Origin (Robert Langdon, #5)by Published 03 Oct 2017
|Origin (Robert Langdon, #5).pdf|
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.
"Origin (Robert Langdon, #5)" Reviews
Where do we come from?
Where are we going?
Yes, it's the new Dan Brown book. Yes, it's pulpy and ridiculous. But I have to say it-- it was really entertaining, too.
The thing about Brown is that he's a mediocre-at-best writer with really fascinating ideas. If you spend too much time analysing individual scenes and sentences, then you're going to start to see the cracks, big and small. Big cracks like world-renowned scientists jumping to ludicrous conclusions, and small cracks like world-renowned scientists suddenly knowing nothing about a subject so that Robert Langdon can inform them (and the reader) of some exciting tidbit.
And Langdon himself must be the stupidest genius ever written. He knows absolutely everything about everything until it's convenient for him to not know something so someone can explain it to him.
BUT, for some reason, Brown's plots and codes and puzzles are interesting enough to... kind of make it okay. At least for me. I love all the information about history, science and religion. I love how you can look up the organizations mentioned and find that they are all real. It's very much a plot over writing book, but sometimes that can be exactly what you need. Mindless, pageturning entertainment.
In Origin, famous scientist and billionaire Edmond Kirsch is about to make a world-changing announcement. His research and technology have led him to make a discovery about the origin of humankind, as well as their future destiny, that will shake the foundations of the world, tear apart religions, and change absolutely everything. He has essentially found answers to the two questions: Where do we come from? and Where are we going?
It's hard not to be drawn in by these universal questions. Then when the announcement event goes horribly wrong and it seems his discovery might be buried forever, Robert Langdon and Ambra Vidal must go on a clue-solving, code-breaking spree across Spain to uncover Kirsch's discovery. Throughout, all I could think was "what could his discovery be?" It would need to be something dramatic enough, something with impact... and, well, personally I loved the reveal.
Fake news now carries as much weight as real news.
Origin draws on current events and hot topics to make it more relevant to today's world. Brown touches on subjects like "fake news", the advancement of technology and artificial intelligence, and the dark corners of the Internet. He may not be an amazing writer - whatever that means - but he does play on universal thoughts, fears and questions. It makes for a very compelling tale.
I wouldn't recommend this to anyone looking for excellent writing, well-developed characters and a whole lot of sense-making. But if you want to sprint through an almost 500-page novel at breakneck pace and escape from thinking for a while, then it is very enjoyable.
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All right, Danny boy, let's see what you've got for us this time. Anyone want to take bets on how many times he mentions the Mickey Mouse watch?
Man, I hope that thing gets smashed under a garbage truck.
If you’re reading this in an effort to determine whether or not you want to read Origins, I’m going to make two assumptions:
1) You’ve already read the previous books in the series and, as such, need no introduction to Robert Langdon or Dan Brown’s art/history/symbol/puzzle MO; and
2) You’re not looking for sparkling prose (because, if you are, it’s a little bit like going to an all-you-can-eat $5.99 buffet and getting pissed that there’s no caviar and foie gras).
Dan Brown is the Hootie and the Blowfish of thriller writers. A smash hit cultural phenomenon early on (like Darius Rucker and the boys), Brown subsequently suffered an unfairly disproportionate critical backlash from holier-than-thou critics who (perhaps not incorrectly, if a bit unfairly and unnecessarily) savaged his writing style and mocked the formulaic nature of his books (which, yes, are a bit like an episode of Home Improvement: Tim creates a crazy situation, Tim screws up, Tim and Wilson have a backyard heart-to-heart, Wilson says something wise, Tim utterly bollixes up communicating the advice to Jill but succeeds in heeding it to fix what he screwed up, Al’s beard gets made fun of, cue credits (…and it just occurred to me that no one under the age of 35 gets that reference, and, if you do get it, you’re sitting there thinking, “Why did he just reference a show whose popularity was utterly inexplicable when considering the quality of its content?”); because, that’s why).
Were The Da Vinci Code (in Brown’s case) and Cracked Rear View (in Hootie’s case) good enough to warrant their absurd sales and global buzz? Probably not. But, neither were their subsequent offerings so impossibly bad that they deserved the mockery that ensued (Inferno, for example, has some fun puzzles and history, and I stand by Fairweather Johnson—“The Earth Stopped Cold at Dawn” might be Hootie’s finest work).
Look, Hootie and the Blowfish wasn’t the first bar band that broke big, and Dan Brown didn’t invent the historical thriller/mystery/puzzle genre, but they both reinvigorated their respective niches, and significantly expanded the audience receptive to such offerings. A lot of subsequent bands and writers owe these cats a debt of gratitude, as they have been able to make a decent living peddling similar (if often inferior) fare thanks to that receptivity—or, if not a decent living, maybe what I like to call “gumball money” (that is to say, pennies), as in the case of the questionable talent responsible for inflicting The Camelot Shadow (not to mention its prequel The Strange Task Before Me: Being an Excerpt from the Journal of William J. Upton) on the world (of all the things Dan Brown should apologize for, its giving the author of those debacles the idea that he could graft a Brownian approach onto a Victorian setting).
(I am just shameless, no?)
All that said, what about Origins? Well, it’s no Da Vinci Code, I’ll tell you that…
I kid. Well, no, I really don’t—it’s not as compelling, or as ingeniously crafted, a book as Da Vinci or Angels & Demons, largely because, save for one impressive feat of mental prestidigitation involving an ampersand, Langdon’s most awe-inspiring moment of symbolic insight is explaining the hidden symbol in the FedEx logo, which has nothing to do with the book’s central mystery and is, I’m sure, known about by anyone with functional eyes. Instead, Langdon relies on oodles of help from, quite literally, deus ex machina—a state-of-the art AI named Winston, the creation of the man whose murder serves as the book’s inciting incident. That, combined with the book’s focus on modern art, a scene in which Langdon is a fish out of water (or, more accurately, a squiggle out of a square, based on what I know about the composition of modern art), makes for a less engrossing and thrilling ride through intricately crafted (if often implausible) historical puzzles than past outings.
Still, there’s something to be said for the book’s concluding chapters, which ultimately convey an uplifting message of hope and unity. Maybe I’m naïve (or, at least, wish I still could be naïve), but there’s something charmingly square about Langdon (and his creator) that, in an age of divisive rhetoric, intolerance, and unbridled hatred for that which is “other” (regardless of who you are and which side of history you think you’re on) resonates and gives an otherwise average (by Brown standards, at least) tale a favorable gloss.
Next time, though, let’s get back into something Langdon actually knows about, eh?
Finally will travel again with my idol, Professor Dan Brown Robert Langdon..
This time to Spain..
With an unfamiliar world to him, the world of Modern Art, and on a quest to answer two of the most profound questions in human history.
But since I only obsessed with read Illustrated Editions...
May the God help me to wait in patience
رواية العبقري، مجنون الرموز واصل الإنسان والديانات والحضارات، روبرت لانجدون "الشهير بدان براون" أخيرا ستظهر...أكتوبر القادم
هذه المرة لانجدون لأول مرة يصطدم بعالم الفن الحديث المعاصر !! وسؤالين من اهم الأسئلة في تاريخ البشرية
ما هما السؤالين؟ لا استطيع الانتظار حقا لاستكمال مجموعتي الاثيرة
والتي جمعت بين اسرار جماعات التنويريين في مواجهة الكنيسة في القرون الوسطي، وبين اسرار الفاتيكان وصراع الدين والعلم
واسرار فرسان الهيكل والجماعات السرية الاوروبية والكأس المقدس وعبقرية دافنشي السابقة لعصرها
وأسرار الماسون وبناءهم العالم الجديد الحر ، امريكا، وعلومهم المتشعبة من الحضارات السابقة والاديان والعقل البشري
وحتي اسرار دانتي والجحيم الذي تنبأ به مالتوس بسبب الزيادة السكانية
كل هذا يأتي في سلسلة روبرت لانجدون المثيرة...والان نحن في انتظار تلك المحطة الجديدة
Please release the Illustrated Edition in the same time.
First pre-review 28 Sep. 2016
Dan Brown is back with some of his best work in a while. I was not a huge fan of his last two – Inferno and The Lost Symbol. I think for me they seemed kind of stale after Angels & Demons and The Da Vinci Code. Origin is now probably my second favorite of his (behind Angels and Demons).
Some of the key points:
Religion and Science – this is a big battle in our world today. It is an exhausting battle for someone like me who goes to church but also loves science. I worry that the feeling is starting to be that the two cannot exist together. Dan Brown does a great job of addressing this debate in this book (even though at times I was worried that it was going to end up just being another annoying commentary on the same debate)
Lead Female Characters – Brown amuses me with every new lead female character. It is always a scientist, art expert, museum curator, etc. who just so happens to be one of the top 5 most beautiful women alive (he has 5 Langdon books, each with one of those top 5 ;) )
The Dan Brown formula – I will say that each of Brown’s book has basically the same structure. A mystery starts (usually in a museum, church, famous building). Langdon meets a woman (see above). Langdon and this woman run around trying to solve the mystery. Yes, that formula is here. However, that felt okay this time. The last two books it felt like old hat – almost like he was phoning it in. But, with this one I was kind of glad to get back into the same formula and he developed the plot and suspense well.
If you like Dan Brown – I recommend this.
If you thought maybe the Langdon series had no gas left – I recommend this.
If you want an interesting, thought-provoking mystery with a lot of suspense – I recommend this.