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The Midnight Mayor (Matthew Swift #2)

4.15 of 5 stars 4.15  ·  rating details  ·  2,504 ratings  ·  173 reviews
It's said that if the ravens ever leave the Tower of London, then the Tower will crumble and the kingdom will fall. Resurrected sorcerer Matthew Swift is about to discover that this isn't so far from the truth...

One by one, the protective magical wards that guard the city are falling: the London Wall defiled with cryptic graffiti, the ravens found dead at the Tower, the Lo
Hardcover, 480 pages
Published March 8th 2010 by Orbit (first published 2010)
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Feb 15, 2014 Carol. rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: urban fantasy fans
Recommended to Carol. by: Carly
A solid urban fantasy read.

The second installment of the Matthew Swift series, The Midnight Mayor continues to follow recently reincarnated Matthew Swift and the co-inhabitants of his body, the electric angels. Once again, Matthew regains consciousness near a public phone, lying in the ground in the dark and the rain; cold, burned, and bloody. As he tries to orient himself, hooded faceless spectres start to stalk him. He manages to escape after some clever displays of sorcery and goes to find th
An excellent second book in one of my favorite series. The plot is well drawn, and fast paced. I love how magic works in these books, and how it has changed with the times. I love how much of a character the city of London is in these books, and I love Matthew's relationship with the city. The writing continues to amaze me, and I love the sense of humor these books have. They more than hold up on repeated reading for me. On to the next one.


(view spoiler)
Lyrical, sensual, and gritty urban fantasy with magic, monsters mystery and blood splashed unrepentantly across the very first chapter... welcome back to the weird/wonderful/wicked world of Matthew Swift, London's première symbiotic-sorcerer!
It took me too damn long to get around to reading this. I really enjoyed the preceding instalment, A Madness of Angels - it's not perfect, but it got me excited - and I was psyched to dive into the next one, but it took me an age to get around to it. Eve
Nov 27, 2014 Carly rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of fantastically imaginative UF who won't mind the writing style
Recommended to Carly by: me. Thank you, me!
**edited 11/28/13

Something is wrong with the city.
Spectres and Saturates (scum monsters) stalk (or squish) through the streets. There is writing on the walls of London. The ravens of the Tower are dead. And Matthew Swift, somewhat-deceased, partially-possessed sorcerer, has been attacked through the very phone lines from which he draws part of his identity. When he awakens from unconsciousness, wounded and bleeding, it is to the realisation that the Midnight Mayor, mysterious protector of the c
Matthew Swift died choking on his own blood.
Years later, he came back.
But he didn't come back alone.

His struggle to understand his death, and the other magic users' struggle to come to terms with his new dual identity of blue electric angels and dead man, formed the basis for A Madness of Angels. After the cataclysmic events of the last few years, Swift deserves a nice long break--but alas, he's the last sorcerer left in London, and doom has come upon his city. The supernatural defenses of Londo
Wow, just wow! I loved everything about this book. Matthew Swift has to be one of the best characters ever invented and I still say he must be Harry Dresden's long lost cousin or even his twin brother separated at birth. The descriptions of London are magnificent and actually make me homesick which is amazing since England has not been my home for many years now. The pace of the story is relentless and it is very hard to put the book down at any point. There is one scene in which Matthew and the ...more
Matthew Swift has died and been resurrected once before, and he would very much like to stay alive for good this time, thank you very much. It's too bad someone has other plans. The ravens at the Tower of London are dead, the London Wall has been defiled, and the London Stone has been broken. The Midnight Mayor has been found dead of thousands upon thousands of small slices to the skin, with clothing and even fingernails somehow untouched. With the protective wards of the city down and the Midni ...more
The magical wards of London are being systematically destroyed — the ravens at the Tower of London are dead, the London Wall is defiled. Before the very fabric of London is sucked into chaos, Matthew Swift must solve the riddle of where Mo has gone, and who is scrawling the slogan ‘Give Me Back My Hat’ across the walls of his city. In The Midnight Mayor, Kate Griffin takes the reader on a scorching tour around the city of London, introducing the Midnight Mayor and the extremely creepy Mr Pinner, ...more
Gripe: if you save one innocent life and kill fifty others doing it, that does not count as a moral victory.

Also, the author writes too much description. I've learned to skim over all the comma-separated lists of scenery elements. I understand that the main character draws strength from his environment, but still. She should have just had one item per scene.
N.K. Jemisin
Almost gave this one four stars, because it started out too much like the first book, and I don't actually like it when subsequent books in a trilogy give me more of the same. It even started off the same way: Matthew awakens, disoriented and afflicted with strange magic, then has to immediately fight off a dire threat (spectres this time, instead of the litterbug of the first book). But soon we're introduced to new marvels and mysteries, like the Aldermen, and soon we get something I hadn't rea ...more
William Crosby
But way too much description of London for my tastes. I do not enjoy reading travelogues. If that is your thing, then check this book out. A slightly different view of London.
The writer likes lists. Some of her paragraphs are just long lists (of what the narrator sees and other various lists). I do not like lists. I found myself skimming.
Still, inventive.
And a fascinating take on magic.
These books are like a rich chocolate cake, so, so good! One sliver almost makes you keel over from a sugar high, but you just can't stop. And why would you? I love, love, love these book!!! This one was just as good, or better than the first. Oh how I loathe waiting for the next!
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
J.D. Robinson
Let me start from the beginning. It all started in March this year, when the cover of The Midnight Mayor caught my eye on the shelf. I mean look at it, it’s such a beautiful cover! Who could resist picking that up and buying it? When I got it home to read though, I was just a little confused, and took me a good fifty pages to realize that, while a separate story in it’s own, it was the second book in the Matthew Swift series. Reluctantly, I went back and found the first book, A Madness of Angels ...more
In contemporary London a young immigrant woman, working as a meter maid, is assaulted and her hat is stolen. Enraged and depressed she stands on London Bridge and shouts into the darkness,"Give me back my hat!"

She doesn't realize that her cry for respect hss cursed the city.

I've read all of Kate Griffin's book, but this is my favorite. The books assume the existance of magic, magic fueled by patterns of life: traffice, neon, the footsteps on the sidewalks, the hands on the guard rails of the ste
Peter Taylor
From the cover

It's said that if the ravens ever leave the Tower of London, then the Tower will crumble and the kingdom will fall. As it happens, that's not so far from the truth ...
One by one, the magical wards that guard the city are failing; the London Wall defiled with cryptic graffiti; the ravens found dead at the Tower; the London Stone destroyed. This is not good news. The array of supernatural defences - a mix of international tourist attractions and forgotten urban legends - formed a for
Utterly stunned. I immensely enjoyed whole vibe that Matthew Swift really was unashamedly 'winging it' most of the way through the book! It made a welcome change from previous books I have read where the characters have the answers layed out before them! Little quips and the attitudes of the main charaters (even in the most dire situations) made me laugh to myself. I am more in love with the main character, Matthew, than I was before and the relationship between he and Oda was even better than i ...more
Vijay Paradkar
This series by Kate Griffin (Catherine Webb) is rapidly becoming one of the more exciting and original urban fantasy series I've encountered. Where most authors simply transpose traditional notions of magic to contemporary or urban settings, Griffin conceives of a world in which magic, powered by life and belief, evolves to fit the modern day. The result is a brilliantly vivid portrayal of London and the vibrant pace and chaos of one of the world's most bustling metropolises.

The first book in th
I have read the first three of the Matthew Swift series and enjoyed them: The Madness of Angels, The Midnight Mayor and The Neon Court. Swift was a human sorcerer who was killed and brought back to life infused somehow with the Blue Electric Angels of the telephone wires. The magic Griffin gives us is Urban Magic, born of the pulsing life and power of the cities.

Griffin’s style will have a lot to do with whether or not you like these books. It is dark, chaotic, almost stream-of-consciousness. He
Having found the first book in this sequence a very pleasant (if blood-soaked) surprise, I was more than happy to get stuck into the second of the series. And it was clear straight away that this was not going to be some lacklustre retread of previous works (certain US authors of similar genres - I'm looking at you. And I'm tutting. With a little sniff of contempt). Sure all the elements that made the first book such fun are still here - at times bone dry humour, plenty of snappy dialogue and ac ...more
Matthew Swift, hechicero urbana y angeles azules electricos, deberia evitar contestar llamadas telefonicas en mitad de la nada, pero va con su naturaleza... y al despertar empiezan los problemas y persecuciones luchando por su vida.

Alguien ha asesinado al Alcalde de la Medianoche, y Swift es el principal sospechoso, los espectros lo persiguen y él sólo queria hallar a un chico perdido. A lo largo de la historia, este apaleado er antiheroe nuestro va descubriendo que Londres ha sido maldecido, to
An excellent follow-up to Book 1.

A novel in the breathless, grim, viscerally described style of true urban magic. Matthew Swift the semi-human sorcerer gets caught up into the myth of the Midnight Mayor, who protects the stones of the city against outside destruction.

Reminds me of The Books of Magic, John Constantine, and Dream of the Endless series of graphic novels -- the graphic nature of the description, the City of London as a vivid background and character, the dark and wild creativity of
I was happy to see that the second book of the Matthew Swift series is just as good as the first one had been. It's similar, really, the style and the depth. We learn about some new aspects of magic.

The main difference is in the pacing: the story of The Midnight Mayor progresses considerably faster than that of the first book (Madness of Angels). This made it easier for me to read it, and made for a more immersing experience.

Looking forward to reading the third installment, The Neon Court.
5 Stars

“We be light, we be life, we be fire!
We slither blood blue burning, we sing neon rumbling, we dance heaven!
Come be me and be free.
Me be blue electric angel.
Anonymous graffiti, Old Street"

The Midnight Mayor: Or, the Inauguration of Matthew Swift is an amazing read, and the second book in a series that could have been perfect with just one. The first book by Kate Griffin A Madness of Angels is simply one of my very favorite all time reads. I was so captured and enthralled with that book tha
I was very pleased to learn that "The Midnight Mayor" doesn't suffer from a second-book curse (unlike London). In fact, I enjoyed it even more than "A Madness of Angels". Whether it was because I got to know the world built by Kate Griffin in the first book and was overjoyed to learn even more about it in "The Midnight Mayor", or because this installment's descriptions were worded better and different sides of Swift's character were shown, this book felt like a rich, decadent chocolate cake one ...more
Creta Massenge
Dribble is dribble

I almost quit this story because of the word dribble, the most over used word ever used by an author! I wanted to text, tweet, call this author and suggest a thesaurus. I did like the story, I am a sucker for the underdog, and who can resist a blue electric God. Great story! Stick it out and enjoy the ride.
The second Matthew Swift book was a bit slow to get going, probably because I read it right after the latest Dresden Files book (Skin Game). Many similarities, but very different style. The both series are urban fantasies, written in 1st person narrative, and the main character is a magician guy: wizard (Dresden) or sorcerer (Swift). Both are also very city-specific: Dresden in Chicago, and Swift in London. Those are the similarities, but the language and the main character personalities are ver ...more
The Midnight Mayor is the sequel to A Madness of Angels, which I loved. While the two books have separate plots and don’t necessarily have to be read in order, I would still recommend reading A Madness of Angels first as the events in it are referred to in The Midnight Mayor.

The Midnight Mayor is a worthy sequel, and the tone stays similar to the first book. Fans of the first should not be disappointed.

The Midnight Mayor opens a lot like A Madness of Angels: sorcerer Matthew Swift wakes up next
Aussi prenant que le premier opus. Je ne suis pas un spécialiste du genre mais je n'ai pas pu lâcher l'affaire avant le mot fin ! Je trouve l'écriture de Kate Griffin absolument splendide et son idée du couple Matthiew - the blue electric angels fantastiquement contemporaine J'adore redécouvrir Londres à travers son regard Et l'histore ??? intrigante, pleine de personnages plus vrais que natures, de rebondissements, de promenades nocturnes, de combats tant physiques que psychologiques...

Je vais
I gave up about four-fifths of the way through.
For a while I enjoyed the descriptiveness of the writing, but eventually one intensely detailed passage started to merge into the next, and it lost its impact.
I found it impossible to care about any of the characters. I'm not really sure why, but Matthew Swift just remained a blank for me, while the other characters were two-dimensional.
I liked the idea of urban magic. The various monsters - spectres, a thing made out of rubbish, the guy with the hu
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Kate Griffin is the pen name under which Catherine Webb writes fantasy novels for adults. She also uses the pen name Claire North.

Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.
More about Kate Griffin...

Other Books in the Series

Matthew Swift (4 books)
  • A Madness of Angels (Matthew Swift, #1)
  • The Neon Court (Matthew Swift, #3)
  • The Minority Council (Matthew Swift, #4)

Share This Book

“He glanced up as I entered, and for a moment, looked almost surprised.
"Mr. Swift!"
"Ta-da!" I exclaimed weakly.
"You're still..."
"Still not dead. That's me. It's my big party trick, still not being dead, gets them every time.”
“When last I checked, you were a sorcerer, not a Jedi."
"You've seen Star Wars?"
"Seen it and denounced it."
"You've denounced Star Wars?"
She looked me straight in the eye and said, "Hollywood should not glorify witches."
"I think you've missed the point..."
"I also denounce Harry Potter."
"...because literature, especially children's literature, should not glorify witches."
"Oda, what do you do for fun?"
She thought about it, then said, without a jot of humor, "I denounce things.”
More quotes…