Photo: ‘My Policeman’
‘Normal People’ by Sally Rooney
The passionate and painful romance of Connell and Marianne captured the hearts of many during quarantine when the series adaptation premiered on Hulu. The book and series follows their romance from high school into college. The two come from very different economic backgrounds by finding comfort and familiarity in the way that they perceive the world. Their presence in each other’s lives leaves a significant impact and is a thrilling yet stunning journey of intimacy and friendship.
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‘Conversations with Friends’ by Sally Rooney
A stunning narrative that follows the lives of twenty-something Trinity students who are personally experiencing the intersection between female sexuality, adultery, and friendship. It’s a compelling depiction of how subverting society’s expectations and embracing intimacy could be painful and liberating. Sally Rooney has a unique ability to explore the most vulnerable aspect of romance and how exposing our faults leads to a meaningful connection. Despite their intense relationship, Nick is married to Melissa, who develops her own relationship with Frances’ best-friend/ ex-girlfriend Bobbi. Luckily for fans of Sally Rooney, the novel will be adapted by Hulu into a series of the same name.
‘Daisy Jones and the Six’ by Taylor Jenkins Reid
‘Daisy Jones and the Six’ is led by a powerful female presence that defies the status quo by embracing her sexuality on the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles during the 1970s. An unconventional coming of age tale that unapologetically examines female sexuality in relation to a shifting culture. At a young age, Daisy is left to discover a chaotic world on her own, discovering her sexuality from wild nights with rockstars and notable faces in Hollywood. It’s easy to be swept away by the magnetic personalities behind the story of a girl blossoming into womanhood while defining conventionality. The novel will be adapted for a series airing on Amazon Prime.
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‘The Great Gatsby’ by F. Scott Fitzgerald
All that glitters isn’t gold, Gatsby. One of the great American classics from the 20th century, Fitzgerald’s prose flickers back through time and lands on the glamorous scenes of the Jazz Age. The story of Jay Gatsby is set in West Egg and told through the observant lens of Nick Carraway, a man who fled the mundanity of the Mid-West to seek out a more purposeful life in New York, as many did during the time. Caraway nestles within the inlet of Long Island, not too far away from New York City.
As fate would have it, Carraway moves next door to the man behind New York society’s most fabulous parties, Gatsby. Upon meeting Gatsby, Carraway quickly recognizes he is a man of wealth and power with questionable connections to haunting figures. Gatsby’s past is alarmingly vague, fueled further by his lack of friends or close confidants. That is, until he meets Nick Carraway and reveals his obsession for Nick’s cousin, Daisy Buchanan who has a mysterious past with Gatsby.
The lustrous glam of the 20s and the chic parties make for a perfect film. Luckily, you could go with the classics and watch the 1974 film adaptation starring Robert Redford or enjoy a more modern approach with the 2013 film starring Leonardo DiCaprio.
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‘Persuasion’ by Jane Austen
The final completed novel by Jane Austen, ‘Persuasion’ is a story of redemption and follows Anne Elliot, the daughter of Sir Walter Elliot. The story has a more subtle charm compared to the agonizing tension of ‘Pride & Prejudice.’ At the age of 27, Anne is still unmarried and considered a spinster by society’s standards. She was once engaged at 19, to Frederick Wentworth but because he came from little fortune and dwindling prospects, she was talked out of marrying by those closest to her.
That is, 8 years following their engagement, Wentworth eventually joined the Navy and made a fortune. As their paths cross for the first since ending their engagement, the book follows the encounters between Anne and Wentworth. Despite having a quiet disposition, Anne is filled with powerful emotions that makes this story such a compelling read. Luckily, Netflix will be releasing an adaptation of Austen’s novel of the same in 2022, starring Dakota Johnson as our heroine.
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‘The House of Mirth’ by Edith Wharton
Set with the timeless beauty of the Gilded Age as the backdrop, Edith Wharton’s ‘The House of Mirth’ is a tragic tale that encapsulates the limitations society places on women by leveraging security and wealth. Lily Bart, a familiar face among ‘old money’ in New York City, is a charming and beautiful woman who attracts men from all walks of life. As she’s approaching the age of 30, her social capital is in dire crisis and she feels immense pressure to find a husband for financial security. Many have compared Edith Wharton’s ‘The House of Mirth’ to the much loved ‘Gossip Girl’ with a girl connected to high-society but still finding her footing. To watch the story unfold, the 2000 adaptation of the book with the same name stars Gillian Anderson, Laura Linney, Eric Stoltz, and Dan Aykroyd.
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‘My Policeman’ by Bethan Roberts
Yes, Harry Styles will be starring in the film adaptation. Now that I have your attention, it’s time to uncover what makes this novel a very addictive and beautifully observant read. Set in midcentury England, it’s a provocative story that explores possessiveness and passion, and that power behind the expression of love. Inspired by the real-life relationship between novelist E.M. Forster and a policeman, Bob Buckingham, the story encompasses a painful love triangle that involves Tom’s wife, Marion. Harry Styles will lead the cast with David Dawson playing Patrick, Tom’s lover, and Emma Corrin playing Tom’s wife, Marion. The film follows the journey of their romance over the course of decades and is an intimate account that exists beyond the bounds of societal conventions. The film will be released on Amazon Prime sometime in 2022.
By Gina Michele Yaniz
Click here to read The Hollywood Insider’s CEO Pritan Ambroase’s love letter to Cinema, TV and Media. An excerpt from the love letter: The Hollywood Insider’s CEO/editor-in-chief Pritan Ambroase affirms, “We have the space and time for all your stories, no matter who/what/where you are. Media/Cinema/TV have a responsibility to better the world and The Hollywood Insider will continue to do so. Talent, diversity and authenticity matter in Cinema/TV, media and storytelling. In fact, I reckon that we should announce “talent-diversity-authenticity-storytelling-Cinema-Oscars-Academy-Awards” as synonyms of each other. We show respect to talent and stories regardless of their skin color, race, gender, sexuality, religion, nationality, etc., thus allowing authenticity into this system just by something as simple as accepting and showing respect to the human species’ factual diversity. We become greater just by respecting and appreciating talent in all its shapes, sizes, and forms. Award winners, which includes nominees, must be chosen on the greatness of their talent ALONE.
I am sure I am speaking for a multitude of Cinema lovers all over the world when I speak of the following sentiments that this medium of art has blessed me with. Cinema taught me about our world, at times in English and at times through the beautiful one-inch bar of subtitles. I learned from the stories in the global movies that we are all alike across all borders. Remember that one of the best symbols of many great civilizations and their prosperity has been the art they have left behind. This art can be in the form of paintings, sculptures, architecture, writings, inventions, etc. For our modern society, Cinema happens to be one of them. Cinema is more than just a form of entertainment, it is an integral part of society. I love the world uniting, be it for Cinema, TV. media, art, fashion, sport, etc. Please keep this going full speed.”
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Gina Michele Yaniz is a writer and digital media content creator with a deep love for storytelling. Charmed by the notable influence of the entertainment industry, Gina is passionate about uplifting the voices of artists and celebrating powerful material. She likes to embody the philosophy of writing through a non-judgmental and a genuine perspective while expanding the perception of film industry. Along with Hollywood Insider, Gina values the responsibility the media holds and wishes to use her writing to provide meaningful content. During her free time, Gina loves to watch period pieces, stand-up comedy, and indulges on her avid interest for reading articles on self-care.