Author: Jessica Khoury
Release Date: 04 September 2012
Date Read: October 2012
Pia is perfect. She is incredibly intelligent. Her physical abilities are superhuman. Her beauty is stunning (literally). This is no coincidence. Pia was genetically engineered through five generation to be perfect, to be the first of an Immortal race. She was raised in Little Cam, a secluded village in the middle of Amazon, by the best scientists in the world.
Pia works hard to be the perfect immortal everyone wants her to be. I couldn't decide whether I enjoyed reading the story through Pia's perspective. I got frustrated at her, especially at the beginning, because so many of her hard convictions and beliefs weren't hers. Her thoughts and words were shadows of what the scientists told her time and time again. Ugh! And she was so conceited, up herself and vulnerable to say the least. Normally, I would have hated her, but considering her immortal circumstance, it made for a very interesting narrative.
Khoury did a fantastic job in creating the world of Little Cam, of the Amazon. With a few choice words, Khoury breathed life into a vibrant jungle filled with amazing greenery, flowers, exotic animals and the sounds exclusive only to the jungle that housed Pia's entire life.
Even though Pia is obedient of the scientists' wishes, she still yearns for the life outside Little Cam, the life of the jungle. On the night of her seventeenth birthday, she finds a hole in the gate that traps her inside Little Cam. She takes the opportunity, sneaks out and encounters Eio, as mysterious as the jungle itself. Half Ai'oan, he joins Pia in discovering the jungle that's always been out of reach. The romance between the two was romantic and beautifully crafted, even though it was an insta-love. I think the time frame of the book, and their encounters was only a week or two. But really it felt much longer than that and considering their circumstance, it didn't bother me at all. They had a real connection and they loved each other. Khoury's wonderful prose certainly helped in that matter. Seriously, the scnes between the two were heart-warming and butterflies were going crazy in my stomach.
The other characters were great and all you could hope for side characters. Well-rounded and with substance, they were real people with their own fears, dreams and desires. I especially liked Harriet. No matter how much I wanted to hate her, I couldn't. It made me wonder how far I would go for the things I wanted and loved.
Origin is a fast-paced novel with an original story-line. It is filled with action, romance, suspense, adventure and prose that expertly creates the exotic setting, the Amazon jungle, of this story. I was surprised to find that it is a stand-alone title. It's not easy to find a good stand-alone adventure/dystopia book. But I'm glad I found this one.