The book I am reviewing in this post is The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown which is an excellent thriller which I bought from a carboot sale. A while back I saw a tv programme which looked at what evidence there was to back up the claims that the rituals used in the book are genuine. I think it has a lot to do with free speech that the book can make inaccurate claims like that and get away with it. I think the organizations mentioned in the book are genuine. A lot of the stuff in the book is sensationalized to make a story and it would make a good film. The main theme is Washington DC & the freemasons who Brown claims drink wine out of skulls. There's no mention that in fact the skulls are plastic. I daresay masonic memberships will soar in the wake of this book. Dan follows a long tradition of fiction writing that can be traced back several centuries where authors write religious stories that make outrageous claims ie The Da Vinci Code, to be honest it's just entertainment but obviously a few nutters will take it seriously. I think the Da Vinci Code is the biggest selling novel in Britain of all time. He tries to claim that the freemasons are protecting forbidden knowledge which is just nonsense. I read Freemasons for Dummies a while back and did a post on the subject at my history blog at
I think most people would find the freemasons boring and apart from charity work, a lot of what they do is go to a restaurant, have dinner and talk about a lot of mundane things. They do have certain traditions but that's all they are. This book also claims that the architecture in Washington DC is masonic and that it is possible to see masonic shapes in the street patterns. The lead character in this book also features in quite a few of Brown's books in this he is a freemason expert called on to do a talk on freemasonry for some freemasons. I don't want to sound like I'm having a go at the book which is great entertainment.