Page to Screen Nets Some Big Tickets , Nov. 16, 2018 | Book Pulse

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, My Brilliant Friend, and Widows open this weekend. Both Time and LibraryReads pick their best of the year. In new adaptation news David Baldacci, Mira Grant, and Annalee Newitz all head to the screen.

Page to Screen

A handful of long-awaited films and streaming series start today and over the weekend.

Opening today:

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, set in the world of Harry Potter and written by J.K. Rowling. Reviews | Trailer

Widows, based on the novel by Lynda La Plante. Reviews | Trailer

Speed Kills, based on the book by Arthur Jay Harris. Reviews | Trailer

Debuting on November 18:

My Brilliant Friend, based on the novel by Elena Ferrante. Reviews | Trailer

Airing on November 19:

The Little Drummer Girl, based on the novel by John le Carré. Reviews | Trailer

Agatha Raisin and the Wizard of Evesham, based on the novel by M.C. Beaton. No reviews yet | Trailer

The Last Kingdom, based on the books by Bernard Cornwell. No new reviews yet | Trailer

Starting on November 20:

Hope at Christmas, based on the novel by Nancy Naigle. No reviews yet | Trailer


The NYT reviews Steve Kornacki's The Red and the Blue: The 1990s and the Birth of Political Tribalism (Ecco: HarperCollins): "lively and fulfilling." Also, Destroy All Monsters: The Last Rock Novel by Jeff Jackson (FSG Originals: Macmillan): pulls "the reader past the velvet ropes into the black-box theaters and sweaty, sticky-floored stadiums." The Feral Detective by Jonathan Lethem (Ecco: Harper): "while it’s not essential Lethem, the book grows in your estimation in retrospect, and upon rereading, because of its ambitions, its sneaky tenderness and the relevance of its questions about identity and tribal warfare." Storm Lake: A Chronicle of Change, Resilience, and Hope from a Heartland Newspaper by Art Cullen (Viking: Penguin): "I don’t mean to sound cranky, but this book feels like a missed opportunity."

NPR reviews The End of the End of the Earth: Essays by Jonathan Franzen (FSG: Macmillan), calling the essays "melancholy and lovely."

The Washington Post starts its year end posting of reviews of older titles, circling back to Seven Types of Atheism by John Gray (FSG: Macmillan): "He is erudite, witty and persuasive." Also, Capitalism in America: A History by Alan Greenspan, Adrian Wooldridge (Penguin): "well worth reading." Presidents of War by Michael Beschloss (Crown: Random House): "a significant feat of historical synthesis." Ninth Street Women: Lee Krasner, Elaine de Kooning, Grace Hartigan, Joan Mitchell, and Helen Frankenthaler: Five Painters and the Movement That Changed Modern Art by Mary Gabriel (Little, Brown: Hachette): "a vivid portrait of the very nature of the artist." Saudi America: The Truth About Fracking and How It's Changing the World by Bethany McLean (Columbia Global Reports): "informed by her experience in financial affairs, McLean has cautionary words about the limits of U.S. output."

Briefly Noted

Time picks its "10 Best Fiction Books of 2018" and the "10 Best Nonfiction Books of 2018."

LibraryReads names its Favorite of Favorites for 2018, with Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover (Random House) topping the list. The memoir is No. 3 on the new Time list, No. 1 on the Amazon list, and makes The Washington Post's "50 notable works of nonfiction in 2018" list (but not their ten best of the year list). Keep up with all the year-end best picks at Largehearted boy; the site updated its running list of "best of" lists yesterday.

BecomingNews: Entertainment Weekly goes inside Michelle Obama's opening event for her book tour. She was interviewed by Oprah Winfrey. On her Ellen appearance, Mrs. Obama and Ellen go to Costco to sign books. Here is the video. Vanity Fair has a review of the memoir. Vulture has a look at its critical reception.

Vanity Fair reports on the National Book Award ceremony. So do Vulture and Esquire. The Atlantic considers Isabel Allende acceptance speech.

The Washington Post suggests audiobooks for "that long Thanksgiving drive."

The Cut offers "If You Can’t Get Enough of Elena Ferrante, Read This."

Vogue suggests books to read right now.

Nylon asks 12 authors to pick "Books That Best Represent America."

Author Tommy Orange writes about Thanksgiving for The Washington Post.

The Guardianinterviews George Saunders, Fox 8: A Story (Random House).

The Washington Postinterviews Jeff Tweedy, Let's Go (So We Can Get Back): A Memoir of Recording and Discording with Wilco, Etc. (Dutton: Penguin).

The L.A.TimesappreciatesNotes from No Man's Land: American Essays by Eula Biss (Graywolf Press: Macmillan).

The Guardian runs an essay by author Michel Faber on Stan Lee. Esquire has a more pointed take.

The L.A. Times considers John W. Campbell, "a chief architect of science fiction's Golden Age ... who single-handedly designed many of the ways we saw the future then and continue to see it now." The story mentions Astounding: John W. Campbell, Isaac Asimov, Robert A. Heinlein, L. Ron Hubbard, and the Golden Age of Science Fiction by Alec Nevala-Lee (Dey Street Books: Harper).

Author David Walliams is huge in the UK, selling "more than 110,000 copies [of his newest book, The Ice Monster] in just three days, making it the fastest-selling title since Harry Potter and the Cursed Child." The Guardian has a view of what makes him so popular.

The Washington Post reports that the CBeebies Bedtime Story show will debut a story time reading using sign language.

Authors on Air

Nancy Pearl interviews Leif Enger, Virgil Wander (Grove Press; LJ starred review), for her Book Lust show.

David Baldacci’s John Puller series is headed to TV. Netflix will adapt Alex Kershaw's The Liberator. Netflix also has plans for John Marrs's The One. Hugh Grant has joined the cast of The Undoing, based on the book You Should Have Known by Jean Hanff Korelitz. Marcus Sakey’s Brilliance trilogy is headed to the big screen. Deadline Hollywood has all the details.

Mira Grant's Rolling in the Deep is headed to the movies. Variety has the story. reports that Autonomous by Annalee Newitz is headed to TV.

Shadow and Act has news that Jewelle Gomez's The Gilda Stories is getting adapted.

Author Image
Neal Wyatt

Neal Wyatt is LJ’s readers’ advisory columnist, contributing The Reader’s Shelf, Book Pulse, and Wyatt’s World columns. She is the coauthor of The Readers’ Advisory Guide to Genre Fiction, 3d ed. (ALA Editions, 2019). Contact her at

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Kids are using VR to explore worlds and create new ones


Kids are using VR to explore worlds and create new ones


Kids are using VR to explore worlds and create new ones

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