The best book to TV adaptations: six to get excited about

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Big Little Lies (Sky Atlantic)

The main difference between Liane Moriarty’s bestselling mystery about mothers living in an affluent small town is that it has been transplanted to Monteray, California, from Australia, but the plot remains the same. Single mum Jane (Shailene Woodley) moves to Monteray and enrols her son in the local school, where she meets Celeste (Nicole Kidman) and Queen Bee Madeline (Reese Witherspoon who is as loyal to her friends as she is FIERCE to her enemies. She’s awesome). Beneath the glossy blow dries and school run chic, they’re all harbouring secrets: wealthy Celeste is trapped in an abusive marriage while Jane is trying to track down her son’s father. The supporting cast includes Alexander Skarsgaard and Adam Scott and between the houseporn and the drama, think Desperate Housewives reimagined as prestige drama.
13 MarchCredit Netflix

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Girlboss (Netflix)

Britt Robertson steps into the empire-building shoes of Sophia Amoruso (AKA the founder of Nasty Gal) in this adaptation of her memoir (that has lost the hashtag in its translation from book to screen). Sophia went from broke eBayer to multimillion-dollar e-tailer by the age of 28, and the series promises to show an unlikely businesswoman, who isn’t always likeable. The comedy drama was created by Kay Cannon of Pitch Perfect fame, and has Charlize Theron exec producing, who has said the story appealed because, “Something really grabbed me about it. I’ve built a whole career playing flawed and f**ked up characters.”
We. Can’t Wait.
21 AprilCredit Netflix

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The Handmaid’s Tale (Hulu)

Margaret Atwood’s chilling novel about a dystopian future in which women are enslaved for reproductive purposes is a modern classic, and the TV adaptation also promises great things. Elisabeth Moss is Offred, living in what was the USA, now a dictatorship renamed the Republic of Gilead. She has been taken away from her husband and child to have her ability to bear children exploited by an infertile couple higher up the pecking order. It's the kind of fantasy that doesn’t feel that far removed from real life right now, and co-starring Joseph Fiennes, Samira Wiley and Alexis Bledel, has a stellar cast.

Air date TBCCredit Hulu

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I Love Dick (Amazon)

The title alone had us at hello. Chris Kraus’ book of the same name combines highbrow themes of feminism, art criticism and memoir, but the show – with Transparent’s Jill Soloway at the helm – promises to be more easily accessible. New York filmmaker Chris (Kathryn Hahn) is frustrated when she moves to Marfa, Texas, with her arty husband (Griffin Dunn) and becomes obsessed with cultural theorist and uber-manly-man Dick (Kevin Bacon) so decides to write him a letter. Expect the same keenly observed humour of the multi-award-winning Transparent.
12 MayCredit Amazon Prime

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13 Reasons Why (Netflix)

exec produces, with the thirteen reasons in the title referring to the reasons given by Hannah (Katherine Langford) about why she committed suicide. Based on the book by Jay Asher, thirteen tapes arrive at her classmate Clay’s (Dylan Minette) house, identifying actions by different classmates – and one teacher – that led her to the decision to end her life. Will Clay be in the list? This emotional going at times, but brilliantly executed.
31 MarchCredit Netflix

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American Gods (Amazon Prime)

Neil Gaiman’s 600 page book begins with macho-but-sensitive guy Shadow Moon being released early from prison because his wife Laura has been killed in a car accident. After the funeral he doesn't know what to do with himself until the enigmatic Mr Wednesday offers him a job as a bodyguard. It turns out he’s a God, and he’s not the only one. America is full of them, and there’s a war between the old Gods and the new. Ricky Whittle stars as Shadow, with Ian McShane as the wry Wednesday. One for the Game of Thrones fan in you – and to keep you going until GoT is back in June.
1 MayCredit Amazon Prime

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