GUEST POST: Adapted Reading
On September 24, 2018

by guest blogger Paul Grech

We’re never satisfied aren’t we? At least I tend not to be in so far as television is concerned. No matter how many new series are produced, I’m always wanting more of my favourite reads to receive the Game of Thrones’ treatment. So much so that I keep a running list of books that I want to see on screen, which I’m sharing with you because they’re so good that you’ll want to pick them up before they make it (if they do make it) on to our screens.

Fair warning: given that my preference is for fantasy and sci-fi my recommendations tend to be heavily inspired by those genres.

Is this the best book adaptation ever?

The Belgariad by David Eddings

A classic hero’s journey where an unsuspecting boy discovers that he is special and must embark on a quest in order to save the world, this is similar in many aspects to Lord of the Rings yet different enough to justify standing on its own. With five books in the series there is plenty of material for any prospective director to chew on.

 

The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher

Harry Potter for adults. Sort of. This series deals with a wizard, Harry Dresden, who is also a private investigator and has an eye on the unusual disturbances in Chicago. As the series develops, so too does the world making it all the more captivating. A television series loosely based on this was made a few years back but it was too poor to count as a decent effort.

 

Station Eleven by Emily St John Mandel

A dystopian tale of a world that has been decimated by a deadly virus, this is a bit of Walking Dead meets Handmaid’s Tale. What makes it different than most similar stories is that it looks at how human culture, rather than humanity, would survive.

 

Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi

In a nut shell this is Game of Thrones, the space version. It seems astounding that an author as successful as John Scalzi (who recently signed a $3.4 million contract to write 13 books) has not seen any of his work made into a television series or a movie especially as his work is perfect material.

 

Il-Fiddien trilogy by Simon Bartolo and Loranne Vella

Undoubtedly one of the finest fantasy series in Maltese (and importantly one that stacks up well with foreign language ones). The decidedly Maltese setting should make this an obvious pick for any local television provider looking to do something different (and artistically more rewarding) than another drama.

Please turn this into a TV series

Saga by Brian K Vaughan

By far my favourite graphic novel, one that deals with inter-racial (actually, interplanetary) love and cultural acceptance in a deeply antagonistic universe, so it is fair to say that I would love to see it on the screen. Some of the characters might be challenging to portray but Vaughan has already seen a difficult graphic novel  –Ex Machina – brilliantly converted into a movie.

 

Earthsea Cycle by Ursula K Le Guin

Ursula K Le Guin’s death earlier this year brought her work back into focus and, hopefully, this will result in some books of hers being adapted. Le Guin’s work was not only fantastical, it was also a brilliant exercise in subtly examining themes like politics, gender, religion, relationship with the natural world and sexuality.

Paul Grech has written about players who made the Italian game great in Il Re Calcio e-book series. He is also the publisher of Paġna Mmarkata, a magazine of original Maltese writing that is also a bookmark.

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