Two Books I’d Rather See on Screen

the first bad man
The First Bad Man by Miranda July
Published by Scribner on January 13th, 2015
Source: Library
Pages: 276
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All signs point to me loving this weird novel about a lonely woman who is obsessed with her co-worker, hears the thoughts of babies and has her world shaken by a twenty-something roommate. Miranda July is a master at picking out the raw, exceedingly weird things we all do and amplifying them to their extreme. Sometimes those extremes are a little too much, even for someone who willingly embraces the odd.

I kept thinking about how incredibly awkward it was to be in Cheryl’s head, even though I found many of the observations to be smart and funny. At one point, I realized it was almost like reading an episode of Broad City from Abbi or Ilana’s perspective, which would take some of the show’s great oddity and push it a little too far. Though The First Bad Man had potential, I think Miranda July is at her best when she steps outside her characters and lets them run wild on screen.


lost boys symphony
The Lost Boys Symphony by Mark Andrew Ferguson
Published by Little, Brown on March 24th, 2015
Source: Publisher
Pages: 352
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Much like The First Bad Man, there’s much about The Lost Boys Symphony that should appeal to me, especially the task of figuring out where heartbroken Henry’s reality begins and ends. Unfortunately, the genre-bending pushed me a little too much, and I had a hard time staying engaged as time began to fold and bend.

I do tend to like similar stories on the screen, however, and was reminded a bit of About Time (which I’m a total sucker for) while reading. I would love to see Henry’s various ages played by different actors and think the book would make a great screenplay and much more enjoyable film.


Are there any books you think you would enjoy more as TV shows or movies?


  • I started listening to the audio book for The First Bad Man, but ran out of time and had to return it to the library. It was a bit of a relief because I also found Cheryl’s oddball thinking interesting, but the oversharing became a bit much. I really liked that Miranda July did the narration because I felt she channelled a lot of her personality into the recording.

    • Yeah, there was definitely a point where the narration just became a little too much for me…but I wished it wasn’t! I wanted to keep reading.

  • I love how you did this post! I remember having the same thought about Crazy Rich Asians…that it would make a great reality show, but it got tiresome as a book.

  • I’ve not read any of Miranda July’s work, but I remember being curious by this one when I saw it in a list of books to read from some online publication. The story line is just intriguing enough that I’d be willing to give it a shot! Thanks for the recommendation and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

  • Is it just me or does your opening synopsis of Miranda July’s The First Bad Man sound like the nineties hit Ally McBeal? Loved that show!

  • This is such a great point! I’m having trouble coming up with any specific books I’d prefer as movies, but I’ve *definitely* experienced that feeling while reading.

    Also, you just reminded me of how much I enjoyed Me and You and Everyone We Know! Bizarre but lovely.

  • Jennine G.

    Titles aren’t coming to mind, but there have definitely been books that I thought, I can wait for the movie and preferred to do that.

  • I guess I enjoy some action books better as movies: such as the Bourne series, or Jack Reacher was pretty entertaining. Or maybe a novel like Expats would make a good movie.

  • I think you’d like The Martian more on screen, too. *wink* *duck*
    Actually I feel this way about most fantasy titles. I’d much rather watch than have to keep track of the unfamiliar names and places and so.many.characters.

  • It’s always disappointing when a book seems right for you on paper, but doesn’t work out! I like books with a lot of action scenes better as movies, if done well, because I’m bad at picturing fights in books :)

  • That clip from Broad City is amazing. Also I am still so sad Miranda July didn’t dazzle you like she did me. But yeah I would 100% watch a first bad man show/movie. It would be so awkward and I would love it like my own child. Cheryl’s the weirdest.

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