If you purchase an independently reviewed product or service through a link on our website, Variety may receive an affiliate commission.
Book lovers are in for a treat this year, with a jam-packed slate of upcoming movies and TV series based on best-selling books.
Transport yourself to the mythical world of Neil Gaiman’s “The Sandman” whose adaptation for Netflix stars Tom Sturridge and Gwendoline Christie; immerse yourself in the dense pages of Joyce Carol Oates’ “Blonde,” in eager anticipation of Ana De Armas’ transformation into the iconic Marilyn Monroe, and ready yourself for the truly wild, time traveling series from Brian K. Vaughan’s comic book adaptation of “Paper Girls.”
Here are the best books to dig into this summer before they hit the theaters.
‘The Sandman’ by Neil Gaiman
In Neil Gaiman’s seminal comic book series “The Sandman,” a wizard attempts to capture Death to bargain for eternal life only to unwittingly trap her younger brother Dream, also known as Morpheus, in the process. In order to keep him safe, the wizard keeps Dream encased in a glass bottle for decades until he finally makes an escape on a quest to to seek vengeance on his captors and fix the chaos caused in his absence. The series is one of the first graphic novels to make it onto “The New York Times” Best Seller List and has now been released as a Netflix series starring Tom Sturridge, Gwendoline Christie and Taron Egerton.
‘Eragon’ by Christopher Paolini
“Eragon” is the first of four books in Christopher Paolini’s best-selling series “The Inheritence Cycle,” which is now in early development as a live action TV series at Disney+. In the series, a young farmboy named Eragon befriends a dragon named Saphira, who he teams up with to defeat the evil king Galbatorix and free the land of Alagaësia from his tyranny.
‘Blonde’ by Joyce Carol Oates
Ana de Armas stars as Marilyn Monroe in this powerful tale that offers a tantalizing glimpse into the life of one of pop-culture’s most renowned icons. Andrew Dominik is adapting Joyce Carol Oates’s fictionalized story to Netflix, slated for a release date on September 23, with Adrien Brody, Bobby Cannavale and Julianne Nicholson also starring. Check out more Marilyn Monroe books here.
‘Where the Crawdads Sing’ by Delia Owens
Based on Delia Owens’ best-selling novel, Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine-produced adaptation is set for a July 15 release. The crime drama follows the wild and unkempt Kye, suspected of a mysterious murder in a quiet fishing village. Daisy Edgar-Jones stars as Kye, alongside Taylor John Smith and Harris Dickinson.
‘Red, White & Royal Blue’
The Amazon Studios production is an adaptation of Casey McQuiston’s 2019 best-seller which centers on a star-crossed power couple — the Latiné character of Alex Claremont-Diaz, the son of the president of the United States, and his relationship with Prince Henry, grandson of the Queen of England. Matthew López is set to direct the film starring Taylor Zakhar Perez and Nicholas Galitzine.
The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo
This bestseller is being adapted into a movie for Netflix by “Little Fires Everywhere” creator Liz Tigelaar. The book tells the secret story of the reclusive Hollywood icon Evelyn Hugo as told to an unknown, young magazine reporter Monique Grant. Hugo’s stories of Tinseltown in the 50s, 60s and 80s change Grant’s perspective, but why was this writer plucked from obscurity to tell this story?
‘Wool’ by Hugh Howey
Rebecca Ferguson and Tim Robbins are set to star in Apple’s series adaptation of Hugh Howey’s beloved sci-fi trilogy. In “Wool,” all of humanity (the remnants that exist of it anyway) lives underground in a single silo. The story follows Juliette, a woman from the underground who struggles with her newfound power after being inexplicably promoted to the head of law enforcement.
‘The Lord of the Rings’ by J.R.R Tolkein
Amazon Prime’s upcoming television adaptation of J.R.R Tolkien’s renown series, “The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power,” is being developed by J.D Payne and Parick McCay. The new series will be set in the Second Age of Middle-earth as a prequel to the events in the original novels and films. Set for a premiere date of September 2, Morfydd Clark, Robert Aramayo and Joseph Mawle star in the promised-to-be-epic show.
‘Daisy Jones & The Six’
The New York Times bestseller offers irresistible authenticity to a fictional tale about the rise of an iconic 1970s rock band called the Six and a young girl named Daisy who finds herself at the center of their world. Reid chronicles the band’s success as a riveting oral history, adapted into a 13-episode miniseries for Amazon Prime Video by Reese Witherspoon’s production company Hello Sunshine. Starring Riley Keough and Sebastian Chacon, the series does not currently have a release date.
‘The Vanishing Half’ by Brit Bennett
Brit Bennett’s “The Vanishing Half” was one of the biggest books of 2020, and is now coming to the screen with Aziza Barnes set to write and produce the HBO adaptation. It tells the story of two identical twin sisters growing up in the Jim Crow South before escaping at 16 and pursuing divergent life paths. There have been no casting announcements for the highly-anticipated series yet.
‘Paper Girls’ by Brian K. Vaughan
“Paper Girls” centers around four young girls who, while out delivering papers on the morning after Halloween in 1988, become unwittingly caught in a conflict between warring factions of time-travelers, sending them on an adventure through time that will save the world. “Toy Story 4” writer Stephany Folsom adapted the popular sci-fi comic book series as an Amazon original series and is expected to stream on July 29.
‘The Power’ by Naomi Alderman
The adaptation of Alderman’s story, directed by “The Handmaid’s Tale’s” Reed Moreno, imagines a world in which women are physically stronger than men, by way of a magical electric current that rises through their body. Alice Eve, John Leguizamo and Auli’i Cravalho are set to star in the 10-episode series.
‘Malibu Rising’ by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Taylor Jenkins Reid’s recently released novel is being developed as TV series for Hulu, helmed by “Little Fires Everywhere” creator, show runner and executive producer Liz Tigelaar. The best-selling novel, which follows Reid’s first successful book “Daisy Jones & the Six,” centers on the famous Rivas siblings whose lives take a dramatic turn after their annual end-of-summer blowout in 1983.