“Origin” By Dan Brown 

By Dan Brown
Narrated by Paul Michael
Series: Robert Langdon, Book 5
Length: 18 hrs and 9 mins
Release date: 10-03-17
Publisher: Random House Audio

Once again Robert Langdon is out seeking clues in art and trying to solve one of life’s mysteries.  This time around the clues are not from some ancient master, but rather from one of his former students.

Edmond Kirsch a billionaire futurist, pretty much Elon Musk, Steve Jobs, and Richard Branson rolled into one, has found the great answers to the 2 questions that have stymied the philosophers and clerics through the centuries; “Where do we come from?” and “Where are we going?”  Kirsch has made this discovery and knows it will blow apart religion as we know it.  To give the world’s religious leaders a heads up he presents his findings to a 3 of the most powerful of religious leaders.  That may have sealed his doom.  Without religion the major religions lose their control over humanity.  Kirsch presents his findings to the public but before he can reveal the final results he is assassinated by a religious zealot.

Robert Langdon is in the audience for the live event and finds himself following Kirsch’s clues to release the presentation to the world which will reveal why religion is dead.  To do so Langdon follows clues left behind by his former student.  The action takes place through many famous landmarks in Spain.  The reality of Dan Brown’s writing lies in his use and detailed descriptions of these landmarks and their use in pushing the story line forward.

While this book is not as thrilling as some of Brown’s previous Robert Langdon’s books, it does have a lot of fun in the solving of the clues.  The letdown in the story for me was the answers, as revealed by Kirsch, to those 2 big questions.  It was like a catch and release fishing trip; the thrill is in the hunt but the find was a let down in that you couldn’t enjoy the final product.

Paul Michael does an excellent job of narrating and presenting the action as well as the thought processes of Robert Langdon.  I nearly Tom Hanks as Langdon (in the movies), and fully accepted Paul Michael as the puzzle solving professor.

All in all a fun book, but the end was a bit of a let down.

Publisher’s Summary
Where do we come from?

Where are we going?

The stunningly inventive new novel from the world’s most popular thriller writer.

Bilbao, Spain

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.

©2017 Dan Brown (P)2017 Random House Audio