I know this book was all the rage awhile back, but I wasn’t in the mood to pick it up – likely due to reading fatigue. But now with HBO’s television adaptation of it, I figure I should try reading it before watching the show and seeing which was better.
I’m about six episodes in, and I’ve finished the book. My verdict? In a rare instance, I’m going to say the show is better!
For one, the issue of race didn’t really come through in the book. The show definitely plays on that more, which is what helped pull me in. Also the character of Mia (played brilliantly by Kerry Washington) is way stronger and more independent and speaks her mind on the show, whereas I found her slightly weaker in the book.
They’ve also turned the character of Izzy into a budding lesbian on the show, whereas there’s no mention of that in the book. At least, none that I can recall.
Author Celeste Ng is overseeing the TV show, so I guess she’s the one behind the changes or at least has approval over them. It’s like she’s getting a do-over with her novel via the TV show and this time is getting it right.