Finished reading Harry Potter: Order of the Phoenix.
So far, I'm liking this series far more than I expected. I remember enjoying it as a kid, but even as an adult there's a lot to like, if one can enjoy it for what it is. Harry Potter is actually quite a compelling protagonist, and the series has a number of great characters, my favorites being Dumbledore and Hermione (I love her to death). And some cool minor characters too, like Barty Crouch Sr and Jr.
On to the next.
Also, I am going to buy Shogun from James Clavell, which is a historical fiction, based on the Tokugawa Shogunate in Japan just as it started, except the characters are based on historical figures but with different names (I believe Tokugawa is called Torunaga). Sounds interesting.
Also, and I am SUPER excited for this, I ordered Les Rois Maudits series from Maurice Druon in French, 7 books (the Accursed Kings), also a historical fiction based on the era between Philip IV The Just of France, also known as the Iron King, to the beginning of the Hundred Year War. Apparently George R. R. Martin was heavily inspired by it for his ASoIaF, especially in terms of the political intrigue, which after a quick glance at summaries seems hugely abundant in this series.
A couple of years back, I had stopped reading novels and fictions in favor of academic work, but now that I took it up again I realize how mentally stimulating and helpful it is and now I can't sleep without reading. And what makes me really excited for Les Rois Maudits is that it's a historical fiction that is very faithful to the actual history that Maurice heavily drew upon from primary sources (and the fictional events being more or less inspired by folktale and rumors), combining about the awesomeness of a novel and the educational aspect of an academic book (with of course a grain of salt to know where the story and history become distinct).
I'm also interested in getting books on Philip of Macedon, Subotai, Thutmose III, and Hannibal Barca written by Richard A. Gabriel, a military historian, who is focusing on the military aspect of their careers.
Annnnnd, I am thinking of finally reading the Lord of the Rings series, the Hobbit, and the Silmarilion. Speaking of which, I've seen a movie tie-in edition
, but I am not sure if it's an abridged version or somehow different from the original versions. Does anyone know or can provide help?