Book Review: “Origin” by Dan Brown

Genre: Thriller

“Where do we come from? Where are we going?”

A few days ago…..

Edmond Kirsch, atheist, scientist, and billionaire, thinks he has answered those two most fundamental questions.

Where do we come from?  Did God create humans with Adam and Eve, or did humans evolve over billions of years from the primordial soup?

Where are we going? Edmond says this is his most frightening prediction as the process has already started…..and humankind can do nothing to stop it.

Before Edmond releases his findings to the world, he presents them to three prominent religious leaders: Bishop Antonio Valdespino, Rabbi Yehuda Koves, and Allamah Syed al-Fadl.

Not unexpectedly, the religious leaders are flabbergasted and vow to fight the release of Edmond’s findings. Two of them end up dead.


Robert Langdon was requested by one of his first students and arguably most brilliant, Edmond, to attend the formal presentation of his findings in the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain.

On a self-guided tour of the museum, Robert’s virtual guide is Winston.  As Robert finds out, Winston is not a real person, but, an extremely advanced Artificial Intelligence (AI) designed by none other than Edmond.

The presentation begins as only the very imaginative Edmond can begin: With an environment built into the museum (thanks in part to Director, and soon to be Queen of Spain, Ambra Vidal) that takes the audience (both live and watching via the Internet) back in time to the beginning of life on Earth and to the end of humanity far (?) into the future while answering the two questions: “Where do we come from? Where are we going?”.

A bullet to the head ends Edmond’s presentation prematurely, setting off a chain of events that finds Robert Langdon, Ambra Vidal, and Winston teaming up to search for Edmond’s password that will set the rest of the presentation free for the world to see.

“Origin” is a terrific novel that I simply had to force myself to put down.  A mixture of art, symbology, religion, science, politics, architecture, technology, and mystery.

Perfect in every way.

“Where do we come from? Where are we going?”  To find out, you will have to read the book. 🙂

The dying King of Spain passing the torch to his son talking about the need for the Franco museum: “Most importantly, he said, “this museum must celebrate the other lesson history has taught us–that tyranny and oppression are no match for compassion…..that the fanatical shouts of the bullies of the world are invariably silenced by the unified voices of decency that rise up to meet them……”

Hmmmm….I’d say this is frighteningly relevant in 2018.



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