Tuesday, 22 June 2010

On this day...

American novelist Dan Brown was born in 1964. The son of a maths teacher, Brown was introduced to puzzles and cyphers from an early age and participated in the treasure hunts which have become so emblematic of his works. Perhaps unusually for a blockbuster writer, Brown, after graduating from university, firstly pursued a career in music - his opening release being a children's cassette tape titled 'SynthAnimals'. After only selling a hundred copies, and possibly starting to doubt the seriousness of his work, Brown targeted the adult market, joining the National Academy of Songwriters and moving to Hollywood.

Yet it was while on holiday in Tahiti in 1993, that Brown discovered his literary career path. Inspired by reading Sidney Sheldon's 'The Doomsday Conspiracy', Brown began to write thrillers, publishing his first, 'Digital Fortress', in 1998. However his foray into the field proved remarkably unsuccessful, until the release of his fourth novel 'The Da Vinci Code', which ignited the public's attention and gathered an estimated $250 million in sales. Preceeded by 'Angels and Demons', 'The Da Vinci Code' was followed by 'The Lost Symbol' in 2009, with Brown reportedly invisaging another 12 books in the series. Although popular by sales figures, Brown cuts a figure of controversy, with many criticising his perceived attack on Christianity, as well as many deeming his writing style poor.

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