Losing the Plot

detail from The Last Supper by Leonardo Da Vinci

Losing the Plot

Mr Dan Brown, author extr’ordinaire,
Thrilling and gripping and Devil-may-care –
His fans want adventure, his fans want romance,
And intrigue uncovered from New York to France,
And heroes so clever and rugged and bold –
The sillier the story, the tighter it’s told.
Fast and loose plotting, his signature style –
From airport to bedside, from breathless to smile.

And what of Da Vinci ? Would he agree ?
Or would he be fuming, consumed in a rage,
As he turns and turns the page ?


Now you and I both might well disagree,
And see them as pulpy and intellect-free,
With sneers at the ready, with snoots in the air –
How we love to play pedant and cry it’s not fair.
He’s got his facts skewed and his history wrong,
So we have to correct him, for loud and for long.
We’re putting him right and we’re putting him down –
But the sales, they keep coming for Mr Dan Brown.

And what of Da Vinci ? Would he agree ?
Or would he be laughing, strutting the stage,
As he turns and turns the page ?

Dan Brown is on record saying that the ‘truths’ presented in The Da Vinci Code are all true. This of course is bollocks. But it is also irrelevant. And that infamous page of ‘facts’ at the start of the novel are just that – the start of the novel, a part of its world, and in no way to be criticised for not being a history textbook.

The author is under absolutely no obligation to tell the truth either on the page or off it – and indeed the whole point of fiction is to lie with style.

And yes, I am aware that I capitalised the Da in Da Vinci as if it were a surname and not an adjective. If it upsets you, then this is definitely the wrong blog for you.

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