Dan Brown Biography & Facts
Daniel Gerhard Brown (born June 22, 1964) is an American author best known for his thriller novels, including the Robert Langdon novels Angels & Demons (2000), The Da Vinci Code (2003), The Lost Symbol (2009), Inferno (2013), and Origin (2017). His novels are treasure hunts which usually take place over a period of 24 hours. They feature recurring themes of cryptography, art, and conspiracy theories. His books have been translated into 57 languages and, as of 2012, have sold over 200 million copies. Three of them, Angels & Demons, The Da Vinci Code, and Inferno, have been adapted into films.
The Robert Langdon novels are deeply engaged with Christian themes and historical fiction, and have generated controversy as a result. Brown states on his website that his books are not anti-Christian and he is on a "constant spiritual journey" himself. He claims that his book The Da Vinci Code is simply "an entertaining story that promotes spiritual discussion and debate" and suggests that the book may be used "as a positive catalyst for introspection and exploration of our faith."
Daniel Gerhard Brown was born on June 22, 1964, in Exeter, New Hampshire. He has a younger sister, Valerie (born 1968) and brother, Gregory (born 1974). Brown attended Exeter's public schools until the ninth grade. He grew up on the campus of Phillips Exeter Academy, where his father, Richard G. Brown, was a teacher of mathematics and wrote textbooks from 1968 until his retirement in 1997. His mother, Constance (née Gerhard), trained as a church organist and student of sacred music. Brown was raised an Episcopalian, and described his religious evolution in a 2009 interview:
"I was raised Episcopalian, and I was very religious as a kid. Then, in eighth or ninth grade, I studied astronomy, cosmology, and the origins of the universe. I remember saying to a minister, 'I don't get it. I read a book that said there was an explosion known as the Big Bang, but here it says God created heaven and Earth and the animals in seven days. Which is right?' Unfortunately, the response I got was, 'Nice boys don't ask that question.' A light went off, and I said, 'The Bible doesn't make sense. Science makes much more sense to me.' And I just gravitated away from religion."
When asked in the same interview about his then-current religious views, Brown replied:"The irony is that I've really come full circle. The more science I studied, the more I saw that physics becomes metaphysics and numbers become imaginary numbers. The further you go into science, the mushier the ground gets. You start to say, 'Oh, there is an order and a spiritual aspect to science.'"
Brown's interest in secrets and puzzles stems from their presence in his household as a child, where codes and ciphers were the linchpin tying together the mathematics, music, and languages in which his parents worked. The young Brown spent hours working out anagrams and crossword puzzles, and he and his siblings participated in elaborate treasure hunts devised by their father on birthdays and holidays. On Christmas, for example, Brown and his siblings did not find gifts under the tree, but followed a treasure map with codes and clues throughout their house and even around town to find the gifts. Brown's relationship with his father inspired that of Sophie Neveu and Jacques Saunière in The Da Vinci Code, and Chapter 23 of that novel was inspired by one of his childhood treasure hunts.After graduating from Phillips Exeter, Brown attended Amherst College, where he was a member of Psi Upsilon fraternity. He played squash, sang in the Amherst Glee Club, and was a writing student of visiting novelist Alan Lelchuk. Brown spent the 1985 school year abroad in Seville, Spain, where he was enrolled in an art history course at the University of Seville. Brown graduated from Amherst in 1986.
Composer and singer
After graduating from Amherst, Brown dabbled with a musical career, creating effects with a synthesizer, and self-producing a children's cassette entitled SynthAnimals, which included a collection of tracks such as "Happy Frogs" and "Suzuki Elephants"; it sold a few hundred copies. The music has been compared to Gary Glitter. He then formed his own record company called Dalliance, and in 1990 self-published a CD entitled Perspective, targeted to the adult market, which also sold a few hundred copies. In 1991 he moved to Hollywood to pursue a career as singer-songwriter and pianist. To support himself, he taught classes at Beverly Hills Preparatory School.He also joined the National Academy of Songwriters and participated in many of its events. It was there that he met his wife, Blythe Newlon, who was the academy's Director of Artist Development. Though it was not officially part of her job, she took on the seemingly unusual task of helping to promote Brown's projects; she wrote press releases, set up promotional events, and put him in contact with people who could be helpful to his career. She and Brown also developed a personal relationship, though this was not known to all of their associates until 1993, when Brown moved back to New Hampshire, and it was learned that Newlon would accompany him. They married in 1997, at Pea Porridge Pond, near Conway, New Hampshire.
In 1994 Brown released a CD titled Angels & Demons. Its artwork was the same ambigram by artist John Langdon which he later used for the novel Angels & Demons. The liner notes also again credited his wife for her involvement, thanking her "for being my tireless cowriter, coproducer, second engineer, significant other, and therapist". The CD included songs such as "Here in These Fields" and the religious ballad, "All I Believe".Brown and his wife, Blythe, moved to, Rye, New Hampshire in 1993. Brown became an English teacher at his alma mater Phillips Exeter, and gave Spanish classes to 6th, 7th, and 8th graders at Lincoln Akerman School, a small school for K–8th grade with about 250 students, in Hampton Falls.Brown has written a symphonic work titled Wild Symphony which is supplemented by a book of the same name. The book is illustrated by Hungarian artist Susan Batori which feature simple ambigrams for children, while the visuals trigger the corresponding music in an accompanying app. The music was recorded by the Zagreb Festival Orchestra and will receive its world concert premiere by the Portsmouth Symphony Orchestra in 2020. On March 30, 2022, it was announced that Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and Weed Road Pictures will turn Wild Symphony into an animated musical feature film in the vein of Walt Disney's Fantasia, with Brown writing the screenplay and songs, and Akiva Goldsman producing.
While on vacation in Tahiti in 1993, Brown read Sidney Sheldon's novel The Doomsday Conspiracy, and was inspired to become a writer of thrillers.He started work on Digital Fortress, setting much of it in Seville, where he had studied in 1985. He also co-wrote a humor book with his w.... Discover the Dan Brown popular books. Find the top 100 most popular Dan Brown books.