If you were a child during the early to mid 2000s or worked in Children's Publishing, you quickly learned the names of some notable protagonists.
Harry, Percy, Artemis. Darren, Eragon, Charlie. All guys, all pale, all magical. It wasn't a new type of fantasy-novel hero, but one that really ran amok during that time.
 If, somehow, you don't know: Harry Potter (wizards), Percy Jackson and The Olympians (myths, with many spinoffs to match), Artemis Fowl (Fae), The Saga of Darren Shan (vampires), Eragon (high fantasy), and Charlie Bone (which is a little harder to describe).
There is, however, one book series that was never quite as popular as any of the above:
A lonely child who threw himself into his work of becoming a great magician, in an alternate universe of magical London, where one can summon demons.
Underestimated and scorned by his master, he works hard to master his studies in secret, after constantly being punished for his curiosity. After a potent, though childish, plan falls through, he works to avenge the one person who cared for him and soothe his adolescent pride all at once.
This is Jonathan Stroud's "Bartiemaeus Sequence", known for its witty titular character and another thing rarely seen in children's books[*].
But this isn't about him, it's about the main human character, Nathaniel.
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