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Netflix Adaptations Spur a New Chapter for Books

During the Coronavirus lockdown, many of us have turned to streaming platforms such as Netflix as our main source of entertainment. Keeping their platform sufficiently stocked, Netflix has recently released a lot of new shows and films that are based on or adapted from a book. While many people may have first fallen in love with stories like The Queen’s Gambit, Bridgerton, Lupin and Firefly Lane through the original books, many viewers may be introduced to these works for the first time via Netflix.

As the adaptations have grown in popularity so to have the books themselves, finding news audiences in print and hitting bestseller lists and book club picks. In fact, half of The New York Times Best Sellers list in February featured books that are tied to a Netflix series.

Bridgerton quickly became Netflix’s biggest series after its release on Christmas Day 2020 and the popularity of Julia Quinn’s Bridgerton series of novels ballooned with it. At one point, five books from the author’s series were on the New York Time Best Sellers list, with the Duke and I held steady at number one for four weeks. In their monthly bestsellers list, The Duke and I by Julia Quinn ranked number two – beaten in its fifth week on the list by James Patterson and James O. Born’s The Russian – while The Viscount Who Loved Me ranked at number three.

Kristin Hannah’s Firefly Lane – the novel which inspired the show of the same name – first appeared on the Top ten list a month before the adaptation’s release on Netflix, as interest in the series grew. The book reached number one just three days after the show’s premiere on Netflix, a staggering 13 years after its publication.

The Queen’s Gambit – a series about a young chess prodigy – was based on the book by Walter Tevis. Three weeks after Netflix’s limited series, based on the book, premiered on the streaming platform, Tevis’ novel appeared on the bestsellers list for the first time since it was publisher 37 years ago. It went on the stay in the Top 10 for 11 weeks.

After Lupin premiered on Netflix, Maurice Leblanc’s original book – which was first written way back in 1907 – began to trend in several countries including Italy, Spain, the US, the UK and Korea. Sales soon reach the equivalent of a year’s worth for the book normally within just 15 days. Ten days after its premiere, Leblanc’s book ranked in the Top 5 bestsellers on Amazon and Fnac (a large French retail chain that sells books, DVDs, music and electronic products).

So, thanks to Netflix and their upcoming shows, what other books might soon find themselves on the bestsellers lists? Maurice Leblanc’s Lupin returns to Netflix for ‘Part Two’ which is on its way this summer. The series YOU, based on Caroline Kepnes’ books also sees a return to Netflix for a third season, coming soon. Plus, a third Kissing Booth film, based on the books by Beth Reekles is also coming soon.

What more, all these literary adaptations are due to drop on Netflix soon!

Premiering in March:

  • Jennifer Mathieu’s Moxie (The book)
  • Amy Krouse Rosenthal’s YES DAY (The book)

Premiering in April:

Coming soon:

  • A.J. Finn’s The Woman in the Window
  • R.L. Stine’s Fear Street Trilogy
  • Jojo Moyes’ The Last Letter From Your Lover
  • Robyn Carr’s Virgin River – Season three
  • Sherryl Woods’ Sweet Magnolias – Season two
  • Concrete Cowboy, based on Gregory Neri’s Ghetto Cowboy
  • J.A. White’s Nightbooks
  • Stephanie Land’s Maid

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