As you are a Gaiman fan, I'd love to hear your thoughts on comparisons between Harry Potter and Tim Hunter. Coincidence? Or not?

I haven't read much of Gaiman yet but I suppose you mean the hero character of Book of Magic?
I think it's not a coincidance but if I recall correctly (correct me if I am wrong), Book of Magic was released before Harry Potter, no?
By any means, I cannot comment on that one because all I have is a preview at the end of Sandman: Preludes and Nocturnes.

About the novel:
It's a fine novel, Leather_Raven. I feel a hint of Douglas Adams but that's probably just me. As kiya, who is a finer reader than myself, already stated, the style is similar to a female version of Terry Pratchett, which is quite convinient.
Good of you of putting The King in the temple's statue room.

Your father should be proud of you.