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Genre-crossing inflames critics

Two stories report on literary adaptations: from film versions of books to the much stranger phenomenon of video-game novels.

In the Washington Post, film critic Stephen Hunter discusses the merits and pitfalls of book-to-film adaptations from the perspective of industry insider, bibliophile, and filmgoer, explaining in the end why film adaptations will never satisfy book-lovers. With a glut of book-films to hit box offices this fall — The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe; Memoirs of a Geisha; the umpteenth adaptation of Pride and Prejudice; and Everything Is Illuminated to name a few — Hunter tells us which books to seek out — and which to stay away from at all costs.

Speaking of literary crossovers, Clive Thompson at Wired.com dishes on the disturbing trend that is the publication of novels based on video games. Thompson, an avid gamer, calls them “the US Weekly of the gaming universe.” Look for Resident Evil, Halo, Tomb Raider, MechWarrior, and Splinter Cell novels crowding the shelves of the big box bookstore nearest you.

Related links:
Click here for the full Washington Post article
Click here for the latest on video game books at wired.com