With London gearing up to host the Olympics, the city doesn’t need a serial killer stalking the streets, but they’ve got one anyway. Leaving a trail of brutal and bizarre murders, the police force is no closer to finding the latest psychopath than Detective Inspector Kurt Lancer is in finding a solution for his daughter’s disability. Thrust into the pressure cooker of a high profile case, the struggling single parent is wound tight as he tries to balance care of his own family with the safety of a growing population of potential victims. One of whom could be his own daughter. Fingers point in every direction as the public relations nightmare grows, and Lancer’s only answer comes in the form of a single oak leaf left at each crime scene.
Review: Oracle by J.C. Martin is an amazing psychological tale full of twists and turns that held me captivated from start to finish!
When I read the synopsis for this book, I was intrigued. It had been a while since I had read a police mystery and one centered around the Olympics in London 2012 sounded interesting. Add to that the aspect of psychological twists and a serial killer and I couldn’t wait to get my hands on a copy!
Kurt Lancer is a single father to a precious little girl who has a condition that is slowly leading to her blindness. He aches for her as he tries to be the best father that he can after his wife was brutally murdered. Kurt is also a detective who has to handle some pretty intense and dangerous cases. He will do anything to protect his daughter – no matter the cost.
When bodies begin piling up around London, each left with a calling card of an oak leaf, Kurt and his partners must work against time to solve the crime before it is too late and more innocent lives suffer torture or death.
Kurt questions who he can trust and who he cannot. To make matters worse, questions arise in Kurt’s mind about his own brother that he has more or less raised from birth. Kurt wonders whether or not he can trust him or if he would do something unspeakable to his precious little girl. He worries that he will become a victim, leaving his daughter behind with no one. He worries that someone is out to put her life to an end and he worries that he will be unable to capture the serial killer before the Olympics begin.
Not only is Oracle a mystery and suspense novel, but it is written in a way that the basis of the story focuses on the mythological teaching of Zeus and Greek mythology. The intertwining of historical points from this time period lent an excellent dimension to the story and was, quite honestly, fascinating to me.
J.C. Martin shows enormous talent for weaving a complex tale that will surprise the reader repeatedly. Though I had the killer figured out pretty early on, I did find myself questioning my thoughts now and then and still found myself very surprised and relatively shocked with the plot twists and turns. Oracle is a very smooth and well-written story with characters that the author brings to life within the pages. I loved Kurt and felt myself aching for him at time; I loved his daughter, Meghan, his close friend and partner, Blaize and his newest partner Holloway. The dialog and plot were very real and believable, lending credence to the story.
Throughout the story, there are dabs of humor and compassion rounded out with tons of suspense and fast-paced action. I find it hard to believe that Oracle is J.C. Martin’s debut novel. She truly displays a maturity in her writing that it takes many authors years and many books to reach. With that being said, I see great things in this author’s future and I for one, cannot wait to read more work by her!
For any lover of suspense – particularly psychological suspense, Oracle is the perfect choice and one that you will not soon forget!
*As a side note, I do want to mention that the story is British with British spelling and grammar, which did not bother me in the least, but wanted readers to be prepared.
Quote: The picket fence, reduced to charred stumps, stuck out from the burnt earth at odd angles, like a row of rotting teeth over septic gums. Skeletal remains of bushes clawed at the peeled, blackened walls with bony fingers.