7 Amazing Book-To-Screen Adapts!

Hey everyone – Happy weekend!

With so many adapts coming out these past couple years, I wanted to make a post about the adapts I really loved and that swayed true to their book counterparts. I was also inspired to do this seeing how the Thirteen Reasons Why Netflix show is out today! I know what I’m devoting my entire weekend to 😉 Keep an eye out for my review coming out in the next few days!

So, let’s get into it!

If I Stay

If I Stay is one of my favorite novels and I was so afraid they’d mess it up. After hearing that the author, Gale Forman, was working closely with everyone on the film though, it made me feel so much better! That first trailer they released literally gave me goosebumps because I knew then that it would be great. Everyone in the cast was a perfect match for their characters – especially Adam and Mia . Despite a few whispers about how Chloe Grace Moretz was an annoying choice because she was everywhere at the time, I think she did great as the lead. In terms of Adam, it couldn’t have been easy to find someone that could act, sing, play guitar and have chemistry with Chloe but made a great choice picking Jaime Blackley for the part! I appreciated that they highlighted how Adam and Mia’s relationship isn’t perfect, but realistic, and how even when you’ve seemingly grown distant, that love is still there. They could have easily sugar-coated it and made it a happy-go-lucky romance but they didn’t. Even in fights, the chemistry between the two was still there. In fact, it’s because of their great chemistry on-screen that makes me wish so badly for a Where She Went adapt too! *crosses fingers*  The soundtrack was a perfect mix of indie, rock, pop and classical. Liana Liberato (who played Kim,) might not have fit the books description perfectly, but she was a great choice. She’s a seasoned actor who gave us unparalleled vulnerability at the end and made me turn to my best friend at least 20 times to whisper ‘that’s totally us!’. Lastly, the ending…again, the movie could have gone in a totally different direction and given us all the answers, wrapping the movie up without any questions. The books ending is very open ended and leaves the reader questioning ‘what happens now?’. I totally cry my eyes out every time Mia’s grandfather gives his final speech and Adam plays the song he writes for her…it was so beautiful, heartbreaking and true to the mess of emotions Mia feels at that moment in the novel. If you haven’t already seen/read it, go – this adapt is a must-see.

Harry Potter 

It’s no doubt that both the Harry Potter movies and books have touched the hearts of many. With a wide audience, a real-life theme park (they actually just opened up a Harry Potter themed bar here in Montreal,) and a ridiculous amount of other tributes to the series, it solidified it’s place as a timeless classic years ago. While it’s a fantastical book series that many loved reading growing up, the movies truly bring J.K Rowling’s vision to life and all of the amazing actors gave us a chance to see our favorite characters up on the big screen through their good times and their trials. Though the movies omitted some details here and improvised certain parts there, this is an adapt that everyone and their mothers fall in love with instantly upon seeing it. It’s definitely a series that I’ll never get sick of binge-watching!

Outlander

I can’t describe how much I enjoy watching this tv show and seeing Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe on screen, portraying this couple that I have come to love and root for in the book. While the show does take some liberties (I mean, take a look at the freaking size of book #1!) it does the book incredible justice and brings to life some iconic scenes. I personally loved how they didn’t just skip out on the relationship between Claire and Frank because even though I’m clearly a fan of her and Jaime, their scenes at the start of the book are beautifully ruined. In fact, it’s what sold me and convinced me to keep reading. I don’t usually like time pieces because of the social conventions back then and the way books tended to be written back then but I was totally sucked in by the scenes of Claire and her husband in their hotel, rekindling their romance or arguing about the time they’d been forced to spend apart. So when the show stayed true to that, despite Jaime clearly being the fan favorite, I was happily hooked on the show, just as I had been on the book.

The Vampire Diaries

Okay. I’m very on the fence when it comes to this show. I’m super passionate about The Vampire Diaries novels and as much as it kills me to say so, I can go on for days talking about how much I hated it as an adapt just as much as I loved it. The first episode was so much like the book (save for the absence of Meredith and Jeremy replacing the character Margaret.) I was really happy with the start of season one. However, the show strays away from the novels a lot and at some points, it’s probably fair to judge the book and show as two completely separate things. However, I do love all of the acting choices and think that the cast is great. Elena (Nina Dobrev) is a lot more strong minded and less naive in the show than in the books and the Salvatore brothers are perfectly brought to life on screen (if were ignoring the whole Stefan/Ripper thing that is.) I think that Ian Somerhalder and Paul Westley do a great job of playing the lovers of Elena Gilbert. And I loved that they stayed true to how Stefan represents Elena’s innocent, first love while Damon represented the more dangerous and deeper relationship. At least the writers stayed true to L.J Smith’s own ending for the characters and who Elena ends up with, making me one happy viewer. Also, side-note, there are a lot of complaints out there about the fact that Elena’s sibling is a teenage brother and while it did bother me at first, I think that this change ended up working very well. Elena is a nurturing, caring person by nature and instead of having a little sister (who barely appears in the book,) Jeremy’s character added a lot more to the show and Elena herself. Also, Kat Graham might not look like and be less timid than Bonnie in the books but I honestly love both versions of this character. In the end, Bonnie is a bad ass witch and Elena’s selfless best friend. So, if you don’t mind an adapt that strays a bit from the original books, this is for you! The Vampire Diaries is entertaining, romantic, thrilling, sexy and seriously fun to marathon.

Pride & Prejudice (2005)

I took a class a few semesters back called ‘Fool For Love’ and Pride & Prejudice was on the reading list. At first, I’d rolled my eyes. Again, not a huge fan of older books or time pieces. But Pride & Prejudice was the first classic I’ve ever really enjoyed reading in a class! I really loved the humor and romance as well as the character development of Lizzy and Darcy. My only complaint had been the lack of kissing if I’m being totally honest because the entire time I was reading, I was egging Darcy on to get over himself and just grab her and kiss her. Afterwards, we watched the movie staring Kiera Knightly and Matthew Macfadyen and while the teacher turned her nose up at the differences in the ending, I was on the moon because it gave me the only thing that I had desperately wanted in the book. The movie also has more of a comedic element than the books but other than that, the adapt was pretty much a true one, bringing this story of a saucy bookish girl and a brooding rich man torn by love and ideals.

Fault in Our Stars

This is probably the only adapt where I was seriously happy the movie left out a major plot point or scenes. I really enjoyed Fault in Our Stars and thought the casting choices were pretty great. Anything with Shailene Woodley (who plays Hazel Grace,) is bound to be amazing and her chemistry with Ansel Elgort (Augustus Waters,) is so sweet and romantic! The screening I went to got just as many laughs and awws from the audience as it did sobs and I think that’s majorly because of the outstanding acting. It’s a true adapt in my view that kept all the iconic scenes/lines and personally, I was really happy they cut out that whole ‘Hazel, you look like my dead girlfriend’ thing Augustus went through. In the books, it was the only part that made me less immersed in the story and even made me feel a little creeped out for Hazel. Fault in Our Stars might be an emotional wreck on our hearts and minds but it’s a quick read and a good chick-flick that can be watched over and over again!

City of Bones (movie)

Okay, just hear me out first! I feel like the show has gotten a ton more press and attention than the movie ever did and that it’s the fan favorite however…I’m more of a fan of the movie at the moment. In all fairness, I haven’t finished the books or the show and in time, doing so might change my opinion on this. But at the moment, I think if you look at just the first book, the movie does a really good job of keeping to the story and not divulging into the other novels. Apart from Magnus Bane’s actor, I loved the cast of the movie version and it’s definitely what hyped me up for the movie. I’ll watch anything with Lily Collins and the chemistry between her and Jaime Cambell Bower were awesome!! To me, Lily was a great Clary. Plus, adding in two more of my favorite actors, Johnathon Rhys Meyers and Robert Sheehan, were great choices in my opinion. Both actors for Simon (in the show and movie) do great jobs of portraying Simon’s character but I really would have loved to see what Meyers would have done with Valentines character if the movie had done well enough to get a sequel. If you’re not in the mood for marathoning a two-season long show just yet, take a look at the movie and you’ll be just as entertained!

There a ton more adapts that have been released and more that are coming but these are just a few that I felt were true and well-done ones! I didn’t add Before I Fall for the same reason I excluded Thirteen Reasons Why (for now) because I have a whole other post/review about it. Check it out here and expect a review ASAP on Jay Asher’s masterpiece ! 🙂

What are your favorite book-to-screen adapts? Also, if you’re a fan of Mortal Instruments, do you prefer the show or the movie? Let me know in the comments down below! Don’t forget to follow to stay up to date with new posts – I post every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Until next time, see you then and have an awesome weekend guys!

-Mel

7 thoughts on “7 Amazing Book-To-Screen Adapts!

  1. Loved this list! I totally agree. Harry Potter is hands down one of my absolute favourite book to movie adaptations! Pride and Prejudice is also so great and If I Stay was lovely as well (though I actually didn’t care about the book as much?? Oops. I’m glad you loved both though!) I haven’t watched the Vampire Diaries, but I’ve heard a lot about it?? There seems to be so much hate for the recent seasons haha. And yes, The Fault In Our Stars was such a lovely movie as well! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The second book of If I Stay, Where She Went, is better written for sure :p And yeah I totally agree about Vampire Diaries. It strays A LOT from the story in the books but (besides a couple nics) the characters/actors are super spot on 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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