Sunday, October 22, 2017

5 Wine Glass #Review of Origin by Dan Brown

32283133Title: Origin
Series: Robert Langdon #5
Author: Dan Brown
Format: Hardcover, 480 pages
Published: October 3, 2017 (Random House, LLC)
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N
Reviewer: Linda
Source: Library
Rating: 5 out of 5 Wine Glasses

Robert Langdon, Harvard professor of symbology and religious iconology, arrives at the ultramodern Guggenheim Museum in 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 forty-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.

Linda's Thoughts:
"Where we come from... is not nearly as startling as where we are going."

I inhaled Origin as I've inhaled every one of Dan Brown's books. I am beyond thankful to my mother, who, many years ago, talked me into reading the Da Vinci Code, the second book in Brown’s Robert Langdon series. I enjoyed it so much that that I subsequently planned a vacation in Paris and spent hours visiting the museums and other sites intriguingly mentioned in that book checking out the art, architecture and other nuances that Brown had touched upon. Therefore, you will understand why I was at my library as they opened on Origin’s release day and snagged one of their two available copies. This book is hands-down one of my favorite reads this year.

Origin’s story is exceptionally well-plotted, mind-boggling and intense and will most assuredly keep you on the edge of your seat … and guessing …until the end. Brown’s writing is so vividly detailed that readers are transported to the book’s settings. Origin takes readers to Spain and Istanbul and I absolutely delighted in traveling to those places with smart and resourceful Robert Langdon, who fondly wears a Mickey Mouse watch. There’s no romance in these books – so if you are looking for a romance, look elsewhere. For those new to the series, each book stands on its own.

I love the trivia that the author enjoyably dispenses within his stories. For instance, Brown shared that George Lucas had modeled his storm troopers after the towering Gaudi chimneys in Barcelona that resemble futuristic helmeted chess pieces. When I read that, I had to go look up pictures of them…  and the semblance is obvious. Now, just imagine many more interesting tidbits just like that…

Following please find a few of my favorite quotes from Origin:

“Kirsch planned to go public with this presentation in a stunning, meticulously choreographed event. When he did, people across the world would realize that the teachings of all religions did indeed have one thing in common. They were all dead wrong.” 

“My friends, I am not saying I know for a fact that there is no God. All I am saying is that if there is a divine force behind the universe, it is laughing hysterically at the religions we’ve created in an attempt to define it.” 

“Historically, the most dangerous men on earth were men of God… especially when their gods became threatened.” 

Reading a Dan Brown book is an experience. After you read one of his books, you will never look at the things and places that he touches upon, the same. It’s hard to explain, but this series feeds my brain in a highly entertaining and unique way. Everything is always tidily resolved – so don't worry about being left with a cliffhanger in any of these books. Origin is a fast-paced, action-packed, gripping, exciting, suspenseful, thrilling, highly original page-turner! The twists are nothing short of brilliant, blowing me away, and leaving me with much to ponder until his next book – which can’t come soon enough!

Suggested Reading Order: 
Angels & Demons (Book #1)
Da Vinci Code (Book #2)
The Lost Symbol (Book #3)
Inferno (Book #4)
Origin (Book #5)

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