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Street Magic

(Black London #1)

3.43  ·  Rating details ·  3,548 ratings  ·  337 reviews
Her name is Pete Caldecott. She was just sixteen when she met Jack Winter, a gorgeous, larger-than-life  mage who thrilled her with his witchcraft. Then a spirit Jack summoned killed him before Pete’s eyes—or so she thought. Now a detective , Pete is investigating the case of a young girl kidnapped from the streets of London. A tipster’s chilling prediction has led police ...more
Paperback, 326 pages
Published June 2nd 2009 by St. Martin's Paperbacks
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Average rating 3.43  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,548 ratings  ·  337 reviews

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Ruric Amhari
Feb 26, 2012 rated it it was ok
This is a short book (335 pp) which I picked up for free at the Connotations Book Mooch in Oct. It says something that I started reading it that weekend and only finished it a week or so ago.

I was drawn to the Black London setting (a London where magic takes place both in and out of a sort of parallel-ish dimension) rather than the actual premise (Teen heroine, Pete, meets older bad boy mage, Jack, who is seemingly killed in front of her. Pete grows up to be a policewoman and is investigating th
Anzu The Great Destroyer
Why the 5* rating? Because:

- Amazing main characters;
- No cheese;
- No romance to distract the reader from the story;
- British setting and humor;
- Good plot.


- Perfect timing;
- Jack Winter.
Suzanne (Under the Covers Book blog)
Pete Caldecott was 16 when she thought Jack Winter died. She unwittingly helped him summon something best left dead and he died from it; she has been denying what she saw that day every moment since. 10 years later she is a Police Inspector working on a case where children are getting snatched, this leads her back to Jack who says he can tell her where the missing children are. But the supposedly long dead Jack is not how she remembers, he is 10 years older, a heroin addict and living on the str ...more
Aug 09, 2009 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I've been casting about for a new paranormal series to start chomping my way through, but if Street Magic accomplished anything, it was to prove that Black London is not going to be that series. Set in a London in which the walls between this world and the shadow-world that runs parallel are very thin, children are going missing. And tough female cop Pete Caldecott is going to need the help of street-mage Jack Winter, who supposedly died in front of her 12 years ago, to get them back...

Some book
Pippa DaCosta
I'm giving this another go. The dialogue is really clunky - one minute peppered with slang and the next all straight and proper - but there are some fascinating ideas floating to the surface now that I'm half way through.

Pre-read comments:

Ooh, gritty UF, mixed reviews, and messed up characters?

Feb 05, 2013 rated it liked it
it tried very hard to be a great book, but it failed to be as good as the dresden and the peter grant books.

will read the next books to see if they improve.
All Things Urban Fantasy
Dec 08, 2009 rated it really liked it
Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy

STREET MAGIC is one of the best series launches I’ve read in a long time. It really just scrapes the surface of this world and these characters, and yet Wow does it pack a punch. The writing is tight and specific. We don’t ever get bogged down with physical descriptions of people and places, but I still know exactly what everyone looks like and I felt very much like I’d visited all the London locations in STREET MAGIC. The plot is suitably sinister with
Aug 05, 2011 rated it did not like it
Combine the mannerisms of John Constantine from Hellblazer, the looks of Spike from Buffy, and complete incompetence, and what do you get? Jack Winter, the most disappointing street mage I've read yet. Supposedly this is set in England: the only way I can tell is that Jack says "bloody hell" every page, calls women "luv," and smokes Parliaments. Otherwise, nothing really marks this as London; it could have been set in any modern city and been the exact same story.

The uninspired, generic feel of
I had this book for awhile and was planned to read it right after I finished with Kittredge's Daemon's Mark last year. However, I was surprised with the British tone and decided to postpone (British tone is good for me on movies/tv shows but a bit difficult to grasp in writing :p). Only now I thought I should give it another try.

... And I'm glad that I did.

I think I have always been a bit luckier when the story deals with magic. This one is very engaging -- right from the very start. I'm a sucke
Jul 22, 2012 rated it it was ok
2.5 out of 5 stars

I don't what to think about this book. It's a gritty urban fantasy, nothing soft or pretty about it, with some very dark undertones. I enjoy that, to a point. I didn't even mind how f*cked up Jack was - and trust me, he's about as flawed as they come. But there were problems in this book that I had a hard time overcoming. I won't list all of them, only the two I struggled most with.

First, the author's botched attempt at "Britspeak". UGH, what an epic failure that was! I've bee
Jun 03, 2009 rated it liked it
I didn't love it, but I did like it. Maybe because it was set in England, it made it a little harder for me to relate to the characters. Wanker, git, bollocks, bugger first it was cute, and then the novelty wore off. That's probably just me, though. Oh well, I usually don't love the first book in any series, so I'll have to give the next book a try before I make up my mind.
Feb 17, 2017 rated it it was ok
The writing was a bit clunky and awkward. I found it was often difficult to follow what was going on, and why they are doing things.

There wasn't much of an atmosphere to it, I didn't get a feel for London itself, and Black London was brushed over. Pete and Jack dipped in and out of it but what it is and what it's like wasn't explained so it never came to life for me, I couldn't picture it

The magic was hard to understand too, but it is a series so maybe it's explained more in later books.

Main ch
Jun 05, 2010 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2010
I really wanted to like this book. I keep hoping for a paranormal detective series that will grab me like the early Anita Blake books did and this definitely sounded promising - the fae, different kinds of magic, missing children, London setting - how could it miss?

Well, it misses in various ways - dreadfully written Britishized dialogue with slang obviously written by an American, shallow to non-existent characterizations, plot holes large enough to drive several semi's through - the list goes
This book convinced me to finally add a category I've been thinking about adding for a while now: "billy idol fetish". hehe

First it started with the man himself, the legendary sex god Billy Idol. Then there was Spike on Buffy, almost an exact replica. Then we have Bones from the Night Huntress series, though Frost has tried to move his image away from Billy Idol as the series has gone on. Then here we have Jack Winter. He comes complete with platinum spiky hair, lead singer of a punk band, says
Like OMG, these characters are totally BRITISH. 'Cause, like they live in LONDON. Yeah. And Jack, like, he TOTALLY knows punk rock so that makes him even more BRITISH. His hair is all blond like Spike from Buffy and no one is more punk rock than, like Spike. But, like in case you didn't know they were British 'cause like they live in London and like punk rock, they totally speak BRITISH, too! So, um even if the syntax, spelling and punctuation are like AMERICAN, they make up for it by saying "bl ...more
Pamela / SpazP
May 25, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
Short & Sweet review: My 4 Star rating is based on my love for the characters. I can't think of two more compelling UF characters as a duo right out of the gate at page 1. Immediately I knew I would love Jack and Pete and sure enough, I did and then some. No matter how dark and grumpy and surly Jack got, I loved him. And Pete kept surprising me through the whole story. She is an awesome heroine. I sometimes got lost at all the Metro English slang and speak, but it completely gave the book that e ...more
Jan 09, 2013 rated it did not like it
Wow, did I not like these two. I like my characters flawed. The more jagged the edges the better. But there was just nothing to hold on to with Pete and Jack. All they were were jagged edges, no substance inside. By the end, I couldn't care less what happened to them.

This is where I give my speech on first books in a series, maybe especially in an urban fantasy series. I'm a little lost, but intrigued. Could go either way from here!
Sep 24, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I should have been looking for a Comfort Read for Christmas. But this Christmas bore no resemblance whatsoever to any other Christmas in living memory (in a word, it sucked), so I drifted with my whim and landed almost randomly on this book on the Kindle. I figured I'd start it and see how it went.

How it went was almost in one sitting. I was hooked quickly and dragged along for the ride. And it was quite a ride.

Taken separately, the component parts of this book aren't promising. The main char
Cat Russell  (Addicted2Heroines)
"Yes, but you'd take my soul in return," Pete said with her own smile.
Jack stared past her into the middle distance before he returned her gaze. His was clouded and almost mourning. "What makes you think I haven't, luv?"

I've had this book collecting dust on my shelf for at least six months now. The less-than-favorable reviews that I've come across had me pushing it further and further back on my "to-read" list. So why did I even buy it? Because I'm a shameless, impulsive, book addict. What can I
Jul 14, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: owned, urban-fantasy
This is a dark urban fantasy-
What I liked:
Our story begins with a 16yr old girl the future Pete Caldecott, Detective Inspector of the New Scotland Yard now a grown women. A nightmare that happened over twelve years ago, when Pete had trust in magic and Jack. Jack Winter, a mage was killed by a ghost that they had freed that night.
Or so she thought till he appeared to giver her a tip all strung out on heroine. Her world shatters, her heart bleeds from the pain and the joy, of seeing him alive.
Jun 24, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: urban-fantasy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 07, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I'm going to start off by saying I LOVE this book. I've read Catilin Kittredge's Nocturne City books and loved them so when I picked this is up was hoping I'd like it the same. It's a different world than her Nocturne series but it's great all the same. Street Magic is urban fantasy. And let me tell you I was hooked from the start.
Petunia “Pete” Caldecott is a detective inspector for Scotland Yard. She doesn't liked being call Petunia so she goes by Pete, which really isn't a girly name but su
Jan 31, 2011 rated it really liked it
You know that feeling you get when you finish a book and all you want is more? It's a wonderful high that every booklover is familiar with and one that once it gets it's hooks in you turns an average reader into a full on series-junkie. That is what happened to me with Kittredge's Black London is like crack to me.

Not only is the series intelligent, but it looks at the typical Urban Fantasy set up in a very different way. The heroine is a well-bred, smart woman who, despite her run in
Jan 26, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: urban-fantasy
I was already aware of Caitlin Kittredge via her excellent Night Life, and so when I got the chance to check out an ARC of Street Magic, I leapt on it with enthusiasm. And I was not disappointed in the slightest.

Street Magic is set in a London that's every bit as dark and gritty as Night Life's Nocturne City, with the advantage of a certain lyricism of style that wasn't present for me in the other book. A great deal of this comes out of Kittredge getting back to the basics of what makes fantasy
Yolanda Sfetsos
Dec 30, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Firstly, isn't the cover of this book awesome? I think it captures the shadowy world Pete and Jack live in, perfectly!

It's been twelve years since Pete Caldecott saw Jack Winter. That's because he died, and she ran. Left to mourn his death but always haunted by his memory.

Well, she thought Jack was dead, until he turns out to be a valuable informant on the case she's working on at the moment. Pete's all grown up now, and is a detective who's recently escaped a bad relationship, suffered through
Jan 13, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was decent for the most part but I was disappointed to learn that while the whole thing takes place in London and the characters were born and raised there, the author is American and that caused me to question the authenticity of the setting, terms of speech, mannerisms, etc. Especially after reading some of the reviews of others who indicate that the slang in this book is sometimes so over the top as to come off as insulting.

My overall feeling was that of being fairly entertained, bu
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Caitlin started writing novels at age 13. Her first was a Star Wars tie-in. Fortunately, she branched out from there and after a few years trying to be a screenwriter, a comic book writer and the author of copious amounts of fanfiction, she tried to write a novel again. Her epic dark fantasy (thankfully) never saw the light of day but while she was struggling with elves and sorcerers she got the i ...more

Other books in the series

Black London (6 books)
  • Demon Bound (Black London, #2)
  • Bone Gods (Black London, #3)
  • Devil's Business (Black London, #4)
  • Soul Trade (Black London, #5)
  • Dark Days (Black London, #6)

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