9 Books That Deserve A Miniseries

Hollywood is constantly mining the printed word, seeking out novels and memoirs that can be adapted for the big screen. Each awards season, we see at least one amazing book that's been turned into a prize-winning movie. (Will this be Gone Girl's year?) But, sometimes, the source material deserves more than just 120 minutes of screen time. And, this being the golden age of television, it seems that there's never been a better time to give our favorite books a little more love and turn them into miniseries.
For instance: HBO has produced Olive Kitteridge, starring Frances McDormand. The 2008 Pulitzer Prize-winning book by Elizabeth Strout follows the titular character, a Maine matriarch, along with other stoic residents of the small coastal town of Crosby. It's a slim volume filled with big stories that will haunt you long after you finish. And, if the reviews are to be believed, the HBO series is amazing. The A.V. Club's Libby Hill writes: "There are many things that Olive Kitteridge gets right, but none so significant as how brilliantly it simultaneously captures the deep, pervasive stillness and the close, suffocating entanglement of small-town living."
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However, Olive Kitteridge is not the only book that deserves some small-screen love. Ahead, we look at nine more titles that would make excellent miniseries. Until TV execs make these happen, you know what we'll be watching on Sunday nights.
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Courtesy of Vintage Contemporaries.
Home Cooking by Laurie Colwin

This collection of personal essays by food writer and novelist Laurie Colwin may seem like an odd choice for a miniseries, but the source material is ripe for a fictional twist. Colwin wrote about food in the '80s, an era quite different from today — it was a time before foodies and our cultural fixation on the Food Network. The sweet stories of life and cooking in New York City would be a refreshing antidote to Girls and Sex And The City, giving Big Apple living some new flavor.
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Courtesy of Dial Press.
The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman

Rachman's The Imperfectionists is a series of interconnected short stories that follow the employees of a small, flailing English-language newspaper in Rome. The quirky characters — an ego-maniacal war correspondent, a desperate Parisian stringer, the overbearing editor-in-chief — are ideal for a TV adaptation in the vein of The Newsroom. Also, who doesn't want to spend a little more time in Italy's lovely capital?
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Courtesy of Penguin Books.
The Best Of Everything by Rona Jaffe

Jaffe's novel made a big splash when it debuted in 1958 for being groundbreaking in its portrayal of women's ambitions and sexuality. Nearly 60 years later, it's still an exciting read, as it follows the lives of five young women working in publishing in 1950s New York City. The book got a big screen adaptation in 1959 (starring Joan Crawford) but with the success of Mad Men and Masters of Sex, TV execs would be crazy not to return to this source material.
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Courtesy of Random House Vintage.
Geek Love by Katherine Dunn

There have long been rumors of a big-screen adaptation of this National Book Award finalist, but nothing has yet come to fruition. With the success of Ryan Murphy's latest season of American Horror Story, now is the time to usher this one-of-a-kind story of a family of freaks out of developmental hell and onto the small screen, because the story is too rich and complex for just a movie. Give the Binewskis — Arturo the Aqua Boy, Siamese twins Iphy and Elly, hunchback Oly, and baby Chick — the time and space they need to really, truly tell their one-of-a-kind story.
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Courtesy of Blue Rider Press.
Yours For Eternity: A Love Story On Death Row by Damien Echols and Lorri Davis

Many people became familiar with the harrowing story of the West Memphis Three after HBO aired a series of documentaries that chronicled the tale of three young men from Arkansas who were wrongly sentenced for the murder of three young boys. But, fewer people know about the love story between death row inmate Damien Echols and Brooklyn-based landscape architect Lorri Davis, 10 years his senior. The two fell hopelessly in love and married while Echols was in prison. Their love letters were released in book form earlier this year and are fascinating material for a miniseries that follows the highs and lows of this incredible relationship. Just imagine Orange Is the New Black, only with much, much higher stakes.
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Courtesy of Riverhead Books.
This Is How You Lose Her by Junot Díaz

While this may be the golden age of television, it's still a frustratingly whitewashed, male-centric era. Where is the diversity of storylines and characters beyond the white male antiheroes we see over and over? Díaz is a master storyteller, and this compelling collection follows the life of Dominican-born, Jersey-raised Yunior and the women he loves and loses. The stories are complicated and heartbreaking, and would make for some serious must-see TV.
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The Hour I First Believed by Wally Lamb

Why hasn't one of Lamb's novels been adapted for the big screen yet? An Oprah Book Club favorite, he writes sprawling epics that often cover decades of a character's life — not something easy to sum up in two hours. But, The Hour I First Believed is just calling out for a small-screen adaptation. It's the story of the Quirks, a family directly affected by the shooting at Columbine High School. It's a rich, moving morality tale that explores the personal heartache caused by a national tragedy that would make for one seriously gripping series.
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Courtesy of Viking.
A Tale For The Time Being by Ruth Ozeki

This gorgeous and intricate novel tells the story of a novelist living in the Pacific Northwest who discovers a teenaged Japanese girl's diary that has washed ashore. The story moves back and forth between the two narratives, and it's easy to imagine a small-screen adaptation that slowly unravels the mystery of the girl who penned the diary.
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Courtesy of Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides

Eugenides' 2011 novel was met with mixed reviews, but the story of Madeline, Mitchell, and Leonard — friends, lovers, and college students at Brown — could be one of those rare titles that improves in adaptation. Set in the 1980s in Rhode Island, New York, India, and Cape Cod, the story follows the ups and downs of early adulthood and manages to feel like both a contemporary novel and a classic love story. Beyond the compelling storyline, TV execs should consider it for the '80s costumes alone.
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