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Th e Washington Post book reviewer calls this book a waste of our intelligence (and presumably a waste of time). Th is reviewer, however, found the novel a little more intriguing than the Post reviewer with its thoughtful assertion of atheism, and a resolution of the signifi cance of “death in religion” which occurs in most of the major religions wherein a prophet is sacrifi ced to create a belief in something more extraordinary than the pedestrian life we all live, as being “Martyrdom is at the heart of all religion”. Th is reviewer has not only visited, but has sung masses (with a Presbyterian choir) in some of the greatest religious edifi ces of the world, including Notre Dame of Paris, France, St. Stephen’s of Vienna, Austria and Cologne Cathedral in Germany. Th ere seems to be a moving force of inspiration that causes these structures to rise from the ground. In that regard, one might also enjoy reading the new sequel to Pillars of Th e Earth by Ken Follett, which concerns a fi ctional cathedral in England he calls Kingsbridge, the new sequel named A Column of Fire. Origin is worth your time and attention if you have a curiosity level of interest in possibly searching for the answer to the question of what happens next. (Th is coming from a reviewer who will attain his 80th birthday in about three or four months). Th e greatest adventure of life will be the fi rst few moments after death according to the founder of the Independent Presbyterian Church. Happy reading and happy adventure! G Book Review Robert R. Kracke by Dan Brown Penguin Random House, LLC, New York 2017, 480 pages, $19.95 Many years ago this reviewer reviewed the only other book worthy of review written by Dan Brown. Th at is Th e DaVinci Code which he wrote in 2003. Other signifi cant novels by Dan Brown include Angels and Demons in 2000, Th e Lost Symbol in 2009 and Inferno in 2013. Most of his novels revolve around treasure hunts, keys, symbols, codes, and conspiracy theories and Dan Brown’s perception of controversy surrounding the Roman Catholic Church (Origin is no diff erent). Th is novel, Origin, is also a travel adventure through northeastern Spain primarily Catalonia and begins in the library of Montserrat which is a monk’s cell in the hills of the Pyrenees mountains. It goes variously from there to the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain and from there to the architectural wonder of Spain and maybe the world, the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona. Th is reviewer and his wife visited the Sagrada Familia which is a sandcastle like church built as a recapitulation of nature. Remembering that nature has ORIGIN virtually no square forms but is round, as in bubbles, molecules, trees, etc., the Sagrada Familia appears to be trees growing out of the ground with a leafy canopy for a roof. Th e tour taken by this reviewer and his wife was not as thorough as the tour the reader receives in Origin inasmuch as it leads the reader as it descends into the depths of the Sagrada Familia to a chapel which most tours omit. Th is reviewer, though, followed the novel’s tour into the depths of the chapel by logging onto the website and taking a virtual tour as if one were in a bubble looking at the ceiling, the walls and then the fl oor. Th e plot line of Origin follows one Edmond Kirsch and his shocking revelation that he will announce publicly the answer to where we come from and where we are going, as in human origins and the future of mankind. Th e plot involves the usual protagonist Robert Langdon and his codes and symbols with allusions to William Blake, (the artist and poet) the grail chalice, artifi cial intelligence, Th e Four Zoas, etc. Th e characters include, of course, Langdon, an American professor of symbology at Harvard; Edmond Kirsch, a 40-year old billionaire futurist and former student of Langdon; Ambra Vidal, the Director of the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, who is also the fi nancer of Spain’s fi ctional Prince Julian; “Winston”, Kirsch’s artifi cial intelligence assistant, named after Winston Churchill; Bishop Antonio Valdespino (the noir-themed representative of established religion) and others to create the tension in the chase for “the truth”. Th is novel, as many of Dan Brown’s other novels, will probably be made into a movie that will water down some of the intellectual thought generated by his novels. Conversely, a review by Editor Robert R. Kracke 32 Birmingham Bar Association


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