When you pick up your copy of ORIGIN, you begin a virtual tour through the main character's life--compliments of Diana's extraordinary talent. Page by page, you become involved with Lena's life, complete with unanswered questions about her origin. That mystery compactly comprises a catalyst that influences her insights and reactions to uncovering the reason for a sudden series of crib deaths.
I have a weakness for reading with pen-in-hand anyway; this book didn't help break my habit. The story builds momentum like a train racing to cover every inch of track before it, steady, moving you forward, and then you read: “Which, it now seems, I've been doing all my life--seeing and not-seeing, as if I'm the black spot at the center of my own vision.”
That calls for a stop at Lookout Point, Lena's life filters through your brain and that moment in her life becomes as real as your own. What a wonderful reading experience...but, I must know more; so I underline to come back and enjoy again and again. Nevertheless, meanwhile I can read on because that phrase will never be lost to me.
Without a doubt, you'll find Diana's ability to describe a well-known feeling, experience, that you never could put words to, before now, making this book uniquely written for you. All of that and a mystery with universal appeal unfolds before the movement and intake of your eyes.
ORIGIN reads so well you can't feel all the work that went into it, you just reap the rewards. Read Diana's interview in this issue and learn where she did the extensive research; and surprisingly, where she wrote from her author's inner-sense and couldn't have been more on target if she'd live the experience herself. Intrigued? You should be.
For those of you that need the bones of a good mystery to make you hit the bookseller's shelves; go ahead, put forth the effort. You won't be disappointed. The members of the police force, a frantic grief-stricken mother unable to accept the reason given for having to bury her infant, co-workers that will have you shaking your head, all believably come together forming the universe that holds the answers. Experience unearthing the clues, pull the parka up around your neck, and deal with reporters creating havoc. You'll utilize all of your senses to try and solve this mystery before Lena and the police. Will you accept this challenge and have one of the best reads of your life? We certainly hope so.
By Diana Abu-Jaber
Hardcover: 384 pages
Publisher: W. W. Norton
Release Date: June 25, 2007