It is just us, or does 2017 seem to be the perfect year to escape to fictional worlds? If you are in need of new options to take a break from reality, you're in luck. We've found 10 books — touching on everything from explorers lost in the Amazon and evil internet companies — that you should binge-read before their film adaptations hit the big screens in the coming months.
By Deborah Moggach
Movie release date: February 24
The story takes place in early-17th-century Amsterdam, during the tulipomania period. Academy Award winner Alicia Vikander plays Sophia, a young woman married to wealthy merchant Cornelis Sandvoort. Sophia falls in love with a young artist, who is hired by her husband to paint the couple's portrait. The cast also includes Dane DeHaan, Zach Galifianakis, Christoph Waltz, Judi Dench, and Cara Delevingne.
By William P. Young
Movie release date: March 3
A little girl is kidnapped and murdered while camping with her family, leaving her parents devastated. Years later, her father, Mack (Sam Worthington), receives a suspicious note that prompts him to embark on a journey to deal with his grief in the place where his daughter was murdered. Octavia Spencer, Radha Mitchell, and Tim McGraw round out the cast.
Before I Fall
By Lauren Oliver
Movie release date: March 3
Imagine living the same day over and over again. This is what happens to Samantha Kingston (Zoey Deutch), a popular 17-year-old who dies in a car accident — but she wakes up only to live it all over again. Samantha has to discover what she has to do differently in her snobby, shallow life to change her fatal destiny.
The Zookeeper's Wife
By Diane Ackerman
Movie release date: March 31
Set in Poland during World War II, this true story follows Antonina Zabinska (Jessica Chastain), who saved hundreds of people by hiding them from the Nazis in empty animal cages at the Warsaw Zoo. The cast includes Daniel Brühl and Johan Heldenbergh, playing Antonina's husband.
By R.J. Palacio
Movie release date: April 7
August "Auggie" Pullman was born with a facial deformity and just wants to be an ordinary kid in his new school. He eats ice cream and rides his bike like anyone else, and he feels the same inside, but he can’t help people seeing him different. This award-winning tale about 10-year-old Auggie and the struggles of being different will grab you by your heart. The film features Jacob Tremblay as Auggie, and Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson as August’s parents.
Read on for more books to binge.
The Lost City of Z
By David Grann
Movie release date: April 21
Set in 1925, British explorer Colonel Percy Harrison Fawcett embarks on a journey with his son to the Amazon to find the mythical city of Z. This nonfiction adventure tale follows their jungle expedition — and the mysteries surrounding it. The cast includes Charlie Hunnam, Tom Holland, Sienna Miller, and Robert Pattinson.
By Dave Eggers
Movie release date: April 28
Emma Watson stars in this dystopian story as Mae Holland, a new tech worker for the country's most powerful internet company. Soon, she discovers that knowing and sharing everything is not as great as it seems. Any resemblance to reality is pure coincidence. The film includes Tom Hanks as Eamon Bailey, John Boyega, and Patton Oswalt.
By Nicola Yoon
Movie release date: May 19
Eighteen-year-old Maddy Whittier (Amandla Stenberg) has never been outside her house, thanks to a rare genetic disorder that makes her allergic to the world. But everything changes when she meets boy-next-door Olly Bright (Nick Robinson), who inspires her to live in the outside world regardless of the tragic consequences. The cast also features Anika Noni Rose and Ana de la Reguera.
My Cousin Rachel
By Daphne du Maurier
Movie release date: July 14
If you like tales about forbidden love, then you have to read and watch this classic mystery-romance. Rachel (Rachel Weisz), a recent widow, moves to Cornwall where her late husband’s cousin, Philip Ashley (Sam Claflin), lives. Philip and Rachel develop a relationship mixed with passion and suspicion.
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
By Pierre Christin
Movie release date: July 21
In a universe without boundaries, space and time-traveling agents Valerian (Dane DeHaan) and Laureline (Cara Delevingne) are sent into a mission to investigate a galactic empire and maintain order in the universe. Their mission fails when menacing forces jeopardize the future of mankind. The film based on the French graphic novel also includes Ethan Hawke, Clive Owen, and Rihanna.
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