The Shadow Over Lone Oak

This Fallen World Book 1

Fiction - Thriller - General
258 Pages
Reviewed on 02/23/2022
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

An avid reader and writer since middle school, C.J. Sears is the author of the “This Fallen World” horror/thriller series. In 2013, he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Writing from Arkansas Tech University. After languishing a few years at a mundane job, C. J. set out to pursue his passion. Inspired by Twin Peaks and Resident Evil, he began working on what would eventually become The Shadow Over Lone Oak – the first of several books chronicling the adventures of eccentric Special Agent Llewyn Finch.

In the fall of 2016, C.J. gave his life to Christ. That faith now informs his storytelling and ongoing blog. He believes that fiction is a uniquely valuable medium for delivering both entertainment and essential truths. His emphasis is on the power of the parable rather than preachiness, and he affirms that no message should get in the way of a good story.

C.J.’s range of interests and hobbies include gaming, occasional poetry, swimming, and amateur photography. He mostly spends time with his family and loved ones, particularly his two rambunctious cats and silly goof dog. The quiet life suits him fine, but when a new vision of monsters and mystery beckons, he’s no stranger to answering the call.

    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

The Shadow Over Lone Oak is a work of fiction in the thriller, horror, and crime subgenres. It is aimed at the adult reading audience owing to scenes of violence and gore as well as moderate explicit language throughout and was penned by author C J Sears. Written as the first novel in This Fallen World book series, we find ourselves in the titular town of Lone Oak. Whilst the town, historically at least, has always been a hotspot for bloody legends and dangerous criminal types, local sheriff Willow Donahue is still shocked and horrified when a young woman’s body is left on display for all to see. Though she is skeptical at first, an intrusion from the enigmatic Special Agent Llewyn Finch might be just what Willow needs to solve this horrifying murder case.

Readers seeking a highly accomplished multi-genre work need look no further than this stunning and immersive blend of horror, mystery, and suspense with just a little tinge of the speculative laced over it for good measure. Author C J Sears knows how to craft a scene that leaves readers devastated, but also desperate to know more, and it didn’t take me long to rocket through this enthralling novel and wish that there was another case to move straight onto. I especially enjoyed the dynamic between Willow and Llewyn as they blended their skills to produce fresh and exciting approaches to the different mystery elements. For me personally, the balance of horror versus thriller was spot on, with violence and gory accents only when necessary, and never glorified or gratuitous. Overall, I would highly recommend The Shadow Over Lone Oak as a promising start to a thrilling new crime horror series that I, for one, don’t want to miss out on.

Keith Mbuya

Special Agent Llewyn Finch heads to the small town of Lone Oak following the mysterious murder of twenty-one-year-old Jane Harley. The murder had left Sheriff Willow Donahue, deputy Rick Mason, all the members of the LOPD (Lone Oak Police Department), and the Lone Oak town residents shocked. Agent Llewyn Finch speculated that the murder was linked to a cult. It turns out that Llewyn Finch has special abilities to help him in solving cases. Will Finch's abilities help in the investigations this time around? On the other hand, an old tycoon hires detective James Black to investigate a case that dates back in his family’s history. Is James Black’s case related to the case in Lone Oak town? Find out how it all goes down in C. J. Sears’s The Shadow Over Lone Oak.

Looking for a crime and mystery thriller laced with a spell-binding touch of dark powers? C. J. Sears’ The Shadow Over Lone Oak is the perfect choice for you. I loved everything about the book. Sears uses short and twisted sentences which he loads with appropriate expressions. He employs the use of sophisticated vocabulary, which gives the book a professional touch. Sears undoubtedly has a magnificent imagination; the plot of the story is intriguing. With every step I made into the story’s plot, the more the suspense, tension, and thrill intensified. The setting of a small town effectively added to the underlying ominous and macabre tone. The author aligns his ideas in a way that gives this story a beautiful flow. The book features very interesting and entertaining characters. The character development in the book is splendid. The picturesque depictions of scenes and characters made reading the book feel like watching a movie. The conversations were insightful and humorous and I loved them. Being the first installment in This Fallen World book series, I cannot wait to get started on the next one. The Shadow Over Lone Oak is a magnificent piece of work.

Pikasho Deka

The Shadow Over Lone Oak is the first book in This Fallen World series by CJ Sears. Special Agent Llewyn Finch arrives in the seemingly humdrum town of Lone Oak to investigate the murder of Jane Harley, whose body was found just on the outskirts of town. Believing it to be linked to a dangerous cult, Finch, alongside Sheriff Willow Donahue and Deputy Rick Mason, delve into the case following clues left by the killer, leading them to a bootlegging operation involving parasitic spores in an abandoned quarry. But they soon discover that everything is not as it seems, and the parasites are even more deadly than they previously thought. As Willow and Finch see close friends and family dying all around them, can they survive the oncoming assault?

A gripping horror/thriller that keeps you on the edge of your seat, The Shadow Over Lone Oak is a wild rollercoaster of a ride you don't want to get off. What starts as a sleuth murder mystery quickly evolves into something you never quite expected. Author CJ Sears brings out a sense of tension and dread through the pages that will have you biting your nails. The plot is completely unpredictable, and the twists and turns keep you hooked from start to finish. The characters have complex layers to their outward personas, making them riveting to read. Finch's inner conflict and his dynamic with Willow were some of my favorite aspects of the book. If you're looking for a tantalizing mystery horror story, The Shadow Over Lone Oak is the book for you.