Podcast

The Waterstones Podcast - Adaptation

Posted on 27th January 2020 by Mark Skinner

Your chance to hear authors going beyond the book to talk about the themes and ideas that obsess us all.

Adaptation

Books have provided the inspiration for countless films, plays, musicals, TV series, and other works of art. In Adaptation we speak to RJ Palacio about seeing her best-seller, Wonder, transferred to the big screen. We hear from Neil Gaiman about the different ways he has adapted his own work into other forms and which he thinks have worked the best. And Margaret Atwood speaks to us about seeing The Handmaid’s Tale become a phenomenon and her own adaptation of the work of Shakespeare.

Featured in this week's podcast

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A landmark Young Adult novel that captured the hearts and minds of millions of readers, Palacio’s tender examination of physical difference and its emotional consequences is undeniably powerful.
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A richly gothic fantasy with profound things to say about childhood and the vagaries of memory, The Ocean at the End of the Lane has become one of Gaiman’s best loved works. Deploying all the phantasmagoria of the author’s febrile imagination in service of a nuanced, moving narrative, this is masterful storytelling indeed.
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Twinkling with gothic menace and dark subtext, Gaiman’s deliciously creepy fantasy mines childhood displacement and sinister new environments to create a startlingly original and unnerving novel. Ominous prophecies in the tea leaves and alternate parents with black button eyes infuse this strange, poignant work with a singular literary aura.
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Good Omens is the result of the kind of dream collaboration that so rarely gets realised. Pooling everything that is so great about Pratchett and Gaiman’s writing into a freewheeling tale of the apocalypse, the antichrist and the disturbingly specific prophecies of a 17th century witch, it is a comic fantasy whose reputation has only grown stronger with the passing years.
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Both an unforgettable portrait of defiance and authoritarian rule and a devastatingly powerful exploration of female oppression, The Handmaid's Tale is a classic dystopian vision with an all-too chilling resonance for our times.
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In this electrifying sequel to The Handmaid's Tale, acclaimed author Margaret Atwood answers the question that has tantalised readers for 33 years: What happened to Offred? Since 1985, Margaret Atwood's vision has only grown in significance, becoming a rallying call around the world. Now The Testaments finally reveals, for the very first time, Margaret Atwood's vision of Gilead's future.
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Through the story of a wronged Canadian theatre director, Margaret Atwood creates a sublime, riotous retelling of Shakespeare’s The Tempest, aglow with all her customary wit and a wealth of meta-textual shenanigans.
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Harry Thompson’s sole novel demonstrates what a sad loss the writer’s death is to contemporary fiction. Imagining the relationship between Charles Darwin and Captain Robert Fitzroy during the legendary expedition of the HMS Beagle, the Booker-shortlisted This Thing of Darkness is a book about deep friendship and how ideological differences can tear the strongest bonds apart.
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Superstar spaceman Chris Hadfield shares the invaluable life lessons that he has picked up in the course of his training to become an astronaut and the do-or-die crises that have arisen once adrift in the cosmos. Always engaging and lively, Hadfield’s unconventional self-help guide is a marvellously entertaining volume.
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Atkinson’s first collection of short stories is a typically mercurial melding of the mundane and the magical delivered in sparkling, involving prose from a consummate storyteller. From eternal life to a plethora of fish, these miniatures are a delightful, constantly surprising bounty.
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