Jottings on science, religion, technology, pop culture and faith from the Antipodes.

Faith & Religion, Pop Culture

Urban fantasy on my mind


I’ve just finished reading Paul Cornell’s “London Falling,” part of the growing genre of urban fantasy which juxtaposes the everyday world with a parallel, invisible world visible to those with the eyes to see. In this particular case it mixes a police drama, organized crime, football, London and the supernatural, and after a slow start it was quite a good read. I’m looking forward to reading the sequel.

For a theologian urban fantasy is a rich treasure-trove of ‘biblical afterlives’ – echoes of biblical texts and stories somehow cut adrift from their original context and taking a life of their own in everyday culture – and often religious characters are dealt with more sympathy than one might think. (On the other hand, I’m not a big fan of paranormal romance which often intersects with urban fantasy).

From the past few years, here are a few of my favourites (which are often part of a series):

“Neverwhere (text only) 1st (First) edition by N. Gaiman” (N. Gaiman)

“Something from the Nightside (Nightside, Book 1)” (Simon R. Green)

“A Kiss Before the Apocalypse: A Remy Chandler Novel” (Thomas E. Sniegoski)

“Storm Front: Book one of The Dresden Files” (Jim Butcher)

“A Madness of Angels: Or The Resurrection of Matthew Swift” (Kate Griffin)

“J. Michael Straczynski’s Midnight Nation, Vol. 1” (J. Michael Straczynski)

“The President’s Vampire (A Nathaniel Cade Novel)” (Christopher Farnsworth)

“Hounding the Moon (Tess Noncoiré Adventures, Book 1)” (P. R. Frost)

“Anansi Boys” (Neil Gaiman)

“The Dirty Streets of Heaven (Bobby Dollar)” (Tad Williams)

And a few others which cross over with steampunk and western

“Ghosts of Manhattan” (George Mann)

“The Six-Gun Tarot” (R. S. Belcher)

“Phoenix Rising: A Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences Novel (Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences Novels)” (Pip Ballantine, Tee Morris)


  1. Do you have recommendations for lighter urban fantasy, like Darkfever or The Forever Girl?

  2. Comment by post author


    Good question. I guess something like Becca Fitzpatrick’s ‘Hush, Hush’ series or Thomas E. Sniegoski’s ‘Fallen’ series might fall into that, as might things like Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman’s ‘Good Omens’ and Pratchett’s ‘The Nome Trilogy’ (AKA ‘The Bromeliad Trilogy’), though the latter is for children.