Though some of us hope he’s quit while he’s ahead, others, namely those hoping to roll in the piles of money even his excrement would generate at this point, are wondering where the hell his Da Vinci followup book is. Meanwhile, Dan Brown Himself continues to sit quietly on his blue whale- and condor-bone throne, wiping spilled wine from his black turtleneck and tan jacket with the corner of the Queen’s cloak, and eating peeled grapes from a plate balanced on the head a shackled, kneeling, Sphinx-like People Magazine critic.
Now that Harry Potter — the only bigger publishing phenomenon of the age — is retired, no book has been as eagerly awaited as Mr. Brown’s next novel, purported to be about freemasonry and the Founding Fathers. The problem is, it is still awaited…and awaited…and awaited.
The whole industry is impatient. Book sales are generally sluggish, and one explosive, high-profile title can jump-start sales across the board as customers pour into the stores and walk out with a bagful of titles. When Bertelsmann AG reports 2007 results in March, it will be the first time since 2002 that it didn’t get a boost from “The Da Vinci Code.”