am one of the few yet to read the aforementioned much-discussed book. Dan Brown is new to me, but following the completion of Deception Point, he will no longer be a stranger in my bookcase.

Deception Point feels as though it was written in the staff room of a University campus. By this, I mean, that there are liberal doses of history, geography, technology, science, politics, philosophy and English literature, naturally. These individual subjects are blended together to create a very interesting story that makes you stroke your chin and say, “This could really happen.”

The story follows Rachel Sexton, an intelligence analyst for the National Reconnaissance Office, who is asked to verify the authenticity of radical discovery beneath the Arctic ice. A bold deception is discovered and she finds herself being hunted by a deadly team of assassins before she can warn the US President. There is never a moment during the story that makes you snort in disbelief and this made me enjoy the book even more.

‘What if’ books are one of my weaknesses and this book taps directly into that passion. The book relies heavily upon scientific analysis of problems and events, such as glaciology and oceanography, but Dan Brown approaches these complicated subjects with a flair for simplifying it to a notch above patronising. The acknowledgements give the impression that his research was important to him and this reinforces the idea that this fiction could easily be fact.

Dan loves his technology. He really loves gadgets and equipment. During some of the action sequences, you feel the text has been lifted from an arms dealer’s catalogue: Delta-One was preparing a dehydrated protein meal when his watch beeped in unison with the others. Within seconds the CrypTalk communications device beside him blinked on alert.” Every page seems to have reference to the latest technological advances, but the author states at the very beginning that all the equipment in the story exists, which makes you shake your head in quiet amazement.

I loved the characters in Deception Point, especially the ambitious Senator Sexton and the quirky Dr. Corky Marlinson. There were not too many clichés in the main characters, just enough to forgive Dan and accept them as quick character developments.

Overall, Deception Point was a great book to read over a few days. The ideas made me open my eyes to the possibilities to deceive the public and the technology that is available to help them. I just hope that the Delta Force are never after me.

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