If You Liked… Harry Potter!

12 BOOKS TO READ
IF YOU LIKED HARRY POTTER

I’ve done a few of these “If You Liked…” guides now and I figured it was finally time to put together a recommendation list for people who have read and loved Harry Potter! I always see recommendation lists around on the internet (especially on Pinterest!) and it seems like the same suggestions over and over again, many of which consist of middle grade books geared towards the younger readers who have maybe just read Harry Potter for the first time. Don’t get me wrong — that’s not a bad thing. I love that those recommendations are out there and clearly I’m all for adults reading whatever books and “age range” they want to (I AM a advocate of YA after all) but still I’m not much of a middle grade reader and the recommendations that I keep seeing seem to be more middle grade fantasy series.  I wanted to come up with some new recommendations too — recommendations geared more towards the adults who grew up with Harry Potter and are looking for new series to fall in love with (which is why you won’t see any Percy Jackson on my list)! Harry Potter is SUCH a big fandom and was really big part of people’s childhoods and still held dear in their adult lives, so my suggestions included in this post are books and series that I think life-long Harry Potter fans will be able to fall in love with and get (almost) just as invested in! These are some of my biggest fandoms, favorite characters, and most amazing fantasy worlds. If you grew up loving Harry Potter and are looking for a new book or series to become invested in, I hope you’ll find some of that same magic in these books!


if you liked harry potter


IF YOU LIKED HARRY POTTER…

Try… SHADOW AND BONE by Leigh Bardugo.
Review // Goodreads // Amazon

Aside from Harry Potter, The Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo was one of the first fantasy series I really got into. I was never a big Lord of the Rings person and besides HP, I hadn’t really read much fantasy so I THOUGHT I wasn’t a fan. Once I started SHADOW AND BONE, I fell head over heels for the books and the genre! Leigh Bardugo is an amazing writing and the magic system and amazing fantasy world in this series are so well done! I’ve become wholly invested AND all three books are already out in case you want to read the whole series back to back to back! Plus, there’s an excellent school for magic in here!

Try… MISTBORN by Brandon Sanderson.
Review // Goodreads // Amazon

MISTBORN was one of the first adult fantasy series I really fell in love with… and let me tell you, I could NOT put these books down. Despite their length (not TOO bad. Depending on the version you’re reading, about 550-600 pages), I totally inhaled them and ended up reading the second and third books back-to-back because I just couldn’t stop! The magic system is really interesting and the characters are just wonderful. I like to think of this as a sort of “crossover” in between YA and adult because one of the main characters, Vin,  is in her late teens and the other characters are all adults. (They even released a new edition of the book under Tor Teen when it was originally published as adult, so even the publishers are spanning both YA and adult.) She learns the ropes of the magical rules and properties and really starts to come into her own throughout the series. I included this as a recommendation because I immediately became hooked on learning how all of the magical properties worked and totally immersed myself into this fandom right away!

Try… THE NAME OF THE WIND by Patrick Rothfuss.
Review // Goodreads // Amazon

Technically THE NAME OF THE WIND is also adult, but I like to think of it as another “crossover”. The book starts with the young life of main character Kvothe and the first and second books mainly span his time as an adolescent and young adult. The book spends most of its time in the University where Kvothe learns many skills and much magical prowess, but it also cuts back to the present day of the books where he’s now an adult. These books are amazing. Also quite long but each word is totally worth it. I absolutely love Kvothe and have become SO invested in him and his story! This is another fantasy recommendation I included for its fandom — I’m so deeply invested in this books and I’m obsessed with watching for updates about when the third book will be out!

Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass, #1)Try… THRONE OF GLASS by Sarah J. Maas.
Review // Goodreads // Amazon

You may have seen news and flails for THRONE OF GLASS flying around (especially if you’re diving in head first into the book community!) and let me tell you, the obsessed fans are totally spot on with the praise for this fandom! The Throne of Glass series has grown to be so entertaining, detailed, unique, and fascinating. Admittedly, book one is actually my least favorite of the series but not because it’s not as good — it does a lot of setting up for the rest of the series (a six book series in all (seven if you include the bind-up of novellas) with book four set to release in September 2015) and I just think the series really takes off from THRONE OF GLASS! The characters, the plot, the magic — everything really grows so immensely and this series is so exciting! It’s another really big fandom out there right now and you can read the first three books and join us in flailing and trying to wait patiently for the rest of the series!

Try… THE LIES OF LOCKE LAMORA by Scott Lynch.
Review // Goodreads // Amazon

THE LIES OF LOCKE LAMORA is definitely an adult recommendation (please don’t give this to your kids. LOTS of cursing) and oh boy, is it just a BLAST to read. This definitely felt like adult fantasy mixed with Ocean’s 11 and I just loved it. The characters are hilarious and also incredibly clever. Combined with the subtle magical elements (that end up playing a larger role in future books) and a picturesque fantasy world, THE LIES OF LOCKE LAMORA is a book I think adult fans would enjoy! I had no idea what I was getting into when I started this series and now I can’t stop reading them! Another series I just totally devoured until I was left waiting for the next book to be published.

Try… SERAPHINA by Rachel Hartman.
Review // Goodreads // Amazon

SERAPHINA had a really great feel for me. It was the same sort of magical presence that I felt with Harry Potter and books like SHADOW AND BONE — the content isn’t necessarily similar but I was easily able to fall into this world and allow myself to get swept away by these characters and this story line. Seraphina is the title character who lives in a world where dragons live among the people… and can take human form. It’s an unsettling time in the human/dragon history and the events that take place in SERAPHINA were really just exciting and lovely and emotional to witness!

Try… CINDER by Marissa Meyer.
Review // Goodreads // Amazon
CINDER is the first book in The Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer and oh, guys… it’s one of my favorite series of ALL TIME. It’s definitely more sci-fi than fantasy (though there is some magic involved, though it’s more scientifically-based) but it’s another one where this fandom just totally swept me away. Each book gets better and better (though CINDER is great from the beginning) and the layers of characters and layers of plot build with each book. This got me into some light sci-fi (the author said herself that she pulled inspiration from Star Wars and Sailor Moon) combined with fairy tale retellings and the result is positively addicting. The last book in the series, WINTER, releases November 2015 and I cannot tell you how much I’m anticipating its release!


Try… THE NIGHT CIRCUS by Erin Morgenstern.
Review // Goodreads // Amazon
THE NIGHT CIRCUS is a bit more like the magic in Harry Potter — real-life magicians who have actual magical powers. THE NIGHT CIRCUS chronicles two magicians in particular and includes some stunning imagery, wonderful magic, and a heart-aching romance. If I had to pick one recommendation that really felt SIMILAR to Harry Potter, this would be the one! It lacks the magical school and full-on wizarding community, but it feels more like an adult take on the magical world as it is within the non-magical realm.

Try… THE STORYSPINNER by Becky Wallace.
Review // Goodreads // Amazon
I’m recommending THE STORYSPINNER because it was one of those books that just left me with a feeling after I had finished, much like the emotional connections I have to Harry Potter. I had finished the book and I just couldn’t stop thinking about it. I had really becoming emotionally invested in the characters and also in each of the respective relationships. The plot set-up was excellent and the magical elements were introduced enough to see that there would be so much more in the books to come that I was so anxious to learn even more! THE STORYSPINNER was just released in March 2015 so we’ve got a lot more time to spend with this series!

Try… THE RAVEN BOYS by Maggie Stiefvater.
Review // Goodreads // Amazon
THE RAVEN BOYS isn’t so much fantasy as the other recommendations on this list are (you’ll find more magical realism/paranormal/mythology), but I had to include it because along with Harry Potter, The Lunar Chronicles, and The Grisha Trilogy, this is one of my TOP TOP TOP fandoms. I just re-read THE RAVEN BOYS in preparation to do a series re-read before the last book in the series, THE RAVEN KING, comes out in 2016 and I fell in love all over again, much like I do each time I read Harry Potter. I’d say where HP has a strong world and plot that sweeps readers away, THE RAVEN BOYS accomplishes the same thing on an emotional level and I cannot recommend this series enough!

Try… DAUGHTER OF SMOKE AND BONE by Laini Taylor.
Review // Goodreads // Amazon
DAUGHTER OF SMOKE AND BONE is a little bit of a different kind of magic, focusing more on an on-going war between angels and chimaera. I liked it for a Harry Potter recommendation here for its completely separate world. Only people with knowledge of Eretz (that’s the realm in which the seraphim and chimaera live) know how to enter or are allowed to go there, though the seraphim and chimaera have also been seen in the human world within the book. It’s a magical story, a love story, and an incredibly powerful tale of an epic war within a magical community. The writing was gorgeous and the story so powerful.

Try… STEELHEART by Brandon Sanderson.
Review // Goodreads // Amazon
STEELHEART is another book by Brandon Sanderson (see MISTBORN above) but it’s also very different. This is a bit more sci-fi than fantasy, I’d say (we’re dealing with superheroes here… or supervillains, rather) but I liked it for fans of Harry Potter because of its overall feel. Main character David provides a lot of comic relief and I just loved his relationships with the other characters of the book. It reminded me of the friendship of the “Golden Trio” (though David’s a bit of a mix of Harry and Ron in most ways) and although the subject matters don’t directly align, I think the feel and topic would be great for HP fans!


So what do YOU think? Which books would you recommend for fans of Harry Potter? I was going more for the adults who have grown up with the series like I did, but I’m always looking for any recommendations or read alikes when it comes to HP! Would you second any of my picks?

I hope you enjoyed the post! If you’re looking for more reading guides or recommendations or more posts about Harry Potter, check out some of my links below! 

More reading guides and/or recommendations: 

More posts about Harry Potter: 

18 thoughts on “If You Liked… Harry Potter!

  1. Amy

    This list is incredible! I totally understand what you mean when you say most of the recommendations about the HP series are based off the first couple of books in the series because the later books are definitely more YA even Adult. Throne of Glass is my favourite and the detailed world draws you in just as much as the wizardry world drags us muggles in. The Raven Cycle also reminds me of HP with the similarities of the unbreakable the friendship bonds in both books. I haven’t read either of the Brandon Sanderson books but they sound right up my ally.
    This is a great list thanks for putting it together :)!

  2. Inge @ Bookshelf Reflections

    I’m always looking for books that gave me the same feeling as Harry Potter (although I think I might never find it and will just have to reread Harry Potter every year — no complaints there), so this is a great list! I’ve already read half of them — definitely recommend the Mistborn series and The Night Circus. I just loved the way the Cirque was described, it looked so beautiful. (Also, how cool would it be to see a Night Circus movie?)

    There are also some I haven’t read yet, like Rothfuss and Lynch, so I’ll be checking those out!

    1. Wendy

      Seriously, right? It’s a real crossover, too. I’d recommend it to a MG reader, but my fifty-something brother-in-law got reinvested in reading when my sister handed him a copy of this! Also a great example of a series with many strong books, not just a great start and then a slow fizzling out.

  3. Christina @ Between Bookends

    Thank you for putting together this list! I just added a handful of books to my TBR pile. It’s hard for me to find books outside of the YA world. There’s so many books I don’t know where to begin, but these sound fantastic and I can’t wait to try them out.
    Thanks again!

  4. Theresa

    Love so many of these book series! My favorites are Mistborn, Daughter of Smoke and Bone and The Lunar Chronicles. I hope to read the Raven Boys very soon! Great list!!

  5. Quinn @ Quinn's Book Nook

    So much fun! I love Harry Potter (who doesn’t!). I’m a children’s librarian, so I feel like I’m always trying to come up with new readalikes, for HP. Although I usually gear my recommendations more towards kids. 🙂

  6. Alexa S.

    I think creating a recommendation list of titles that adult readers of Harry Potter would enjoy is a brilliant idea! I really like that you included a bunch of my favorites (Throne of Glass! Cinder! Seraphina!), and a few titles that I’d like to read too.

  7. Morgan @ Gone with the Words

    Love your recommentations! I felt the same way about Shadow and Bone; something about the feeling of reading it reminded me of Harry Potter, which was fantastic. And the way that Marissa Meyer sprinkles clues and builds the story throughout the Lunar Chronicles reminded me of JK Rowling so much! I think that’s also why I love The Raven Boys. There is so much nuance and hidden meaning that beyond just loving the characters and the mythology and mystery, there’s something new to find every time you read. It’s the only series I’ve read more than once besides Harry Potter! I need to give Locke Lamora another try, it was a little overwhelming the first time around. And I’ve heard great things about Name of the Wind and Daughter of Smoke and Bone.

    If I could add one book to your list, it’s Grounded: The Adventures of Rapunzel. It’s technically middle grade but the author ran The Leaky Cauldron for years and has been building her world Tyme for over a decade. And it SHOWS. Plus she has the same editor as HP! It feels like Harry Potter, the deep worldbuilding sprinkled in little bits, the hints of whats to come in future companion books, the hope and age of the characters mixed with darkness and emotional complexity, and the whimsy, charm, and magic of the fairy tale world of Tyme reminded me of the wizarding world. I think you would really enjoy it. It felt like Harry Potter to me 🙂

  8. Lynette Floyd

    I’ve personally only read one or two of these books but the majority of them are on my TBR list. These are really good choices to compare to those who liked Harry Potter because they all share a grand mystical theme, which personally I love in books!

  9. Briana @ Pages Unbound

    You have some great books on this list! I’m always torn on what to recommend to people who like Harry Potter because it’s hard to think of a book that has the same “feel” as the Harry Potter series. Interestingly, I don’t even think there were really a lot of wizard boarding school knock-offs after Harry came out. It was a trend, but definitely different from what happened with Twilight, The Hunger Games. etc. I think people just generally started writing more fantasy, of various kinds.

  10. Kate @ Mom's Radius

    Another bonus of The Night Circus is that the audiobook is read by Jim Dale, who read all of the Harry Potter books. I know I go into Jim Dale withdrawal just as much as Harry Potter withdrawal sometimes. 🙂

  11. Jessie

    I recommend The Hollows series by Kim Harrison. I can’t say it’s better than Harry Potter but it’s 100% equal for me. I’m on the 2nd last book in the series and am just as obsessed.

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