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7 Books to Read Before They Hit the Screens

By Ashly Moore Sheldon • February 07, 2020

When books get adapted to film, it seems like something always gets lost in translation. As we often say, #TheBookIsAlwaysBetter! So, if you're anything like us, you make a point to read (or even reread) the book before seeing the screen version. That's why we do our best to keep you informed about upcoming adaptations. Here's a list of seven titles that are coming out as movies or television shows in the next couple months. Get your hands on the source material so that you can properly judge what they've done to it.

Locke & Key

The new Netflix series, based on Joe Hill's excellent graphic novels, is being released today, February 7! In this horror/fantasy tale the three Locke siblings, along with their mother, retreat to the ancestral family estate, Keyhouse, after their father's mysterious murder. There they find a set of magical keys that may be connected to their father's death. These keys have the potential to unleash powerful forces.

P.S. I Still Love You

The charming sequel to Jenny Han's YA bestseller To All the Boys I've Loved Before returns us to the endearing Lara Jean, now happily coupled up with Peter. When one of her other former crushes returns to the scene, she finds herself feeling confused. Can a girl love two boys at once? The Netflix movie version comes out on February 12!

High Fidelity

This witty, heartfelt novel by Nick Hornby, already a hit 2000 film starring John Cusack, is being revamped as a Hulu series. This version, coming out on Valentine's Day, offers a gender twist, turning the protagonist into a woman. With Zoe Kravitz as the lead, take a trip down musical memory lane as a record-store owner Rob revisits her past loves.

The Good Lord Bird

Based on James McBride's National Book Award–winning novel, the Showtime miniseries created by and starring Ethan Hawke promises the same absorbing mixture of history and imagination. The story centers on a young enslaved boy in 1850s Kansas Territory who gets caught up with a motley crew of abolitionist soldiers. February 16 release date.


Do we have room for yet another adaptation of Jane Austen's charming novel about the matchmaking Emma? Of course we do! Widely regarded as Austen's most accomplished novel, this story is packed with her trademark wit and whimsy. The newest film, coming out February 21, looks ever so lovely.

The Invisible Man

H.G. Wells' science fiction classic has been adapted to screen before. It is the story of a scientist who creates a serum that turns him invisible. When he is unable to reverse the condition, he descends into violent madness. In February 28's loosely based thriller, Elisabeth Moss plays the vengeful scientist's former lover on the run from his controlling, violent ways.

Little Fires Everywhere

This bestseller from Celeste Ng, on everyone's must-read list from 2017, is now coming out as a Hulu limited series on March 18. The riveting family drama stars Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington as two women in a cloistered Cleveland suburb who find themselves at odds with each other.

We're sure there are more adaptations of great books coming out in the next few months. Let us know what we've missed!

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Read more by Ashly Moore Sheldon

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