Dan Brown's latest mystery is set here in DC. You might not know that Professor Margaret Soltan has read it, and talked about the book last night on the Lehrer News Hour. From the transcript (here):
MARGARET SOLTAN: [Mystery blockbusters] appeal to a large audience because they're fun to read, they're scary, they're lurid, all those kind of lower emotions they appeal to. The other way of getting at it is that his books are -- they satisfy that curiosity. I mean, serious literature tells you life is mysterious, but at the end of the novel, it's still mysterious. It's even worse, OK? Here, it's mysterious, and things get solved in a very satisfying way.