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3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (9 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Diana Abu-Jaber Narrator: Elisabeth Rodgers Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Lena is a fingerprint expert at a crime lab in the small city of Syracuse, New York, where winters are cold and deep. Suddenly, a series of crib deaths—indistinguishable from SIDS except for the fevered testimony of one distraught mother with connections in high places—draws the attention of the police and the national media and raises the possibility of the inconceivable: could there be a serial infant murderer on the loose?

Orphaned as a child, out of place as an adult, gifted with delicate and terrifying powers of intuition, Lena finds herself playing a critical role in the case. But then there is the mystery of her own childhood to solve. Could the improbable deaths of a half-dozen babies be somehow connected to her own improbable survival?

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Here’s a brilliant protagonist who can trust her intuition when she reaches the limits of her professional training.”

    Chuck Palahniuk

  • “A superbly written and utterly compelling novel.”

    Andre Dubus III, New York Times bestselling author

  • “Creepy fun…an original—just wonderful to read.”

    Washington Post Book World

  • “A riveting new novel…told in compact and vigorous prose…Terrific.

    Seattle Times

  • “Put Abu-Jaber among those who have not only embraced the mystery genre but have created expert novels in doing so.”

    Fort Lauderdale (FL) Sun-Sentinel

  • “Finally, a novel of literary suspense that gets almost everything right—forensically and psychologically.”

    Baltimore Sun

  • “[A] mystery of cold beauty and dark isolation, written with crystalline precision.”

    Miami (FL) Herald

  • “[A] haunting story, icy cold in its upstate New York setting but glowing with the unusual brightness of its heroine.”

    Eugene (OR) Weekly

  • “A departure for Abu-Jaber; a treat for readers.”

    Amazon.com, editorial review

  • “[A] gripping contemporary thriller…Abu-Jaber’s lovely nuanced prose conveys the chill of an upstate New York winter as well as it does Lena’s drab existence before she was drawn into the mystery of the crib deaths…Enthralling.”

    Publishers Weekly, starred review

  • “Poetic in tone and profound in its inquiry into the nature of memory and the self…An utterly magnetic story…Readers seeking gorgeously rendered fiction as well as intelligent and atmospheric mysteries will find Origin extraordinary.”

    Booklist, starred review

  • “Weaving themes of identity and isolation into the briskly paced plot, Abu-Jaber has written a smart, edgy, and unnerving thriller.”

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Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Tania | 3/26/2011

    " book 33 of 2011 - aim 133 books in 2001 "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Kathleen | 8/23/2010

    " Origin: A Novel by Diana Abu-Jaber (2008) "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Hal | 7/6/2010

    " I liked the main character and the atmosphere. Thought some of the plot twists, like Lena's role in the investigations, were a bit unbelievable. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Denice | 6/25/2010

    " An interesting book. Kind of a CSI meets Cold Case. The lead character is in search of finding out who she really is and is surprised and somewhat disappointed to find out what she thought she knew of herself is not real. "

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About the Author
Author Diana Abu-Jaber

Diana Abu-Jaber is the author of Origin, Crescent, The Language of Baklava, and Arabian Jazz. She has won the PEN Center USA Award for Literary Fiction, the Oregon Book Award, and other prizes. Her writing appears in the New York Times, the Washington Post, Slate, Ms., Gourmet, Salon, and Vogue, and she is frequently featured on National Public Radio. She lives in Coral Gables, Florida, and Portland, Oregon.