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MuggleNet Staff Picks: Book Recommendations from Our Own Shelves

Thanks to the pandemic, a lot of us have been doing more reading than usual lately, which is wonderful, but with stores closed, a lot of independent bookstores are struggling. That’s why MuggleNet is proud to be a Bookshop.org affiliate!

Bookshop.org allows you to support local bookstores while shopping online for your next great read.

Check out our new Bookshop store, featuring official Wizarding World titles, companion books, our own titles, and recent staff picks. MuggleNet’s staff members are only too happy to tell you about our book recommendations:

 

The Lunar Chronicles – Marissa Meyer

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Cover image of "Cinder" from "The Lunar Chronicles"

 

If you like stories about a Chosen One, with endearing characters and twists that will make you gasp, you want to read this series! It also features a villain with a fascinating backstory that will remind you of Tom Riddle.

—Alison Siggard, Staff Coordinator

 

Memory Wall – Anthony Doerr

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Cover image of "Memory Wall"

 

This short story collection is a fascinating look at different aspects of memory. The title story features a device that acts somewhat like a Pensieve and illuminates just how much the past impacts the present and future, as well as our identities.

—Alison Siggard, Staff Coordinator

 

The Books of Bayern – Shannon Hale

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Cover image of "The Goose Girl" from "The Books of Bayern"

 

Destinies and magic come together in this beautiful series that begins with a retelling of a classic fairy tale. The wonderful worldbuilding will make you want to dive into the pages just as much as Hogwarts does!

—Alison Siggard, Staff Coordinator

 

The Book of Dust trilogy – Philip Pullman

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Cover image for "The Book of Dust" by Philip Pullman

 

Read our previous review.

 

For fans of fantasy rooted in reality, the first installment in the ‘Book of Dust’ trilogy lays the foundation for the world Pullman showed us in ‘His Dark Materials’.

—Amy Hogan, Creative Media Manager

 

Maisie Dobbs – Jacqueline Winspear

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Cover image of "Maisie Dobbs"

 

The ‘Maisie Dobbs’ mystery novels are set right after World War I, the same period we’re seeing in the ‘Fantastic Beasts’ films. These books have a touch of ‘Downton Abbey’ and a little bit of ‘Sherlock Holmes’.

—Amy Hogan, Creative Media Manager

 

The Broken Earth trilogy – N.K. Jemisin

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Cover image of "The Fifth Season" from "The Broken Earth" trilogy

 

If you’d like to hear more from women of color in the adult fantasy genre, the ‘Broken Earth’ trilogy is for you! This series is set in a world where seismic activity is a constant threat to civilization, with a fascinating and diverse range of human and non-human characters.

—Catherine Lai, News Administrator

 

The Last Wish: Introducing the Witcher – Andrzej Sapkowski

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Cover image of "The Last Wish"

 

‘The Witcher’ stormed Netflix a few months ago, and of course, it’s based on a book series that must be read to fully appreciate this high fantasy world. ‘The Last Wish’, a short story collection, comes chronologically first in the story of Geralt of Rivia.

—Catherine Lai, News Administrator

 

Writers & Lovers – Lily King

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Cover image of "Writers & Lovers" by Lily King

 

Anyone who has dreams of being a writer can relate to this novel. Making ends meet while trying to find inspiration and time to write, 31-year-old Casey must come to terms with her past and present relationships.

—Courtney Wallace, Marketing Assistant

 

The Merciful Crow – Margaret Owen

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Cover image of "The Merciful Crow"

 

Read our previous review.

 

This book is for anyone who loves fantasy, magic, and clever cats. Fie is a Crow, which means it’s her job to collect the bodies of those killed by the plague, which may be difficult for people to read right now, but Owen’s writing is full of heart, humor, and hope.

—Gretchen Roesch, News Team Manager

 

Hike – Pete Oswald

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Cover image of "Hike"

 

Read our previous review.

 

‘Hike’ is a gorgeous (and almost wordless) picture book about a hike. The book’s simplicity and beauty will remind you of why we go out and experience the world, which is especially meaningful right now.

—Gretchen Roesch, News Team Manager

 

The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett, Illustrated by MinaLima

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Cover image of "The Secret Garden" illustrated by MinaLima

 

Read our previous review.

 

Transforming the ordinary into a magical land full of wonder and amazement, this book is a must-read for any fan of ‘Potter’. You can also appreciate the book with added ‘Potter’ magic, as MinaLima has released a stunning illustrated edition.

—Lizzie Gladwyn, Recruiting Coordinator

 

A Darker Shade of Magic – V.E. Schwab

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Cover image of "A Darker Shade of Magic" by V.E. Schwab

 

Kell can travel between Red London, Grey London, White London, and Black London – a coveted, dangerous ability. V.E. Schwab’s ability to outpace the imagination and breathe life into ink will leave you as hungry for more as Lila is for adventure.

—Marissa Osman, Transcript Coordinator

 

The Priory of the Orange Tree – Samantha Shannon

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Cover image of "The Priory of the Orange Tree"

 

This epic fantasy filled with courtly intrigue, clever women, and sapphic love will keep you on your toes. Immersive storytelling and brilliant prose combine in this breathtaking tale of dark forces awakening once more.

—Marissa Osman, Transcript Coordinator

 

A Court of Thorns and Roses – Sarah J. Maas

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Cover image of "A Court of Thorns and Roses"

 

Feyre is destined to break an ancient curse to save the lands and people she was raised to hate and fear. Hers is a story of finding one’s inner strength through love and power – perfect reading for the fiery romantic at heart.

—Marissa Osman, Transcript Coordinator

 

Red, White & Royal Blue – Casey McQuiston

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Cover image of "Red, White & Royal Blue"

 

This is the most heartwarming, sexy, hilarious enemies-to-lovers plot you’ll ever read. Casey McQuiston gives readers a secret, slow-burning romance between America’s First Son, Alex Claremont-Diaz, and Henry, Prince of Wales.

—Marissa Osman, Transcript Coordinator

 

Vampire Academy – Richelle Mead

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Cover image of "Vampire Academy"

 

This first installation of the seven-book series sets up incredible worldbuilding around modern vampire lore. Rose and Lissa’s unwavering friendship has seen them through the trials of high school, but will Rose always be able to protect her best friend from the evil that is determined to consume them both?

—Marissa Osman, Transcript Coordinator

Catherine Lai

I have been a fan of Harry since 2000, a fan of MuggleNet since 2005, and a MuggleNet team member since 2013. I believe in the power of stories to bring people together, and nothing does that quite like Harry Potter. I’m an annoyingly proud Canadian and live in Toronto.