Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Origin Review

My son beat me to the punch, and read Origin by Dan Brown within days of it being released. He then preceded to hound me until I finally picked it up, and then stared at me...and peppered me with questions for the entirety of my time reading the book. We do this to each other sometimes. It's a "thing" in our house. I think it was punishment for my not having picked up The Lord of the Rings for a re-read yet, like he wants me to do. 

We have read all of the Dan Brown/Robert Langdon books, and both have different favorites. They are slightly tainted by which cities in Europe we call our favorite. I have purchased the Illustrated editions because it's not fun having to look up the art work and architecture that's referenced CONSTANTLY while reading, and much easier to have the work done for you. Of course, those are purchased AFTER we've already read the regular novel. 

I guess what I'm trying to say is, I enjoy the Robert Langdon book series. I find them entertaining, which is what fiction is trying for...most of the time. I have a half-finished blog post about genre bias in fiction, and my issue with people who think certain books are better than other books...and I feel that the Dan Brown novels get tossed into the mix of authors who are snubbed, and treated as less than in the bookosphere. I don't want to go on a gigantic tangent, but there are a lot of folks out there who missed the fact that 1) his books are fiction, and labeled as such, and 2) if the formula works, why tweak it. 

Origin once again finds Robert Langdon in the middle of a crazy turn of events, this time in the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao Spain, and once again has to solve a mystery to help a former student who was killed reveal a discovery that he's promised will "change the face of science forever" and destroy religion as we know it. With the help of the lovely Ambra Vidal, the museum director and fiance of the future King of Spain, he hopes to reveal the discovery and keep the two of them alive. 

That is probably a horrible summary, I'm sure Goodreads has done a much better job of it! Langdon is running around with a smart and beautiful woman trying to solve a mystery, with a bad guy chasing after him. 

I thoroughly enjoyed seeing Spain through the eyes of Robert Langdon. I Googled a LOT while reading this book. I found a few sites to add to my bucket list, and I really liked that it wasn't a location that had been covered in his books before. 

I analyzed the crap out of this book while I was reading it! At one point in time, I thought everybody was the bad guy. Well, everyone but Langdon himself. I sussed it out earlier than I'd liked to have, but was still guessing...and when I realized I'd hit the jackpot I practically jumped up and down! I was so damn proud of myself for figuring something out before it happened, because it NEVER happens. 

Now, although I enjoyed this book, as I've done all but The Last Symbol, this wasn't my favorite Langdon novel. I thought the first half of the book was pretty good, but it fell apart towards the end...and I found myself skimming, which is never a good thing. The big reveal wasn't nearly as exciting as I'd hoped it would be, and it all got a little too wordy and convoluted. 

So, if you're a fan of the Dan Brown books, I would say definitely pick this new one up to read. It's not the worst one in the series, in my opinion. But it's also not the best, by a long shot. Angels and Demons is still my favorite of his, but that's also the first one I read. If you've never read a book of his, I'd go with that, or Da Vinci Code before this one. 

But it was still entertaining, folks. 

And it did nothing to change my faith in God, thank you very much. Fiction, ladies and gentleman.

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