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From Books to Movies: YA Literature on the Big Screen

Everyone knows about "Twilight" and "The Hunger Games" but have you heard about these movies that began as great Young Adult books?

With the advent of the fifth installment of the Twilight saga, Breaking Dawn: Part 2 (Nov. 16) it is a good time to list some other just as notable Young Adult books that have recently made it or are going to make it to the big screen soon. Read them before you see them @ The Pearl River Public Library!

Fat Kid Rules the World by K.L. Going
Troy is an obese teenager trying to get through high school unscathed. While he is contemplating jumping in front of a subway train he is rescued by Curt, a troubled and gifted guitar player. After Curt saves Troy’s life he feels that Troy owes him one.  Curt convinces Troy to play drums for his new band even though Troy has little experience with actual drum playing and is mortally afraid to be on display in front of others.
The movie with the same title has been released as an independent film and won the Audience Award at the South by South West Film Festival. The director Matthew Lillard promoted the film during the Vans Warped Tour this summer attracting the audience for which it was intended, teens who love music.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
Charlie a shy, self-proclaimed wallflower is entering his first year of high school. He soon makes friends with kids older than he is that introduce him to the world of sex, drugs and the Rocky Horror Picture Show. This book told in letters, is a coming of age story that depicts what many kids face during their teenage years.
The movie with the same title is coming out September 21 with a well-known cast including Emma Watson. The Perks of Being a Wallflower hit number 6 on the most frequently challenged books list of 2008, according to the American Library Association.

The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
Clary always thought she was a normal girl but a trip to a local night club reveals her ability to see invisible people and monsters. It turns out Clary is born from Shadowhunters a group of demon hunters that have the ability to hide themselves from human eyes. They also have amazing magic powers to help fight evil. Clary’s heritage has been kept secret for her protection but events that unfold lead her to embrace her destiny.
City of Bones
is set to release August of 2013. This book which has been a selection on the Pearl River School District Summer Reading List for several summers is already a big hit with the teens and is sure to be an even bigger hit on the big screen. According to IMDb the cast is comprised of actors such as Jonathan Rhys Meyers and Lily Collins.

Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card
Ender Wiggin is the only tactical and strategic master on the planet that can save the human race from the alien “buggers” that once again threaten the Earth. One small problem no one thinks he can do it because he is just a kid.
Ender’s Game
is the beginning of a successful and popular series by Orson Scott Card. This novel originally published in 1977 is now getting its due with a movie release scheduled to open in November 2013 with an impressive cast of characters including Harrison Ford and Ben Kingsley.

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
(OK, so maybe this book is not strictly YA but it is on many high school reading lists.)
This story is narrated by Nick Carraway a young gentleman that has recently moved to the nouveau riche community of West Egg, Long Island. His Neighbor Jay Gatsby is known for his incredible parties where everyone who is anyone attends. Gatsby however, has an unrequited love for Nick’s cousin Daisy who is also the wife of Nick’s college friend Tom. Gatsby befriends Nick in hopes of getting closer to Daisy. As events unfold the excess and extravagance of the 1920’s is prevalent in the way these characters react to the situations in which they find themselves.
The film is due out in 2013 with Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby. However this is not the first adaptation of Fitzgerald’s novel. It was originally released in 1974 with Robert Redford as Gatsby. Critics gave it mixed reviews with emphasis on how the movie did not really follow the book. It will be interesting to see how this new interpretation will be received by critics and fans alike.

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