The Blog of Toledo Lucas County Public Library

Books on the Big Screen

Posted 11/04/20 by Ann H

Book-to-screen adaptations are extremely popular. From the ubiquitous Harry Potter and The Hunger Games to lesser known titles like Jane Austen’s Emma (also known as Clueless) and Mean Girls (based on the book Queen Bees & Wannabees by Rosalind Wiseman), we’ve got something for everyone.

Cover of Shawshank Redemption

Shawshank Redemption

Print   |   eBook

As the top-rated film on Internet Movie Database ( since 2008, Shawshank Redemption has a lot to live up to when comparing it to the literary inspiration, Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption by Stephen King, included in his collection of short stories, Different Seasons.

Cover of The Princess Bride

The Princess Bride

Print   |   eBook   |   eAudiobook

The Princess Bride, by William Goldman, is a wonderfully quirky, historical account of Princess Buttercup and Westley. The movie adaptation stays true to the book in terms of plot, character and tone, but is simply a fairy tale.

Cover of Downton Abbey, the motion picture

Downton Abbey, the motion picture

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The age-old question of which came first, the chicken or the egg, can be applied to Downton Abbey. Which came first, the book, TV series or movie? While the TV series has propelled it into popular culture, Downton Abbey, the motion picture, is indeed based on the book, To Marry an English Lord by Gail MacColl.

Cover of Emma


Print   |   eBook   |   eAudiobook   |   DVD   |   DVD (Search Ohio)

Whether you prefer the 1995 adaption Clueless, the 2010 adaption Emma or the 2020 adaption Emma (all listed above), you will have a lot to discuss when comparing them to Austen’s original novel.

Cover of Ready Player One

Ready Player One

Print   |   eBook   |   eAudiobook

Other than the title and overall theme, this motion picture shares little else with the novel by Ernest Cline. Is this proof that the movie can be better than the book? You be the judge.

Cover of About a boy

About a boy

Print   |   eBook

Like the book by Nick Hornby, the motion picture is a lot of fun and balances humor and touching human experiences nicely.

Cover of To kill a mockingbird

To kill a mockingbird

Print   |   eBook   |   eAudiobook

Where a book has an unlimited number of pages in which to tell a story, a film adaptation has a finite amount of time. There are bound to be scenes found in the book that have been excluded from the film. That being said, the film, directed by Robert Mulligan, stays fairly true to the original tome.

Cover of Extremely loud & incredibly close

Extremely loud & incredibly close

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A poignant look at a young boy’s life after losing his father on 9/11. While the book and motion picture share plot, theme and main characters, the book contains details that help provide a more complete picture.

Whether you prefer a gripping page turner or an action-packed cinematic marvel, books and movie adaptations often go hand-in-hand.