Harry Potter by JK Rowling – I’ve just reread these, reading the last six in about seven days, and they left me with a MASSIVE book hangover which only went away when I read the spellbinding River Daughter by Jane Hardstaff. It’s easy to see why so many people love them so much – Rowling’s characters are wonderful, her plots have clever twists which make them rewarding rereads, and there are so many truly magical moments. (Many involving Neville!)
Charlie Bone by Jenny Nimmo – When growing up, Nimmo’s Magician Trilogy – especially The Snow Spider – was one of my favourite series. Since that’s a trilogy, though, I’ll pick her more recent, but perhaps lesser-known, Charlie Bone series. It’s similar to HP in many ways – a young boy goes to a magical school, makes friends, and gets involved in battles against strong powers – but it’s a shorter, quicker read and is hugely exciting.
The Dark Is Rising by Susan Cooper – Incredibly atmospheric, The Dark Is Rising and The Magician Trilogy are the two series which I went back to again and again when I was a teen. The Dark Is Rising tells the stories of three ‘ordinary’ children, Simon, Jane and Barney Drew, and Will Stanton, Last of the Old Ones, as they’re caught up in a centuries long struggle. Book one is about the three Drews, books two and four are about Will, and books three and five see them work together. They’re a truly brilliant series with roots in Arthurian legend which never fail to delight.
The Chronicles of Prydain by Lloyd Alexander – For some reason I only read the entire series of these relatively recently despite having enjoyed the first two growing up. They get better as the series of five progresses – book four, Taran Wanderer, is a stunning coming-of-age tale which adds hugely to the sequence despite being slightly off-track as far as the main battle is concerned, while book five, Newbery medal-winner The High King, is one of the few fantasies to ever make me cry. An outstanding sequence.
The Wolves Chronicles by Joan Aiken – I’ve never actually finished these, for some reason, but have read the early books – particularly Black Hearts in Battersea and Night Birds on Nantucket – dozens of times. Dido Twite, the street urchin introduced in Black Hearts, is one of the all-time great characters in children’s literature, and Aiken’s writing stye is glorious.
Skulduggery Pleasant by Derek Landy – This is the only other one (out of the completed series, at least) which I haven’t finished. I’m still putting it on, partly because the books I’ve read are a brilliant mixture of exciting action and hilarious humour, and partly because Caitlin is a massive fan, and she’s one of my go-to people for MG recs.
Wereworld by Curtis Jobling – Sensationally strong world-building, brilliant characters who develop superbly, outstanding action and some wonderful romance makes this epic fantasy a six-book series to go back to again and again and again.
GONE by Michael Grant – Like Wereworld, the character development in this one for numerous characters is absolutely fantastic. I don’t read sci-fi often and I’m not that keen on gory – you need a strong stomach for parts of this – but despite these biases against it I was a HUGE fan.
Department 19 by Will Hill – This is the only series on the list that’s incomplete, and the last book, Darkest Night, is up there with Non Pratt’s Remix as my most anticipated read of the rest of the year. Hill’s characters are great, his world-building is stunning – brilliantly playing off the Dracula story but bringing it right up to date – and the last two books have raised some really interesting questions about heroism, villainy, and the place of vampires in his world.
Kat Stephenson by Stephanie Burgis – I said I wanted series longer than trilogies; thankfully this JUST qualifies – there are three novels about Kat as a young teen and a novella about her as an 18-year-old. She is my absolute favourite character since I started reviewing (and probably ever); a wonderfully loyal, brave and awesome heroine.
What did you do for your Top Ten Tuesday this week? Share a link in the comments!