Reading Guide to Dan Brown's "The Lost Symbol" (Unauthorized) Dan Brown's 'The Lost Symbol' was the most anticipated novel of 2009, and was the literary event of the year. Alex Carmine examines all the themes in depth, and provides a chapter-by-chapter analysis of 'The Lost Symbol'. From Alex's assessment of the novel, it is very much apparent that Dan Brown has not only been adhering to his own formula, but that he has also been following Joseph Campbell's concept of the hero's journey. We know that Dan Brown likes to play with the names of his characters, so Alex explores these in great detail. In this way, Alex reveals the name of the real American family upon whom the Solomons are based. Alex also shows that, following its development within 'The Da Vinci Code', Dan Brown's still very much in tune with his 'sacred feminine' side, with his stunning representation of womb envy. Dan Brown's fascinating depiction of masculinity within this novel is studied too. In addition to this, Alex explores the literary devices that Dan Brown employs, and the magical sleights of hand that he uses to make the reader look the wrong way. Indeed, one of the main arguments in this book is that Dan Brown has hidden much of the true meaning of 'The Lost Symbol' behind various veils of allegory, much as the Masons do with regards to their secrets, and like the Symbologist Robert Langdon, Alex reveals these meanings to you. However, Dan Brown is an author who also likes to reward his readers, so Alex examines the clues about the novel that he disseminated prior to publication via Facebook and Twitter. Furthermore, Alex considers the various Masonic practices depicted within the novel, and bring to the fore the conspiracy theories that surround this mysterious fraternity. Alex Carmine's very close reading of the novel literally leaves no stone uncovered, and will transform your own interpretation of the text.