Sometimes Dan Brown books and especially Robert Langdon as a character take credit for kind of obvious and not all that profound wisdom and philosophy.
For example, there’s a part in this book where a character says a thing about evolution in a specific and creative way. Then, Dan Brown has Robert Langdon laugh at and admire how clever the saying was.
That’s not how novels work dude! Don’t say something (not all that) clever and then have a character give you credit for it.
Having a Mickey Mouse watch is not a character trait! It doesn’t make you young at heart even you say you keep it to remind yourself to young at heart!
So this book actually seems to take place in the 21st century for the first time in Dan Brown’s career! And it turns out that Dan Brown basically writes the novel that Thomas Friedman would write if he were a hack writer. Well, wait, a hack thriller writer. Again, the best parts of this novel like the others is the generally decent thriller writing and the goofy premise and goofy “symbology” is the less good parts of it. The novel is fine, but it’s nothing particularly different from the other novels, other than it being a much more modern version of the familiar tropes of the Robert Langdon novels.
I more or less figured out the thriller part of the novel early on, while missing the less obvious historical mystery part. I found the historical part pretty lacking.