The big, BIG list of literary adaptions coming to screens in 2020

There are so many outlets for watching movies and series out there nowadays, the amount of content is a bit overwhelming! With the current glut of original content hitting our big and small screens, it can be a bit of a shot in the dark to find something to watch that’s actually good. Which is why literary adaptations are experiencing a bit of a heyday, movies and TV based on popular books have a built-in fan base from people who’ve read and enjoyed the books, and also introduce the source material to new readers.

Several book-based series are continuing with new seasons this year:  season 5 of the Starz series Outlander, (based on The Fiery Cross by Diana Gabaldon), season 3 of BBC series C.B. Strike, (based on Lethal White by Robert Galbraith),  and season 2 of the HBO series His Dark Materials, (based on The Subtle Knife by Philip Pullman) are all coming to the small screen in 2020.

Beyond that, the list of new movies and television set to be released in the coming year is  HUGE. Check out all this book-based programming :










There are still more book adaptations expected to premiere in 2020, with release dates yet to be finalized:

This is not a completely comprehensive list, and is subject to change as the year goes on. What literary adaptations are you most excited to see this year?


Movies or Television Shows and the Books You Did Not Know They Were Based On

We know that many television shows and movies are based on books. Love them or hate them hits like Twilight, Harry Potter, Gone Girl, True Blood, Game of Thrones, and many more were based on (or inspired by) the written word. However, there are so many more movies and television series that you have already seen, or could be currently binge watching, that are also based on books and you just do not know it. Here are some of the titles that I thought were the most interesting or surprising.booktomovie1

Pitch Perfect the film may have been based on Pitch Perfect: The Quest for Collegiate A Cappella Glory by Mickey Rapkin, a non-fiction book about a capella competitions, but I have to imagine that the movie version is much more audibly entertaining.

The movie Die Hard is based on Nothing Lasts Forever by Roderick Thorp. The book was published in the late ’70s, and went out of print before the movie adaptation was released almost a decade later.booktomovie2

Shrek! by William Steig is a picturebook about an ogre who falls in love with an “ugly” princess, so part of the concept remained when the animated version of Shrek was made.

Forrest Gump by Winston Groom might have been changed a great deal in the film adaptation of Forrest Gump.  However, the award-winning film certainly helped book sales.

booktomovie4Gordon Buford wrote Car, Boy, Girl in 1961, seven years before the first Herbie the Love Bug adaptation.

The Brave Little Toaster by Thomas M. Disch was a critically acclaimed science fiction novella long before it was turned into a beloved children’s movie, also named The Brave Little Toaster, it was nominated for both a Hugo Award and a Nebula Award.

The self-help book Queen Bees & Wannabes by Rosalind Wiseman might not seem like the typical book to inspire a movie. However, it is what  Mean Girls is based on.booktomovie6

Ted Hughes, former poet laureate of England,  wrote a children’s book called The Iron Giant in 1968. The animated movie, also titled The Iron Giant, was released in 1999.

Jack Bickham wrote The Apple Dumpling Gang, a novel about orphans during the California gold rush. Disney adapted it into the classic The Apple Dumpling Gang with Don Knotts in 1975.

booktomovie7I know of a few more that were surprising, either because I did not know the book existed or because the adaptation so barely resembled the book that I could not recognize it. Are there any here that surprised you, and do you know of any more book to movie or television series adaptations that might be surprising? Please share your thoughts with us in the comments.

10 Books on the Small Screen

You may already know that some of the most popular shows at the moment came from previously published books. However, you may not realize just how often these small screen hits have been adapted from stand alone books, or longer series.

Here are ten television shows that I have been happy to inform my husband have been based (at least loosely) on books. Some are obvious, and well known to come from books, while others might surprise you.

1)T[Cover]rue Blood is based on Charlaine Harris’s Sookie Stackhouse series, about vampires and other paranormal creatures and their interactions with people in Louisiana. The book series begins with Dead Until Dark, published in 2001. Fans of the books who watch the show are not necessarily “in the know”. By the end of the first season the respective plots have diverged enough for fans to enjoy both without knowing just what might happen next. The final book in the series, number 13, Dead Ever After was just published on May 7th.

2) Dexter is based on a book series about a serial killer with a strict moral code written by Jeff Lindsay. The first book, Darkly Dreaming Dexter, was published in 2004. Dexter’s Final Cut, the seventh book in the series, is scheduled for release in September of 2013.
3) Vampire Diaries is a television series based on a young adult book series of the same name, which began with The Awakening. The book series was originally written by  L.J. Smith, but is now ghost written because the publisher did not like the direction Smith wanted to take the characters in, and her contract gave the publisher the rights to her name and the series. There are now a collection of book sub-series, and it seems to still be going strong.

4) The Dresden Files was a television show that, sadly, only ran for one season on the Sci Fi channel in 2007. It was set in the same world as the book series of the same name, which began with Storm Front. The series was good, and can be found on DVD, but the book series about a wizard detective for hire and doing his best to make a difference, and stay alive, is phenomenal with 14 books and counting.

5) Game of Thrones, as you might already know, is based on George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series, which began with A Ga[Cover]me of Thrones in 1996. While the television series has captivated many, and incited many to find the books, I must warn that, while the reads are well worth it, they can be daunting. The books are lengthy, at over 800 pages with the very shortest book, and the fifth book, A Dance With Dragons, tops 1000 pages. Books 6 and 7 are slated to be published in 2015 and 2019, respectively. If you want to ‘read’ the books, but are turned off or intimidated by their sheer size, A Game of Thrones has also been released as a graphic novel and as an audiobook.

6) The Walking Dead is a television series based on a zombie themed graphic novel series by Robert Kirkman. The first installment, Days Gone By was published in 2004, and the most recent volume, number 18,  titled What Comes After, comes out in June 2013.

7) The Unit was on CBS from 2006 through 2009. The show was about a top-secret military unit based on the real-life U.S. Army special operations unit commonly known as Delta Force. The series was very popular, but many fans never realized that the show was based on the show producer Eric L. Haney’s book, Inside Delta Force : the Story of America’s Elite Counterterrorist Unit.

8)Friday Night Lights is another popular show that many fans do not connect with the book, rather they think about the movie. Both the television series, and the movie, were inspired by the non-fiction book Friday Night Lights: A Town, a Team, and a Dream by  H.G. Bissinger, which was published in 1988.

9) Bones, the television series about a forensic scientist working with the FBI, is inspired by the Temperance Brennan series by Kathy Reichs. The book series began with Déjà Dead, published in 1997.  The show does not follow the novels, rather that act somewhat like a prequel to them, with the TV show’s Temperance Brennan as a younger version of the novels’ Temperance Brennan.

10) Pre[Cover]tty Little Liars is an American teen drama with an element of mystery and a thriller twist built in. It is  loosely based on the popular series of novels written by Sara Shepard, which began with a novel of the same title, Pretty Little Liars published in 2006. The 13th book in the series, Crushed, is scheduled to be released in the summer of 2013 and the 14th book is expected to be released in December of 2013. The television series premiered in 2010, and was renewed for its 5th season, with a spin off series to air in the fall of 2013.