Where do we come from?
Where are we going?
The stunningly inventive new novel from the world's most popular thriller writer.
Robert Langdon, Harvard professor of symbology and religious iconology, arrives at the ultramodern Guggenheim Museum Bilbao to attend a major announcement - the unveiling of a discovery that "will change the face of science forever." The evening's host is Edmond Kirsch, a 40-year-old billionaire and futurist whose dazzling high-tech inventions and audacious predictions have made him a renowned global figure. Kirsch, who was one of Langdon's first students at Harvard two decades earlier, is about to reveal an astonishing breakthrough...one that will answer two of the fundamental questions of human existence.
As the event begins, Langdon and several hundred guests find themselves captivated by an utterly original presentation, which Langdon realizes will be far more controversial than he ever imagined. But the meticulously orchestrated evening suddenly erupts into chaos, and Kirsch's precious discovery teeters on the brink of being lost forever. Reeling and facing an imminent threat, Langdon is forced into a desperate bid to escape Bilbao. With him is Ambra Vidal, the elegant museum director who worked with Kirsch to stage the provocative event. Together they flee to Barcelona on a perilous quest to locate a cryptic password that will unlock Kirsch's secret.
Navigating the dark corridors of hidden history and extreme religion, Langdon and Vidal must evade a tormented enemy whose all-knowing power seems to emanate from Spain's Royal Palace itself...and who will stop at nothing to silence Edmond Kirsch. On a trail marked by modern art and enigmatic symbols, Langdon and Vidal uncover clues that ultimately bring them face to face with Kirsch's shocking discovery...and the breathtaking truth that has long eluded us.
Origin is Dan Brown's most brilliant and entertaining novel to date.
Dan Brown is the author of numerous number one international best sellers, including The Da Vinci Code, Inferno, The Lost Symbol, Angels & Demons, Deception Point, and Digital Fortress.
"Narrator Paul Michael dazzles in this latest Dan Brown thriller featuring symbologist Robert Langdon.... Michael's narration provides a tone of erudition that complements Brown's signature blend of art, architecture, history, and thriller. Michael's inspired vocal work adds further texture, though Winston, surprisingly, outshines most of the human characters." (AudioFile)
I remember when I read the DaVinci Code. I couldn't put it down. And when I did, it was 4am and I was half convinced a Spanish albino monk was going to come crashing through my window.
Maybe it isn't fair to compare the two, but this felt lazy by comparison. It's possible I'm immune at this point to the twists that Dan Brown takes the reader down, but I honestly don't think his heart was in the story. This felt more like an excruciatingly protracted science lesson than a mystery thriller.
I say this as a fan of Brown and as someone who will continue to read about Professor Langdon - regardless of the absurdity of his "romances" and leaps in logic - but this was the most disappointing "adventure" Langdon has embarked on. I honestly wanted to like it, but there were times in the story when I rolled my eyes so often, my wife thought that I was having stroke.
Return to Angels & Demons or DaVinci Code...even Inferno, but leave this on the shelf with the Lost Symbol.
201 of 218 people found this review helpful
This was the first Dan Brown novel I chose to listen to on Audible. I typically like to read novels the old fashioned way, and listen to non-fiction on Audible.
When I first started reading Dan Brown novels, I loved that while his plots all seemed to follow the same formula and arc, they were rarely so predictable from the start. In almost every other DB book, I would find myself at a point where I’d feel glib for not seeing a plot twist coming.
That being said, this was an enjoyable book, and well-worth the Audible credit at 18+ hours.
It just wasn’t Dan Brown’s best effort, and I was really hoping for less exhausting over-explanation of details that don’t impact the plot. Dan Brown’s critics typically point to this as his biggest flaw, as if he’s trying to turn an 80 chapter book into one that’s over 100 like this one.
What I did love:
DB always does an amazing job creating imagery, especially when describing the setting and characters.
The narrator was FANTASTIC in my opinion. I really enjoyed listening to him read the book.
The theme of the plot. It was topical and very relevant to current societal issues.
All in all I give this novel:
5/5 Audiobook Performance
110 of 122 people found this review helpful
I have listened to all of Dan Brown's books...one was even on cassette! This one actually lost my attention several times. Usually these are great driving books due to the excitement, but this one was a bit too philosophical. It sometimes bound up the flow of the story and I had to relisten to sections because my mind had wondered. Definitely a Dan Brown book, but not his best.
90 of 100 people found this review helpful
So much excitement, then what should have the best part of the book turned into a scientific lecture. Now my head hurts and I don’t care when or how life started.
63 of 70 people found this review helpful
Dan Brown needs to find a new formula. Robert Langdon continues to chase around beautiful, historical cities with a beautiful woman. (really the same woman just with a different name & nationality in each book) The twists and denouement have become banal.
I anticipated the "surprise" revelations many chapters before the conclusion.
I have enjoyed Mr. Brown's previous books, but I forced myself to slog through this one.
Many pages ( or minutes ) of boring exposition.
29 of 32 people found this review helpful
The writing is uninspired, boring, and repetitive. The pace is very slow. The suspense feels contrived. The subplots are unimportant/uninteresting. I seriously considered returning the book midway through. But the promise of the big science discovery and the superb narrator kept me going. In the end, it was just ok, nothing ground breaking as promised. Surprisingly Brown cites real scientists and their ongoing preliminary research in the final presentation.
35 of 39 people found this review helpful
This was my first Dan Brown read. First off, i really enjoyed how Dan Brown incorporated real life locations and history into this fiction story. However, a small part of me almost felt like Dan Brown was trying to preach his religious agenda in this book. Moreover i almost felt like that book was long-winded and lengthy. Call me young and stupid but i really felt like there where large chunks of seemingly irrelevant matter that doesn't really advance the narrative - ex. Herman's Melville's lengthy descriptions of different types of whaling ships and species of whales - really didn't need all that info. (Sorry if you're offended). I picked this book because i wanted a good mystery/adventure/suspense book. Overall i give this book a 3.5 out 5.
24 of 27 people found this review helpful
Great read especially if you are a science person. If you like thrillers this one is for you too. If you like just the science-y part it can be long. But I get it a spoon full of sugar...
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
Brown's latest tale begins with bold claims, claims demanding of any storyteller. But Brown has delivered gripping narratives playing on some of humanities most entrenched divisions, with complex supporting characters, and a lead who is both superbly capable while being "Everyman" relatable. Unfortunately the characters in this novel do not live up to this, they are shells of personalities, predictable in their use and intent. Even Langdon, normally a perceptive, deliberative hero is clumsy, unnaturally biased in his actions, easily swayed in his perception of other characters- sometimes within only a couple pages.
Winston's character is again predictable in being plied to the story by Brown. The character is far more reactive than proactive in driving the characters supported and is chained to already overly used tropes for AI. Futurist may be the title of the man who created Winston but is not the description that can be affixed to Brown's use of the character.
The enlightenment at the end of the mystery leaves this reader feeling played for a fool, it is nothing near the promise received in the stories early setup.
The best of the book involves the descriptions and observations of architecture, art, and artists in Spain. It will leave one with an immediate desire to travel and see in person what is described. Perhaps leaning on experiences internalized from his time in Spain, Brown does an excellent job relating the structures and works of art he describes along with fair to tolerable (if shallow by necessity of scope)critique of the individuals responsible for their creations.
I expected more from Brown in this novel but choose to trust that this will be a disappointing anomaly in his series not a foretelling on limitations in his works to come.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful
this was such a disappointment. im in disbelief. could not believe that was all of it when i got to the end. had to check if there was something wrong with my app. there was no mystery! nothing. i loved all his earlier books, read all of them. this felt like a short story written just for the money
15 of 17 people found this review helpful