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Black Magick, Vol. 1: Awakening, Part One

(Black Magick #1)

4.09  ·  Rating details ·  2,198 ratings  ·  330 reviews
Collecting the first five issues of the critically-acclaimed new series from creators GREG RUCKA (Lazarus, Star Wars: Shattered Empire) and NICOLA SCOTT (Secret Six, Earth-2). Rowan Black is a detective with the Portsmouth PD... and a witch, two aspects of her life she has struggled to keep separate. Now someone is targeting Rowan, someone who knows her secrets and means t ...more
Paperback, 128 pages
Published May 3rd 2016 by Image Comics (first published April 27th 2016)
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4.09  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,198 ratings  ·  330 reviews

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I've always enjoyed reading about a Witchy Woman, so this was right up my alley. Add to that all the beautiful artwork with the (mostly) black & white palette that pops with color at just the right times?
Perfection! <--for me, anyway


Ok, since this was the first volume, there is a lot of backstory that's left unexplained.
There's a ton of very interesting stuff that's hinted at as part of the origin story of these ladies, and I can't wait to find out more about their past. Or maybe n
✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
And the moral of this reread is: this definitely ain't not your Boring, Average, Typical, Standard Police Procedural (BATSPP™), my Glittering Decapods! It's exciting and fresh and original and slightly dark and cool and stuff. Which makes me want to um, you know, do the thing I usually do when I get all titillated and stuff. You know, that thing that sometimes involves shimmying and shaking and getting down and footing it and hoofing it and and working it and generally displaying one's super s ...more
Nov 24, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: paidkindle, graphics
Black Magick is gorgeous. If I could, I would spend hours upon hours by just slowly going through this first volume, time after time. This is an exceptional work of art, and this alone is a reason to purchase this as an physical copy instead of digital version. I will give full five stars to Nicola Scott for crafting such a pleasure for my eyes.

Black Magick is a fine mix of witchcraft and police work whereas the focus is more on the clinical detective side than of the lurking evil. First volume
Jan Philipzig
Sweet! I haven’t been this excited about a Greg Rucka comic book since... Gotham Central? Whiteout? Like those two minor classics, Black Magick is a crime title with a twist, though in this case the twist is witchcraft rather than superheroes or the ice of Antarctica; like them, it feels a bit like a cheap but surprisingly good 70s genre flick—despite the occasional computer screen. So yeah, Rucka was the reason I picked up Black Magick, but boy will I also be on the lookout for Australian comic ...more
Sam Quixote
May 09, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: best-comics-2016
Buh… wha… Greg Rucka… wrote a... GOOD comic…?! What am I saying, I’m losing my edge! Noooo….. NO - credit where it’s due and Black Magick was great! (Goes to lie down)

Rowan Black is a homicide detective on the Portsmouth PD - and she’s also a witch. Magic be real, witches! After a series of grisly ritual killings, she begins to suspect she and her coven are being targeted by an unseen enemy. Can she stop them before they destroy her? Well?! Oh, I guess we’ll find out in the next volume or so…

One of the best comics I read recently and I read lot of great stuff recently.
David Schaafsma
Jul 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: gn-crime, gn-horror
I liked this a lot, a really fast read, a page turner, with very good writing and strong art to match from Nicola Scott. Rowan Black is a cop for the Portsmouth PD and she's also a witch, part of an area coven. But she wants to keep these two aspects of her life separate, secret from each other. There's a lot of magick-related bad stuff going on, seemingly targeting her as witch. they have to figure that out, clearly, hopefully without blowing Black's magick secret life. And a lot happens in the ...more
Apr 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics, fantasy, mystery
(Received from Netgalley for review.)

Really interesting. I've liked most of what I've read by Rucka, so I requested this book without really investigating what it was or what it was about. I probably would have requested it anyways. It's a blend of police procedural and Wiccan-flavored magic, and at least in this volume, it works rather better than it probably should. Main character Rowan Black is a cop, and a witch, and she's being hunted. The question of who, or what, is hunting her and why is

I would like to thank NetGalley and Image Comics for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.


Now, I have been reading graphic novels that usually have a mixture of different genres within a story and most of them were pretty well done as it is quite unusual and rare to see two different genres existing in the same story. So, when I heard so many good things about Greg Rucka’s “Black Magick Volume One: Awakening” graphic novel, I just knew that I had to
Haven't read any Rucka for a while, so I was anticipating a rush of the old magic from this dude - even though he seems to have let the air out of the tires on Lazarus (when is he delivering volume 4 already? Oh - it's been out for months already? Well shit, now *I'm* the asshole - a role I'm well familiar with).

I love the opener - was beginning to worry Rucka had lost his droll sense of humour, gotten a little too deep into Portlandia lifestyle.

LOVE the sparse use of colour. Why don't more book
Jeannette Nikolova
May 18, 2016 rated it it was ok
Also available on the WondrousBooks blog.

The first issue of Black Magick got its deserved spot on my Good list. It was intriguing and it looked like it will lead to something bigger and even better. However... it did not. The entire volume lead to one single evil pawn of someone more evil that we have no idea about, except that they, well, exist.

The problem I had with the entire volume is basically that. Some of the single issues don't even have a villain. We see one crazy, possessed guy and o
Mar 08, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nicola Scott provides some great art here, expressive black and white work that features specific, sparse splashes of color when magick is used. Story-wise, although this first volume is mostly a lot of set-up, Greg Rucka uses his time-honed skills at writing police procedurals and strong female characters to put together a decent crime/occult combo that promises interesting things to come as Detective Rowan Black struggles to keep her identity as a witch a secret as an occult conspiracy grows a ...more
Skye Kilaen
Appropriately ominous start to a series that blends police procedural with witchcraft and GORGEOUS art by Nicola Scott.

Police detective and witch Rowan White usually does a reasonable job keeping her magickal life separate from her job. But when a hostage-taking criminal asks to talk to her, then tries to burn her as a witch after speaking her true name, she suspects things are about to get complicated. Her next murder case isn't reassuring, as it involves ritual elements that fuel her suspicion
Apr 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
A really cool urbsn fantasy/horror/police crime novel. A detective arrives at a crime or hostage situation. Shes also a witch and from here we lead down a trail of investigation on who is attemtping to murder her. Cool artwork which has these black/grey tones in every frame. The only colour is when magic appears. Reccomended for any UF fans
Althea J.
May 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics, netgalley
Greg Rucka writes one of my favorite lady detectives - Dex from his series Stumptown. So this series, Black Magick, which features a female detective, Rowan Black, looked particularly interesting because it combines the procedural world of being a cop with the world of pagan magic.

First off, Nicola Scott's art draws me in, with her distinct characters and uncanny ability to make characters who are inherently sexy without sexualizing them. There's such a clean, almost filmic translation of the re
Gary Butler
Jan 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-novels
7th book read in 2017.

Number 104 out of 572 on my all time book list.

Review Pending:
Cathy (cathepsut)
Really nice! I like the black and white artwork very much. The brief bits of colour are very nicely placed and the line art is gorgeous.

Great attention to detail.

Issue #2 was a bit of a filler. Issue #3 was slightly more interesting, but this definitely seems like a slow burning type of story. The ending of Issue #4 was a scary cliffhanger... Issue #5 brought it all to a nice climax, with two plotlines coming together and a new one opening.... which means that I will very likely get the next vol
Feb 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Voilà - Maybe my favorite new series.

My buddies said I should buy something else, because the cover has a shitty kind of 80s look :D
What a compelling argument! I bought it anyway since I already read the first pages and sensed some potential here. And the main character doesnt look as weird as on the cover throughout the book imo ;)
The witch theme combined with the intriguing crime story works really well for me and the art is especially interesting when it gets more witchy than detective...-y.

Feb 24, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A solid story with some gorgeous artwork by Nicola Scott. I am usually not the biggest fan of Rucka's writing, but this series is pretty good, at least so far.
Jan 25, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I totally enjoyed this start to what looks like an interesting story. Rowan Black, police officer, and practitioner of magick, deals with a hostage taker and murdered rapist in quick succession, with some mysterious group seemingly targeting her.
The artwork is fantastic, with highly effective and targeted use of colour. I like how Rowan is trying very hard to keep the two different parts of her life separate, and her two recent cases look like they're going to bring both sides colliding. There's
Rory Wilding
May 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
Whenever I think of paganism, my first thought goes to The Wicker Man, a British cult horror that embraced some form of Celtic paganism, even if the film ended with a policeman being a reluctantly participant in ritual human sacrifice. Obviously, that sheds some darkness towards the subject of paganism, despite that there are many forms of paganism ranging from ancient to modern and even some actually makes more sense than today's other religions.

At the beginning of Greg Rucka and Nicola Scott's
Feb 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-novels
Rowan Black, a bona fide modern-day coven-affiliated witch-slash-Oregon police detective, finds herself targeted by a secret, magick-wielding shadow society. Their activities draw the attention of a menacing, self-appointed witchcraft-oversight organization.

Rucka's two favorite themes are present: tough, smart women and riveting crime mystery. And he's in top form. It's gripping and funny and scary, there's a ton of plot space to explore, I want to know more about these modern witches, I want to
Apr 30, 2016 rated it really liked it
I'm a big fan of Rucka's writing--Lazarus is a brilliant series--so was really looking forward to this one. It's a very interesting mixture of police procedural with elements of magic and the supernatural. Portsmouth police detective Rowan Black is a practicing witch who slowly becomes involved in a series of weird, seemingly inexplicable events. First, a man takes hostages at a local burger joint, insisting that he'll only talk to Rowan. She agrees to go in and talk to him, if he'll free the ho ...more
May 03, 2016 rated it liked it
I received this book from the publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

This book follows a woman named Rowan Black, who by day is a Police Detective, but she is also keeping a deep dark secret as she is in fact a witch. Things start becoming strange once she ends up in a hostage situation and the man lets the other hostages go in exchange for her. He knows her name, and her secret real name and he knows what she is. At that moment he tries to kill her by setting her on fire, but sh
3.5 stars, rounded up for potential. It's the kind of urban fantasy I really like, there wasn't anything for me to criticize about the story. It was just a little slight. If I had been buying each issue as it came out I think I would have been pretty frustrated, since it felt like the entire volume didn't have much meat. It was because there were a lot of things that had to be introduced, so we only got to see a little bit of each opening storyline and how they are going to intertwine. I can sta ...more
Travis Duke
Jun 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Loved it, great crime story mixed with witchcraft. Rucka does a great job telling the story of Rowan Black a cop who practices witchcraft. I like that he anchors the story telling from the police perspective and balances it Rowan's personal story. The art is damn near perfect, Nicola Scott is super talented. Her skill at drawing the human face is something to marvel at, seriously impressed. The story follows Rowan as she works on a few strange cases that seem to be targeting her but the mystery ...more
Un gros gros coup de coeur pour ce comic qui est merveilleusement illustré (en plus, le choix de la couleur est intéressant, un genre de sépia, qui met en valeur les détails et donne une atmosphère vraiment spéciale, "magique", à l'histoire).
Yzabel Ginsberg
[I received a copy of this book through NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.]

3.5 to 4 stars. A fairly good read, containing the first 5 issues of the “Black Magick” series. Portsmouth P.D. Detective Rowan Black is also a witch, one who meets with her coven to practice rituals, and she definitely doesn't want this other part of her life to bleed into the mundane one. Until a perp reveals he knows so much about her... but she's never met that man, so what's happening, who's after her, and
Dec 14, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own
I liked this a lot, but I want more!

Reminded me a little of Charmed and a little of Witch Hunter Robin. Hard to say what is going on, but I can tell you this book is about witches and the occult. I like how the witches were handled in this as well. Plus there is a guy named Morgan in this...can't go wrong with a Morgan ;)

Maybe the best thing about this comic book was the art. Loved the black and white with only magical parts with color. Made this book fun too look at as well as read.
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Madison Mega-Mara...: #76 Black Magick v1: Awakening by Greg Rucka 1 2 Jun 19, 2016 06:31PM  
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Greg Rucka, is an American comic book writer and novelist, known for his work on such comics as Action Comics, Batwoman: Detective Comics, and the miniseries Superman: World of New Krypton for DC Comics, and for novels such as his Queen & Country series.

Other books in the series

Black Magick (4 books)
  • Black Magick, Vol. 2: Awakening II
  • Black Magick, Vol. 3: Ascension
  • Black Magick: The First Book of Shadows