The final Harry Potter movie hits theaters in the U.S. on July 15. If you’re devastated by the end of this popular series, fear not. Here are Harry Potter-like books for all ages and tastes.
•Wizard and Wart, by Janice Lee Smith. This great book for beginning readers introduces us to Wizard (a magician extraordinaire!) and his friend Wart. Wizard and Wart set up shop in a crumbling castle and try to solve their customers’ problems with magic.
•The Dark is Rising, by Susan Cooper. Eleven-year-old Will Stanton finds out he is an Old One (a person who possesses countless decades of knowledge and magical abilities) who must gather six magical signs in order to defeat the powers of darkness. This is the second book in a series, which can be read out of order.
•Magyk, by Angie Sage. On the night of his birth, Septimus Heap, the seventh son of a seventh son, is stolen away from his family. The same night his grieving father finds an abandoned infant girl with purple eyes. Years later the two children must discover their true identities in order to fulfill their destinies and save loved ones.
•Charmed Life, by Diana Wynn Jones. Cat has always believed that he has no magical powers. However, when he and his sister, Gwendolen, get invited to the castle of the most powerful sorcerer in the world, Cat discovers that he may be a Chrestomanci–a wizard with nine lives.
•Otto and the Flying Twins: the First Book of the Karmidee, by Charlotte Haptie. Otto and his family live in the Karmidee, a magical city that has been taken over by non-magical humans. When Otto’s toddler twin sisters fly from their cribs, Otto discovers his family is not as perfectly normal as he has always believed.
•The Alchemyst: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flame, by Michael Scott. Fifteen-year-old siblings Sophie and Josh discover they may be the twins of the prophecy who are meant to either save or end the world. Their fates become intertwined with the struggle between the immortal alchemyst Nicholas Flamel and his nemesis, John Dee.
•So You Want to Be a Wizard, by Diane Duane. While taking refuge from bullies in her local library, Nita finds a beginning wizardry book. As she develops her magical talents, Nita befriends another young apprentice (named Kit), summons a friendly white hole and begins her fight against the dark powers of the universe.
•Flora Segunda: Being the Magickal Mishaps of a Girl of Spirit, Her Glass-gazing Sidekick, Two Ominous Butlers (one blue), A House with Eleven Thousand Rooms, and a Red Dog, by Ysabeau Wilce. Flora Fyrdracca lives in a decaying magical house that moves staircases, rooms and is generally very difficult to navigate. Flora is about to leave for her all-important 14th birthday party when the house traps her in a long forgotten series of rooms. Can she escape in time to make her coming of age ceremony?
•A Wizard of Earthsea, by Ursula K Le Guinn. As a young apprentice the boy who would be known as the great wizard Ged summons a terrible evil. Ged (also known as Sparrowhawk) must defeat this awful being before he is able to live a peaceful life. First in a quartet of books.
•The Book of Wizard Craft: In Which the Apprentice Finds Spells, Potions, Fantastic Tales, and 50 Enchanting Things to Make, by Janice Eaton Kilby, Deborah Morgenthal and Terry B. Taylor. A highly rated craft book that is chock full of fun crafts for children (and adults) of all ages. In between descriptions of crafts there are stories about famous wizards, such as Merlin and Gandalf. A great rainy day book for any burgeoning wizard.
•The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook: From Cauldron Cakes to Knickerbocker Glory, More than 150 Magical Recipes for Wizards and Non-wizards Alike, by Dinah Bucholz. With the help of this book, bake, cook and stir up some of the magical foods made famous by the Harry Potter series.
•Harry, a History: The True Story of a Boy Wizard, His Fans, and Life inside the Harry Potter Phenomenon, by Melissa Anelli. Melissa Anelli is one of the founders of the Harry Potter fansite “The Leaky Cauldron.” Get a fans-eye view of the book series that has grown into a worldwide phenomenon. A fascinating glimpse into the world of a Harry Potter super-fan.
•Imagine You're a Wizard! by Meg Clibbon and Lucy Clibbon. This fun picture book lets young readers examine all aspects of a wizard’s day-to-day life. Readers can see inside a wizard’s house and learn all the skills one needs to become a truly powerful wizard.
•Harry Potter: Building the Magical World, by Elizabeth Dowsett. This is a book that combines the world of Harry Potter with Lego fun. Learn how to build places like Hagrid’s hut or Hogwarts with Lego building blocks, or simply enjoy taking a look at Lego works of art with a Harry Potter twist.
•The Magicians, by Lev Grossman. Brilliant, lonely Quentin would do anything to escape from high school to his made up world of Fillory. Quentin’s world is upended when he is admitted to a private, secret school for magicians in New York. A well-written exploration of what would happen if every-day people (with all their flaws and foibles) were given magical powers.
•Prospero Lost, by L. Jagi Lamplighter. Imagine if Shakespeare’s Prospero did not in fact renounce magic or free his servants. Hundreds of years after the Shakespeare play that made him famous, an immortal Prospero disappears, leaving his daughter Miranda and the rest of his magical family scrambling to find him.
•The Dresden Files, by Jim Butcher. Harry Dresden is a practicing wizard detective who steps in whenever a crime stinks of magic. Beginning with Storm Front, this is a long-running and popular series that combines fantasy with hard-boiled detective fiction. The series is also available in a graphic novel format.
•Spellwright, by Blake Charlton. Nicodemus has trained at the wizard school of Starhaven since he was very young. However, Nicodemus has the equivalent of wizard dyslexia. In a world where magic spells are based on correct spelling, almost everything Nicodemus attempts ends up terribly wrong. When there is a murder at the school, Nicodemus must attempt to clear his name and discover his own particular brand of magic.
Editor's note: Jenna Zarzycki is a student librarian intern at the Woodinville Library.