The first Harry Potter book was released in 1997, and since then – the seven-part series has sold over 500 million copies. This stat makes them the best selling book series in history, and they have been translated into seventy-three languages. Each of the last four books set records for the fastest-selling books in history, with the final instalment selling roughly eleven million copies in the US within just 24 hours. I read the Harry Potter books as a child, but am now re-reading the whole series, and the magic and nostalgia just fill me with joy every time I open the pages. However, so many of us are familiar with the feeling of panic and dread that washes over us when we finish the series. What now? Why can’t we just stay at Hogwarts? We are suddenly faced with the boring and mundanity of our muggle world. So what books can we turn to? What are the best books similar to Harry Potter? There must be some! I have put together a panel of book lovers who have all faced this problem, and have some suggestions for the best books similar to Harry Potter, to save you from your muggle malaise. So, get comfy, pour yourself a butterbeer and get ready to meet the panel who will be presenting the best books similar to Harry Potter…
Alwyn Hamilton is an author of books in the young adult genre, with her debut novel Rebel of the Sands having achieved an incredibly positive reception. Alwyn Hamilton was born in Toronto, but also lived in Europe and Canada whilst growing up, before her parents settled upon living in France. Following the success of her first novel, Alwyn Hamilton is planning to write two more books to complete a trilogy.
Steve Vander Ark is the creator, editor in chief, and webmaster of The Harry Potter Lexicon. He started the Lexicon back in 1999 as a tiny little website with a few lists on it. He’s the one who created the graphics and most of the writing on the 700+ pages of the current Lexicon is his. Steve is also a freelance writer, a theatre teacher and director, a library media specialist, and a public speaker.
Emma Pocock was a fan of the series before she could read it herself, and like so many others knows the series has shaped her life. Emma is the Senior News Editor at The Leaky Cauldron, an all-purpose site for the Harry Potter enthusiast. J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter books, has called Leaky “my favourite fan site” and “a wonderfully well-designed mine of accurate information on all things Harry Potter”.
Nathan’s Harry Potter adventure began back in July 2000, when his older brother bought the Goblet of Fire book. Within a week he’d finished the first three books and was waiting for his brother to get to the end of the Goblet of Fire so that he could read it. The aim of Magic Alley is to create an entirely Harry Potter focused store, stocking products and quirky items that aren’t usually found in many other places in the UK.
It’s now time to discover some of the best books similar to Harry Potter…
Steve Vander Ark:
The Bartimaeus Trilogy by Jonathan Stroud is my first recommendation. The first book, The Amulet of Samarkand, was the first book I’d read after Harry Potter that gave me the same thrill. The stories are a bit darker than Potter but the alternate reality version of Britain in which they take place is as compelling as anything I’ve ever read. The second book, The Golem’s Eye, pulls you even further into magical London and the third book, Ptolemy’s Gate, brings it all home in a spectacular conclusion that will leave you breathless.
Shadow & Bone by Leigh Bardugo – If you’re a fan of Chosen Ones who had no idea they had powers at all, and who have big expectations and powerful enemies, meet Alina Starkov.
When Hogwarts lets out for the summer, head on over to Camp Halfblood! Percy, Annabeth and Grover rival the original Golden Trio too.
Steve Vander Ark:
On a slightly lighter note, Eoin Colfer’s wonderful Artemis Fowl series immerses you in a world where fairytale characters are real – and usually a lot tougher than their cute names suggest. Holly Short, for example, is the most badass Fairy you’ll ever meet, and a Captain in the LEPrecon, which is the recon division of the Lower Elements Police. Yes, that’s LEPrecon, as in “leprechaun.” Artemis is not your average hero. He’s cold and ruthless and something of a criminal mastermind who just happens to be one of the good guys as well. There are eight books in the series along with graphic novels and The Artemis Fowl files, a guide to the world of the books which makes my Lexicon heart sing.
I’d recommend Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. If what you loved about Harry Potter was solving mysteries, and puzzles, then I highly recommend this book! It is puzzle after puzzle on a long quest through a virtual reality.