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Our Harry Potter Reading Odyssey Ends


It was a momentous evening in our household last night. I finished reading Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows to my eldest daughter. That’s it. It’s all over. All seven books, read out loud at bedtime over the past 18 months or so. Apart of a few nights here and there when I was out of the country or something, I have read the text of all the novels out loud. I am sure that I am not the only parent to have done this. That’s a lot of spells and teenage angst.

We usually read books from other writers in between each Harry Potter book in order to avoid Hogwarts overkill, but the last two books have been read back to back due to popular demand so we could discover how the finale pans out.

harry-potter-and-the-deathly-hallowsAt the start of the evening, we still had four chapters to go and we usually read a chapter each night. But last night we couldn’t stop – we just ploughed on and on until it was done. I read from 7.15pm to 9pm. When we started reading the Potter books, my daughter had very elementary reading skills and now she’s an accomplished reader – my first thought was, as the final sentence trailed off, that she could read them herself now. That would keep her quiet for a while.

I thought the final chapter of The Deathly Hallows was unnecessary. It should have ended at the conclusion of the chapter before. But the real problem is what are we going to read now? She’s read every Roald Dahl book, including the crap compilations put together after his death, we’ve read the Narnia Chronicles, she’s working her way through the Percy Jackson books, we’ve done The Hobbit and she’s read the Spiderwick books.

Suggestions are very welcome – she’s eight. I would like a series of books because the structure of something on-going works very well with a young listener. (Oh yes, I need to like the books as well).

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Richard Davies

17 Responses to “Our Harry Potter Reading Odyssey Ends”

  1. Moomintrolls!

  2. Wrinkle in Time Series, Dark is Rising Series, Ballet Shoes Series, Headless Cupid Series with the Stanley Family by Zilpha Keatley Snyder (sp?), Laura Ingalls Wilder Series, Sister’s Grimm Series…just to name a few.

  3. Oh, Paddington the Bear and Winnie the Pooh too.

  4. Oh, and I forgot Paddington Bear and Winnie the Pooh!

  5. Anne of Green Gables

  6. Bunnicula (this one’s a series), the Great Gilly Hopkins, From the Mix-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, the Protector of the Small series by Tamora Pierce.

  7. Oh, and The Mouse and the Motorcycle.

  8. I LOVED reading Nancy Drew books, but they may get a little monotonous to read aloud. I also LOVED the Baby-Sitters Club.

  9. My father and I used to read the Redwall books by Brian Jacques together every evening. There are plenty of titles in the series, and they are sizable books. We did this from when I was about 8 or 9 until I was far too old to be reading them – but I loved how we would each act out the different characters and have recurring roles throughout the books. They started coming out in the mid-eighties. I highly recommend them. Several of the books have a really great lady hero-warrior, which I always really liked too.

  10. It seems like she enjoys the fantasy/adventure-type series? I would first recommend the following books:

    -Doctor Dolittle series – Hugh Lofting
    -A Series of Unfortunate Events – Lemony Snicket
    -The Neverending Story – Michael Ende
    -The Princess Bride – William Goldman
    -Artemis Fowl series – Eoin Colfer
    -The Castle in the Attic – Elizabeth Winthrop
    -Behind the Attic Wall – Sylvia Cassedy
    -Indian in the Cupboard series – Lynne Reid Banks
    -Sally Lockhart series – Phillip Pullman

    Two series I haven’t read – but have heard good things about – are 1) The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits, and a Very Interesting Boy – Jeanne Birdsall (there is a second book), and 2) The Dark is Rising series – Susan Cooper.

    If she’s willing to try non-fantasy-type books, I would recommend these also:

    -Charlotte’s Web – E.B. White (his two others books, Stuart Little and The Trumpet of the Swan, are also good)
    -Superfudge – Judy Blume
    -The Ramona series – Beverly Cleary
    -Number the Stars – Lois Lowry
    -Maniac Magee – Jerry Spinelli
    -The Watsons Go to Birmingham-1963 – Christopher Paul Curtis
    -Sideways Stories from Wayside School books (there is at least one sequel) – Louis Sachar
    -Matilda – Roald Dahl
    -Harriet the Spy – Louise Fitzhugh

  11. Not just Anne of Green Gables but all of the follow-ups right up to Rainbow Valley. LM Montgomery bibliography helps to read the books in the right order.
    And if you’re into older books you could try Pollyanna (a bit sickly for my taste but my kids loved her) and then there’s Noel Streatfield’s offerings – not quite a series but some link up and they are in the same style.

  12. Angela Brazil and Enid Blyton both wrote great school stories – totally improbable but it’s fiction!

  13. Try the Rondo series by Emily Rodda. My son and I have both read them and found them to be quite good.

  14. Princess Academy (won the Newbery Honor, excellent book), Five Children and It, Wind in the Willows, Tale of Despereaux or The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane or The Magician’s Elephant (love anything by Kate DiCamillo), Peter Pan, the Narnia books, Redwall, East to Adonia (shameless plug, written by my roomie)… the list could go on.

  15. Ronia the Robber’s Daughter–Astrid Lindgren

    The Chronicles of Prydain–Lloyd Alexander

    Glenda–Janice Udry

    The Worst Witch–Jill Murphy

    Howl’s Moving Castle–Diana Wynne-Jones

    Wizard of Earthsea–Ursula LeGuin

    His Dark Materials–Philip Pullman

  16. Love Harry Potter!

  17. Richard Davies
    Richard Davies August 8, 2011 at 7:54 am

    Of course, my second daughter will want to have them read to her too.

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