(Books:) Cracking Codes & Cryptograms for Dummies


Full Title

Cracking Codes and Cryptograms for Dummies,

by Denise Sutherland (syndicated puzzle author) and

Mark E. Koltko-Rivera, Ph.D. (M:.M:., 32 ° , K.T.).

Foreword by Christopher Hodapp 32 °  (author, Freemasons for Dummies).

Online Purchase Links

Available online at these sites (click on form of the book): 

Publisher's Description

 The fast and easy way to crack codes and cryptograms

Did you love Dan Brown's The Lost Symbol? Are you fascinated by secret codes and deciphering lost history? Cracking Codes and Cryptograms For Dummies shows you how to think like a symbologist to uncover mysteries and history by solving cryptograms and cracking codes that relate to Freemasonry, the Knights Templar, the Illuminati, and other secret societies and conspiracy theories.

You'll get easy-to-follow instructions for solving everything from the simplest puzzles to fiendishly difficult ciphers using secret codes and lost symbols.

  • Over 350 handcrafted cryptograms and ciphers of varying types.

  • Puzzles of all levels: Easy, Tricky, and Treacherous.

  • Tips and tricks for cracking even the toughest code

  • An introduction to the history and relevance of using code

  • Uncover a bigger mystery--use the code-breaking answers you discover to solve three conspiracy stories contained in the book.

  • Check your work--find hints and answers for all the book's puzzles.

Sutherland is a syndicated puzzle author; Koltko-Rivera is an expert on the major symbols and ceremonies of Freemasonry.

With the helpful information in this friendly guide, you'll be unveiling mysteries and shedding light on history in no time!


Co-Author Statement

I made three types of contributions to this wonderful book. These contributions involved the conspiracy stories, the Masonic ciphers, and the history of codes and ciphers.

The Stories

Most of my readers do not know that I also write fiction. For Cracking Codes and Cryptograms for Dummies, I wrote three espionage stories in the form of letters and emails. One story is set during the American Revolutionary War, and involves the real-life conspiracy to betray the Revolutionary cause and deliver West Point into the hands of the British. The second story is set during the American Civil War, and involves the real-life conspiracy of The Golden Circle. The third story is set in our time, involving the conspiracy of The Organization; I will have to leave it to the reader to determine how the extent to which the elements of this story have real-life counterparts. 

Pieces of the stories were then encrypted and cryptogrammed by puzzle master extraordinaire, Ms. Denise Suitherland, and used as puzzles in the body of the book.  Solutions could then be used to fill in the blank parts of the stories, given in sequence in Chapter 3 of the book.

Masonic Ciphers

Without giving away anything that is (ahem) currently in use in Freemasonry, I supplied information for Chapter 8 ("Masonic Ciphers") about a variety of ciphers that were historically used in different Masonic groups in the 18th and 19th Centuries. These include some French Rose Croix ciphers, Albert Pike's Cypher of the Rose Croix, some Pigpen ciphers, and some magical writing systems, including Malachim and Celestial. One or another of these were used in the 34 puzzles of Chapter 8.

The History of Codes and Ciphers

I wrote Chapter 1 ("Clueing You In about Codes and Cryptograms"), which  included a brief history of the use of codes and ciphers in espionage from ancient to modern times. I also include suggestions for further study of cryptography, with sub-sections for further puzzle books, general cryptography knowledge, use of cryptography during the American Revolution and Civil War, and Freemasonry and its use of ciphers.