N5B: Harry Potter

I'm going to give it to you straight: you may never find another series like the Harry Potter books. They are cornerstones for modern literature that create a detailed world of right and wrong in the most amazing, descriptive way. They are such a cultural phenonenon that children have been waiting around for their Hogwarts letter since their eleventh birthday, wondering if there was some sort of mixup. You can read the Harry Potter books several times and still find something new every time, but eventually you'll have to move on. There may never be another book that makes your heart skip a beat quite like these, but there are some amazing books out there that you will love. For those of you who know exactly in which house you belong (I'm a Hufflepuff, FYI) but need a new series to dig into, here are your Next 5 Books:

Magyk by Angie Sage (Septimus Heap, book 1)

The Septimus Heap series tells of the adventures of a young wizard—seventh son of a seventh son—his valiant adopted sister Jenna, and his whole magical family, who remind me delightfully of the Weasleys. Dragons, alchemy, time-travel, and dangerous villains, this seven-book series will keep you coming back for more “magyk.”


Redwall by Brian Jacques

In a world of evil rats and peaceful mice, these epic stories of good vs. evil will appeal to kids who love battles, adventure, and animals. In the first in the series, Redwall Abbey, tranquil home to a community of peace-loving mice is threatened an evil one-eyed rat warlord and his battle-hardened horde of predators. But this fearsome army hasn't bargained for the courage and strength of the combined forces of the Redwall mice and their loyal woodland friends.


Sky Raiders by Brandon Mull (Five Kingdoms, book 1)

The five kingdoms lie in between - wakefulness and dreaming, reality and imagination, life and death. Some people are born there. Some find their way there from other worlds. And once people are in the Outskirts, they find it very hard to leave. With the magic of the Outskirts starting to unravel, an ordinary boy named Cole and an unusual girl named Mira must rescue his friends, set things right in the Outskirts, and hopefully find his way back home… before his existence is forgotten.  


Keeper of the Lost Cities by Shannon Messenger

Everything changes for twelve-year-old Sophie Foster the day she meets Fitz, a mysterious boy who appears out of nowhere and has the power to read minds—just like she does.  In the blink of an eye, Sophie is forced to leave behind everything and start a new life in a place that is vastly different from anything she has ever known. Fantasy fans will love the elves, alicorn, goblins, and magical powers, as well as the mystery involved in Sophie’s life as she runs from kidnappers and faces danger and long forgotten secrets. 


Inkheart by Cornelia Funke (Inkworld, book 1)

Characters from books literally leap off the page in this engrossing fantasy. Meggie has had her father to herself since her mother went away when she was young. Mo taught her to read when she was five, and the two share a mutual love of books. He can "read" characters out of books. When she was three, he read aloud from a book called Inkheart and released characters into the real world. At the same time, Meggie's mother disappeared into the story. This "story within a story" will delight not just fantasy fans, but all readers who like an exciting plot with larger-than-life characters.

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