The Lost Symbol covers released
Conspiracy theorists, ready, set, go! Publishers in the United States and Great Britain today released the covers for Dan Brown's The Lost Symbol, which goes on sale Sept. 15. The U.S. version (on left) shows the Capitol surrounded by mystical symbols and a red seal that features a double-headed eagle, the number 33 and the a Latin phrase meaning "order from chaos." It looks genuinely creepy, but no less so than the dollar bill's Great Seal, an eyeball hovering over a pyramid. Brown decoders have noted the similarities to emblems of the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry, which has a headquarters in Washington.
The U.K. version (on right) seems more straightforward. The Capitol is more prominent, presumably to emphasize to folks in the Mother Country that Washington is the mystery's setting. It also features a key with a square and compass, an age-old symbol of architecture and Freemasonry.
You can keep following the mystery on The Lost Symbol's Twitter page, where puzzles are regularly posted. Or you can get creative, deciphering this intriguing map of Washington, which has the square and compass image superimposed to link key buildings. Or take Read Street's Dan Brown quiz. (Answers here.)