Missing your Hogwarts days, Potterhead? I get you. It’s the feeling of getting lost in a magical world and meeting characters who feel closer than real friends that we miss the most. We’ll remedy that problem with these books like Harry Potter for you to get lost in.
It’s an understatement to say that Harry Potter is a phenomenon. With 500 million copies sold, the generation of readers forever obsessed with it, the movie franchise, and the theme parks, you’d have to be living under a rock to have not heard about Harry Potter.
Though the magic, the mystery, and the friendships in the Harry Potter world are one-of-a-kind, there are books like Harry Potter you’d be drawn, too. Of course, they are not exactly the same as Harry Potter, but they’ll make you relive the extraordinary magic and adventures of the Wizarding World.
Here are 15 books like Harry Potter that will get you flipping pages late into the night.
Magic School Books Like Harry Potter
If Hogwarts and the classes were your favorite aspects of Harry Potter, these magic school books like Harry Potter might be just what you need.
1. The Magicians by Lev Grossman
The Magician is about a young man named Quentin Coldwater, who was admitted to a college wizard school and soon discovers that Fillory, a Narnia-esque world he once thought of as fantasy actually exists. However, the land of Quentin’s fantasies turns out to be full of darkness and danger.
It’s a coming-of-age three-book series best for adults (because of its mature content), and it was also adopted as a television series for SYFY.
Heads-up: You’d be disappointed if you prefer the typical “good” hero because Quentin is quite a problematic character.
2. A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik
Here’s another wizard-school genre novel, but it is set in a fabled school of dark magic with no teachers. The students have to educate themselves, and it’s either they graduate, or they die.
The story’s heroine is “El” Higgins, a 16-year old sorceress who unlocks the school’s mysteries and possesses a power so strong she can defeat all monsters prowling in her school or kill all other students.
It’s an excellent choice for older teens and adults, and if you liked the magical boarding school of Harry Potter, you’d love this one, too.
3. Pennyroyal Academy by M.A. Larson
Pennyroyal Academy series is another book like Harry Potter set in a classic fairy tale world. Here knights and princesses are trained for the battle against witches and dragons.
Enter Evie – a young girl who has no memory of herself, who enlists in the academy, and finds herself in the middle of a world at war. As she endures the harsh training, she discovers that the war around her is closely tied to herself more than she first thought.
4. House on the Cerulean Sea by T.J Klune
While the story is set in an orphanage rather than a school, it is also a place where magical children are kept and learn magic. Linus Baker was unexpectedly summoned to travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage to determine whether six dangerous magical children were likely to bring about the world’s end.
Linus will soon learn burning secrets and must make a choice: destroy a home or watch the world burn.
The orphan component, as well as the magic, will remind you of Harry Potter.
5. A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin
Here’s another coming-of-age book about a wizard just like Harry Potter, but the hero here has some self-absorbed issues.
Ged was Earthsea’s greatest sorcerer, but he was a rash and proud wizard in his youth. He enrolls in a wizardry school, but he tampered with long-held secrets in his quest for power and knowledge, casting a horrible shadow upon the world.
This is the harrowing account of his trials, including how he mastered the great words of power, tamed an ancient dragon, and came to terms with death to restore balance.
Magic Books Similar to Harry Potter
If you enjoyed the spells and unique applications of magic the most about the wizard world, then you may appreciate these magic books like Harry Potter.
6. Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
Another amazing urban fantasy book by Neil Gaiman, and many voted for this book to be added to this list of books similar to Harry Potter.
Neverwhere is first a TV series before it was a book. It’s a dark fantasy novel about Richard Mayhew, whose act of kindness of helping a girl named Door, bleeding in the street, plunges him into the world underneath London, London Below. It is a city full of monsters and saints, murderers and angels.
His bizarre and terrifying adventure with Door then begins in a quest to save London Below and to find his way home.
7. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
The Night Circus is another spell-binding book that will keep you guessing until the end. It’s about a fierce magical duel set in a mysterious night circus between these two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained from their childhood.
Only one magician will be left standing. But the conflict is, they are in love.
Little did they know, the competition is more than a simple game that only their instructors know the true stakes.
This book will give you that old familiar feeling of wonder and magic.
8. His Dark Materials by Phillip Pullman
If His Dark Materials isn’t familiar to you, maybe The Golden Compass 2007 movie is. Yes, the first book was adapted into a movie, and now this series is an ongoing TV show.
Lyra and Will are two ordinary children who embark on a perilous trip across shimmering, haunting otherworlds. They will encounter witches and armored bears, fallen angels, and soul-eating specters. And, in the end, it will be up to them to decide the fate of both the living and the dead.
It’s a great series with mind-bending twists and turns and suspenseful adventures.
Witch Books Like Harry Potter
9. A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness
If you love witches and vampires, then this book might get you hooked.
I’m not a fan of stories that has vampires in them, but this book series seems to be well received. Here’s what People Magazine says about All Soul Series, “a wonderfully imaginative grown-up fantasy with all the magic of Harry Potter and Twilight.”
The story begins with Diana Bishop, an Oxford scholar and a witch-descendant, discovering an enchanted alchemical manuscript that unleashes evil on the world. Along with Matthew Clairmont, her love interest, Diana fights to keep evil at bay.
It’s a four-book series that’s also adapted in a television show on AMC.
10. Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Gregory Maguire
Gregory Maguire’s revolutionary New York Times bestseller reimagines Oz, its inhabitants, the Wizard, and the Emerald City, taking a darker and greener look at the world imagined by L. Frank Baum.
Wicked is a brilliantly original reimagining of one of literature’s most feared and detested villains: the universally reviled Wicked Witch of the West, who, in Maguire’s imaginative version, isn’t nearly as evil as we expected.
Middle-Grade Series like Harry Potter
11. Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan
Moving away from wizardry, if you want to explore Greek mythology in a laughing-my-head-off kind of way, here’s the Percy Jackson series.
A fun read about demigods, epic quests, and mythological creatures (plus, they have a trio, too!) If you’ve seen the movies, you’ve probably been acquainted with Perseus “Percy” Jackson.
Percy is a 12-year old New Yorker with dyslexia and ADHD. But like Harry Potter, he soon discovers the truth about himself: he is a demigod, the son of Poseidon. He soon joins other demigods in Camp Halfblood and goes on a quest to recover Zeus’ lightning bolt. His journey to become a hero in Olympus begins.
12. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children throws us into a captivating and unique story of a very odd home of children with “special” abilities.
16-year old Jacob, following the clues from his grandfather, sets on a journey on an isolated island off the Welsh coast, where he unravels the mystery of Miss Peregrine’s orphanage. He discovers the shocking fate of the peculiar (and possibly dangerous) children who lived there and who though impossible, might live there still.
13. The Uncommoners Series by Jennifer Bell
The story begins when strange intruders (brandishing toilet brushes?!) show up at their residence. Ivy and Seb flee to Lundinor, a mystical city beneath London where everyday objects are enchanted with amazing abilities.
The Uncommoners will leave readers with the same magical feeling when you read Harry Potter, thanks to mystical creatures, phenomenal world-building, great characters, and exhilarating action.
YA Fantasy Books like the Wizarding World
14. Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
Shadow and Bone is another fantasy epic trilogy that’s recently adapted into a Netflix series.
It’s about this orphan, plain-looking soldier, Alina Starkov, who possesses a power that might save the war-ravaged nation Ravka.
During their first journey in The Fold, impenetrable darkness filled with flesh-eating monsters, her best friend, Mal, is attacked by these monsters, and she unleashes a dormant power believed to destroy The Fold.
Now, she is carried away to the royal court of Grisha to learn to control her power under the mysterious Darkling. But, things are just beginning to unfold.
With Leigh Bardugo’s Shadow and Bone, you will get a fresh spin of YA fantasy romance, magic, and superstition set in an alternate 1800s Tsarist Russia.
15. The Alchemyst (The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel Series) by Michael Scott
While this is not a series about that Nicholas Flamel, who appeared in Harry Potter, J.K. Rowling and Michael Scott draws inspiration from the same historical source.
Legend has it that Nicholas Flamel, the greatest Alchemyst of his day, didn’t die in 1418 but lives. It is said he discovered the secret of eternal life through a book he protects, but this powerful book can destroy the world, too.
In the Alchemyst, Flamel enlists the help of the teenage twins Sophie and Josh Newman to protect the book against the master necromancer Dr. John Dee.
Looking for more great books?
Harry Potter books will continue to captivate millions of readers in the world, but if you want more fantasy books to lift you out of the Harry Potter doldrums, check out 10 Books Like Mistborn By Brandon Sanderson.
Fascinating set of connections!
In the first category, don’t forget _The Lives of Christopher Chant_ by Diana Wynne Jones. Starts out with a sort of Dickensian childhood, evolves into a magic-school story long before Harry Potter, and ends up in a kind of epic fantasy. All in one short volume.
I’ve never heard of it. Thanks for the recommendation!