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The Oracle Code

3.82  ·  Rating details ·  2,504 ratings  ·  511 reviews
The #1 New York Times bestselling author Marieke Nijkamp (This Is Where It Ends) and artist Manuel Preitano unveil a graphic novel that explores the dark corridors of Barbara Gordon's first mystery: herself.

After a gunshot leaves her paralyzed, Barbara Gordon enters the Arkham Center for Independence, where Gotham's teens undergo physical and mental rehabilitation. Now usi
Paperback, 208 pages
Published March 10th 2020 by DC Comics
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Moegir198 I would say a mature 10 could read it but it’s intended for 11-13. My advance uncorrected proof says 13+ but I disagree.

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Nenia ✨ I yeet my books back and forth ✨ Campbell

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I hated Nijkamp's YA novel, THIS IS WHERE IT ENDS, so much that I had pretty much decided "never again." But I'm a sucker for graphic novels, especially novels about female characters who are in STEM and are strong and capable, so I figured maybe it was worth giving the author another chance.

THE ORACLE CODE blew all of my expectations out of the water. It almost feels like a response to THE KILLING JOKE, which also ended up with Barbara
Sep 05, 2020 rated it it was ok
"I hate this." -- Barbara Gordon, on page 19

Oh 'Babs,' you're making it too easy to fashion a snarky or cutting line about how I didn't really enjoy your new YA-themed graphic novel The Oracle Code. It was sort of a shame, too - I repeatedly make mention in GR reviews that Black Canary, Zatanna, and Barbara Gordon (a.k.a the original Batgirl, a.k.a Oracle, a.k.a. Joe the Cop on the 'What's Going Down' episode of That's My Mama . . . just kidding on that last one - or am I???) are some of my very
Mar 01, 2020 rated it liked it
A YA retelling of Barbara Gordon's origin as Oracle. Barbara is hanging out with her friend Ben and suffers an accident or is shot (The storytelling is very unclear on this point as she is shown falling off a rooftop but then it's referenced that she was shot later on in the story.) and is paralyzed from the waist down. Arkham has been reimagined as a rehabilitation center where one goes to learn to live with their new circumstances. The majority of the book is Babs trying to process what she's ...more
— nova
Mar 10, 2020 rated it liked it
i have a lot of conflicting feelings about this one.

on the one hand: this was a cute little story. it had an intriguing mystery, and the art was good. i think a lot of people, especially preteens, would find this enjoyable.

on the other hand.... something about this interpretation of Barbara felt off. i had a hard time separating this from every other batgirl & oracle comic i’ve read out there. i don’t know how i feel about all the changes to her origin story, though i do understand why some of
Valerie J
I absolutely loved this book. Even though it’s targeted at young adults, this book takes in such a NUANCED conversation around disability. We watch Barbara transition from before and after her debilitation and watch as she struggles with her own self identity once she is a wheelchair user. But the parts of her that make her Barbara Gordon never changed and the author makes that clear. Through the support of other disabled kids she relearns who she is. Meanwhile the mystery plot is actually what ...more
Dec 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
I have been increasingly interested in these YA DC Comics adaptations and when I saw The Oracle Code I knew I had to read it. I am not as well versed in the DC universe, but The Oracle Code is a compelling read either way! I adored the disability representation and the overwhelming message that disabled people do not require fixing to be considered whole.

(Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)

The Oracle Code is not o
Noura Khalid (theperksofbeingnoura)
Thank you DC Comics for the gifted review copy in exchange for an honest review!

I’ve read quite a few of the young adult releases from DC Comics and this one is definitely one of my favorites!

The plot was so different and definitely a mystery I too tried solving. I loved following Barbara Gordon’s journey and especially towards healing. Loved that the author brought to us disability representation, and proved that people with disabilities don’t need to be fixed to be seen as whole. To me this is
This is a young adult version of the Barbara Gordon mythos of Batgirl fame. Although she is no longer paralyzed, in the comic books, there was a time that she was, and she solved crimes from her wheelchair, being a hacker.

In this version, she is a teenager, and is partially paralyzed, and has to solve the mystery of the rehabilitation hospital where she is recovering.

A sort of Nancy Drew take on a teenage Barbara Gordon, there are interesting twists and turns, and Barbara tries to find out what
Kadi P
I liked the emotional exploration here and the disability representation was refreshing to see. But the threads that connected the dots in this mystery were so tenuous it rendered the plot mediocre and the theme of being lost and losing were too overplayed that it became cringe-inducing by the end.

A valiant attempt but it was too short with limited substance and ended up falling short of something special.
Rod Brown
Apr 23, 2020 rated it did not like it
Badly written. The truly insipid voiceover narration and awful dialogue make it a chore to read. Then, we're given such a tired and overused plot: our protagonist moves into a creepy boarding institution where she meets a girl who speaks cryptically about disappearing children before disappearing herself. Oh, whatever shall we do, Nancy Drew?

This version of Barbara Gordon exists in a world where she is the daughter of James Gordon but seems to have never been Batgirl. She's just a thrill seeking
Nov 03, 2020 rated it liked it
3.5 stars
Aug 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I don't read graphic novels all that often, but there are a few that I love, and this one, I DEVOURED. It's about Barbara Gordon when she was a teen, and for context, I've literally never read any comics about her before apart from the DC Super Hero Girl MG graphic novels (which present her as a very different character in very different circumstances). However! None of that got in the way of me absolutely loving this book from the first few pages onwards, and it worked perfectly as a standalone ...more
Feb 10, 2021 rated it really liked it
Barbara Gordon was a young girl who has talent as a hacker and she was paralyzed after getting shot (not by the Joker). Her father sent her to a facility for disabled youths for treatment and Babs was very unhappy about it. Was there something more about this facility than what met the eyes?

Dad once told me that even a hopeless situation doesn't always stop him. Not because he believes there'll be a miracle, but because giving up feels too final.

I think it's an okay-ish re imagini
The Nerd Daily
May 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
Originally published on The Nerd Daily | Review by Sarah C

In the new young adult DC Comics Universe series, The Oracle Code takes us to Gotham City to see a younger Barbara Gordan as the Oracle. I am not too familiar with all of the characters and timeline in this universe, and the good thing about this book is that you don’t have to be!

After an unfortunate shooting and fall, a partially paralysed Barbara (or Babs, as she prefers to be known) is taken to the Arkham Center for Independence. It’s
Aug 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
"But there are only ghosts and secrets here."

The Oracle Code is the first book I've read by Marieke, and I enjoyed this graphic novel. This is a YA book about Barbara Gordon as Oracle, and I don't think I've ever read a graphic novel in which Oracle is the main character. This book has a creepy hospital setup, and I liked the mystery. Barbara is adjusting to life with her wheelchair in this story, and she goes through a lot in this book. I would definitely check out another book if this ever bec
Mar 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
Loved this! A great teen mystery with an #OwnVoices disabled character.
mad mags
Mar 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
A thoughtful and engaging origin story for Barbara Gordon/Oracle.

(Full disclosure: I received a free e-ARC for review through Netgalley. Trigger warning for medical abuse. Caution: this review contains vague spoilers.)

Teenager Barbara Gordon - daughter of police commissioner James Gordon and hacker extraordinaire - is running toward the scene of a crime when she's shot and paralyzed from the waist down. Six weeks into her recovery, Commissioner Gordon send
Lost in Book Land
Mar 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Hello Again!

 I have recently been enjoying a lot of DC comics and this was the next one that I read! Before reading any of these comics (you can see other previous reviews here on my site or on my Goodreads page) I honestly knew little to nothing about the DC universe of its characters. My husband and I played the batman games together on the Playstation a few years ago and I have seen all of the newer films but that is about it (aside from watching Flash on the CW, which I am behind on but I us
Feb 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
Not only is the plot of this graphic novel so well developed, but the way it is told is fantastic. Barbara uses the metaphor of a puzzle to describe many of the problems facing her in her life. Her life in the wheelchair since the accident, her friend Ben who won’t text her back, the ghosts who may roam the halls, and the odd history she has uncovered. These are all pieces that she tries to put together in a coherent picture of healing.

The artwork features phenomenal shadow work and a palette of
Sarah Davis
Sep 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
Nice to read a YA book that puts disability front and center. Like many differently abled who read this, I feel seen.
Tamsien West (Babbling Books)
May 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, graphic-novels
These origin stories can sometimes feel a little under-done, but The Oracle Code bucked the trend and felt like a self-contained story. Teenager Barbara Gordon, a vigilante hacker in her spare time, is shot and paralysed in crossfire at a crime scene (I think, it was a bit hard to tell exactly what happened).

She is sent by her father, the famous Commissioner Gordon of the Bat Man world, to a rehabilitation clinic for people with mobility issues of all kinds (which appears to be a reimagined Arkh
Matthew Noe
Jan 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
I love this and can't wait to add it to the graphic medicine collection. I think it's something both the intended audience (younger teens) and the health profession both need.

Received an advance copy at ALA Midwinter 2020.
& She Reads
Mar 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I received an ARC of this via netgalley in exchange for an honest review

DC does it again! I'm having so much fun reading all of these DC YA graphic novels!

The Oracle Code was definitely a favorite and of all of them it feels the most concrete one.
The story does not feel rushed at all and its actually pretty detail oriented for a comic.

This graphic novel follows Barbara Gordon after getting shot and having to go through recovery from her physical
disabilities but also her emotional ones. Sh
Yursa Tahir
Apr 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Woow this one was also amazing. Loved the artwork and the story and strong portrayal of Barbara Gordon while suffering from her disability.
Feb 04, 2022 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I loved this book because it showed you that you shouldn't ever give up nor ever try to stop helping others when you have a gut feeling something is up. I also loved how her friends stuck by her side even when everything went downhill. I truly loved this book most so far this year. ...more
Jan 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
This YA graphic novel explores a young girl’s determination, self-revelation, and healing after a tragic shooting has left her paralyzed. While on her journey through recovery at the Arkham Rehabilitation Center, Barbara Gordon finds new friendship and the meaning of self awareness. While she adapts to her new normal she feels like something is just not right with this facility and it’s up to Babs to put the pieces together and code the truth within the walls of her temporary home.
What started o
Apr 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
I'm very biased towards Batgirl/Oracle/Barbara Gordon but this graphic novel was actually really good and even took me by surprise at some points. It deals with disability struggle which I think is really important and I found the characters were very well written. The relationships throughout the story were very well paced and had interesting dynamics. Overall, a really cute ghost story with arguably my favourite character from the DC universe 🦇💻👻 ...more
Nov 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
Barbara Gordon is a teen hacker who is harmed when she gets in the way of a police chase. She must learn to use a wheelchair, and her father, Commissioner Gordon, sends her to the Arkham Center for Independence for rehabilitation. Babs has trouble getting used to the center, but starts to make a few friends as she also suspects something weird is going on when a new friend disappears and she starts hearing strange noises at night. With her love for puzzles, she vows to find out what happened to ...more
I'm really enjoying this series of little DC middle grade comics. I'm not super familiar with Oracle in general but I have read her first origin story in the form of The Killing Joke and this is definitely a step up from that in terms of you know ...generally not being sexist and ableist and awful. Definitely appreciated all the cool disabled characters and that the story revolved around the idea that no they don't actually need to be 'fixed'. Really fun and quick read. ...more
Mar 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
ACTUAL, MULTIPLE DISABLED CHARACTERS! WHO STAY DISABLED! This is the only piece of fiction I’ve read that has a wheelchair user as a protagonist, and other side characters who are disabled. Also this was just a super fun story and I loved the art style! RTC
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Crip Shelves: The Oracle Code - Jan/Feb 2021 5 7 Feb 20, 2021 08:35PM  

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Marieke Nijkamp a storyteller, dreamer, globe-trotter, geek.


Please note I don't respond to friend requests or messages on GR, but you're always welcome to tweet or email me. :)

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