Josh Schwartz, producer of the series, ended the ‘John Green’s Looking for Alaska’ panel by announcing that all eight episodes of Hulu’s new series would be available October 18th. Hulu has had much success with book-to-screen adaptations, like 11/22/63and, more recently, Catch-22. This will be the third time one of Green’s books finds its way to the screen. This comes as no shock, seeing as both The Fault in Our Stars and Paper Towns had significant success.
Looking for Alaska captures the life of Miles “Pudge” Halter after he is brought into Alaska Young’s world at boarding school. Captivated by the beauty just down the hall, his life will never be the same. The book has been nominated for several awards, including the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Young Adult Fiction.
Joining Schwartz for the panel event was John Green, Stephanie Savage, Charlie Plummer, and Kristine Froseth. Are you excited for the latest John Green adaptation?
Following the huge success of the movie IT and the excitement for the upcoming Pet Semetary, Stephen King’s The Stand is being adapted as a TV mini-series. The Stand will include approximately ten episodes and will be available on CBS all access.
Image Via Highlight Hollywood
The Stand will be directed by Josh Boone, who is huge fan of King.. When asked about the work in progress he stated:
“I wrote King a cameo as himself in my first film and have been working to bring The Stand to the screen for five years. I’ve found incredible partners in CBS All Access and Ben Cavell.”
Ben Cavell who is working with Boone will be executive producing and writing the script. Boone goes onto describe a touching moment from his childhood, after his parents had burned his copy of the The Stand.
“I read The Stand under my bed when I was twelve, and my Baptist parents burned it in our fireplace upon discovery. Incensed, I stole my Dad’s FedEx account number and mailed King a letter professing my love for his work. Several weeks later, I came home to find a box had arrived from Maine, and inside were several books, each inscribed with a beautiful note from God Himself, who encouraged me in my writing and thanked me for being a fan. My parents, genuinely moved by King’s kindness and generosity, lifted the ban on his books that very day.”
The Stand is set during the apocalypse, when a super-virus that leaked from a lab wipes out most of the population, leaving the survivors to decide between what is good and what is evil, plunging them into not only a battle for survival, but also a battle of morals.
Image Via La Boucle
King expressed his own excitement for the new series:
“I’m excited and so very pleased that The Stand is going to have a new life on this exciting new platform. The people involved are men and women who know exactly what they’re doing; the scripts are dynamite. The result bids to be something memorable and thrilling. I believe it will take viewers away to a world they hope will never happen.”
King’s spine-chilling work always delivers and we will be looking out for this one!
I never thought I’d be reading a book the size of the first iPod Touch until I came across the latest editions of John Green’s bestselling books. Marketed as Penguin Minis, these books have text that reads horizontally with onion-thin pages flipping upward. As a person who loves to lug books around, this would be a perfect option in theory. In execution, I was completely wrong.
I never thought I would hate a book format more than a poorly designed e-book, but Penguin Minis have come along to prove me very, very wrong. The point of these books is to be super easy to handle. Apparently, the “revolutionary landscape design and ultra-thin paper makes it easy to hold in one hand.”While I will admit that the book itself feels quite nice to hold in such a nontraditional way, trying to read the pages and flip from page to page is near impossible. The pages are so thin that there is no way I can successful grab onto only one, instead flipping an entire chapter.
GIF Via The New York Times
The text size is nothing to complain about unless you’re not used to reading mass market paperbacks with similarly thin pages and smaller print than typical paperback books or if you have particularly bad eyesight. I took issue with my bad eyesight combined with the small font and the thin pages. From a distance, it was hard to keep track of where I was on the page as the words from the pages before ghosted onto the page I was reading.
Photo via Emily Hering
On top of all of this, there are twenty-five skin-thin pages at the end of the book just hanging out. What does Penguin and John Green expect me to do with these? Write notes in them? Doodle my interpretation of Gus’s pre-funeral? Write my riveting review of the novel? What is the purpose of these twenty-five blank pages?
In conclusion, would I purchase a Penguin Mini again? Absolutely not. They may be perfect for reading on the subway during rush hour, but the thinness of the pages makes reading a two-handed activity, even for the most agile of readers. I will give them credit and say that it is probably one of the cutest books I will ever own and it will look preciously displayed on my bookshelf. It may just be a case of a format that Americans aren’t quite used to and with an audience that isn’t quite ready for another revolution in literary distribution, this time in the form of palm-sized books.
So it may be that ‘all’s well that ends well,’ but some of these books nearly didn’t! The secret alternate endings of these five popular novels are different from the endings that made it to our bookshelves. (That’s ‘different’ as a synonym for completely bizarre.) Some endings changed the tone of the story in ways the author decided against. Some endings changed other important things, like whether or not anyone would buy the book.
1. The Fault in Our Stars
It’s hard to imagine John Green changing one thing about his devastating hit The Fault in our Stars(besides the title, which would work just as well as Buckets of Our Tears). Actually, Augustus’ death was almost the second most tragic thing about the novel. In a twist that Green himself describes as “epically terrible,” the novel initially ended with Hazel Grace and author Van Houten attempting to murder a drug dealerin order to honor Augustus’ life… knowing that they will likely die (just relatable teenager things). This ending supposedly lasted only forty pages, which begs the question—what? It gets worse. Green also considered using the ending of the novel to explore the Trolley Problem—which, to sum it up, asks whether it’s more morally heinous to let a trolley crush five people or to personally divert the train to crush only one person. His editor admitted later that she “[couldn’t] tell whether or not it [was] a joke.” It wasn’t.
2. The Dream Thieves
Maggie Stiefvater‘s Raven Cycle series stands as one of the most positively critically reviewed YA series of all time. Its second book, The Dream Thieves, is particularly rife with the dark (best friends replaced with subservient clones) and the delightful (every possible use of ‘Dick’ as a nickname for Richard). In one earlier draft, troubled protagonist Ronan enters into amagical drag racewith distinctly-more-troubled antagonist Kavinsky—which, contextually, is not as strange as it sounds. The two subsequently have their magic race up the side of a mountain, and in a reckless but astoundingly unsurprising move, Kavinsky drives his car off the edge of a cliff. Stiefvater herself summarizes the whole plot as: “Fireball! Death!” This is also an excellent description of the novel’s actual ending. However, this earlier draft lacks the redemptive elements and positive LGBT representation of the rewrite—especially since the rewrite is also full of cars and danger.
3. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
One of the most chilling lines in the Harry Potter universe reads: neither can live while the other survives. It would then logically follow that… to use J.K.’s own words… neither can live while the other survives. So it doesn’t exactly add up that J.K. Rowling almost concluded her series with Voldemort AND Harry surviving. In one strange version of the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows ending, the spirits of Voldemort’s dead parents appear during their showdown to comfort Harry and turn Voldemort into a child. When Voldy tries to zap Harry with his final curse, it rebounds, freezing him as a living statue. If you’re wondering how the rebounded spell doesn’t kill him, you can keep on wondering—there is no real explanation. Fortunately, we have the original standoff between Harry and Voldemort, as well as all the powerful scenes and lines that come with it.
4. Thirteen Reasons Why
Especially after its TV debut, Thirteen Reasons Whyis almost universally recognizable as a story of the tragic suicide of a high school student and the following series of upsetting confessional tapes detailing fellow students’ contributions to her death. But what if Hannah didn’t die? According to author Jay Asher, that’s exactly what almost happened. As the near-suicide of a close relative inspired Asher’s work, he considered that Hannah might also live. In the end, he decided against it. He felt that Hannah’s survival meant fewer consequences for the students who tormented her, as well as lower stakes surrounding the issue. Asher explained: “it felt false for this particular story and for the seriousness of the issue. If someone goes through with a suicide, there are no second chances for anyone involved.”
We all recognize George Orwell‘s 1984 as the classic behind the phrase “Big Brother is watching.” Fewer people know that this grim tale once had an alternate ending—one that made the ending tonally more optimistic (not an easy feat, given how depressing this story gets). Free-thinking Winston undergoes torture in order to destroy any part of him that might rebel against the novel’s totalitarian government. But just before the end, he has a brief nervous break and thinks to himself: 2 + 2 = 5. This signifies the extent to which Winston, wholly indoctrinated, now accepts Big Brother’s lies. However, Orwell’s first edition tells a different story. There, the sentence ends with 2 +2 = (without the number 5), implying that Winston manages to hold onto some sense of self and that resistance is real. One letter subtly but unmistakably changes the meaning of the entire novel… and makes it a whole lot sadder.
Featured Image Via The-toast.com. All In-Text Images Via Amazon.com
You’ve probably already heard of John Green, YouTube sensation; YA superstar; and the author of the novels The Fault in Our Starsand Paper Towns, whose movie adaptations crushed both the box office and our fragile little hearts. But maybe you haven’t heard about his latest project. Teaming up with Rosianna Halse Roja, literary critic, YouTube personality, feminist, and Green’s own personal assistant, Green has just announced his new book club, Life’s Library. Maybe you recognize the name from theLooking for Alaskapassage that features the same phrase: “I’ve read maybe a third of [the books in her collection]. But I’m going to read them all. I call it my Life’s Library. Every summer since I was little, I’ve gone to garage sales and bought all the books that looked interesting. So I always have something to read.”
Image Via Playbuzz
In his YouTube announcement, Green describes his intentions in founding the book club: “reading is usually a solitary and private experience, but when you’re done with a book, it can be so fulfilling to talk about it with people.” As a group Discord is a crucial part of Green and Roja’s plans for the book club, it’s clear that a feeling of community and camaraderie is crucial to the project’s vision.
As a YouTube personality, Green is tech-savvy and used to creating content that reaches thousands and thousands of people. The video announcement itself already has over 89,000 views. But Green is interested in something more interactive, wanting to “create the experience of a slightly less open, more community oriented internet where we do and make stuff together.” Since it costs no money to access the Discord, it really is accessible to everyone.
So how does the book club work? Every six weeks, the club will pick a new book to read and discuss. There are no restrictions based on length, genre, or subject- the only rule is that the book has to be over a year old. The DFTBA webpage’s new page details the different paid book club packages (and don’t panic; there’s a way to do this for free!). For a recurring payment of $25, you get the “physical subscription,” meaning you get the digital content AND all of the stuff- think postcards, bookplates, pins, and a letter from John Green about his thoughts on the book. Stuff you probably want. The $10 subscription is also a pretty sweet deal, giving you access to the paid digital content- a reading guide with discussion questions and a podcast talking about the book. In the future, this subscription could also include digital artwork. All the proceeds go to Partners In Health, a charitable organization helping the needy access healthcare. But if you’re broke (like just about everyone) you can still have access to the Discord and the community. As for the books themselves? Well, that’s what your local library is for.
But now let’s get to the most important part. What’s the book!?
Image Via Penguin Random House
Jacqueline Woodson’s If You Come Softly, the 1998 story of an interracial relationship at a predominantly white (and rich!) prep school, is a timeless depiction of social issues prevalent in today’s world. A perfect choice for fans of breakout hit The Hate U Give, the novel follows a Jeremiah, a black student from Brooklyn, as he makes a difficult adjustment into a Manhattan private school. There he meets Ellie, a Jewish girl with demons at home that keep her from fitting in with the other privileged students. As their relationship grows stronger, so does the world’s reaction to it. The novel deftly tackles teen romance and social issues in the same breath, making it a strong first addition to Life’s Library.
John Green has one major piece of advice: if you don’t join, it won’t happen! Life’s Library will only thrive if it has members- so sign up for a paid subscription, follow the club’s new Instagram, or grab the book from your library for no cost at all.