Staff Picks: Books to Movies
Summer is prime time for film adaptations of books and this summer is no exception. “The book is better than the movie” is a truism but we asked our staff for some of the movie adaptations of books they’ve enjoyed.
The African Queen
by C.S. Forester
As World War I reaches the heart of the African jungle, Charlie Allnutt and Rose Sayer, a disheveled trader and an English spinster missionary, find themselves thrown together by circumstance. Fighting time, heat, malaria, and bullets, they make their escape on the rickety steamboat The African Queen…and hatch their own outrageous military plan. This book was made into a movie in 1951 starring Humphrey Bogart and Katharine Hepburn. Humphrey Bogart won an Oscar for Best Actor in a Leading Role.
Bridget Jones’s Diary
by Helen Fielding
Bridget Jones’ Diary is the devastatingly self-aware, laugh-out-loud daily chronicle of Bridget’s permanent, doomed quest for self-improvement — a year in which she resolves to: reduce the circumference of each thigh by 1.5 inches, visit the gym three times a week not just to buy a sandwich, form a functional relationship with a responsible adult, and learn to program the VCR. This book was made into a movie starring Renee Zellweger, Hugh Grant, and Colin Firth.
The Color Purple
By Alice Walker
The Color Purple depicts the lives of African American women in early twentieth-century rural Georgia. Separated as girls, sisters Celie and Nettie sustain their loyalty to and hope in each other across time, distance and silence. Through a series of letters spanning twenty years, first from Celie to God, then the sisters to each other despite the unknown, the novel draws readers into its rich and memorable portrayals of Celie, Nettie, Shug Avery and Sofia and their experience. It was made into a movie in 1985 and featured many stars including Whoopi Goldberg, Danny Glover, and Oprah Winfrey. It was nominated for 11 Oscars.
Book/eBook (Hoopla and Overdrive)/DVD
The Devil Wears Prada
by Lauren Weisberger
A delightfully dishy novel about the all-time most impossible boss in the history of impossible bosses.
Andrea Sachs, a small-town girl fresh out of college, lands the job “a million girls would die for.” Hired as the assistant to Miranda Priestly, the high-profile, fabulously successful editor of “Runway “magazine, Andrea finds herself in an office that shouts “Prada! Armani! Versace!” at every turn, a world populated by impossibly thin, heart-wrenchingly stylish women and beautiful men clad in fine-ribbed turtlenecks and tight leather pants that show off their lifelong dedication to the gym. With breathtaking ease, Miranda can turn each and every one of these hip sophisticates into a scared, whimpering child. This book was made into a movie in 2006 and starred Anne Hathaway and Meryl Streep.
Book/Audiobook CD/Overdrive eBook/DVD
by Chuck Palahniuk
Fight Club’s estranged narrator leaves his lackluster job when he comes under the thrall of Tyler Durden, an enigmatic young man who holds secret after-hours boxing matches in the basement of bars. There, two men fight “as long as they have to.” This is a gloriously original work that exposes the darkness at the core of our modern world. Made into a movie in 1999 starring Edward Norton, Brad Pitt, and Helena Bonham Carter.
Audiobook CD/Audiobook Hoopla/DVD
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
by Stieg Larsson
Harriet Vanger, a scion of one of Sweden’s wealthiest families disappeared over forty years ago. All these years later, her aged uncle continues to seek the truth. He hires Mikael Blomkvist, a crusading journalist recently trapped by a libel conviction, to investigate. He is aided by the pierced and tattooed punk prodigy Lisbeth Salander. Together they tap into a vein of unfathomable iniquity and astonishing corruption. First made into a movie in Sweden in 2009.
Book/Overdrive eBook/Audiobook CD/Overdrive Audiobook/Hoopla Comic/Hoopla Movie
North and South
by John Jakes
Part history, part novel, this book chronicles two great American dynasties over three generations. Though brought together in a friendship that neither jealousy nor violence could shatter, the Hazards and the Mains are torn apart by the storm of events that has divided the nation. This book was made into a TV miniseries in 1985 starring Kirstie Alley.
Book/eBook Hoopla/DVD/Hoopla Movie
Of Mice and Men
by John Steinbeck
An intimate portrait of two men who cherish the slim bond between them and the dream they share in a world marred by petty tyranny, misunderstanding, jealousy, and callousness. Clinging to each other in their loneliness and alienation, George and his simple-minded friend Lennie dream, as drifters will, of a place to call their own—a couple of acres and a few pigs, chickens, and rabbits back in Hill Country where land is cheap. But after they come to work on a ranch in the fertile Salinas Valley of California, their hopes, like “the best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men,” begin to go awry. This has been in made into a movie multiple times and the 1939 version can be found in the Lehigh Valley Library System.
Book/Audiobook CD/Overdrive Audiobook/DVD
Pride and Prejudice
The novel follows the character development of Elizabeth Bennet, the dynamic protagonist of the book who learns about the repercussions of hasty judgments and comes to appreciate the difference between superficial goodness and actual goodness. Its humor lies in its honest depiction of manners, education, marriage, and money during the Regency era in England. This also has been made into movies many times but we particularly like the 1995 version starring Jennifer Ehle and Colin Firth.
Book/eBook (Overdrive and Hoopla)/Audiobook (Overdrive and Hoopla)/DVD
The Princess Bride
by William Goldman
William Goldman reconstructed the “Good Parts Version” of the fictional novel by S. Morgenstern to delight wise kids and wide-eyed grownups everywhere. What’s it about? Fencing. Fighting. True Love. Strong Hate. Harsh Revenge. A Few Giants. Lots of Bad Men. Lots of Good Men. Five or Six Beautiful Women. Beasties Monstrous and Gentle. Some Swell Escapes and Captures. Death, Lies, Truth, Miracles, and a Little Sex. This book was made into an all time great movie in 1987 with an all star cast.
Book/eBook (Overdrive and Hoopla)/DVD
by Stephen King
Jack Torrance’s new job at the Overlook Hotel is the perfect chance for a fresh start. As the off-season caretaker at the atmospheric old hotel, he’ll have plenty of time to spend reconnecting with his family and working on his writing. But as the harsh winter weather sets in, the idyllic location feels ever more remote…and more sinister. And the only one to notice the strange and terrible forces gathering around the Overlook is Danny Torrance, a uniquely gifted five-year-old. This was made into a very creep movie in 1980 directed by Stanley Kubrick and starring Jack Nicholson.
Overdrive eBook/Audiobook (Overdrive and Hoopla)/DVD
The Accidental Billionaires: The Founding of Facebook
by Ben Mezrich
The high-energy tale of how two socially awkward Ivy Leaguers, trying to increase their chances with the opposite sex, ended up creating Facebook. This was adapted into a movie called “The Social Network” in 2010 starring Jesse Eisenberg.
To Kill a Mockingbird
by Harper Lee
The unforgettable novel of a childhood in a sleepy Southern town and the crisis of conscience that rocked it. The book was made into an classic academy award winning movie in 1962 starring Gregory Peck.
Book/ebook (Overdrive and Hoopla)/Audiobook CD/Audiobook (Overdrive and Hoopla)/DVD