Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Justice Peter Smith ...

... will issue the decisive opinion, but in the meantime I've tossed my two cents into The Da Vinci Code dispute: Cracking the 'Code': A reader's verdict.

Update: I mentioned, but did not elaborate upon the debunking of Holy Blood, Holy Grail - which Dan Brown seems to have been unaware of in spite of his "meticulous research" - but here is a piece from Le Temps of Geneva that provides details: Best-seller 'The Da Vinci Code' is based on a deception.

I read Holy Blood, Holy Grail (that, by the way, is its American title) and its follow-up The Messianic Legacy years ago, and when I first read The Da Vinci Code I was immediately reminded of the earlier book, which I think is a better read.


  1. I like your Philly News piece, Frank. You convince me that Dan Brown picked bits out of HBHG (and probably other books) -- that is what passes for academic research in some quarters. (I don't direct this against Brown in particular, just that I have noticed that this tendency to weave together bits from various sources is fairly prevalent in some circles but is not what any self respecting academic researcher would do).

    That having been said, it is a long way from copying the ideas in a few judicious chunks of text here and there, and being legally defined as infringing copyright. I still know who my money is on to win, whatever the rights and wrongs of the situation.

  2. When I first read Code not long after it came out, I was immediately reminded of HB,HG. I actually don't think Brown did much research at all. Aas I pointed out in the article I think he took a thread from the earlier book and wove his own story out of it. But I do think there are parallels between the two books that are at least as obvious as those that got historians Stephen Ambrose and Doris Kearns Goodwin in trouble over here. In other words, I think there's a prima facie case to be made that Brown let the HB,HG authors do some of his work for them. I have no idea how Justice Smith will rule. I don't know the particulars of Crown law in cases like this. But I am not sympathetic to writers who borrow without giving proper credit and who pass off as their own others' work. It's also a god-awful book.
    Oh, and I'm glad I probably won't have to write about it again.

  3. Brown even blatantly used an amalgamation of the two mens his book. He needs to pay up and move on!

  4. Anonymous11:43 AM

    If the world only knew the true reality that underlies all that has gone on in connection to the accusations of plagiarism that caused the lawsuits connected to "The Da Vinci Code" it would see the judicial corruption and equivocating lies perpetrated by a pair of usurping FRAUDS who have taken unto themselves the enrichment and creative credit that was not theirs to begin with in the first place! Both Brown and Perdue and their publishers and agents are no different than intellectual rapists and murderers!!!!!