Review: Origin by Jessica Khoury
Author: Jessica Khoury
Publisher: Razorbill, an imprint of Penguin Group
Publication Date: September 4, 2012
Age Group/Genre: Young Adult/Science Fiction
Pia has grown up in a secret laboratory hidden deep in the Amazon rain forest. She was raised by a team of scientists who have created her to be the start of a new immortal race. But on the night of her seventeenth birthday, Pia discovers a hole in the electric fence that surrounds her sterile home–and sneaks outside the compound for the first time in her life.
Free in the jungle, Pia meets Eio, a boy from a nearby village. Together, they embark on a race against time to discover the truth about Pia’s origin–a truth with deadly consequences that will change their lives forever.
Origin is a beautifully told, shocking new way to look at an age-old desire: to live forever, no matter the cost. (Cover and synopsis from Goodreads)
Tons of Action and Conflict…
Origin is my kind of story. It reminded me of Lost meets The Village, meets some kind of story about creating the perfect human–and my memory is evading me right now because I know I’ve read plenty of books and seen plenty of movies with that premise, but I can’t think of any. But I really enjoyed the plot of Origin, with its Science Fiction aspect and also the idea of what it is to be human, what it is to be mortal.
And I loved how there was so much conflict in this novel! In my notes I wrote down that there were so many conflicts and I was only a third of the way into the book. It reminded me, as a writer, to have lots of little conflicts in my stories, to keep the plot moving along.
A Few Questions…
I did have a few questions about some of the story, though. For instance, the specifics of her immortality were a bit strange. It was like nothing could kill her, she couldn’t even suffocate. Of course, this was kind of explained later but it was kind of strange to me. And this may be where I get a bit strange, but if she can’t die from any kind of disease, why does she need to brush her teeth? I guess to simply clean them from any food residue, but obviously she doesn’t need to brush them to keep from getting any diseases or anything. I also had a bit of an issue with something that happened at the end of the book, but I won’t get into that because of the spoiler factor.
But I did really enjoy the story and I thought that it moved at a great pace, and there were some nice twists. I saw a few things coming but that didn’t disappoint me at all.
Here are a few of my favorite quotes from Origin: