For many readers the Harry Potter novels will have sparked within them a love for magical fiction. Once they have finished the final book they may be left craving more. The good news is there are many fantasy novels out there that are similar in numerous ways to the Harry Potter series. They are ideal for people who want to delve even deeper into the genre.
The Worst Witch By Jill Murphy
This children’s series is often compared to Harry Potter. Some fans have even suggested that Rowling was directly influenced by Jill Murphy. The story follows Mildred Hubble, a girl who attends Miss Cackle’s Academy for Witches. There are numerous comparisons with Harry Potter. These include a school for magic as the setting, grumpy teachers and eight published volumes of the story. The Worst Witch was adapted for the cinema in 1986 and television in 1998. A new TV series based on the books was released in 2017.
His Dark Materials By Philip Pullman
This fantasy trilogy consists of the books Northern Lights, The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass. It is about two children named Lyra and Will who journey across multiple parallel universes. The series is one of the most revered fantasies of recent years. It has won numerous accolades including the Carnegie Medal and Whitbread Book of the Year. The story is aimed at young adults and may be too advanced for beginner readers. Instead younger children could check out MentalUP as it will help them to develop their minds. His Dark Materials includes complex themes such as philosophy, theology, governmental power and physics. The books can be seen as a damning indictment of organised religion.
Pennyroyal Academy By M.A. Larson
This book is perfect for people who want to enjoy a world full of knights and princesses. It is most suitable for middle grade readers. Pennyroyal Academy was written by a former writer of kid’s TV shows and therefore has plenty of fun and excitement. The story concerns a young girl whose memory is wiped. She is then thrust into a war between good and evil. Part of the joy of this book is its light-hearted silliness which prevents the tone getting too heavy.
Ella Enchanted By Gail Carson Levine
Ella Enchanted is the ideal book for people who like subversions of classic fairy tales. This one takes the story of Cinderella and retells it in an amusingly inventive way. It went on to become a hit film. However, the original novel is arguably superior thanks to the wonderful prose. Gail Carson Levine knows how to keep the chapters funny whilst still creating a sense of tension. This combines to make a real page turner.
Neverwhere By Neil Gaiman
Neil Gaiman is considered one of the best writers in the genre of fantasy. Neverwhere is a novelized adaption of the TV of the same name. A businessman named Richard is sucked into a strange version of London filled with knights and odd trains. Much like Richard the reader will also find themselves sucked into this wonderful escapist romp.