Matthew Swift, sorcerer, Midnight Mayor, is in charge. Or so he'd like to think. London, being London, is having its issues. Drug use is rampant. Teenage vandalism is driving away business. Violent crimes are on the rise. Once upon a time, Matthew Swift wouldn't have cared. Now it's his mess to clean up.
Especially when the new drug on the market is fairy dust and the production process involves turning humans into walking drug labs. And when the teenage vandals are being hunted by a mystical creature. And when the petty criminals of London start dying by magical means.
It becomes clear that not only is this Swift's mess to clean up, but someone is trying to tell him how to do his job. Now he has to sort out who's behind the crime wave and who's interfering in his business. Swift has a lot of old enemies and few friends. If he's going to save London from a rising tide of blood -- he's going to have to learn his lessons and fast.
Griffin's fourth Matthew Swift urban fantasy (after The Neon Court) sees the posthuman Swift struggling to deal with the responsibilities of being Midnight Mayor of London. Powerful and well-intentioned but often na ve and inadvertently destructive, Swift allows events to spiral out of control. When others force him to notice what is going on under his nose, including a particularly twisted scheme by well-intentioned extremists ostensibly working for him, he marshals his impressive resources, but it's not clear who will pay the cost for his lack of diligence. Griffin's breakneck plotting and accessible prose are as engaging as ever, but Swift's apparently willful sloth and ignorance, while convenient to explain how developments reach the point they do, are grating. As less powerful, more motivated characters set the plot in motion, readers may wonder whether Swift should surrender the title of protagonist.