#LeMillRecommends: Your Netflix Reading List: The Best Films and Shows Based on Books

We have a few universally accepted truths in this world. Sun rises from the east. Puppies are cute. The book is almost always better than the movie or show.

But just because the book is better doesn’t mean you should completely disregard the movie or show adaptation. It can be quite amusing to see how the characters we pictured in our heads turn out on the big screen, and how screenwriters and everyone involved interpret the stories we’ve come to know and love.

While there are some must-read (and watch) stories here, there’s still more to come this year. We don’t know about you but we’re surely planning a watch party for some of these.

Daisy Jones and The Six

Book by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Show by Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber

Your Netflix Reading List

The book follows a young singer coming of age in the 60s and early 70s with an angelic voice and big dreams as she joins The Six (a band partly inspired by Fleetwood Mac). Written in a documentary format, Daisy Jones and The Six, chronicles how Daisy’s presence bolsters the band to fame but also brings drama and tension with its brooding leading singer, Billy Dunne. The show, starring Riley Keough (as Daisy Jones) and Sam Claflin (as Billy Dunne), may have gotten mixed reviews but we loved the 70s throwback and reminisced about the golden days of Fleetwood Mac as the singer duo reminded us of Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham.

You can watch ‘Daisy Jones and The Six’ on Amazon Prime Video.

A Man Called Ove

Book by Fredrik Backman

Movie by Mark Forster (renamed ‘A Man Called Otto’)

Your Netflix Reading List

Marc Forster’s A Man Called Otto is an adaptation of Fredrik Backman’s novel A Man Called Ove. The dark-comedy features grumpy 60-year-old Ove who is forced to retire from his job of 40 years after his wife dies and decides to commit suicide. His attempts are interrupted by some lively new neighbours with whom he forms an unlikely friendship. The young family next door not only spoils his plans but shows him that life can become joyous again. The movie stars Tom Hanks playing Otto and the film feels like a warm hug from a dear friend, completely embodying what the book makes you feel. The book is also adapted to a Swedish movie by the same name (2015).

You can watch A Man Called Otto on Netflix.

Normal People

Book by Sally Rooney

Show by Lenny Abrahamson and Hettie Macdonald

Your Netflix Reading List

A simple story about two young lovers in Ireland as they move in and out of each other’s lives throughout secondary school and university, Normal People the book and the 12-part series end on completely different notes. Sally Rooney’s book has a non-linear timeline whereas the show follows Marianne (played by Daisy Edgar-Jones) and Connell (played by Paul Mescal) in a linear storyline which was more comprehensible onscreen. While the book got a lot of mixed reviews and so did the show, we leave it to you to decide which you prefer.

You can watch Normal People on Amazon Prime Video.


Book by Min Jin Lee

Show by Kogonada and Justin Chon

Your Netflix Reading List

The highly acclaimed series based on Min Jin Lee’s national bestseller of the same name, wrapped up its first season on April 29, 2023, with its series finale. The multi-lingual TV series is told in English, Japanese and Korean, following four generations of a Korean family in Korea and Japan throughout the 20th century. The novel’s multi-generational narrative treads through trauma passed down from one generation to another. This has been very well depicted in the show with a more non-linear plotline, adding a touch of mystery and keeping it interesting for the viewer. With an ensemble Korean star cast and a number of awards to their name, the show is a fair representation of the New York Times bestseller, and we just find ourselves looking for news about the next season.

You can watch Pachinko on Apple TV+.

American Born Chinese

Book by Gene Luen Yang

Show by Lucy Liu and Destin Daniel Cretton

Your Netflix Reading List

The story follows Jin Wang - your average student who has moved to a new high school and is just trying to keep his head down until graduation. He is in a juggling act, balancing schoolwork with his social life, when he meets Wei-Chen, the new Taiwanese exchange student. The show wound up being fun, bold, and at times buck wild enough to stand apart from both its award-winning source material and the previous work of its Academy Award-winning cast. If you’ve read the graphic novel, you’ll know that this is just the start of the 3-part story. But honestly? If Michele Yeoh stars in any show, sign us up!

You can watch American Born Chinese on Disney+ Hotstar.