The Oversight by Charlie Fletcher

December 15th, 2014 Kimberly Review 72 Comments

15th Dec
The Oversight by Charlie Fletcher
The Oversight
by Charlie Fletcher
Series: Oversight Trilogy #1
Published by: Hachette
Narrator: Simon Prebble
Length: 14 hrs and 49 mins
Genres: Fantasy, Historical Fiction
Source: Purchase
Purchase: Amazon | Audible
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

"The end always happens faster than you think." Once there were hundreds of members of the Oversight, the brave souls who guard the borders between the mundane and the magic. Now there are only five. When a vagabond brings a screaming girl to the Oversight's London headquarters, she could answer their hopes for new recruit, or she could be the instrument of their downfall.

The Oversight by Charles Fletcher is his first foray into adult fiction and a superb one. Beautifully atmospheric with multiple perspectives I quickly became spellbound as Simon Prebble delivered the narrative. The Oversight offers a fascinating and complex world as Fletcher weaves you into its pages.

“The impossible happens, the world is too various for it not to.”

Five Caffeinated reasons to listen to The Oversight

  • The tale is set in a Dickenson type London, and the writing is mesmerizing. Fletcher brings the world and characters to life using multiple perspectives. The story is rich in details, laced in magic and dark uncertainty.
  • The Oversight stands for the Free Company for the Regulation and Oversight of Recondite Exigency and Supernatural Lore. At one time, the Oversight was a powerful group numbering in the hundreds whose sole purpose was to keep the streets of London safe. A secret order that regulates and contains magic. Now, the membership has been reduced to five. These five make up the Hand, and without them, the Oversight would cease to exist allowing things to go unchecked. They are Sarah, Cook, Mr. Sharp, Hodge and the Smith. Sounds exciting right? I love the set up and secret agency.
  • Fletcher brilliantly takes us from the dangerous streets of London to a traveling Carney. Danger, fate, unknown factors and unique characters quickly draw us into each scene and I found myself caught up in everything from the sights to battling their enemies. While the pacing was slow in the beginning, the twists and unknown factor of Lucy Harbor, a girl who could end them or strengthen them kept me listening into the wee hours.
  • Each of the characters is unique, quirky and thoroughly fleshed out with just enough mystery to ensnare the reader. When Lucy is first introduced to the Oversight she realizes something is amiss. When Lucy touches things, she has visions, but until she meets Sarah, she believed herself to be crazy. Sarah who heads the Oversight believes that Lucy is a Glint, like herself. Lucy’s arrival sets of a series of events and raises questions as we are thrust into a tale.  I found the premise utterly riveting.
  • There is a threat that exists in the shadows, one that can tip the scales spilling havoc into the world around us. It is this knowledge that gives the tale a suspenseful, dark feel even as the pace meanders. Despite intense spurts and than slower pacing I loved all of the details, suspense and unknowing of it all. The imagery was so impressive.

Oversight was a deliciously atmospheric fantasy and introduced a world I would love to explore again. Fletcher explored the various shades of grey that exist within our world. The Oversight is the first in a trilogy and I cannot wait to revisit. I recommend the audio version whole-heartedly as the narrator, Simon Prebble with his lovely accent and tones made the tale magical.

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About Charlie Fletcher

Charlie Fletcher is the author of Stoneheart, shortlisted for the Branford Boase award and longlisted for the Guardian children’s fiction award, the sequels Ironhand and Silvertongue, and the stand-alone YA novel Far Rockaway. His first adult novel The Oversight will be published in May 2014 in the US and UK. Dragon Shield, the start of a new trilogy set in the Stoneheart world of London will be published in mid 2014. He’s also a screenwriter for film and television. He lives in Edinburgh with one wife, two children, and a terrier called Archie.

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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About Kimberly
Kimberly is a coffee loving book addict who reads and listens to fictional stories in all genres. She's a self-professed Whovian, as well as a Supernatural, and Sherlock Holmes junkie, She enjoys sharing books, tips, recipes and hosting the Sunday Post. The coffee is always on and she is ready to chat...Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

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72 Responses to “The Oversight by Charlie Fletcher”

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Even though it is adult..there is nothing keeping it from an older young adult reader.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      This was quite good and I loved the mystery, and traveling..hope you give it a go

  1. Carmel

    I’m no stranger to Historical PNR, but it’s unusual to see the former paired with UF, so your review succeeded in catching my attention. For some reason I thought this title was horror because of the cover. I’m diggin’ Simon Prebble’s narration from that clip too. We have a new TBR candidate. 😀

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Seriously right? Then weave in magic, mystery, time travel…oh yeah

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Thanks Brandee, this was different and I quite enjoyed getting lost in the story.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      You said that and I was like lengthy? LOL yes I guess it is, but it didn’t feel long enough I was lost in it.

  2. Madiha

    Dickinson type London? You got me at Dickinson type London. Let me go add this book to my never ending pile of TBR 🙂 Me and urban fantasy have some catching up to do. Thanks for sharing, as always, mesmerizing review, Kim!

    Madiha recently posted: The Heroine Tag
    • kimbacaffeinate

      Haha…yes the setting seems to be a huge favorite this morning and I loved it. The author and narrator brought the streets to life

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I really enjoyed this Katherine and hope you try it. Hopefully the library will have it since this genre isn’t a regular for you.

  3. Rita

    Now this one sounds interesting, intriguing and quite different to me! Thanks, Kim, for introducing me to a new-to-me author. Funnily, I used to live in Rockaway and worked and went to school in Far Rockaway, the name of one of his books. I wonder if he got the details of it down right, hmm. Enjoy your books this week, and your shopping!

    Rita recently posted: This, That & Whatever
    • kimbacaffeinate

      Oh interesting I wonder if there is a connection. I am hopping to shop this afternoon with hubby. 🙂

  4. Tyler

    “the end always happens faster than you think.” What and intense tag line. I’m sucked in already.

  5. Maja (The Nocturnal Library)

    I read this one a few months back and I enjoyed it quite a bit. I loved Fletcher’s world, the morally gray characters, the Victorian London, all of it. I really thought it was brilliant. It didn’t read like a first foray into adult fiction at all.

    Maja (The Nocturnal Library) recently posted: Review: Fever Pitch
    • kimbacaffeinate

      Maja you are the reason I bought this on audio. Your review sold it and the audio was fantastic

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Oh nice and this will appeal to a mixed audience of young, old, male and female