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Books for Thought is where I post a discussion topic related to books, reading, writing, or something pertaining to one of the three. I hope you’ll join in, and discuss today’s topic of

book adaptations (that i never want)

A lot of books have been adapted into TV shows and movies, and a large portion of them are YA novels. Twilight, The Hunger Games, Maze Runner, The Book Thief, Love, Simon, Everything, Everything, The Hate U Give, The Darkest Minds, The Vampire Diaries, Pretty Little Liars… the list goes on. I think it’s okay to say that some adaptations don’t really hit the mark. This can be because of the actors, the script, the changes made to the story to make it fit for screen. Either way, some adaptations are great and some certainly are not great.

I can’t say whether I’m an overall fan of adaptations or not because I do love some of them out there, and there are some cases where I have only seen the adaptation and not read the original text (so sue me). Regardless of this, though, there are some books I never want to see adapted because the adaptation could never possibly live up to the perfection of the original text. And here they are:

The Wicker King

Even though I just read this book last month it quickly became one of my favourites. The story centres on August and Jack and their codependent, sometimes toxic, relationship. I honestly don’t think that casting people could ever find two boys to fit these roles. I think Jack would be the harder of the two to cast because of his personality changes, and the many different sides he has to him. I just can’t see anyone capturing the perfection of these boys.

The Diviners

Unlike in a lot of movies, where the protagonist and their love interest are the main characters and thus an adaptation would only really require two perfect castings… The Diviners has eight POV characters that would all need to be cast perfectly. In terms of characters I don’t think anyone could capture correctly, I think Evie and Sam would be the hardest, followed by Theta. The characters in The Diviners are so nuances and multi-faceted, even though at times they all choose to show different parts of themselves to different people.

I also think that the setting and the atmosphere of the books would be hard to capture on screen. I think the only thing I’d love to see in adaptation of The Diviners would be all the 1920s clothes. But the clothes aren’t worth seeing my favourite series adapted badly.

Sloppy Firsts

When I think about it, there’s a possibility that an adaptation of Sloppy Firsts could be done well. But it would rely on SO many factors, most of all being who they cast as Marcus. I think Marcus was one of my very first book boyfriends, and thus remains dear to my heart.

I remember I was either 13 or 14 when I first read this book and I adored every minute of it. It remains to this day one of the few books that have made me laugh out loud. But I wouldn’t want these funny aspects to be taken too far. Yes, Sloppy Firsts can be funny but it’s also a very emotional book and I wouldn’t want that to be buried under an attempt to make it a “funny” movie adaptation.


There is just far too much that could go wrong with an adaptation of Fangirl. Much like I said about Sloppy Firsts and the funny aspect, I feel like Cath’s quirkiness/weirdness/introvert-ness could be taken too far and they’d ruin her character. Also, I would be livid if they either a) took out the fanfic aspect, or b) made fun of it. Fangirl is perfect as a book.

Poison Study

Valek. No one could perfectly capture Valek. Also other characters like Ari and Janco, who are sweet and playful. I think maybe the perfect person could be found for Yelena, but I think they would have to search for and wide for the actor that could take on the challenge of portraying Yelena and not stuff it up.

The Raven Boys

But, you might say, The Raven Cycle IS being adapted into a TV show! Yes, I will reply, but that doesn’t mean I want to see it adapted.

I was certainly not ecstatic when the news was announced that TRC was being made into a TV show. I am very wary of who they will cast as Blue and the boys. Whether they will hetero-wash Ronan and Adam. How they’ll bring the magic to life. I am not looking forward to it whatsoever. I don’t know if I’ll watch it. I don’t know if I’ll look back on these words and want to eat them because I was wrong. Let’s hope I am because I really don’t want to see this perfection adapted into a shitty TV show.

What about you? What are some books you don’t want to see adapted?sig-chiara

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Posted on: February 6, 2018 • By: Chiara

11 Responses to Books I Never Want to See Adapted

  1. i totally agree that the market is totally oversaturated with adaptations… a book become a hit and it’s like they get instant movie contract. i’m happy for the authors, don’t get me wrong, but they often has no control on the movie that it came out differently and flopped on the market. i actually think tv is the perfect medium for the raven cycle- if it’s done right, it’s like twin peaks, stranger things, and the x files! i hope they won’t try to drag the series on and instead let it done as the book is done :)

  2. I definitely understand what you mean with The Raven Boys – on one hand I really want to see it as a tv show, because if done well it could be amazing, but I’m just so worried that they’ll screw it up. There’s so much to screp up too! I had never thought about ways they could ruin Fangirl, but you’re right, I don’t think they’d do it justice. I fear they’d go with the cliché of Cath being shy and introverted and then fall in love with Levi who’d they turn into a more popular, social guy (of course he is social, I don’t remember he was popular, but I feel like they’d really emphasise that?) and the Simon Snow and fanfic parts would probably not go well either like you said… Let’s hope Hollywood stays away from these :P

  3. Kelly says:

    I try to stay away from.adaptations unless they’ve had widely praised reviews. I just don’t want a book spoiled by someone else’s interpretation or being dulled down for the big screen. Percy Jackson is the extreme example. They massacred that man’s work because he was left out of the creative process. One I really loved was Jasper Jones, such an incredibly moving story about small town fifties racism in Australia. There’s an Australian series starting soon on NITV of Grace Beside Me, which I have my fingers crossed is amazing!

  4. Ooh The Wicker King…yeah, that would be a tough one to adapt. I think it would be really tough to get the right guys to play Jack and August like you said. And The Diviners probably have TOO MANY characters to accurately tell the story. I’m excited about The Raven Boys TV show, but I they better not make Adam and Ronan straight.


  5. I full-heartedly love this post! I’m incredibly scared of what will happen with The Raven Cycle. In my mind, I’m already imagining a “Shadowhunters”-quality adaptation, and I’m DREADING IT. I think it’d be fun to see the outfits for the The Diviniers – if they had the budget to make them good, that is – but I agree, it’d be near impossible to find the perfect actors. Also, I have the feeling they’d create lots of drama between the characters… TV shows for young adults tend to do that.

    Veronika @ The Regal Critiques

  6. Dina says:

    Valek is perfect, and I felt upset by how he was not done justice in the latter books. I cannot imagine him being portrayed in real life at all, because it’s like a delicate balance between being shrewd and sweet. I have not read The Diviners yet. I will get there, because I gathered the first two books from that series already. I’m just kind of intimidated. YES, I agree, Fangirl would never work as a movie, because I feel like they’d be mocking the fangirl culture? And, plus, how will they connect the actual fanfic part to that story? So many questions.

  7. Valerie says:

    I agree! I think it’s cool when your favorite books are adapted (Like The Book Thief, which I actually enjoyed a lot!), but there is SO MUCH that can go wrong! I’m nervous to see the TV show for The Raven Cycle, but I’ll probably still try it out because I’m curious haha.

  8. I’M THE SAME ABOUT THE RAVEN CYCLE. Everyone was tagging me to see the news on twitter and i’m like??? This is the worst idea I’ve ever heard. The books are so full of thoughts and aestheticness and like circular references it just…it just won’t be captured on film and they’ll condense it AND I’LL CRY.?? Also will be frikkin’ mad if they take out Ronan/Adam. (Although the only good thing about the show is they could cast more POC people which would be nice.) Anyway, if it DOES happen, I don’t want to see it.??

    Also agreed about The Wicker King. It happens too much in August’s head?! I think it’d be hard to translate his reasonings on-screen and he’d just look like an idiot for doing what Jack wanted the whole time. (Omg i love that book I have so many feelings.)

    (The only adaption I’m excited for is Love, Simon.❤️)

  9. Sooo I haven’t been the best with keeping up with the blogosphere but I’ve heard so many raves about the Wicker King, I love the sound of it tbh! I know those feels about them not wanting to adapt your faves because they can certainly get it wrong and ruin it.

  10. This is such an interesting post! When I watched the Ghibli movie Whisper of the Heart it reminded me a LOT of Fangirl so if something like that happened I would watch it, but I think that’s a pretty long shot. I agree, I think the Diviners would be super difficult to adapt and cast well. BUT the clothes would be wonderful.

  11. I agree completely with The Diviners. I love that series so much that I would hate to see it portrayed badly. I can’t imagine anyone replicating the amazing atmosphere of the books on screen and, like you said, all of the characters would have to be cast well.

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