I’m not a fan of Dan Brown’s writing. I think he’s something of a hack, who lucked out by stumbling onto a deep yearning to embrace the divine feminine. The films, thanks partly to director Ron Howard, are far more entertaining, excising much of the tiresome lecturing masquerading as prose in Brown’s novels. One of my only real pleasures in considering the influence of Brown’s career is how he seems to make conservative Catholics (and quite a few conservative Protestants) spend countless hours debunking a popular fiction writer. Enter conservative (Catholic) columnist Ross Douthat, who in his zeal to slam the co-existence of Jesus with Brown’s various New Age/heretical theories does his own sloppy research.