Book Review: Oracle by J.C. Martin

Published July 10, 2012 by LS Murphy

Synopsis: As the countdown begins, the body count rises.

With London gearing up to host the Olympics, the city doesn’t need a serial killer stalking the streets. They’ve got one anyway.

Leaving a trail of brutal and bizarre murders, the police are no closer to finding their latest murderer 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 next 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.

The First Line: “The last of the theatergoers had gone, the place locked up for the night, but for Vincent the Magnificent, the entertainment had only just begun.” Really, now. The party’s just getting started? Interesting opening. I’m curious as to what will happen next. Since this is a suspense/thriller, I assume this guy’s going to bite it and now I want to know why.

The Good: Kurt Lancer is a single father to Meghan. Unfortunately for Kurt, Meghan’s losing her eyesight. Not only does Lancer have to deal with the tough job of being a homicide detective, but he’s struggling to deal with his daughter’s physical issues. Not only does this add serious depth to the character, but it makes a harden cop sympathetic. Usually, that’s one of my biggest problems with crime novels. I get tired of “harden cops” being such a stereotype that they become unlikeable. That’s not an issue here.

Martin’s setting is timely. Set in London just before the Summer Olympics, a murderer is on the loose. Lancer and his team, Sam Blaize and Tom Holloway, need to catch the killer before the Olympics begin.

The Bad: Wish Angie’s story had been clearer earlier. It felt like it was drawn out for dramatic effect when it didn’t need to be.

Recommendation: Definitely check this out. Especially if you love a good thriller. The setting, characters, and mystery will keep you reading throughout the night.

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