While in Paris on business, Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon receives an urgent late-night phone call: the elderly curator of the Louvre has been murdered inside the museum.Read more...
While in Paris on business, Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon receives an urgent late-night phone call: the elderly curator of the Louvre has been murdered inside the museum. Near the body, police have found a baffling cipher. While working to solve the enigmatic riddle, Langdon is stunned to discover it leads to a trail of clues hidden in the works of Da Vinci -- clues visible for all to see -- yet ingeniously disguised by the painter. Langdon joins forces with a gifted French cryptologist, Sophie Neveu, and learns the late curator was involved in the Priory of Sion -- an actual secret society whose members included Sir Isaac Newton, Botticelli, Victor Hugo, and Da Vinci, among others. In a breathless race through Paris, London, and beyond, Langdon and Neveu match wits with a faceless powerbroker who seems to anticipate their every move. Unless Langdon and Neveu can decipher the labyrinthine puzzle in time, the Priory's ancient secret -- and an explosive historical truth -- will be lost forever. THE DA VINCI CODE heralds the arrival of a new breed of lightning-paced, intelligent thriller...utterly unpredictable right up to its stunning conclusion.
Fall publishing season brings hot new releases
The coming months will bring lower temperatures, but our fall fiction forecast is nothing if not sizzling. Starting this month, some of the biggest names in fiction will release new novels destined for bestseller lists. Here's a sneak peek at the fall books everyone will be talking about.
Mystery and suspense
The legendary Sidney Sheldon makes a comeback on September 14 with Are You Afraid of the Dark? (Morrow, $25.95, 354 pages, ISBN 0060559349). Four men die in accidents continents apart. Their deaths are similar in only one way: all four worked for the Kingsley International Group, a prestigious, multinational think tank. Two of the widows become reluctant allies as they try to unravel the mystery behind their husbands' deaths.
Look for acclaimed mystery author David Baldacci's next thriller, Hour Game (Warner, $26.95, 448 pages, ISBN 0446531081), on October 26. Recurring characters Sean King and Michelle Maxwell are following a bloody trail of corpses left by a serial killer who places a watch with each victimand who has inspired a copycat murderer.
Suspense heavyweight Nelson DeMille's Night Fall (Warner, $26.95, 504 pages, ISBN 0446576638) will be released on November 22. His 13th novel is both a timely look at airline security issues and a thriller that will keep readers riveted. Federal agent John Corey, who first appeared in Plum Island, is back, and this time he's investigating the tragic 1996 crash of TWA Flight 800.
Dean Koontz is ready to send chills up readers' spines on December 7 with Life Expectancy (Bantam, $27, 352 pages, ISBN 0553804146). In this new thriller, an ordinary man inherits an extraordinary legacy that will change the way he looks at the world.
Susan Isaacs enters the world of politics in October with Any Place I Hang My Hat (Scribner, $26, 400 pages, ISBN 0743242157). Reporter Amy Lincoln, whose tumultuous upbringing included a father with a criminal record, decides to help a young man prove that presidential candidate Thomas Bowles is his biological father.
Tom Wolfe goes back to school this November with a provocative novelization of college life, I Am Charlotte Simmons (Farrar, Straus, $28.95, 600 pages, ISBN 0374281580). After an excerpt appeared in the August issue of Rolling Stone, Wolfe's portrayal of oversexed, undereducated students at a fake Ivy League school had readers talkingand wondering where he'd done his research.
On the lighter side
Alisa Valdes-Rodriguez has written a follow-up to her sassy, sensational fiction debut, The Dirty Girls' Social Club. Playing With Boys (St. Martin's, $24.95, 368 pages, ISBN 0312332343) is scheduled to hit shelves on September 7. This time out, the action takes place among the rich and beautiful people of Los Angeles. There, three very different Latinasa troubled former novela actress, a gutsy Mexican-American talent manager and an El Salvadoran would-be screenwriterteam up to make a mark on the movie business.
Romance lovers, mark your calendars: Nora Roberts' Northern Lights (Putnam, $25.95, 576 pages, ISBN 0399152059) goes on sale October 12. Policeman Nate Burke moved to the tiny, remote town of Lunacy, Alaska, to make a fresh start after disaster derailed his life in Baltimore. Pilot Meg Galloway was born and raised in Lunacy, and enjoys living alone with only her two dogs for company. When the body of Meg's long-lost father is discovered on a nearby mountain, she and Nate join forces to investigate and find plenty of danger and romance along the way.
The fun-loving Janet Evanovich takes a break from her popular Stephanie Plum series to create another memorable heroineand another sure-to-be bestseller. Metro Girl (HarperCollins, $26.95, 304 pages, ISBN 0060584009), on sale November 9, stars Alexandra Barnaby, a Miami girl who's looking for her missing brother. During her search, she uncovers much more, including dead bodies, treasure, bad guys and a sexy NASCAR driver.
Stephen King wraps up his Dark Tower saga with the September 21 release of The Dark Tower VII (Simon & Schuster, $35, 768 pages, ISBN 1880418622). This final volume in a series almost 25 years in the making ranks as one of the most eagerly anticipated books of all time, especially after the cliff-hanger finale of Song of Susannah. Information about the book prior to publication has been scarce, but it's safe to say that fans won't believe what gunslinger Roland Deschain and his friends find at the end of their quest to unlock the secrets of the Dark Tower.
When fantasy author Stephen R. Donaldson's classic six-volume Thomas Covenant series ended in 1983, fans mourned the death of the celebrated Thomas and the conclusion of a landmark series. Twenty years later, Donaldson makes a surprise return to his magical alternate universe, the Land, on October 14 with The Runes of the Earth (Putnam, $26.95, 560 pages, ISBN 0399152326). The first in a planned quartet, Runes opens 10 years after Thomas' death and follows the adventures of his former companion, Linden Avery, and their young son, who are unexpectedly summoned back into the Land.
Meanwhile, relative newcomer Laurell K. Hamilton continues her chart-topping Anita Blake series on September 28 with Incubus Dreams (Berkley, $23.95, 320 pages, ISBN 0425198243). In her 12th adventure, the seductive vampire hunter is trying to track down a vampire serial killer preying on strippers. As the consort of the city's Master Vampire, Anita is afraid to trust her own judgment on the case.
Da Vinci declaration
Dan Brown's 2003 blockbuster novel hasn't been released in paperback yet, but when a book spends 18 months on bestseller lists and inspires fan pilgrimages to pivotal settings, a mass market price isn't necessary. Instead, Doubleday is publishing The Da Vinci Code: Special Illustrated Collector's Edition on November 2. It's sure to be a hot holiday gift item for Da Vinci devotees and newbies alike.