Friday, September 27, 2013

Watch This? Read That! Fall 2013 Edition

Continuing the theme of last week's list, here are some reading suggestions for the hot fall shows which are not already based on books!

If you are watching Junior MasterChef … 

Show premise: Will Gordan Ramsey clean up his language and attitude when a group of kids compete to be MasterChef?!

Try: Suzanne Collin's The Hunger Games for the darker side of children competing against one another (it involves food too!). For a more realistic choice Kathyrn Williams's Pizza, Love, and Other Stuff That Made Me Famous follows a 16-year-old who competes in a reality show cooking contest for teens.

If you are watching The Blacklist … 

Show premise: One of the men on the FBI's Most Wanted List strikes a deal to help them find other people on the list if he is given mercy.

Try: Thomas Harris's The Silence of the Lambs, where a serial killer is used to track another serial killer.

If you are watching Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D … 

Show premise: The Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division attempts to fight nefarious organizations while finding and understanding people who develop superpowers.

Try: Jonathan Hickman's ambitious S.H.I.E.L.D. : Architects of Forever which imagines famous historical figures such as Leonardo Da Vinci and Galileo as members of the cult organization.

If you are watching Brooklyn Nine-Nine … 

Show premise: The odd couple trope gets yet another makeover as a laid-back detective and his strict captain work together to solve crimes in New York.

Try: Chris Grabenstein's Tilt A Whirl pairs together former military policeman John Ceepak with girl-crazy part-time cop Danny Boyle as they attempt to solve a high-profile murder during a Jersey Shore summer.

If you are watching The Michael J. Fox Show … 

Show premise: After being diagnosed with Parkinson's disease, Mike Henry had to give up his career as a news anchor and focus on his health and his family. Five years later, Mike decides to get back to work and struggles between family and career.

Try: Tough to find a book that hits upon the right sense of comedy and tone. Perhaps David Sedaris's Naked to try and match the dry humor, family situations, and comedic take on living with a disorder.

If you are watching Almost Human … 

Show premise: In the not-so-distant future, human cops are paired together with incredibly realistic android partners to fight crime.

Try: Isaac Asimov's The Caves of Steel, his response to the suggestion that science fiction and mystery stories were mutually exclusive ideas. The story pairs together a human detective and android cop to try and solve a high-profile murder. Also Philip K. Dick's Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (the inspiration for the movie Blade Runner), where a bounty hunter tracks down rogue androids while musing about their ability to feel human empathy.

If you are watching The Crazy Ones … 

Show premise: A zany father with good-intentions runs an ad agency in Chicago with his more straight-laced daughter.

Try: Joshua Ferris's Then We Came to the End about the employees and office dynamics of an ad agency in downtown Chicago. Also Matt Beaumont's  E: A Novel about a British ad agency with tons of misadventures in a desperate attempt to win a contract with Coca Cola.

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