Yesterday, I spoke with Elizabeth Blair on NPR’s morning edition about unfilmable novels (I’d written a piece on the topic for The Atlantic back in October). I really enjoyed our conversation – but the most exciting part to me was that I had a chance to be on air with David Mitchell, one of my favorite contemporary writers. I only wish that I’d had a chance to meet him in person.
I’ve actually yet to see Cloud Atlas the movie; I must admit, I’m stalling because of my love for the book. I’m too afraid of being disappointed. That’s actually something Elizabeth and I discussed during our conversation, though it didn’t make it to the final cut: how do you approach the films of books that you’ve loved? Do you avoid them for fear of ruining a dear mental image–or do you embrace them on their own terms? It depends on the film and the book in question, of course, but it’s always an interesting conundrum. I’d love to hear your thoughts. And a related question: have you ever read a book after loving the movie? And if you have, were you ever disappointed?