There is an age in everyone’s life when they are stuck between childhood and adulthood. For the longest time, they were addressed as teens and now they prefer calling themselves young adults. Long before mass entertainment systems like the TV and the movies became mass, there was another medium that was popular and was as much fun if not more. They were the literary works.
Today, we might call those novels classics and we might not connect with them the same way like the contemporary novels but those classics once inspired people and they spoke to these ‘young adults’ who were going through the awkward years of growing up. It wasn’t until the 1960s that these books were categorized as Young Adult fiction.
Young Adult covers a variety of genres like the classic and contemporary coming-of-age novels, the fantasy fictions like the Harry Potter series and Lord of the Rings, the dystopian novels like The Maze Runner and Hunger Games and many more. Soon other avenues of entertainment began to use these novels as source material.
It may seem like a recent fad but young adult stories being adapted into movies isn’t. It has been 15 years since we were introduced to the world of Princess Mia on the big screen. We have seen countless other of our favorite characters being brought to life in the movies. Here is a look at some of the other lesser known YA novels that inspired movies.
A Series of Unfortunate Events
This series follows the adventures of the Baudelaire Orphans who are placed under the care of Count Olaf who only has eyes for their inheritance. The series had 13 books in it where each followed the pattern of Count Olaf’s plan to get his hands on the inheritance and how the kids managed to outwit him. A few of these incidents led to A Series of Unfortunate Events, the three-part movie series, which released in 2004 starring Jim Carrey and Meryl Steep. A video game was also introduced and currently Netflix is working on a 13-episode series on the books.
The Spiderwick Chronicles
How would you feel if you could move into an estate in a deplorable condition? Doesn’t sound exciting, does it? Especially if you are kids. What if that same estate is also a portal to the world of faeries (typo intended)? That’s exactly what happens to the nine-year-old Grace twins and their 13-year-old sister Mallory when they moved into Spiderwick estate. Once they discover the world of faeries, there is no turning back for them and a series full of adventure is in store for them. A feature film with the basic storyline of all the novels was released in 2008 and a video game was released too.
Bridge to Terabithia
There have been multiple times when we have slipped into our own world to escape drudgery, boredom, loneliness and some such evils. An imaginary world cannot cause us much harm and we rule it. When Jesse and Leslie name their world Terabithia and rule over it, it provides solace. Terabithia helps them deal better with the real world. This book was adapted twice; once a TV movie while the other released in 2007 starring Josh Hutcherson, Robert Patrick and Zooey Deschanel.
I am Number Four
This is the first book from the Lorein Legacies and the only one to be made into a movie. The story is about a boy from a planet called Lorien. He assumes the name John Smith and walks among us. This book follows his adventures. For sci-fi lovers, this should be a thrill of a read. The movie based on the book released in 2011 by Dreamworks, two years after they bought the rights.
The Golden Compass
Wouldn’t it be an amazing world where every human has an animal psychically connected to them? They apparently exist in a parallel world according to this novel. They are called daemons. They also are the soul of the humans and they protect and comfort them. The series follows the travels of Lyra Belacque as she ventures with her daemon in search of her friend Robert who has been kidnapped by Gobblers. The movie The Golden Compass released in 2007 and was based on the first book of the series. Due to the lukewarm response at the box office, the idea for a sequel was scrapped.
City of Bones
City of Bones is the first book of the series The Mortal Instruments, which is set in New York City and follows the adventures of Shadowhunters who are a secret association tasked with hunting down demons. They have their own version of spells that are set in symbols and once you enter this world there is no way back. The movie released in 2013 and was based on the first of the series. The sequel was cancelled due to moderate response but it was converted into a TV series titled Shadowhunters, which has now been renewed for a second season.
This is a classic published in the year 1968-1969 in two parts. The novel begins with the story of four March sisters as they prepare for Christmas without their father in the midst of Civil War. Thereon, their adventures are narrated through the story as they battle through illnesses and settle down finding husbands and giving birth to children. It concludes with the sisters reuniting on their mother’s 60th birthday. The movie has been adapted six times on the big screen. The first two versions being silent in the year 1917 and 1918. The rest released in the years 1933, 1949, 1978 and 1994.
Young Adult is not a novice genre when it comes to being adapted on the big screen and filmmakers continue to get better with handling the novels while adapting. Don’t forget to catch up on sone reading with these novels and movies over the weekend and let us know how you find it in the comments below.