14 Books You Need to Read Before They Hit the Big Screen in 2022

From hardbacks to Hollywood.

By Bridget Chambers
samantha wennerstrom, could i have that, california, reading, relaxing in living room on couch

One of my favorite parts of the new year is setting my reading goals for the upcoming 12 months. I use the GoodReads app to organize books into a “Want to Read” category, set a numerical goal, and get to reading. This year, I’m upping my goal to read 20 titles, and my list is full of books becoming movies in 2022. I’ve always loved reading the books before they’re adapted into movies or TV shows and comparing the two. More often than not, I find that the screen adaptation pales in comparison to the beauty of the book, but every once in a while, there is a film or show that does a story perfect justice. With that being said, I always have high hopes for these adaptations and always look forward to their release dates. 

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My friends and I recently started a GroupMe channel where we send and receive book recommendations, discuss our favorites, and plan get-togethers. This year, I’m begging everyone to read Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens before July so we can all see the long-awaited film adaptation together in theaters. Planning to read a book and watch the movie/show as a group is my ideal book club model, and I can’t wait to get started. 

So, without further ado, here are the most exciting books becoming movies in 2022… AKA your new year’s book bucket list.

Editor’s note: many of these releases have been carried over from the 2021 book-to-movie releases, due to production changes and COVID-19. 

Scroll on for 14 books becoming movies in 2022…

Rebekah Peppler dinner party

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens 

Where the Crawdads Sing is one of those books that make you want to crawl into a cozy spot and read every page in one sitting… or at least that’s what I did! I did not want the story to come to an end, but I was simultaneously dying to get to the bottom of what was happening. This coming-of-age mystery novel truly transported me into a different world—a quiet coastal town in the 1960’s—and follows the life and experiences of the female protagonist, Kya “The Marsh Girl,” when someone in the town turns up dead. When I heard that a movie adaptation was in the works, I did not think I could be more excited, until I learned that Daisy Edgar Jones is set to portray Kya. Another plus? Reese Witherspoon is attached to the project, as well.

P.S. If you haven’t read Sally Rooney’s Normal People and seen Edgar Jones play Marianne, add this one to your list, as well. 

Release Date: July 22, 2022

Conversations With Friends by Sally Rooney

Sally Rooney has one of the most uniquely beautiful writing styles I have ever read. While I haven’t yet read Conversations with Friends, her novel Normal People was one of my favorite reads of 2020. Hulu already adapted Normal People into a limited series (it’s worth checking out if you haven’t seen it yet), and the same team is now adapting Conversations with Friends! This book, which was actually Rooney’s first novel, follows best friends, Frances and Bobbi, and their complicated relationships with married couple, Melissa and Nick. While no one is yet tied to this mini-series, if it is anything like Normal People, it will assuredly be incredible. 

Release Date: TBA

Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers

This well-loved, romance classic inspired by the Book of Hosea in the Bible, is finally coming to life as a feature film. It will star Abigail Cowen, Nina Dobrev, Tom Lewis, and Eric Dane (Grey’s Anatomy fans, McSteamy is back!). This book follows the protagonist, Angel on her journey from prostitution to self-acceptance, forgiveness, and love. Needless to say, this book, and hopefully the movie, is hopelessly romantic. Every woman will want to find a man like Redeeming Love’s Michael. Don’t be intimidated by the length… the story sucks you in and you’ll be finished before you know it. Watch the trailer here.

Release Date: January 21, 2022

Deep Water by Patricia Highsmith

From the author that brought us The Talented Mr. Ripley, Deep Water is a psychological thriller about the dark realities behind seemingly perfect suburban lives. Vic and Melinda Van Allen have a loveless marriage that survives only on the arrangement that Melinda can have any number of extramarital lovers. Determined to win his wife back, Vic falsely takes credit for the murder of one of her lovers… but soon makes it come true. This film adaptation stars (and exes) Ben Affleck and Ana de Armas. I am dying to read this book, and even more excited to see the fictional and real-life tensions on-screen.

Release Date: TBA

Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie

Part of the Hercule Poirot mystery series, Death on the Nile is being released as a sequel to 2017’s movie adaption of Murder on the Orient Express. The so-called ‘Queen of Mystery,’ Agatha Christie, does it again with this story of a murdered heiress and a ship full of people with motives. Kenneth Branagh returns to the screen as Poirot and is joined by Gal Gadot, Tom Bateman, Arnie Hammer, Annette Bening, and Letitia Wright. 

Release Date: February 11, 2022

Mrs Harris Goes to Paris by Paul Gallico

This period piece is set in the 1950s and follows Mrs. Harris, a cleaning lady in London, as she lays eyes on the most beautiful thing she has ever seen, a Dior dress. In dreams of one day owning something as beautiful, she changes her life. I can personally relate to Mrs. Harris’s love for fashion, and cannot wait to read about how she works tirelessly to move to Paris and insert herself in the world of couture. Mrs. Harris is a 60-year-old woman with the charm and spirit of a young woman, and I can only imagine how gorgeous the fashion will look on screen.

Release Date: March 4, 2022 

Blonde by Joyce Carol Oates

The life of Marilyn Monroe has long been a subject of fascination and judgment. Blonde is a fictionalized account of the inner workings of the woman, the myth, the legend, Norma Jeane Baker, who became known as Marilyn Monroe. She tells the heartbreaking story of how this young girl lost her way. It is a beautiful tribute to the star, who will be portrayed by Ana de Armas in this Netflix adaptation. 

Release Date: TBA

Persuasion by Jane Austen

Persuasion is Jane Austen’s last completed novel and is a love story about missed opportunities and a satire of the vanity of society. Anne Elliot, the protagonist is 27-years-old and lacks a love interest. As a young girl, Anne was forced to turn down the proposal of Frederick Wentworth. However, when their paths cross after eight years, everything is sure to change. Dakota Johnson will portray Anne Elliot, and Cosmo Jarvis will portray Frederick Wentworth. 

Release Date: TBA

The Stars at Noon by Denis Johnson

The Stars at Noon is a fictional account of an American woman abroad in 1984 Nicaragua. While she claims to be an American reporter, her actions are often shady and mysterious. When she meets an English businessman, their lives abroad become increasingly tangled, and increasingly sinister. It’s a novel about self-destruction, passion, and betrayal at its finest. I’m most excited about the cast of this adaptation: Robert Pattinson and Margaret Qually. 

Release Date: TBA

Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll

This novel is the story of how even the most perfect people have their secrets. It follows Ani, a successful writer in New York, as she is forced to revisit and address the trauma of her past that she has spent so long running from. It’s a psychological thriller that has been compared to Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train, two of my other favorite book-to-movie adaptations. I have already read Luckiest Girl Alive and was so excited to learn that it will be a Netflix movie. The killer cast includes Justine Lupe, Mila Kunis, Finn Wittrock, and Connie Britton.

Release Date: TBA

Anatomy of a Scandal by Sarah Vaughan 

The back of the book sums it up best: “Some people’s secrets are darker than others.” I am a sucker for any kind of thriller novel, and Anatomy of a Scandal promises a bit of everything—it’s chock-full of romance, mystery, lies, and politics. The TV adaptation of this courtroom drama will most definitely appeal to fans of Scandal and Big Little Lies. The stacked cast already includes Sienna Miller, Michelle Dockery, and Rupert Friend. I am dying to get my hands on a copy of this book before it comes to Netflix.

Release Date: TBA

“The Black Phone” by Joe Hill

The Black Phone is a short story in Joe Hill’s story collection, 20th Century Ghosts. It’s about Finney Shaw, a young boy who has been kidnapped and locked in the basement of a serial killer. When he finds a mysterious and disconnected phone, he hears the voices of his captor’s past victims who each try to help Shaw escape. The cast includes Mason Thames, Ethan Hawke, Madeleine McGraw, Jeremy Davies, and James Ransone. Watch the chilling trailer here

Release Date: February 4, 2022

20th Century Ghosts by Joe Hill

“The Black Phone” is a short story included in this collection.

20th Century Ghosts by Joe Hill, $11.99

Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie

The classic story we all know and love is getting a refresh and coming to Disney+ in 2022. It’s the same story of the Darling sibling’s trip to Neverland, but with a new and star-packed cast. Ever Gabo Andeson (also seen in Black Widow) will play Wendy, Alexander Molony makes his debut as Peter Pan, and Jude Law is Captain Hook. The film will be called, Peter Pan & Wendy.

Release Date: TBA

My Policeman by Bethan Roberts

My Policeman is the story of a love triangle between a policeman, his wife, and a man named Patrick. It is set in England in the 1950s when homosexuality was illegal, pushing policeman Tom to marry Marion out of safety. However, Marion and Patrick end up sharing Tom’s love. As most love triangles are, their relationships become destructive. While I had never heard of this novel, when I heard that Harry Styles will play Tom, I was immediately intrigued.

Release Date: TBA

Which books becoming movies in 2022 are you most excited for? Share them in the comments below!