Salmon Fishing In Yemen And 8 Other Books That Should Be Films

The Huffington Post UK  |  By Posted: 11/04/2012 15:08 Updated: 11/04/2012 15:12

As Salmon Fishing In Yemen, the latest celebrated novel to hit the big screen, arrives amid traditional grumbles about how cinema can never do literature justice, we thought we'd come out swinging for celluloid by picking the books we'd love to see put in the hands of filmmakers.

We know, we know. Most unbecoming for a book section. But then history proves that sometimes - sometimes - filmmakers can take our beloved novels and create something quite magical with them.

You only have to roll out the usual suspects - The Godfather, Breakfast At Tiffany's, One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest - to be reminded that not every adaptation is sacrilege, and sometimes, though we hate to admit it, the screen can trump the page.

After all, just imagine a world with no Colin Firth coming out of the lake, or Harry Potter with no Daniel Radcliffe.


Some books are just begging to be made into films - like The Secret History or The God of Small Things. Others are a bit more cerebral, but that shouldn't stop the modern film maker, with their CGI and 3D, to make even the most unlikely books into great films.

Check out our list below - and if there's any you feel we've missed, let us know in the comments.

Earthly Powers - Anthony Burgess
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As A Clockwork Orange made it onto the silver screen, and was such a controversial success, it seems strange that Burgess's other novels haven't been filmed.

Earthly Powers isn't as shocking as A Clockwork Orange, but it's a great story, following the lives of two men - one a writer, one a cardinal - throughout most of the 20th century.

Along the way it takes in two World Wars, cults, pop culture and post colonialism, giving plenty of scope to the inventive film maker. The narrator, Kenneth Toomey, intellectual, handsome and gay, dominates the text, and it would be hard to imagine a modern actor who could play him. Hugh Grant, perhaps.