American Literature at the Movies
This list contains novels or short stories by American authors that have been turned into movies (made for tv or theater) or short television mini-series which can be watched as long movies.

If you want to add a book to the list and are not sure if the author is American or not, find the movie in the IMDB database (www.imdb.com), click on the author's name, and find out where they were born and where they currently reside.

Whether you vote for the book based on watching the movie or reading the book is up to you. :)
1 To Kill a Mockingbird
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4.23 of 5 stars 4.23 avg rating — 2,122,836 ratings
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2 Different Seasons featuring...
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4.31 of 5 stars 4.31 avg rating — 105,238 ratings
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3 The Princess Bride
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4.24 of 5 stars 4.24 avg rating — 470,131 ratings
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4 Charlotte's Web
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4.11 of 5 stars 4.11 avg rating — 688,090 ratings
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5 The Silence of the Lambs  (...
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4.06 of 5 stars 4.06 avg rating — 283,473 ratings
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6 The Great Gatsby
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3.84 of 5 stars 3.84 avg rating — 1,868,921 ratings
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7 Table 21
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3.68 of 5 stars 3.68 avg rating — 344 ratings
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8 The Da Vinci Code (Robert L...
by
3.72 of 5 stars 3.72 avg rating — 1,240,954 ratings
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9 Little Women (Little Women,...
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4.0 of 5 stars 4.00 avg rating — 991,277 ratings
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10 One Flew Over the Cuckoo's ...
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4.17 of 5 stars 4.17 avg rating — 384,745 ratings
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11 Fight Club
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4.19 of 5 stars 4.19 avg rating — 275,164 ratings
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12 The Green Mile
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4.38 of 5 stars 4.38 avg rating — 134,637 ratings
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13 The Outsiders
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4.01 of 5 stars 4.01 avg rating — 457,208 ratings
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14 Interview with the Vampire ...
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3.96 of 5 stars 3.96 avg rating — 324,837 ratings
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15 The Lovely Bones
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3.72 of 5 stars 3.72 avg rating — 1,223,010 ratings
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16 Into the Wild
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3.89 of 5 stars 3.89 avg rating — 443,559 ratings
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17 Gone with the Wind
by
4.25 of 5 stars 4.25 avg rating — 663,121 ratings
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18 Memoirs of a Geisha
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4.04 of 5 stars 4.04 avg rating — 1,069,077 ratings
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19 Fried Green Tomatoes at the...
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4.22 of 5 stars 4.22 avg rating — 154,251 ratings
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20 Fahrenheit 451
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3.94 of 5 stars 3.94 avg rating — 810,978 ratings
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21 My Sister's Keeper
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4.03 of 5 stars 4.03 avg rating — 663,201 ratings
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22 The Wonderful Wizard Of Oz
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3.96 of 5 stars 3.96 avg rating — 187,351 ratings
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23 The Grapes of Wrath
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3.88 of 5 stars 3.88 avg rating — 392,562 ratings
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24 The Shining (The Shining #1)
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4.09 of 5 stars 4.09 avg rating — 566,803 ratings
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25 Dances with Wolves (Dances ...
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4.15 of 5 stars 4.15 avg rating — 13,293 ratings
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26 Forrest Gump (Forrest Gump,...
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3.98 of 5 stars 3.98 avg rating — 32,039 ratings
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27 A Walk to Remember
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4.13 of 5 stars 4.13 avg rating — 393,688 ratings
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28 The Notebook (The Notebook,...
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4.04 of 5 stars 4.04 avg rating — 851,636 ratings
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29 Cold Mountain
by
3.78 of 5 stars 3.78 avg rating — 142,647 ratings
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30 Catch-22 (Catch-22, #1)
by
3.96 of 5 stars 3.96 avg rating — 404,423 ratings
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31 The Adventures of Huckleber...
by
3.78 of 5 stars 3.78 avg rating — 832,632 ratings
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32 The Godfather
by
4.33 of 5 stars 4.33 avg rating — 186,004 ratings
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33 A Streetcar Named Desire
by
3.96 of 5 stars 3.96 avg rating — 145,737 ratings
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34 The Last of the Mohicans (T...
by
3.67 of 5 stars 3.67 avg rating — 55,991 ratings
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35 Gone with the Wind, Part 1 ...
by
4.29 of 5 stars 4.29 avg rating — 1,838 ratings
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36 Do Androids Dream of Electr...
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4.05 of 5 stars 4.05 avg rating — 155,954 ratings
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37 Twilight (Twilight, #1)
by
3.56 of 5 stars 3.56 avg rating — 2,677,861 ratings
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38 The Devil Wears Prada (The ...
by
3.64 of 5 stars 3.64 avg rating — 515,209 ratings
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39 Dead Poets Society
by
4.15 of 5 stars 4.15 avg rating — 23,523 ratings
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40 What's Eating Gilbert Grape
by
4.08 of 5 stars 4.08 avg rating — 8,037 ratings
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41 The Cider House Rules
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4.07 of 5 stars 4.07 avg rating — 103,315 ratings
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42 The Time Traveler's Wife
by
3.92 of 5 stars 3.92 avg rating — 955,869 ratings
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43 Brokeback Mountain
by
3.92 of 5 stars 3.92 avg rating — 14,917 ratings
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44 Angels & Demons  (Robert La...
by
3.8 of 5 stars 3.80 avg rating — 1,345,105 ratings
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45 Jurassic Park
by
3.86 of 5 stars 3.86 avg rating — 477,873 ratings
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46 Rosemary's Baby
by
3.92 of 5 stars 3.92 avg rating — 56,824 ratings
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47 Marley and Me: Life and Lov...
by
4.09 of 5 stars 4.09 avg rating — 273,583 ratings
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48 Practical Magic
by
3.79 of 5 stars 3.79 avg rating — 25,502 ratings
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49 Carrie
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3.87 of 5 stars 3.87 avg rating — 244,464 ratings
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50 East of Eden
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4.31 of 5 stars 4.31 avg rating — 248,660 ratings
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51 Snow Falling on Cedars
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3.74 of 5 stars 3.74 avg rating — 98,991 ratings
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52 The Road
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3.94 of 5 stars 3.94 avg rating — 411,635 ratings
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53 Girl With a Pearl Earring
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3.81 of 5 stars 3.81 avg rating — 343,650 ratings
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54 A Time to Kill (Jake Brigan...
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3.96 of 5 stars 3.96 avg rating — 474,093 ratings
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55 The Crucible
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3.5 of 5 stars 3.50 avg rating — 176,706 ratings
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56 The Maltese Falcon
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3.94 of 5 stars 3.94 avg rating — 49,405 ratings
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57 The Call of the Wild
by
3.77 of 5 stars 3.77 avg rating — 173,441 ratings
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58 The Stepford Wives
by
3.64 of 5 stars 3.64 avg rating — 13,536 ratings
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59 I Am Legend and Other Stories
by
3.96 of 5 stars 3.96 avg rating — 80,196 ratings
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60 Of Mice and Men/Cannery Row
by
4.11 of 5 stars 4.11 avg rating — 1,655 ratings
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61 In Cold Blood
by
4.01 of 5 stars 4.01 avg rating — 316,416 ratings
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62 The Joy Luck Club
by
3.86 of 5 stars 3.86 avg rating — 440,545 ratings
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63 The Firm
by
3.92 of 5 stars 3.92 avg rating — 364,317 ratings
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64 The Color Purple
by
4.13 of 5 stars 4.13 avg rating — 303,563 ratings
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65 Road to Perdition
by
3.82 of 5 stars 3.82 avg rating — 1,468 ratings
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66 The Bourne Identity (Jason ...
by
3.91 of 5 stars 3.91 avg rating — 264,261 ratings
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67 The Scarlet Letter
by
3.32 of 5 stars 3.32 avg rating — 393,794 ratings
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68 All the King's Men
by
4.07 of 5 stars 4.07 avg rating — 36,487 ratings
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69 Girl, Interrupted
by
3.86 of 5 stars 3.86 avg rating — 109,488 ratings
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70 Wonder Boys
by
3.94 of 5 stars 3.94 avg rating — 23,265 ratings
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71 Skipping Christmas
by
3.43 of 5 stars 3.43 avg rating — 35,298 ratings
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72 The Old Man And The Sea
by
3.64 of 5 stars 3.64 avg rating — 332,495 ratings
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73 Holes (Holes, #1)
by
3.9 of 5 stars 3.90 avg rating — 514,923 ratings
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74 The Kite Runner
by
4.21 of 5 stars 4.21 avg rating — 1,308,143 ratings
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74 Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ
by
4.0 of 5 stars 4.00 avg rating — 18,527 ratings
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76 Catch Me If You Can: The Tr...
by
3.99 of 5 stars 3.99 avg rating — 22,224 ratings
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77 Shutter Island
by
4.03 of 5 stars 4.03 avg rating — 84,874 ratings
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78 A Scanner Darkly
by
4.03 of 5 stars 4.03 avg rating — 44,337 ratings
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79 Moby Dick
by
3.4 of 5 stars 3.40 avg rating — 314,106 ratings
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80 Bridge to Terabithia
by
3.94 of 5 stars 3.94 avg rating — 257,797 ratings
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81 The Pelican Brief
by
3.89 of 5 stars 3.89 avg rating — 223,739 ratings
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82 Arsenic and Old Lace
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4.12 of 5 stars 4.12 avg rating — 14,931 ratings
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83 Tarzan of the Apes (Tarzan,...
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3.85 of 5 stars 3.85 avg rating — 21,354 ratings
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83 The Thin Man
by
3.99 of 5 stars 3.99 avg rating — 15,847 ratings
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85 Legends of the Fall
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4.02 of 5 stars 4.02 avg rating — 4,327 ratings
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86 The Legend of Sleepy Hollow...
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3.94 of 5 stars 3.94 avg rating — 37,959 ratings
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87 Beloved
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3.71 of 5 stars 3.71 avg rating — 181,351 ratings
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88 Message in a Bottle
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3.91 of 5 stars 3.91 avg rating — 145,682 ratings
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89 Mystic River
by
4.17 of 5 stars 4.17 avg rating — 59,539 ratings
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90 Finding Forrester: A Novel
by
3.91 of 5 stars 3.91 avg rating — 207 ratings
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91 Breakfast at Tiffany's
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3.9 of 5 stars 3.90 avg rating — 105,920 ratings
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92 Primal Fear
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4.14 of 5 stars 4.14 avg rating — 4,342 ratings
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93 Julie and Julia: 365 Days, ...
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3.6 of 5 stars 3.60 avg rating — 97,262 ratings
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94 Rear Window
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3.97 of 5 stars 3.97 avg rating — 723 ratings
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95 In Her Shoes
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3.74 of 5 stars 3.74 avg rating — 132,987 ratings
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96 Where the Wild Things Are
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4.22 of 5 stars 4.22 avg rating — 440,861 ratings
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97 The Curious Case of Benjami...
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3.5 of 5 stars 3.50 avg rating — 22,695 ratings
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98 A River Runs Through It and...
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4.14 of 5 stars 4.14 avg rating — 15,442 ratings
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99 The Shipping News
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3.78 of 5 stars 3.78 avg rating — 80,970 ratings
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100 They Shoot Horses, Don't They?
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3.84 of 5 stars 3.84 avg rating — 3,052 ratings
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flag this list (?)
285 books · 144 voters · list created April 13th, 2009 by Amy (votes) .
15 likes · like
Lists are re-scored approximately every 5 minutes.


Amy
Amy
1097 books
185 friends
Ricki
Ricki
2764 books
1364 friends
Susanna - Censored by GoodReads
Susanna - Censored by GoodReads
2508 books
488 friends
Djo
Djo
123 books
5 friends
Janice
Janice
187 books
1 friend
Gabriele
Gabriele
884 books
122 friends
Carol
Carol
2362 books
739 friends
Matthew
Matthew
1123 books
17 friends

More voters…


Comments (showing 1-25 of 25) (25 new)

dateDown_arrow    newest »

message 1: by [deleted user] (new)

Who wrote the book that was made into The Hours? I cannot think who it was. I had a very hard time on my copy of Stardust finding Neil Gaiman's name!!! (very sad commentary IMO when the author doesn't get much credit when they make a movie out of their book)


message 2: by Amy (new)

Amy Alice wrote: "Who wrote the book that was made into The Hours? I cannot think who it was. I had a very hard time on my copy of Stardust finding Neil Gaiman's name!!! (very sad commentary IMO when the author do..."

The Hours is by Michael Cunningham. I meant to read it until I found out that it was a response to Mrs. Dalloway. So I thought I would read Mrs. Dalloway first until I heard that it was a response to Ulysses. The very idea of reading Ulysses makes my head spin. Maybe I'll never get to The Hours.


message 3: by [deleted user] (new)

Thanks! I had no idea ......how very complicated. I will never read Ullysses either. I read only for pleasure now.


message 4: by Matthew (new)

Matthew Are we voting based on the quality of the movie or the book? I would rank the book "Catch 22" ahead of the book "Shawshank Redemption" but the movie version of Shawshank is fantastic whereas Catch 22 is an okay movie...
How has everyone else been voting?


message 5: by Matthew (new)

Matthew JK Rowling and Shakespeare are American authors? Odd.


message 6: by Amy (new)

Amy Argh! I made this list for the American literature class I teach. Thanks, guys for brilliantly not checking where authors are from before adding it to this list. It's AMERICAN literature, not British! Sadly, there's no way to remove items from this list unless someone knows a secret I don't. Any ideas?


message 7: by Matthew (new)

Matthew Hmm, as list creator I would think that you could control content and delete books. I also think I read that a "librarian" could remove books as well but it may have been my imagination.

Your course sounds interesting--is it for a college? high school?


message 8: by Amy (new)

Amy It's a class in an intensive English as a Second Language school. The class is in their final level before being ready for a university or high school.

I can't find any way to control the content. Sadly, I'm not a librarian. But my husband is. Hmm ...


message 9: by Amy (new)

Amy Matthew wrote: "Hmm, as list creator I would think that you could control content and delete books. I also think I read that a "librarian" could remove books as well but it may have been my imagination.

Your c..."


You're right about "librarian" status. I contacted GoodReads and they said that anyone with at least 50 books in their profile could apply to be a librarian and fix such problems. :)




message 10: by Matthew (new)

Matthew Nice, adios Shakespeare and Harry Potter.


message 11: by Amy (last edited Apr 24, 2009 07:31PM) (new)

Amy Strangely enough, not all books you can read in English are by American authors. These authors are definitely NOT American (and I've since removed them from the list):

Michael Ondaatje (Canadian)
R.K. Rowling (British)
William Shakespeare (British)
Winston Graham (British)
Boris Pasternak (Russian)
Isak Dinesen (Danish)
Carlotte Bronte (British)
Phillipa Gregory (British)
Daphne Du Maurier (British)

If you're in doubt, type the title of the movie into the IMDB database, click on the movie, click on the author's name, and find out where they were born and where they currently reside.


message 12: by Matthew (new)

Matthew Also, William Golding of "Lord of the Flies" fame is British...


message 13: by Killthepopular (new)

Killthepopular I dont understand why you made this list. Are you looking for books that you can get the kids to read and then show them the film? Presumably that rules out films with 18 certificates/NC-17?
Or do you think kids are more likely to read a book if there is a film of it?
What exactly is the logic here?

Incidentally, wth people, i'm the only one to vote for one flew over the cuckoos nest? Its a pretty obvious choice...


message 14: by Amy (new)

Amy Killthepopular wrote: "I dont understand why you made this list. Are you looking for books that you can get the kids to read and then show them the film? Presumably that rules out films with 18 certificates/NC-17?
Or do..."


My students are adults actually. It's NOT a high school class. We use the list to vote on a movie to watch in class (and I have the right to veto ones that might be offensive). They're also allowed to write an essay about an American literature movie for extra credit. It's only a 7-week class, so it gives a broader view of American literature than just reading the one novel and short stories we have time for in class. It also gives them ideas of what they might like to read when they've left my class. Lots of people like to read books when they know they can watch the movie, too. Especially ESL students who may not understand every word they read. Beyond that, the list is also for fun ... like any listopia list.


message 15: by Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) (last edited Apr 14, 2010 11:25AM) (new)

Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) Amy wrote: "Strangely enough, not all books you can read in English are by American authors. These authors are definitely NOT American (and I've since removed them from the list):

Michael Ondaatje (Canadian)
..."



It would appear it's time for a bit of pruning again ... among the "new arrivals" (on page 2) are British authors such as J.K. Rowling and C.S. Lewis, and Australian Colleen McCullough.

Also: Kleinbaum's "Dead Poets Society" is actually a novelization of Tom Schulman's screenplay -- the movie was there first. (It's a truly great film of course, I'm just wondering whether this isn't supposed to be a list about instances where the book came first and the movie was based on it?)


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Removed for non-American authors:

Stardust, by Neil Gaiman (British)
Coraline, by Neil Gaiman (British)
Marnie, by Winston Graham (British)

I am unable to attribute nationality to N.H. Keinbaum, and at any rate, this is a novelization. I would be tempted to remove Dead Poets Society on this basis (list is for book -> movie, this was a case of movie -> book).


message 17: by Amy (new)

Amy I just removed several, too. I've removed Winston Graham books more often than anything else. Someone really must like him.

The only thing about Neil Gaiman is that he's technically considered an American author now that he has lived in the US for several years. He did win a Newbery medal which is specifically given for American literature for children. Since one of the requirements for winning a Newbery is that the author must be a US resident or citizen, I'm supposing that Neil Gaiman is considered to legally be categorized as an American these days.


message 19: by Amy (new)

Amy Susanna wrote: "Hmmmmm."

Yeah. That's what I said when I saw he'd won the Newbery (and then had to look up the rules of the award). I'm still not 100% convinced because he seems awfully British to me.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Reading the Newbery's criteria, though, I see they only require residence in America, though. Still hmmm.


message 21: by Silver (new)

Silver I choose to vote for books if I both read them and watched the movie.


message 22: by Temberton (new)

Temberton I came across this list while searching for movies to use for a study of American Literature. Thanks! :)


message 23: by [deleted user] (new)

Why is GONE WITH THE WIND listed twice?


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Because some people voted for "Gone with the Wind: Volume 1 of 2," and others for "Gone with the Wind."

Which is why they can't be combined.


message 25: by Jonathan (new)

Jonathan The description says "This list contains novels or short stories by American authors that have been turned into movies (made for tv or theater) or short television mini-series which can be watched as long movies." So why are NOVELIZATIONS (movies that were turned into books) and at least one Graphic Novel Adaptation (The Legend of Sleepy Hollow) included?


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