There's a lot to dislike about this book. The unnecessary, unbelievable characters, muddying everything up. The last-minute flurry of exposition. Not to mention Mosse's irritating narrative tics (how many characters can we reasonably believe can/should be knocked out over the course of a 600-something page novel? Do French people actually say everything twice, once in French and again in English?). Certainly, it's more literary than Dan Brown, but this sometimes works against the novel. Mosse is clearly aiming for a fast-paced thriller at certain points, but then gets bogged down in description, parading the amount of research she clearly did. On the one hand, I really do feel like this would have been a better, more exciting book if she'd toned down the literary aspirations. On the other hand, it's perfectly satisfactory holiday reading.