the oracle book coverReviewed by Jessa Larsen

***Warning: contains spoilers***

According to the plot synopsis I skimmed before reading The Oracle, a monster from ancient Italy lurks in or around a house that is near the ruins of Cumae. As legends have it, a young girl was chosen by the gods to continue the reincarnation of the Sibyl, and oracle of the Greco-Roman people who lived there. Apparently the oracle’s spirit passes from one girl to the next infinitely.

This is about the time the book stops talking about the Sybil and makes a hard left over to the story of David Jeffrey, an American author who resides in Italy. I don’t know who was worse, David or his wife Jennifer. The Oracle reads as if the author has made himself into David’s character and, if this assumption is correct, he’s an egotistical author who has a general ill opinion of females. I say this because David’s wife is an alcoholic adulteress and his daughter is some type of beloved prude. But back to the main point…David and his daughter, Angelica, die in a “freak accident” and are survived by Jennifer.

The book then switches to the story of Jake Jeffrey, his wife Valerie, and his daughter Becky. Becky has imaginary friends that her parents find disturbing to the point of sending their daughter to therapy once a month for the past two years. I felt like the imaginary friends’ only purpose in the book was to allow the therapist to suggest a trip to Italy–a trip that would supposedly cure Becky.

I don’t want to waste too much time ranting and raving so I’ll skip to the end where we finally, in the last 2% of the book, get back to the whole Sybil thing, which is sort of, but not really, the ancient Oracle reincarnated. It turns out that Angelica isn’t dead, she’s really been a “creature” trapped in the cellar for the past several years. She gets out of the basement, murders her mother, and that’s the end of it. The epilogue makes a poor attempt at telling us about Angelica living the rest of her life in psychiatric care and freaking some nurse out by showing her a book about the Sybil. THE END.

I read The Oracle via my Kindle and it was not correctly formatted, making the layout choppy and occasionally confusing. I wasn’t impressed by the writing style nor the manner in which we were jerked around throughout the book. There were many factors that made no sense whatsoever and simply irritated me. I will end my review with the worst line in the book, which read: “the door made a scream on its single hinge, sounding like a woman being raped in a New York alley.” I don’t even have words. I would NOT recommend this book to anyone.

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆ 

Jessa lives in Utah with her husband, two kids, two small chihuahuas, and a cat called Number One Boots Kitten. She balances her work as a website admin with her hobbies of watching anime and playing video games.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by The Sedge Group. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.