Street Magik
by Luke Lieberman, Kevin McCarthy, Rodney Buchemi (Dynamite, 2007)

Discovering the novels of Charles de Lint back in the 1980s changed my perspective on modern fantasy. I don't know, but I wouldn't be surprised to learn that Luke Lieberman had a similar revelation.

Street Magik takes mysticism out of the realm of goblins and wizards and drops it directly in the heart of New York City. Jake Conner is a fairly ordinary young man -- although his father died under mysterious circumstances and his mother has turned to the bottle to cope -- until he finds a coin that has followed quite a trail from the hand of a druidic magi. The tarot reading in Washington Square seals his fate.

Soon, Jake is caught up in a supernatural war that leads him across the various paths of a priest, a demon, the police, a jester, a busker, a couple of street basketball toughs and a homeless man who is more than he seems.

Black-and-white illustrations by Rodney Buchemi are intricately detailed and drawn. And the story, co-scripted by Lieberman and Kevin McCarthy, shows a lot of promise for fans of urban fantasy. Sure, the story feels rushed in places and lacks some of the development it deserves, but it's a fine start to what could be an interesting new series ... or could just end right here. It's entirely up to them.

review by
Tom Knapp

20 December 2008

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