Top Ten Tuesday is a meme developed by The Broke and The Bookish where bloggers from around the world discuss their responses to a given prompt. This week we are suggesting 10 books that would suit readers who like a given type of literature. I’ve decided to go for 10 books for Harry Potter fans- 5 for younger readers and 5 for grown-ups.
For Younger Readers:
The Worst Witch- Jill Murphy
Come and enter Miss Cackle’s Academy for Witches, the original boarding school with a focus on witchcraft and the fore-runner of Hogwarts. This book and its sequels were some of my favourite books as a child and I really identified with Mildred Hubble. I’ve recently started pushing these books into the hands of pupils at my school and they are really enjoying them. One loved Mildred so much she even dressed up as her on World Book Day!
The Dark Portal- Robin Jarvis
The Deptford Mice and Whitby series are the books that really got me into reading. I was around 10 years old and just couldn’t put them down. My favourite was The Crystal Prison (the second of the Deptford Mice books) but it makes no sense to put that on the list. You really need to start at the beginning. These books deal with themes of good/evil/family/belief just like Rowling does in the Harry Potter series. A great next step for young Potter fans.
The Weirdstone of Brisingamen- Alan Garner
I absolutely love Harry Potter but I believe that if you want to read classic Middle Grade/Young Adult fantasy then you need to look at the work of Alan Garner. It was hard to decide between this book and The Owl Service but I felt that this book just edged it in terms of appealing to Potter fans.
Mrs Frisby and the Rats of NIMH- Robert C. O’Brien
Another MG classic. I actually didn’t read this until I was an adult studying for a PGDip in Children’s Literature but I wish that I had come across it as a child. My husband read it when he was young and classes it as one of his favourite children’s books.
The Invention of Hugo Cabret- Brian Selznick
I have only just read this a few weeks ago but I know that this is going to become one of my favourite books ever. I’ve already given it to several pupils at school to read and am currently looking in to how I can build a unit of work around it. It’s absolutely magical and I’m going to be posting a full review of this very soon!
For Older Readers:
Neverwhere- Neil Gaiman
Does Neverwhere feature on all of my lists? It seems to feature on a heck of a lot of them. But, then it deserves to! Richard Mayhew, like Harry, is an underdog who ends up plunged into a strange new world peopled by quirky and unusual characters. Just as you’ll never see King’s Cross the same way after reading Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, Neverwhere changed the way I think of London landmarks such as The British Museum and Harrods.
Mort- Terry Pratchett
Basically, any of the Discworld books could have fit in this list but my favourite are those which feature Death. After the radio version of Good Omens, Colin Morgan said that he’d like to play Mort whilst he’s still young enough to do so. Come on, BBC- he is the perfect person for a radio production of Mort! Maybe it could be the next big Christmas audioplay!
The Cuckoo’s Calling and The Silkworm- Robert Galbraith (J.K.Rowling)
I couldn’t get into The Casual Vacancy and it almost put me off trying any of Rowling’s books for adults. I am so glad that I took a chance with The Cuckoo’s Calling. Cormoran and Robin are up there with Harry, Hermione and Ron in my opinion. I absolutely love the way that she stops them from being just stock crime-novel characters and really fleshes out their back stories and their wants and desires. If anything, I liked The Silkworm even more! I can’t wait for the BBC adaptations to be made.
Rivers of London- Ben Aaronovitch
The PC Peter Grant books would be a great next step for grown up Harry Potter fans. It has an irreverent humour but also a basis in myth, legend and fairy tale that is similar to the influences in Rowling’s writing.