The Percy Jackson and the Olympians Series, Rick Riordan
In short: Speaking of series that are like Harry Potter…we have the fabulous Percy Jackson books by Rick Riordan! Percy Jackson is a regular kid who gets into some weird kinds of trouble, but never expects that he is in fact a demigod (the son of a Greek god(dess) and a human) – at least, not until he gets sent away to Camp Half-Blood, where all the demigods, plus some satyrs, nymphs, and so on, spend the summer learning how to fight monsters and drive chariots. These books are great, the kids love them, and I can’t recommend them highly enough. There are a lot of similarities to J.K. Rowling’s series (the sort-of clueless best friend, the know-it-all girl – and this one’s even a daughter of Athena, the pre-teen finding out about magical powers and getting carted away to a special place to learn about them…), but I don’t mean that in a bad way. They don’t feel derivative at all, and Riordan does a terrific job pulling from Greek mythology so that that becomes the focal point. (Well, that and the epic, fast-paced adventures!) It’s tremendous fun for adults (and kids who like Greek myths, which I sure did) to see these famous figures (it’s Ares! it’s a Cyclops!) before the less-well-informed Percy figures out who they are. The last one is coming out in May, and I can’t wait.
Read it if you like: Harry Potter, Greek mythology, awesomeness