Great books being turned into movies or TV series is nothing new. And we all know that some can exceed their source material, and some completely miss the mark. With a slate of book adaptations headed to the big or small screen this year, which ones are worth seeing? Carole Barrowman is back to share four picks that you can watch this year... but of course, she wants you to read the book, too!
For more information on Carole, visit CaroleBarrowman.com. And see below for her picks!
"Little Fires Everywhere" by Celeste Ng (Penguin) - This is at the top of my list of adaptations to watch for the spring. I loved the book. It reminded me of Amy Tan’s “Kitchen God’s Wife.” Ng’s novel is elegant and gripping, about mother’s and daughter and little secrets everywhere. Kerry Washington and Reese Witherspoon star in HBO’s adaptation. It debuts March 18th on Hulu. It’s a great book club choice.
"Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery" by Robert Kolker (Harper) - If you’re a fan of true crime, this is a powerful and gripping book about the women murdered by the Long Island Serial Killer. With compassion and a keen cultural awareness, the author explores victim shaming and one a mother’s struggle to solve her daughter’s murder. The film fictionalizes the story, but it looks as good as the book. Amy Ryan takes the lead, playing Mari, the mother, and Gabriel Byrne plays the detective. You can start binging the NETFLIX series on March 13th.
"The Outsider" by Stephen King (Gallery) - Ok. I admit it. I liked but didn’t love this Stephen King book, but I’m hanging on every word of HBO’s adaptation (catch up On Demand). Maybe because one of my favorite writers Richard Price developed the series? It’s about the murder of a young boy and the consequences on the family of the coach who’s accused of his murder. It’s Stephen King so it chilling and creepy, but also character driven. Ben Mendelsohn and Cynthia Erivo’s performances are Oscar worthy, Jason Bateman’s too.
"High Fidelity" by Nick Hornby (Riverhead) - Hornby’s sweet funny romantic novel about Rob making playlists for Laura as he negotiates his inability to commit to adulting was a sweet, sexy funny novel and the film with John Cusack as Rob running a Chicago record store is a classic. So do we need another adaptation? Yes, we do! Because this adaptation has Zoë Kravitz (love her!) playing Rob. A little movie trivia– in the original movie Kravitz’s real life mom, Lisa Bonet, plays one of Cusack’s past lovers. The adaptation debuts on Valentine’s Day on Hulu.