It’s Week Two of NonFiction November. This week the prompt is to pair up a nonfiction book with a fiction title a la, “if you like this, you might enjoy that.” This week is hosted by Sarah @ Sarah’s Book Shelves and is always one of my favorite weeks to peek around. Some of the participants come up with amazing posts!
My fiction and nonfiction pairings are also connected to films. So, this post is more a “if you enjoyed the movie, you might like the book and whoa, there’s also this nonfiction book!”
The Princess Bride and As You Wish
The Princess Bride is one of my favorite books as well as one of my favorite movies. This book is, hands down, the best example of how to make a wonderful movie from a fabulous book. I believe this feat is only made possible by author William Goldman’s participation in the screenplay. If you love the movie, you will love the book.
But, my infatuation with the book (and movie) made me nervous to read As You Wish, Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride by Cary Elwes. I actually purchased the book as soon as it was available but couldn’t bring myself to read it for months. My fear was a tangible thing. What if he gave into the general public’s need for tawdry details? What if he hated everyone from the film? Oh my gosh, what if Wesley was a jerk?
I shouldn’t have been worried for a moment. As You Wish is a love letter to the amazing cast, crew, and experience of filming The Princess Bride. If anything, this book will make you want to immediately re-read the book and watch the movie. Cary Elwes defines what it means to be a gentleman.
The Princess, The Soundrel, and The Farm Boy and The Princess Diarist
I had the joy of reading both of these books as audiobooks and if you can, I highly recommend the experience. This fictional re-telling of the original movie, Star Wars: A New Hope, is masterfully re-imagining. It is a much more character-driven story as opposed to the action-based energy of the movie. This full cast recording is complete with sound effects and music and will transport you back to that feeling of watching Episode III for the first time.
Similarly, reading Carrie Fisher’s diaries and memories left me missing my Princess more than ever. If you don’t know, Fisher was an unbelievably talented writer and this shines through in her journal entries. Her daughter, Billie Lorde, reads excerpts from journals written during the filming of the original films. Listening to these passages will leave you with no doubt as to why Carrie spent so many years as one of Hollywood’s go-to script doctors. The Princess Diarist does contain some salacious gossip but nothing the fans didn’t already know. What it does give you is a look at how a young woman in Hollywood embraced (eventually) the iconic role that defined her forever.
Pretty in Pink and So That Happened
Pretty in Pink is the book from the screenplay written by John Hughes and I recommend it because it has the original ending before they made the massive change seen in the popular 80’s movie. I’m Ducky forever (and ever and ever) so I prefer the original ending and the book was just plain fun.
As a Ducky fan, I knew I wanted to read Jon Cryer’s memoir, So That Happened. This book measures somewhere between Carrie Fisher and Cary Elwes in terms of gossip. In his memoir Jon is upfront and honest about himself and his journey through life and, while he delivers information about other people, it never takes the reader down any tawdry paths. Except when those paths were walked by Jon! The book is absolutely stuffed with other famous people and hilarious moments. The audiobook is read by the author and is thoroughly enjoyable. It is one of the longest audiobooks I listened to last year and it left me wanting more.
And there you have it! My movie to fiction to nonfiction adventures have lead me to some interesting books and memoirs. It is clear that I have an obsession with reading any book that has been made into film (and vice versa) and an addiction to audible memoirs.
Tell me, please!
What is your favorite fiction / nonfiction pairing?