Share 11 Spellbinding Books to Read Before the Next “Fantastic Beasts” Movie

11 Spellbinding Books to Read Before the Next “Fantastic Beasts” Movie

Sarah Jane Abbott is an assistant editor for Paula Wiseman Books and Beach Lane Books, imprints of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing.  She grew up having NANCY DREW books read to her by her father, and is now an avid reader of mystery, thriller, and horror, along with everything from literary fiction to poetry to personal essays.  She graduated from Bucknell University with a degree in English and a concentration in creative writing.  Sarah Jane is an advocate of quasi-destructive book love—her best-loved volumes are highlighted, scribbled in, dog-eared, and wavy from being dropped in the bath tub.  

With the release of Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, viewers will once again be immersed into the richly imagined, enchanting wizarding world of Harry Potter. But after the film is over, if you can’t get enough of the magical 1920s New York setting, the rival wizards and secret world-within-our-world, or the magical creatures and monstrous villains, here are some books to tide you over until the next installment of the film series.


The Magicians
by Lev Grossman
Perfect for fans of the Harry Potter world, this series follows Quentin Coldwater, who is obsessed with a series of fantasy novels set in a magical land called Fillory and finds his real life disappointing in comparison. When he is unexpectedly admitted to an elite, secret college of magic, he stumbles into a world of dark secrets.
The Magicians
Lev Grossman

With influences ranging from The Chronicles of Narnia to Harry Potter to A Game of Thrones, Lev Grossman’s Magicians trilogy is an enthralling, diabolically crafted coming-of-age tale about magic practiced in the real world—where good and evil aren’t black and white and power comes at a terrible price. Dig into this series now before the Syfy adaptation hits the small screen next year.

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Nights at the Circus
by Angela Carter
The glimpse of a mysterious circus in the Fantastic Beasts trailer is reminiscent of this novel about Sophi Fevvers, the aerialist star of Colonel Kearney's circus who claims to be part woman, part swan. Journalist Jack Walser joins the circus on its tour in an effort to determine if Sophi’s identity is a hoax—and because he is falling for her.
Nights at the Circus
Angela Carter

MENTIONED IN:

11 Spellbinding Books to Read Before the Next “Fantastic Beasts” Movie

By Sarah Jane Abbott | November 26, 2018

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The Diviners
by Libba Bray
The glamorous and gritty 1920s New York atmosphere of the films is evoked in this novel about Evie O’Neill, who is sent to live with her occult-obsessed uncle Will and worries he’ll discover her dark secret—a supernatural power that has only brought her trouble. But when a murdered girl is found, Evie realizes her gift could help catch a serial killer.
The Diviners
Libba Bray

MENTIONED IN:

11 Spellbinding Books to Read Before the Next “Fantastic Beasts” Movie

By Sarah Jane Abbott | November 26, 2018

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The Strange Case of the Alchemist's Daughter
by Theodora Goss 
Mary Jekyll, alone and penniless after her parents’ death, decides to seek out Edward Hyde, her father’s former friend who is also a murderer. On the way she encounters Hyde’s daughter, a feral child raised by nuns, as well as a group of women who have been created through terrifying experiments: Beatrice Rappaccini, Catherin Moreau, and Justine Frankenstein. Together they discover a secret society of immoral scientists, and this team of monsters must triumph over the monstrous.
The Strange Case of the Alchemist's Daughter
Theodora Goss 

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Neverwhere
by Neil Gaiman
Like Fantastic Beasts, NEVERWHERE centers on the irresistable idea that there is a mysterious, magical world just beneath the surface of our own. Richard Mayhew, a young London businessman, stops to help a bleeding girl and is plunged into Neverwhere—a kingdom of shadows and darkness, monsters and saints, in a subterranean labyrinth below London.
Neverwhere
Neil Gaiman

For the adult Harry Potter fan

When a young London businessman stops to help a bleeding girl, that simple act of kindness leads him to discover another reality. Neverwhere is a subterranean labyrinth, a London of shadows and darkness, monsters and saints, murderers and angels. But the only way that he can return to the London Above is if he helps the girl save her strange underworld kingdom from an evil agent.

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The Night Circus
by Erin Morgenstern
Beneath the mysterious and beautiful veneer of Cirque des Rêves, a fierce battle is raging. Two young magicians, Celia and Marco, are engaged in a duel for which they have been trained since childhood by their mercurial mentors. Unbeknownst to them, only one magician can survive. So when they fall in love, it sets off a chain of dangerous consequences.
The Night Circus
Erin Morgenstern

“The man billed as Prospero the Enchanter receives a fair amount of correspondence via the theater office, but this is the first envelope addressed to him that contains a suicide note, and it is also the first to arrive carefully pinned to the coat of a five-year-old girl.”

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A Darker Shade of Magic
by V. E. Schwab
Kell is one of the last Antari—magicians with a coveted ability to travel between four parallel worlds. Officially, she works as an ambassador between worlds but, unofficially, she is a smuggler who will give people glimpses of other worlds—for a price. After a smuggling job goes awry, Kell meets Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty ambitions who forces Kell to take her to another world for a perilous adventure.
A Darker Shade of Magic
V. E. Schwab

MENTIONED IN:

11 Spellbinding Books to Read Before the Next “Fantastic Beasts” Movie

By Sarah Jane Abbott | November 26, 2018

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The Thinking Woman's Guide to Real Magic
by Emily Croy Barker
Nora Fletcher’s life is a wreck until she wanders off and walks through a portal to another world, where suddenly she’s transformed from a drab grad student into a stunning beauty with glamorous friends and a gorgeous boyfriend. Things seem too good to be true until Nora’s new fantasy world turns dark and she must turn to grim, reclusive magician Aruendiel to help her learn the magic she’ll need to survive.
The Thinking Woman's Guide to Real Magic
Emily Croy Barker

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All the Birds in the Sky
by Charlie Jane Anders
A battle between magic and science is raging in San Francisco—an ancient society of witches versus a technological startup. But the groups’ most promising followers (Patricia, a brilliant witch, and Laurence, an engineering “wunderkind”) are falling in love with each other. Laurence and Patricia will be forced to choose sides and their choices may just determine the fate of the planet and all mankind.
All the Birds in the Sky
Charlie Jane Anders

MENTIONED IN:

11 Spellbinding Books to Read Before the Next “Fantastic Beasts” Movie

By Sarah Jane Abbott | November 26, 2018

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The Golem and the Jinni
by Helene Wecker
Chava, a creature made of clay and given life by a disgraced rabbi who dabbled in dark magic, arrives in New York harbor in 1899 alone and unmoored. Ahmad is a jinni, a being of fire born in the ancient Syrian desert who has been released in New York but is not entirely free. The two become unlikely friends with a mystical connection.
The Golem and the Jinni
Helene Wecker

A chance meeting between two mythical beings leads to an unlikely friendship and journey through cultures in New York City at the start of the twentieth century. Helene Wecker’s debut novel is an imaginative mixture of Yiddish and Middle Eastern literature, crafting an imaginative and remarkable story.

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The Philosopher's Flight
by Tom Miller
In this epic historical fantasy set in a World-War-I-era America, magic and science have blended into a single extraordinary art. Robert Weekes is a practicioner of empirical philosophy—an arcane branch of female-dominated science used for everything from summoning the wind to flying. Robert falls for Danielle Hardin, a disillusioned war hero turned political activist. Together, they must fight for the survival of philosophy against forces that would destroy it.
The Philosopher's Flight
Tom Miller

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