My Favorite Book to Television Adaptations

Don’t say Game of Thrones.

I’m not saying it’s bad. It’s just that I haven’t watched the show yet. I was hoping to finish the book series first (I’ll be discussing this more in a future post). Trying to avoid the constant spoilers is next to impossible… Facebook’s tendency to show me things people I know have liked that happen to be spoilers has enraged me on more than one occasion.

However, there are plenty of other great adaptations of books out there that have been made for TV. I have mentioned a few of them in the past, such as The Thorn Birds and Bones. I won’t rehash them here, but those are definitely high on my list.

Rizzoli and Isles

Based on Tess Gerritsen’s mysteries, this one is a series I really enjoyed, despite being almost nothing like the books. The two do share a few characters other than the titular Maura Isles and Jane Rizzoli, and a few plot plots, but otherwise they are very different in both tone and plot. Both are excellent. I binged watched most the the series over the summer and really enjoyed it. However, I haven’t yet brought myself to watch the last few episodes yet. I’ve had to part with too many shows I love in the last few years. I’m having issues letting go.

The Andromeda Strain


The one has actually been adapted twice that I know of. Based on Michael Crichton’s 1969 book, the original movie came out in the 70s. I remember watching it in high school and it was a pretty decent movie that followed the book fairly well. But, I’m looking more at the 2008 miniseries which starred Benjamin Bratt. It’s definitely an update to the original story, but I really liked it. For me, it captured the scariness of the book a little bit better.


This series is adapted from Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments series. It veered pretty far from the source material, but it’s full of such pretty people and is still a good enough story that I keep coming back. Of course part of it is just that I really like to look at Matthew Daddario.



This one might not be totally fair of me to list. As I’ve mentioned before, I’ve never actually read Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s stories about the great detective. But, for real guys, have you watched the BBC’s Sherlock? It’s amazing.

Pride and Prejudice

Another great entry from the Brits. This was not my first run in with Austen (that milestone goes to Sense and Sensibility, which I’m still obsessed with to this day), but it’s certainly one of the favorites. Why? Let’s be honest: Colin Firth. I love the man. And the scene where he comes dripping wet out of the lake, although nowhere to be found in the books, was one of the greatest television moments.

I know there are tons more, many of which I haven’t seen, or I have but I have not read the books. What are your favorites?