Ever since I read all of the books in the Harry Potter Series series, I have been searching for a series (or trilogy) that captures my attention like Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (and all the other books) did!  I began reading the Harry Potter books back when I was teaching – my students talked endlessly about it, so I thought I’d give it a try.  I was instantly hooked!  For those of you who have been living under a rock for the last decade or so, Harry Potter is a series with seven novels written by J.K. Rowling.  They chronicle the life of Harry Potter, a young wizard, along with his best friends, Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley while they attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry!  The first novel was released way back in 1997 when I was just a young-un!

The books have sold more than 450 million copies worldwide, making it one of the best-selling book series in history!!  Since finishing the series, I have been on the look out for my next “Harry Potter” experience!  I have searched and searched and read many trilogies and series, but have yet to find one that captures me the way Harry Potter did.  And what’s even crazier, is how long this obsession lasted.  The first book was published in 1997, and the last book, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was not published until 2007!   That’s 10 years of my life!

Here they are... The 3 kids who captured my attention way back in 1997! What an excellent cast to play the main characters in the Harry Potter series!

Here they are… The 3 kids who captured my attention way back in 1997! What an excellent cast to play the main characters in the Harry Potter series!

The Hunger Games series comes in as a close second place to Harry Potter.  It is a worldwide – bestselling trilogy by Suzanne Collins.  In this trilogy, the action takes place in a shiny Capitol in Panem, that is surrounded by 12 districts.  The Capitol forces each district to send one boy and one girl between the ages of 12 and 18 to participate each year in the Hunger Games – a fight to the death that is broadcast on live TV to all of the 12 districts.  The main character is Katniss Everdeen (played by Jennifer Lawrence in the movies – love her) who becomes a contestant in the Hunger Games.  This trilogy also captured me pretty quickly, but not quite as fast as Harry Potter.  But like I said…definitely a close second!

As you can see, my copies have seen lots of love. Now that Zach is reading them, I might have to invest in some new copies. I love it when I find a series that I want to keep in my bookshelf!

As you can see, my copies have seen lots of love. Now that Zach is reading them, I might have to invest in some new copies.  It’s not very often that I want to pay for the hardback copies – but just had to for these great books! Total keepers!

My next hope for finding Harry Potter was The Divergent Series.  Veronica Roth’s trilogy is very similar in style to the Hunger Games.  The main character in this trilogy is Beatrice Prior, who lives in a society that is divided into 5 factions – Candor, Abnegation, Dauntless, Amity, and Erudite.  Beatrice has a choice to make – stay with her family in Abnegation (the selfless), or transfer to a faction of her choice.  But there is something about Beatrice that makes her different, which also makes her dangerous…  I loved the first book in this trilogy.  But I must confess, I did not get the second and third books read before I saw the movies (which were awesome), so I can’t comment on those books… So once again, I did not find my next Harry Potter.

The reviews of the Divergent Series all mention that if you enjoyed Hunger Games, then you will enjoy this trilogy as well!  Same thing with the Maze Runner Series – another series that I can’t comment on because I haven’t read the books, but I have heard good things about them.  I did enjoy the first movie, but like I always say…the book is usually much better than the movie…  However, I’ve never been one to go read the book after seeing the movie.  It seems to take away some of the fun of creating the characters in your head – how they look, dress, act, etc…

As my title suggests, I’ve been searching for my next Harry Potter series for a while now!  I have great news if you are doing the same…  On July 31, 2016, J.K. Rowling will be releasing Harry Potter and the Cursed Child!  This is the 8th story in the Harry Potter series that began way back in 1997.  This story will also be presented on stage, making its world premiere in London’s West End on July 30.  The summary of the story says…

It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.”

I don’t know about you, but I can hardly wait!  And yes…I’ve already pre-ordered my copy of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child!  Until then, I will continue enjoying re-reading the series with my son, Zach!  He’s not as keen on it as I was, but I’m sure he’ll come around.  He read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.  Then, for some reason, he just stopped.  He said he wanted to read something different.  But guess what…when I had all my Harry Potter books out to take the pictures for this blog post, I found one missing when I went to return them to the shelf.  Guess who had Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban??  Zach!  When he saw the stack of books, he decided to pick it up and start reading it.  Unfortunately, when I offered to read it aloud with him, he said “No thanks, Mom.  I like reading by myself.”  Aaahhhh…dagger to my heart!  Oh well…I’m still holding out hope for my daughter, Morgan!

Here he is...captured again by the Harry Potter series! Just like his mom! I just wish he wanted me to read it aloud to him...

Here he is…captured again by the Harry Potter series! Just like his mom! I just wish he wanted me to read it aloud to him…

If you have found your next “Harry Potter,” please share it with me.  I will always be looking for the next series like that!  Until next time…