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Origin: A Technothriller (Konrath/Kilborn Horror Collective)

3.76  ·  Rating Details ·  4,197 Ratings  ·  386 Reviews
When linguist Andrew Dennison is yanked from his bed by the Secret Service and taken to a top secret facility in the desert, he has no idea he’s been brought there to translate the words of an ancient demon.

He joins pretty but cold veterinarian Sun Jones, eccentric molecular biologist Dr. Frank Belgium, and a hodge-podge of religious, military, and science personnel to try
Audio CD, 0 pages
Published January 10th 2012 by Brilliance Audio (first published April 8th 2009)
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(showing 1-30)
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So...the Evil One

Just looking at Cheney Satan you can tell that he’s a mean, duplicitous, evil, soul-sucking prick who greedily wallows in his own vileness like a pig on a crap carpet.

Still...there’s no denying that the "Horned One" makes a great plot device and I am a big fan of “is it really the Devil or isn’t it” stories. I especially enjoy the psychological, “closed door mystery” variety where maybe-satan is stuck in a specific location and the characters are trying to establish his bona
Jun 11, 2011 Tressa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, 2011, demons
This is what I'm talking about! Just finished two mediocre books and was wanting so badly to pick up a can't-put-down story along the lines of Natural Selection and The Relic, and I chose this one on my Kindle. Great pick, if I do say so myself. Love books about ancient history and religion; throw a demon into the mix and I'm a happy camper. This book is all kinds of fun and it's taking my mind off my current troubles.


Andy, a young linguist who
Dirk Grobbelaar
[He] didn’t like this at all.
His curiosity was being overtaken by a creepy feeling.

Pick up the "Abominog" album by Uriah Heep and stare at the front cover for at least five minutes. No, make that ten. Congratulations, you have now assimilated Origin.

If that thing on the "Abominog" cover looks like it can take a nasty bite out of you… it’s because it probably can, as this book also sets out to prove.

[Its] lips creased back, revealing a huge valley of yellow, jagged teeth.

This book is quite a conu
Jul 14, 2014 Kimberly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This was my second reading of ORIGIN--in order to prepare for its sequel HOLES IN THE GROUND! I absolutely loved the character interaction and the scenes that Konrath had in this book. Having read most of his other novellas/novellas, it was nice to see Frank again (who was recently in the novel HAUNTED HOUSE), and get re-aquainted with what brought him to where he was in THIS novel.

A very fast-paced read, with plenty of horrific "miracles" to keep things interesting.

Highly recommended!
I'd give this one 3.5 stars especially since it's only .99 cents on Kindle. The author describes this in his afterward as Jurassic Park meets The Exorcist which I'd say is fairly accurate. It starts off with the workers building the Panama canal finding a capsule with a creature that may or may not be the devil hibernating within. Roosevelt has it shipped to the US and builds an underground facility to study and contain it. The real action starts in modern times when the thing wakes up. Overall ...more
Apr 20, 2011 Marvin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror
What a roller-coaster ride. While building the Panama canal in 1906, A creature is discovered that looks suspiciously like the devil. President Theodore Roosevelt has it transported in a secret subterranean laboratory in New Mexico where it can be studied. One hundred years later it wakes up.

This is the basis of a fun and scary novel that has you guessing what this thing really is all the way to the end. Konrath combined theology, physics, and other disciplines into an effective techno-horror th
J.F. Penn
Jan 11, 2011 J.F. Penn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thrillers, horror
Full video review here:

I’m a sucker for anything remotely spiritual or related to gods or demons. With a beginning quote from revelation I was hooked!

Plot Overview (no spoilers): When the Panama canal was being excavated a 12 foot long casket was found, marked with strange symbols. Inside was a creature of indescribable horror, alive but lying dormant which was transported back to the US and kept in a secret location in New Mexico, Project Samhain. Now, t
Mike (the Paladin)
I see a lot of people liked this book, I didn't. I found the premise weak and even with his "what's really happening" take on things I had the "been there, done that, got the tee shirt" feeling from early on.

The characters did little or nothing for me. They move through the story as they're directed by the writer and they're okay, but I couldn't get involved with them. I couldn't care.

I've been reading another series by Mr. Konrath and I find that there's something in common. He either doesn't r
Karen B.
This is the third book I have read in the Konrath/Killborn Collective. What I love about each one is that each is unique; totally different thrillers. I am so glad I decided to read the first five before getting into Haunted House which contains many of the characters from the first ones.
Origin is about a mysterious discovery found while digging the Panama Canal. President Teddy Roosevelt decided to keep this discovery under the power of the US government and each successive president has k
May 11, 2012 Steven rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: j-a-konrath
An awesome read!! This story pulled me in from the beginning and didn't let up. All the characters and scenes were vivid and memorable. Plus, it's one of those stories you can't help but tell your friends and family about. If your a fan of stories like Jurassic Park by Crichton or The Relic by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child you will love this book.
Maxine Marsh
At least a 4.5 star read. I'd been wanting to read this for a long time, and finally got to it. I wasn't disappointed. Classic Konrath, good group of characters faces down evil complete with kickass female in the lead. Loved it.
Oct 17, 2015 Paul rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
They don't know that we know they know we know.

My title (from an episode of Friends) relates to a short passage in Origin on Page 78. Maybe it was intentional - maybe not - but this... "Besides, better to know what your enemy knows than to not know if he knows anything or not" made me laugh and reminded me of Friends. Damn you also made me think too hard and hurt my head!

I think I had an inexplicable attack of shallowness or maybe I was just too bogged down while trying to fathom Mo
Russell Brooks
I finished reading this book yesterday. I was a bit let down because I felt that the story had the potential to be a lot better. I'm not trashing it however. The premise was great. But the first half of the story dragged on a bit too long. At one point I nearly lost interest. Then a major incident (don't want to give away the spoiler) got me hooked and it became a rollercoaster ride right until the very last page. Then something else happened on the last page (no spoiler) that upset me.

The initi
Oct 02, 2011 J.D. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
In 1906, workers digging the Panama Canal discovered a capsule buried deep in the earth. They found it contained a sleeping demon. The U.S. government imprisoned the beast in a secret facility buried beneath the desert where it's been studied ever since. But because an assignment to Project Samhain is a one-way ticket, the facility ends up being staffed by misfits, oddballs, and people who have screwed up so badly that they're willing to take the risk of permanent exile for a shot at redemption. ...more
Charn Singh
Aug 12, 2011 Charn Singh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, horror

Origin is one hell of an express ride. Brilliantly fast paced and scary. A completely satisfactory techno thriller, what it promised and intended to be. I read away last 180 pages in a single go, it was that hard to put down.

- Decent characters, no unnecessary manuscripts about their pasts that is a major put-off sometimes.
- Decent enough story with element of suspense and discovery
- Brilliantly described ambiance and setting against story background
- Fast paced adrenaline rush driven secon
Fascinating! Absolutely loved the deft manipulation in the debate from the 3 sides (Judaism, Catholicism, and science)regarding what Bub is. To the point where all 3 feel justly represented. Of course being a science geek I found plot entirely plausible. Loved the characters Enjoyed the realistic dialog. Bub was the best villain ever. Those eating scenes are going to haunt my memory for awhile. Not only am I giving this book 5 out of 5 stars, but it has made it to my list of top 10 books EVER!
Jul 29, 2012 Bill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really liked this book. It was a fast read, funny, scary and held my attention from page one. The premise was fantastic and "Bub" is truly a classic horror villain. I also liked the supporting characters and thought they were drawn out well unlike a few of the 2 star reviewers mentioned. I am a big fan of Konrath/Kilborn/Kimball and I highly recommend this book.
Scott Brook
May 27, 2016 Scott Brook rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good quick read of a discovery found during the building of the Panama Canal. The government believes it may be the unearthing of the Devil, but it turns out to be much worse. A great and unique story by Konrath. I recommend for a good rainy day read.
I love the concept. What is this demon like creature found buried in the South American rain forest. Is it truly Satan... or just some other pissed off demon.

Another overlooked winning selection by J.A. Konrath.
Mar 16, 2012 Marc-Antoine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, demon
Fun and fast read, also scary, actually gave me a nightmare. This is the first novel I have read by this author, there will hopefully be many more.
I loved this book so much! Just like all his books, no matter what pen name this author writtes under (haven't tried the scifi yet, but I'd love to as scifi is my long favorite genre).
I just loved some of the characters here, Dr.Belgium with his speach disorder and revealing it at funny moments repeating evertything thrice...I laughed outloud at some parts in the book :)
Sun was great too and Andy was just her match.
Bub was the very bad villain, scary...the ending left me wondering if there might
Feb 09, 2014 Jessie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It boggles my mind that this author wasn't able to get anywhere with this book. It was fabulous! I haven't read a book that kept me on the edge of my seat as much as this one did in a long time. My family went to bed around 9 PM last night, but I wound up staying awake for another two hours just so I could read this book. When I had a hard time staying awake, I had to put it down to sleep, but the second I woke up, I grabbed my Kindle and finished it. It was incredible, and I loved the ending! I ...more
Feb 07, 2011 Jennifer° rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror
It's been a while since I've read a thriller as entertaining as Origin.

Konrath successfully combined the science of Jurassic Park with the beast of Relic. There were several elements of Origin that pulled me right out of the story at times, but the suspense and my curiosity pulled me right back in.

I got a pdf ebook from Konrath's website for free, but you can also get other formats (Kindle, Nook, etc.) for super cheap. If you are a fan of techothrillers, horror, or suspense, I recommend you chec
Jon Spoelstra
Dec 17, 2009 Jon Spoelstra rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-thriller
Very interesting premise. In 1906 they were digging the Panama Canal. It took a very deep hole. Inside the hole they found a mysterious container about 20 feet long.

This container was shipped to a U.S. military base in New Mexico. At the base, they took the object out of the case. The object was a 19-foot version of what everybody perceives the devil to be, including horns and tail. It was sleeping or in a coma.

It finally awoke.

It was fun to see how people responded to the devil.
Aug 09, 2015 Kate rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, age-adult, 2015
It all started when Teddy Roosevelt's men found it in the jungle. Since that time, it's been kept in a secure underground facility. Now language specialist Andy, who's in deep shit with the IRS, gets a call from the president asking him to participate in something called Project Samhain. Something that looks like Satan himself has woken up from the strange capsule found by Roosevelt. And Andy's supposed to try to communicate with it...

This story moved along quickly and had a lot of fascinating a
May 30, 2014 Christine rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobooks
Up until that last page, I was going to give this book four stars for being good campy fun. The book alternated between making me gag with the grossness of some events and making laugh at the humorous one-liners delivered by characters in a terrifying situation. I love it when authors can throw in just enough humor to break the tension and give me a second to catch my breath. And almost every time that happened, I found myself thinking, "This would make a great movie!" Perhaps this would make a ...more
Kathy Jenkins
Apr 13, 2011 Kathy Jenkins rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Picture this! 100 years ago a capsule was discovered buried in the ground (supposedly by the Mayans). Inside, was a giant creature which resembled everyone's worst-nightmare description of the devil himself, complete with horns and wings. The U.S. government built a massive underground secret facility to house this mammoth creature. For 100 years, the creature, which they called Bub (short for Beelzebub) was in a coma. The government contracted with the top science, religious and medical minds t ...more
Anthea Strezze
It was a fun read, well worth the $0.99 I paid for it, but definitely what I would call a popcorn novel.

The pitch, as written by the author, is:

Thriller writer J.A. Konrath, author of the Lt. Jack Daniels series, digs into the vaults and unearths a technohorror tale from the depths of hell...

1906 - Something is discovered by workers digging the Panama Canal. Something dormant. Sinister. Very much alive.

2009 - Project Samhain. A secret underground government installation begun 103 years ago in Ne
Jul 19, 2010 Asmodean rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I recently purchased an Amazon Kindle and downloaded this book for one simple reason-it was free. I checked the reviews and it is marked favorably, that combined with free, really hit the mark. I downloaded it in under 30 seconds to my kindle and began to read.

Origin was never published in bound book form. Mr. Konrath shopped it around however, it was never picked up for publishing. After several tinkering sessions he decided to release it for free via his website. The response from readers, tho
I’ve got a ton of Joe Konrath books on my Kindle from when he was doing a 3-day giveaway where (virtually) all of his books were free. They’ve been sitting there untouched for quite a while, so I decided to finally give Origin a shot. After all, the book is described as a mix between The Exorcist and Jurassic Park . I don’t see how one could possibly go wrong with that.

And, while Mr. Konrath didn’t go wrong with it, I have to admit the book could have been better (hence my middle-of-the-road
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paced reading hor...: origin 100% spoilers 44 18 Sep 24, 2014 07:28AM  
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JA Konrath writes the occasionally amusing and often frightening Lt. Jacqueline "Jack" Daniels thrillers, available in hardcover and paperback from Hyperion and as a spoken word from Brilliance Audio.

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Basically, JA rips off everybody.

In o
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Other Books in the Series

Konrath/Kilborn Horror Collective (8 books)
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  • Endurance (Afraid, #3)
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“We don't know the Devil's side of the story, because God wrote all the books.” 29 likes
“Frank,” Andy said slowly, “I don’t think the hellspawn wants to play checkers with you.” 1 likes
More quotes…