Origin by Dan Brown
Back in my days as a Bookseller, it was normal to re-order new titles, doing moderately well, in quantities of 10 from publishers. When the Da Vinci Code came out that rule got blown out of the water and I remember the first time I had to 'hotline' 200 copies of Dan Brown's bestseller, I must have looked a sight! Sweating and hyperventilating with my eyes closed as I committed a large amount of company money to this unassuming, paperback about secret codes. It truly was a phenomenon and every day became a battle to keep this book in stock for our customers.
I really enjoyed the early Dan Brown novels but for some reason, have not read any since the Da Vinci Code days. Origin is the 5th book to feature Dan Brown's main protagonist Harvard Professor Robert Langdon.
Robert Langdon attends a presentation by one of his former students Edmond Kirsch at the Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao. Billionaire Kirsch is a controversial futurist Elon Musk type figure who promises to blow apart religion and revolutionise science, but is cruelly assassinated before revealing his big discovery. Robert Langdon and the museum's Director Ambra Vidal go on the run in a bid to find the rest of Kirsch's presentation and reveal it to the world using hidden codes, symbols and art history to unlock Kirsch's secret whilst being pursued by a sinister organisation with wide reaching influence.
What can I say? This book is a romp! Short chapters with a very fast moving plot. I found myself staying up late into the night to read 'just one more chapter'. The action is gripping and the locations are beautiful. As with other Dan Brown's novels, European cities feature heavily throughout and it is always fab to recognise monuments or parts of the cities that you may have visited in the past. It is also an interesting comment on technology and where we are heading as a species.
Dan Brown's novels never seem to get tired. He has a winning formula guaranteed to top any bestseller list but first and foremost, the novels are simply great entertainment. Fast-paced and interesting with glorious locations and sinister organisations. What is not to love?!