Friday, March 16, 2012

Wizard of Dark Street (fiction) - magic, crime, beauty creams

Pendulum House, with its namesake device swooshing through the parlor in great arcs.
A dragonbone desk and enchanted daggers.
The Gates of Iron, opening into New York City every midnight for exactly 60 seconds.

Welcome to Dark Street, last of the 13 great roads connecting the worlds of humans and Faerie, in 1877 as yet another crime investigation is bungled by Inspector White. In just weeks, Oona Crate will be considered old enough to select her own life path, and she knows that she must become a true detective, ignoring the magical blood that flows through her.

Stereotypes for wizards and witches go by the wayside on Dark Street, as Oona must deal with slippery memories, the Goblin Tower prison, suppliers of contraband, and a most puzzling riddle.

The author has scripted, scored, and recorded a musical introduction to Oona's world that you won't want to miss in a video that charmingly showcases his composing and singing skills.

Look for The Wizard of Dark Street at your local library or independent bookstore.

Book info: The Wizard of Dark Street / Shawn Thomas Odyssey. Egmont USA, 2011. [author's website] [publisher site] [book trailer]

My Recommendation: Oona wants to be a detective, not a wizard. Although she is the first natural-born magician in 200 years, she ought to be allowed to cultivate her other talents – as long as she doesn’t get permanently killed in the process.

As Wizard’s apprentice, Oona was learning spells needed to defend humankind if evil forces from Faerie realms attacked; even in the modern world of 1877, the Wizard must be ready. Dark Street lies in the heart of New York City, but ordinary humans rarely find this last corridor between the worlds of Man and Faerie.

But the Wizard’s disappearance, an increase in crimes along Dark Street, and an incompetent police inspector lead her to investigate many things – Why do only young witch girls venture out of Witch Hill? Who has stolen all of Madame Iree’s dresses? Is the blind actor a victim or a criminal?

A new apprentice must be selected since Oona wants to step away from that role, but which candidate will be chosen – witch girl, human young man, snooty Miss Iree, the clever brother? Something is wrong about all this…

Luckily, Oona has enchanted raven Deacon to tutor her in further magic and her own natural curiosity to lead her in detection. Are the criminals after something bigger than just designer dresses? Were her parents really killed by magic instead of an accident?

This first Oona Crate mystery places readers solidly into its 1877 setting and a very magical place indeed. (One of 5,000 books recommended on Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

1 comment:

  1. I really have a thing for fantasies set in worlds that lay alongside ours. The blurring of the edges between what we think of as reality and those magical worlds fascinates me, which is probably why I love the Harry Potter series so much (and why I'm working on a couple of stories with those kinds of worlds myself). The Wizard of Dark Street takes place on Dark Street (oddly enough), a little neighborhood that's linked to New York City, but is actually a bridge between the normal world and the Land of Faerie. It's a highly entertaining blend of Harry Potter-esque magic and Holmesian detective work.


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