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The Wizard of Dark Street (Oona Crate Mystery #1)

3.81  ·  Rating Details  ·  684 Ratings  ·  124 Reviews
Oona Crate was born to be the Wizard’s apprentice, but she has another destiny in mind. Despite possessing the rare gift of natural magic, Oona wants to be a detective.

Eager for a case to prove herself, she wants to show her uncle—the Wizard of Dark Street—that logic is as powerful as magic. But when someone attacks the Wizard, Oona must delve even deeper into the world of
Hardcover, 348 pages
Published July 26th 2011 by Egmont USA
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Oct 08, 2011 Janet rated it it was ok
The Wizard of Dark Street's niece, Oona, would rather be a detective than a wizard's apprentice. When disasters befall both her uncle and a snooty neighbor, she works overtime to solve both mysteries and save the day. Odyssey put together a very clever whodunit; especially for a middle grade mystery, this will keep you guessing. The story is worth reading for that alone. However, the setting for this mystery was disappointingly Disneyfied - with a simply sketched set, stock characters, cartoony ...more
Nov 14, 2011 Pamela rated it really liked it
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 L ...more
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja)
This was a cute book. The mystery was clever (kept me guessing), and I enjoyed the magical elements. If this is a series, I will keep reading it.

Overall rating: 3.5/5.0 stars.

Reviewed for Bitten by Books.
Aug 25, 2013 Lauren rated it liked it
I read my fair share of plucky girl detectives. Some of my favorites include a poison-obsessed tween and two fairy-tale sisters. Oona Crate, the protagonist in The Wizard of Dark Street, doesn’t measure up to her competition.

This book is also a bit like Harry Potter in regards to its setting, a magical world that exists parallel to ours. While Harry Potter never bothered me with all of the world-building details (frankly, JK Rowling could probably write another book in Harry’s world, skip the pl
Sep 05, 2011 Susan rated it it was amazing
After seeing Shawn Thomas Odyssey read the prologue to THE WIZARD OF DARK STREET, I knew I had to read this book. The deliciously sinister feel to the magical world, the idea of a 12-year-old solving mysteries, and the simple fact that Oona (the MC) has a raven for a best friend all suggest a great combination within the book's pages.

Well, let me tell you, this story does not disappoint. I was flipping the pages to find out the whodunits and to see how all the seemingly separate mysteries would
Oona, the 13 year old sleuth of this YA fantasy/mystery, lives on Dark Street, a one street town lying between the New York of 1876 and the land of the Fay. Every midnight for one minute there's an open gate between NYC and Dark Street, and the rest of the time the city is inaccessible. Oona was apprenticed to her uncle, the Wizard of Dark Street, their only wizard, and the person who protects the town against possible fairy attack. Three years before the book starts, she accidentally killed her ...more
Jul 09, 2011 Charlotte rated it really liked it
Here's what this book has:

--an orphan girl named Oona with an innate talent for magic, a gift that led to a terrible tragedy a few years ago
--a fascinating place, Dark Street, poised between a gate leading to our world at one end (which opens for just one minute ever night) and a gate to the fairy realm, locked after a fierce war some years before
--a mystery that could threaten the very existence not just of Dark Street, but our world as well, and cast our orphaned heroine out into the streets
Jan 27, 2013 Danielle rated it it was amazing
Read This Review & More Like It At Ageless Pages Reviews

When I was in the 9-12 age range, some of my favorite books were mysteries, particularly the kind where no one got hurt and I got to play along at home. Nancy Drew, Encyclopedia Brown, "Alfred Hitchcock", (though I could never guess those twists. The diamond was in the python, who was in the acrobats' baton?!) I think Oona Crate and The Wizard of Dark Street would have made little-me very happy and will certainly become a mainstay in my
colleen the fabulous fabulaphile
A cute story mixing two of my favorite things - magic and whodunits.

Oona is a Natural Magician, a rare thing even on Dark Street, the last of the pathways between the World of Man and Faerie, and, since the gate to Faerie has been shut permanently, magic is on the decline.

But despite this, and because of a tragic accident she caused when her magic went wrong, she doesn't want to be the Wizard's Apprentice and, instead, wants to follow the path of her father and be a detective.

But her worlds coll
Barbara Ell
Being 12 years old and a natural magician is one thing, but also hating the idea of actually using magic, and then being the Wizard's apprentice is just something all together.

At least Oona's uncle, who happens to be the Wizard of Dark Street, understands her reasoning in not wanting to pursue magic and instead wanting to open a detective agency. But when her uncle goes missing, she must use all she can to find him...unless he has died.

I really enjoyed this story, and liked how it allowed the a
Bill Tillman
Nov 06, 2015 Bill Tillman rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Wizard of Dark Street

Oona Crate is a very quirky 12 going on 13 year-old. Living on a magic street half way between the normal human world and the world of the Fae. Great and easy read where there are no loose ends.
Joanie Chevalier
Nov 10, 2015 Joanie Chevalier rated it really liked it
Oona and her uncle live on Dark St. somewhere in New York. It is a hidden street with a gate on each end to keep the regular humans (and fairies) out. The gate at the fairy end is always locked, due to a dispute with the fairies hundreds of years ago. The other gate is only open for one minute at midnight. Those wandering by could by chance end up on Dark Street. The story starts out with Oona’s uncle, the Wizard, looking for an apprentice. He places an ad in The Times. Only those who truly know ...more
May 13, 2016 Doreen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was so darn charming that I immediately went and got the next in the series. Oona Crate lives in Victorian-era New York City, or on a street adjacent to it anyway. Magic is inherent in her blood, but she would rather spurn her natural talents and the unreliability of magic for the cold, reliable reason of deduction. When her uncle -- the titular Wizard of Dark Street and the man responsible for protecting humanity from the vengeance of faeries -- is viciously assaulted, Oona is on the ...more
Oct 31, 2015 Mike rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, owned
Getting middle grade books makes me nervous. Every now and then, you come across a Harry Potter...but for the most part, you end up with books that, while delightful for children, don't really hold up to a worldly and discerning adult's suspicious, near-sighted eyeballs. I wasn't reassured when I saw all of the critical (or at least tepid) reviews for this first Oona Crate mystery, either — usually, I'm in the position of being harder on books than other reviewers, so when a lot of people dislik ...more
Mar 01, 2016 Alethia rated it really liked it
At the beginning, I remember telling myself that it would be too easy if the culprit was one of the four applicants. Since she was only suspecting them, I wondered who else was in the room: Deacon and Samuligan. Deacon couldn't have done it, because he never left Oona's shoulder, and Samuligan has no motive. So I said, "It must be Adler, that scoundrel! He seemed nice, but he did call his sister a witch in the presence of a real witch." I completely overlooked the real culprit, forgetting he was ...more
Sherwood Smith
Jun 19, 2011 Sherwood Smith added it
Shelves: fantasy
I read this in draft ages ago, when the author was part of a writing group I was in. I absolutely loved it. I have been saving the book for when I finished a project; that means I get to read it in a week or two.
Emma Woodcock
Jan 11, 2014 Emma Woodcock rated it liked it
There were some likable things about this story, but quite disappointing really. Maybe it's one of those children's books which works fine for children, but doesn't tranlsate so well to adults? I found much of it quite tiresome - especially the ridiculous police inspector, obviously supposed to be comic relief, but just irritating.

Also, the writing really wasn't great. At times it seemed a bit amateurish. At one point there was a sentence containting the same word twice (I can't remember now wha
Jul 16, 2014 Bayla rated it liked it
Buzzwords: Magic, detective work, missing uncles, wizards, witches, death, guilt, puzzles

Cute, but geared towards a slightly younger group than I was expecting. I wanted more magic and detective work, and less insta-love (which stayed in that awkward I-like-you-but-don't-know-you-and-barely-speak-to-you stage. I just thought (view spoiler)
Jun 22, 2016 Camille rated it really liked it
I’m becoming very interested in mysteries, and the premise of a mystery story mixed with magic really intrigued me. I especially love reading about fantasy worlds alongside ours, because it helps me believe in the possibility that magic exists just around the corner. I loved the mysterious and vividly imagined setting of Dark Street, a Victorian era place poised between a gate leading to our world at one end (which opens for one minute every midnight) and a gate to the fairy realm on the other. ...more
May 05, 2014 Daisy rated it liked it
Shelves: listened-to
This book had nice, positive growth as it progressed which is always good to see in something that aspires to become a series. A third of the way into it I thought it was going to be just ok but then it turned a corner and became a decent little mystery. Though the character of Oona Crate starts out rather flat she becomes much more fleshed out as the pages turn. I started out being indifferent to both Oona and her past but by the end I liked her and started wondered if there was more to the fam ...more
Oona Crate is the Wizard's apprentice, but she'd much rather be a detective. After a terrible magical accident, she's decided that logic is better- safer, more reliable- than magic. She's just about to give up her position as apprentice, when the wizard- her uncle- is attacked. Oona has to solve the mystery of who is behind the attack, to save her uncle, her home, and possibly Dark Street itself.

This was a whippet-fast read- It's aimed at younger readers, but grownups will enjoy it too. Oona is
Mar 10, 2014 Guinevere rated it really liked it
As someone who is not really into who-dun-its - I found myself enjoying this book more than I expected. It's a very satisfying book, that's really the best word - it's got this incredible very-stylized approach that is a lot of fun, complete with clueless characters who allow for filling out back-story in that detective-mystery kind of way, and later, characters gasping, "[villain's name]!" at revealing moments. Combine that with an enchanting creative world and this book ends up being really ad ...more
Apr 09, 2011 Erin rated it it was amazing
Within the space between two worlds exists the last of the 13 faire roads called Dark Street. Situated on the North end of the street are the Iron Gates. These gates connect Dark Street to New York City at precisely 12am every night. At the South end of the street are the odious Glass Gates. These gates lead to the world of the fairies and were sealed 500 years ago by the great magicians at the end of the Faire Wars. Dead center of Dark Street is the Pendulum House which is home to the Wizard. “ ...more
May 25, 2012 Dawn rated it liked it
An enjoyable book for middle readers, this book stars 12-year-old Oona, who is apprentice to her uncle, who is the Wizard of Dark Street.
After a horrible tragedy that killed her mother and baby sister, Oona is determined to forever give up practicing magic. Instead, she wants to start her own detective agency. On the night Oona is supposed to sign away her right to all the benefits of the wizard's apprentice and when a new apprentice is to be chosen, a major magical crime against the wizard is
Oct 24, 2012 Corey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When Harry Potter ended, some people pointed to Philip Pullman's "His Dark Materials" as the next big children's book...course it became Suzanne Collins "Hunger Games" but since the games have ended, the question arises "What children's novel will follow in the path set by J.K. Rowling and her 'Harry Potter' novels?"

I believe I have found the answer in a man from my own hometown named Shawn Thomas Odyssey. In "The Wizard of Dark Street" he introduces us to a magical world hidden in New York circ
A determined heroine, check. A devastating loss, check. Mysterious happenings, check. Oona wants to be a detective, but after a close call with a guillotine, her uncle makes her promise to avoid 'deadly criminals.' And she tries hard to do so, but when her uncle disappears while choosing a new apprentice, Oona wonders if she made the right choice in giving up magic. I found Oona a delightful character and really enjoyed reading about her. In spite of the tragedies in her life, she continues to f ...more
Nov 17, 2015 Nafiza rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012
Shawn Thomas Odyssey’s middle grade debut novel is creative, colourful and imaginative. He dreams up a protagonist called Oona Crate who is something called a natural magician, believed to have a small amount of fairy blood in her makeup which makes her able to do magic naturally rather than by learning to manipulate elements etc. However, several horrible things happen which lead to Oona renouncing magic and this in turn leads to the Magician of Dark Street (who is incidentally also Oona’s uncl ...more
Danyelle Leafty
Aug 22, 2011 Danyelle Leafty rated it really liked it
Shelves: bookshelf-2011
The Wizard of Dark Street
Shawn Thomas Odyssey
345 pages
MG fantasy
Available July 26, 2011
Review copy from publisher

From Egmont:

Oona Crate was born to be the Wizard’s apprentice, but she has another destiny in mind.

Despite possessing the rare gift of natural magic, Oona wants to be a detective. Eager for a case to prove herself, she wants to show her uncle—the Wizard of Dark Street—that logic is as powerful as magic. But when someone attacks the Wizard, Oona must delve even deeper into the world of
Jul 21, 2011 Andrea rated it really liked it
The Little Bookworm
12 year old Oona is destined for the position of Wizard's Apprentice since she is a rare Natural Magician. But all she wants to do is start her own detective agency. When the current Wizard, also Oona's uncle, is stabbed with a magic knife, it's up to Oona to figure out who purported the crime.

This was a great mix of fantasy and mystery so it combined two of my favorite genres. Oona is a girl detective and those are the best kind. She is smart, witty, clever and loyal to her
Jul 08, 2011 cecilia rated it liked it
Shelves: purple-covers
While most kids would kill to be the next Harry, Hermione, or Ron, Oona gives up her apprenticeship with the Wizard of Dark Street to pursue her dream of becoming the next Sherlock. All she has to do is to help her Wizard uncle find a worthy replacement. Easy as cat’s craddle until someone decides to do away with her uncle. Now Dark Street is without a Wizard – and Oona must figure out who was behind her uncle’s death and how to save the Wizard’s legacy from the greedy clutches of the Red Martin ...more
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What's The Name o...: SOLVED. Older children's fantasy/mystery [s] 10 39 May 14, 2014 05:20AM  
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Edgar and Agatha nominated author of THE WIZARD OF DARK STREET and THE MAGICIAN'S TOWER, novels of detection and magic.

Visit Shawn on the web at:



More about Shawn Thomas Odyssey...

Other Books in the Series

Oona Crate Mystery (3 books)
  • The Magician's Tower (Oona Crate Mystery, #2)
  • The Magician's Dream (Oona Crate Mystery, #3)

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