Based on ratings from Goodreads and IMDB, 83.5% of books are better than their movie or TV show adaptations.
A recent analysis from broadbandchoices.co.uk compares 279 books to their screen adaptations. The company collected user ratings from Goodreads (for books) and IMDB (for movies). 5-level ratings from Goodreads were multiplied by 2 to match the 10-star system used by IMDB.
You can analyze all data in a special Google Sheets document. Below there is an infographic that lists Top 100 titles. On the left side, you will see ratings for books, on the right for matching screen adaptations.
The Witcher didn’t make it to the infographic, but we have compared the latest ratings on two services. It turns out the Netflix adaptation (8.4/10 on IMDB) has the same rating as the first book in the Witcher series by Andrzej Sapkowski, Blood of Elves (4.2 on Goodreads – multiplied by 2 = 8.4).
Here are other highlights from the analysis by Broadband Choices:
Of the 279 adaptations included in the study, just 46 (16.5%) were better than the books they were based on.
11 (4%) were equally as good as their source material.
Not a single film in the Harry Potter series rated higher than its literary counterpart.
The worst adaptation was The Cat in the Hat with a rating of 3.9, or 113% lower than the books score of 8.3.
The 50 Shades movies dominated the worst adaptations of the last decade.
Make sure to read the source material on Broadband Choices, and below you will find the infographic with top titles.
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A Woman of No Importance: The Untold Story of the American Spy Who Helped Win World War II
by Sonia Purnell
France was falling. Burned-out cars, once strapped high with treasured possessions, were nosed crazily into ditches. Their beloved cargoes of dolls, clocks, and mirrors lay smashed around them and along mile upon mile of unfriendly road. Their owners, young and old, sprawled across the hot dust, were groaning or already silent. Yet the hordes just kept streaming past them, a never-ending line of hunger and exhaustion too fearful to stop for days on end.
Ten million women, children, and old men were on the move, all fleeing Hitler’s tanks pouring across the border from the east and the north. Entire cities had uprooted themselves in a futile bid to escape the Nazi blitzkrieg that threatened to engulf them. The fevered talk was of German soldiers stripped to the waist in jubilation at the ease of their conquest. The air was thick with smoke and the stench of the dead. The babies had no milk, and the aged fell where they stood. The horses drawing overladen old farm carts sagged and snarled in their sweat-drenched agony. The French heat wave of May 1940 was witness to this, the largest refugee exodus of all time.
Day after day a solitary moving vehicle weaved its way through the crowd with a striking young woman at the wheel. Private Virginia Hall often ran low on fuel and medicines but still pressed on in her French army ambulance toward the advancing enemy. She persevered even when the German Stukas came screaming down to drop 110-pound bombs onto the convoys all around her, torching the cars and cratering the roads. Even when fighter planes swept over the treetops to machine-gun the ditches where women and children were trying to take cover from the carnage. Even though French soldiers were deserting their units, abandoning their weapons, and running away, some in their tanks. Even when her left hip was shot with pain from continually pressing down on the clutch with her prosthetic foot.
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