Oracle Code
by Nijkamp, Marieke; Preitano, Manuel (ILT)






"After a gunshot leaves her paralyzed, Barbara Gordon enters the Arkham Center for Independence, where Gotham's teens undergo physical and mental rehabilitation. Now using a wheelchair, Barbara must adapt to a new normal, but she cannot shake the feelingthat something is dangerously amiss."-





Marieke Nijkamp is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of This Is Where It Ends and Before I Let Go and the editor of the YA anthology Unbroken: 13 Stories Starring Disabled Teens. She is a storyteller, dreamer, globe-trotter, and geek. She resides in the Netherlands.

Manuel Preitano is an Italian illustrator and graphic designer, and the co-creator of the Destiny, NY series. He has worked on a wide range of toy designs, book covers, illustrations, and comic books, both in the US and in his home country. He resides in Italy with his comic book collection and his beloved drawing tablet.





Barbara Gordon is a teen hacker, puzzle-solver, and mystery-lover who spends evenings on Gotham City rooftops, coding away with her best friend. But after a gunshot paralyzes Barbara from the waist down, she-now using a wheelchair-is consigned to rehab at the Arkham Center for Independence. As she is divorced from friends and family, her fear and anguish compound themselves, and she angrily pushes back on everything she always believed herself to be. The huge, dark mansion of the institute has some huge, dark secrets, though, and cracking that code will require her to find strength in new friends and her old self. Nijkamp is freed from continuity here to create a complete and emotionally compelling journey for a character who needs to reclaim her life and identity, and overall, readers will find in Barbara a deeply human understanding. Preitano drenches the dark mansion in creepiness, particularly via several stylized story-within-a-story interludes, but keeps the personalities of the characters, their vulnerabilities and strength, front and center. Grades 7-11. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.





Nijkamp (contributor: His Hideous Heart, 2019, etc.) reimagines the backstory of Oracle, computer genius and ally to Batman. When skilled hacker Barbara "Babs" Gordon and her best friend, Benjamin, attempt to intervene in a robbery, Babs is shot. Six weeks later, the newly paralyzed Babs reluctantly rolls into the Arkham Center for Independence, where teens with disabilities undergo physical and emotional rehabilitation. Despite her father's well-meaning advice, Babs resents being there. Even the mysterious cries within the mansion's walls can't lift the teen's despondence—until Jena, a burn survivor full of haunting tales, disappears. Aided by supportive patients Yeong and Issy, whom she gradually befriends, Babs must accept her new reality in order to find Jena and escape a sinister plot. The author sensitively portrays Babs' frustration and trauma and realistically addresses her challenges, such as mastering wheelchair ramps and negotiating stairs. Babs' increasing self-confidence is heartening, and the message that people with disabilities don't need to be "fixed" in order to thrive is em powering (albeit slightly heavy-handed). Balancing bright and dark colors, Preitano's (contributor: Puerto Rico Strong, 2018, etc.) illustrations vividly convey Babs' anger and determination, and a jigsaw-puzzle motif reflects Babs' quest to piece together her new identity as well as the institution's secret. Most characters present white. Yeong, who walks with forearm crutches, is cued through her name as Korean; Issy, who uses a wheelchair, presents black. A refreshingly disability-positive superhero origin story. (Graphic fantasy. 12-16) Copyright Kirkus 2020 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.





Nijkamp (contributor: His Hideous Heart, 2019, etc.) reimagines the backstory of Oracle, computer genius and ally to Batman. When skilled hacker Barbara "Babs" Gordon and her best friend, Benjamin, attempt to intervene in a robbery, Babs is shot. Six weeks later, the newly paralyzed Babs reluctantly rolls into the Arkham Center for Independence, where teens with disabilities undergo physical and emotional rehabilitation. Despite her father's well-meaning advice, Babs resents being there. Even the mysterious cries within the mansion's walls can't lift the teen's despondence—until Jena, a burn survivor full of haunting tales, disappears. Aided by supportive patients Yeong and Issy, whom she gradually befriends, Babs must accept her new reality in order to find Jena and escape a sinister plot. The author sensitively portrays Babs' frustration and trauma and realistically addresses her challenges, such as mastering wheelchair ramps and negotiating stairs. Babs' increasing self-confidence is heartening, and the message that people with disabilities don't need to be "fixed" in order to thrive is em powering (albeit slightly heavy-handed). Balancing bright and dark colors, Preitano's (contributor: Puerto Rico Strong, 2018, etc.) illustrations vividly convey Babs' anger and determination, and a jigsaw-puzzle motif reflects Babs' quest to piece together her new identity as well as the institution's secret. Most characters present white. Yeong, who walks with forearm crutches, is cued through her name as Korean; Issy, who uses a wheelchair, presents black. A refreshingly disability-positive superhero origin story. (Graphic fantasy. 12-16) Copyright Kirkus 2020 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.






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