Books to Read Before They Become TV Shows in 2017

12 Oct 2016

Some of our favorite stories are finding their way to the small screen in the near future thanks to adaptations by Netflix, Hulu, Show Time, HBO, and more. We will all wait with bated breath until the day that we get to find out whether these adaptations will bring our favorite characters to life in wonder ways, or be a sad representation of the world that so captivated us. On the other side, for many of us hearing that a book is being made into a movie or show is a great excuse to finally sit down and read it. Whether you’re jumping up and down for joy or pulling out clumps of hair and shrieking in anticipation, the following list is just ten of the books to read before they become TV Shows in 2017!


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American Gods

Neil Gaiman

After 3 years in prison, Shadow is released to find that the one person he looked forward to seeing again… is dead. Shattered and purposeless, he makes the acquaintance of a “Mr. Wednesday” who offers him a job. Working as the man’s chauffer, body guard, and errand runner, Shadow is exposed to an unbelievable reality that will rock the nation to its very core. Many Neil Gaiman fans solidified their allegiance to the prolific writer with this groundbreaking fantasy story,  which makes this a great one to starting point for his work if you’re not already familiar!

Release date: 2017

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A Series of Unfortunate Events

Lemony Snicket

Following a tragic house fire, the newly orphaned Baudelaire children go to live with a new guardian. Things only get worse from there. If tragedy, misadventure, and things going wrong fill you with overwhelming gratitude for the fortunate life you have led, this is the series for you. If you’re easily prone to sadness, melancholy, and cynicism, this series is for you too… There are 13 books, but Netflix may be doing more than one per season, so it’d be best to play if safe and read them all as soon as possible.

Release date: January 13, 2017

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The Handmaid’s Tale

Margaret Atwood

Atwood’s classic created a dystopian world in which a morality obsessed society has arisen from a period of havoc. The social structure decrees what every person’s role is and very specifically lays out how they must act. After you read this book, taking freedoms for granted will be a thing of the past. Already made a movie in 1990, Hulu’s TV series may be able to deliver more of the story than the earlier adaption’s hour and 48-minute runtime.

Release date: 2017

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The Golden Compass: His Dark Materials Series

Philip Pullman

His Dark Materials series follow two children, Lyra and Will, on their adventure through other worlds. Encountering a fantastical cast of creatures and characters, the protagonists embark on a  quest to save both the living and the dead. Another book with an ill-fated movie adaption, BBC TV’s intentions will hopefully present the story as dynamically as it deserves. For many, Philip Pullman’s books are one of those stories, you know, the ones that changed you forever, from their teenaged years, so we highly recommend giving them a read before you can give them a watch.

Release date: 2017

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Thirteen Reasons Why

Jay Asher

Following the suicide of his classmate 2 weeks previous, Clay finds a package of tapes from her recounting the reasons she decided to take her life. While the film rights to this story were purchased by Universal Studios in 2011, Netflix decided it would extend the story into, that’s right, a TV show! This New York Times Bestselling story deserves a read, regardless of how you feel about Selena Gomez playing the lead.

Release date: 2016 (or, more likely, 2017)

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Super Sad Love Story

Gary Shteyngart

A satirical novel that follows an unlikely couple in post-financial crisis America. What’s more, their relationship may decide the fate of the country, if not the world! Named best book by a number of recognizable publications, it’s high on our list of recommendations. Let’s hope it’s also named best TV show.

Release date: 2017

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Anne of Green Gables

L.M. Montgomery

The heart warming story of an imaginative orphan finding adventure in the day to day life she lives on Prince Edward Island. This story has been adapted almost 10 times. Whether this means a lot of people have better ideas of the screen adaption, or it’s impossible to properly put forth in filmed format, we will find out soon enough what this newest version will bring!

Release date: 2017

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Alias Grace

Margaret Atwood

Based on a true story, Alias Grace follows Dr. Simon Jordan as he attempts to discover what Grace Marks recalls about her involvement in the murders of her master and his mistress, murders she’s been locked up for but claims to remember nothing about. This is a big year for Margaret Atwood adaptions, and with good reason: she’s a master of penning captivating stories.  While you wait for the show to be released, get sucked in to her classic tale.

Release date: 2017

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Brave New World

Aldous Huxley

A remarkable piece of speculative fiction capturing a utopian world in which a sedated population enjoys itself. Sure to inspire deep thoughts, we are looking forward to seeing yet another classic dystopian world brought to life.

Release date: 2017

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My Brilliant Friend: The Neapolitan Novels

Elena Ferrante

The story of two best friends growing up in an impoverished region near Naples during the 50’s. As the two grow up they follow different paths, but remain the closest of friends. By many, My Brilliant Friend is considered to be so much more than a coming of age tale. This book and its subsequent sequels is among HBO’s upcoming shows, so we can all look forward to having our heart strings pulled.

Release date: 2017

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