Made into movie

Mrs. Dalloway

By Virginia Woolf

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"Mrs. Dalloway chronicles a June day in the life of Clarissa Dalloway–-a day that is taken up with running minor errands in preparation for a party and that is punctuated, toward the end, by the suicide of a young man she has never met. In giving an apparently ordinary day such immense resonance and significance–-infusing it with the elemental conflict between death and life–-Virginia Woolf triumphantly discovers her distinctive style as a novelist. Originally published in 1925, Mrs. Dalloway is Woolf’s first complete rendering of what she described as the 'luminous envelope' of consciousness: a dazzling display of the mind’s inside as it plays over the brilliant surface and darker depths of reality."

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The World According to Garp

By John Irving

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"Irving's classic is filled with stories inside stories about the life and times of T. S. Garp, novelist and bastard son of Jenny Fields--a feminist leader ahead of her time. Beyond that, The World According to Garp virtually defies synopsis." -- Publisher's description

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The Perfect Storm: A True Story of Men Against the Sea

By Sebastian Junger

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It was the storm of the century, boasting waves over one hundred feet high--a tempest created by so rare a combination of factors that meteorologists deemed it "the perfect storm."  When it struck in October 1991, there was virtually no warning. "She's comin' on, boys, and she's comin' on strong", radioed Captain Billy Tyne of the Andrea Gail off the coast of Nova Scotia, and soon afterward the boat and its crew of six disappeared without a trace. In a narrative taut with the fury of the elements, Sebastian Junger takes us deep into the heart of the storm, depicting with vivid detail the courage, terror, and awe that surface in such a gale. Also available on audio.

On Film:
The Andrea Gail's struggle with a ferocious Northeastern storm is brought to life in the 2000 movie adaptation of Junger's book, starring George Clooney, Mark Wahlberg and Diane Lane.

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The Green Mile

By Stephen King

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At Cold Mountain Penitentiary, along the lonely stretch of cells known as the Green Mile, killers as depraved as the psychopathic "Billy the Kid" Wharton and the possessed Eduard Delacroix await death strapped in "Old Sparky". Here guards as decent as Paul Edgecombe and as sadistic as Percy Wetmore watch over them. But good or evil, innocent or guilty, none have ever seen the brutal likes of the new prisoner, John Coffey, sentenced to death for raping and murdering two young girls. Is Coffey a devil in human form? Or is he a far, far different kind of being?

On Film:
A stellar cast including Tom Hanks, David Morse, Bonnie Hunt, Michael Clarke Duncan, Sam Rockwell, and Harry Dean Stanton makes this 1999 movie a must see.

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The Firm

By John Grisham

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Mitchell Y. McDeere has worked hard to get where he is: third in his class at Harvard Law. Aggressively recruited by all the top firms, and initially headed for Wall Street, Mitch surprised everyone by joining Bendini, Lambert and Locke, a very private, very rich tax firm in Memphis.

On Film:
The 1996 film, starring Tom Cruise, Gene Hackman, Jeanne Tripplehorn, Ed Harris, Holly Hunter, is a great companion to Grisham's thrilling novel. You can also check out The Pelican Brief and A Time to Kill.

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The Commitments

By Roddy Doyle

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This funky, rude, unpretentious first novel traces the short, funny, and furious career of a group of working-class Irish kids who form a band, The Commitments. Their mission: to bring soul to Dublin!

On Film:
Watch the popular film adaptation. Music from the film is available on CD: The Commitments: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack and The Commitments Volume 2.

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The Accidental Tourist

By Anne Tyler

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The narrow, orderly life of a travel guidebooks author is hilariously disrupted by his estranged wife and an eccentric dog trainer

On Film:
The film adaptation of Tyler's novel was originally released in 1988 and stars William Hurt, Kathleen Turner, Geena Davis.

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Rocket Boys: A Memoir

By Homer H. Hickam, Jr.

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Looking back after a distinguished NASA career, Hickam shares the story of his youth in a coal mining town.

 

On Film:
Jake Gyllenhaal, Chris Cooper, Chris Owen, and Laura Dern star in October Sky, the movie adaptation of Rocket Boys.

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Rebecca

By Daphne du Maurier

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A young woman weds a wealthy widower and goes to live in his palatial Cornish estate. Her good fortune turns nightmarish, however, when she finds herself haunted by the spector of Rebecca, her husband's first wife.

On Film:
Rebecca is a true classic, as is Alfred Hitchcock's spine-tingling 1940 movie adaptation, featuring a darkly handsome Laurence Olivier as Maxim de Winter and a fresh-faced Joan Fontaine as the young Mrs. de Winter. This classic movie is a must see! For an updated look at Rebecca check out this 1997 release starring Charles Dance, Emilia Fox, Diana Rigg, Faye Dunaway, Geraldine James. This movie adaptation is recommended for true Rebecca fanatics only-- it's almost three hours long!

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Jackson Pollock: An American Saga

By Steven Naifeh and Gregory White Smith

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Take an in-depth look at the life of Jackson Pollock, one of the most influential and controversial artists of the twentieth century.

On Film:
Pollock, the 2000 film based on Naifeh and Smith's biography, stars Ed Harris and Marcia Gay Harden. Ed Harris delivers one of the best performances of his life and Harden's portrayal of Pollock's wife, Lee Krasner, earned her the 2001 Academy Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role. For more on Jackson Pollock, be sure to watch the documentary Jackson Pollock: Love and Death on Long Island.

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