Harry Potter Series by J. K. Rowling
Arthur A. Levine Books/Scholastic Press: NY.

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone 1997
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets 1999
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban 1999
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire 2000
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix 2000
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince 2005
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows 2007

For many people Harry Potter needs no introduction or review. Those who have not read the books may be getting tired of hearing about it. Fans can't get enough and want it to never end. If you have seen the movies and not read the books, I strongly recommend that you read the books. The books are much better because things have been cut for the movies.

Although they were not written as children's books, the first two books are written at a level that 3rd to 5th graders can easily read. At that point the books are amusing because of the humor in the dialogue and the interesting things that can be done with magic. Starting with the 3rd book, the series becomes more complex-dealing with social issues and psychological aspects of life. They are still packed with humor and creative details. However, the characters are more developed and interesting, and we start to see that there is a master plan for the series that is slowly being revealed. Loose ends are being tied to the story that before didn't seem significant.

I know that some people are put off by the magic and hype surrounding Harry Potter. The allure of the magic in the series is similar to the fascination with superheroes or awe of computerized graphics. It creates possibilities that we know are not really possible. To me, the magic is just the backdrop-however amusing. It is just another medium used to display the story which is the struggle of good against evil-including different shades and variations of each. The story also incorporates the social and psychological struggle that life can be. As for the hype, that comes naturally because it is one of the best series available-for both juvenile and adult literature. It appeals to both, and so it has become a masterpiece that we all can share.

starting with 3rd book RL=7th-adult

Quidditch Through the Ages
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

My sons loved these books of background information, and they still refer to them for fun and speculation about the Harry Potter series.

For people who want to dig deeper into the stories (or for classes), there are some good sources available. Wizarding World Press supplies critical analysis of the books. Their information is insightful and entertaining. They inspired my family to think more analytically and investigatively of the books.

Ultimate Unofficial Guide to the Mysteries of Harry Potter
The Plot Thickens...Harry Potter Investigated by Fans for Fans
New Clues to Harry Potter: Book 5

by Galadriel Waters
*There are newer books also that we have not read.

The website links listed below provide news, editorials, speculation, discussion, spin-offs, etc.

Leaky Cauldron-JKR's favorite fan site
Pottercast-Leaky's podcast
Site of Requirement
HP Lexicon
COS Forums

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