Books on screen at TIFF

Love books and film? This year’s Toronto International Film Festival, best known as TIFF, promises to be one for the books.

 

1. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas, narrated by Bahni Turpin

The Hate U Give.

Starr moves between two worlds: her poor neighborhood and her fancy prep school. The balance between the two shatters when she witnesses the fatal shooting of her best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed, and his death is a national headline. As protesters take to the streets, what Starr does or doesn’t say could upend her community and endanger her life.
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2. Beautiful Boy by David Sheff, narrated by Anthony Heald

Beautiful Boy.

Before meth, Sheff‘s son, Nic, was a varsity athlete, honor student, and award-winning journalist. After meth, he stole money from his eight-year-old brother and lived on the streets. With haunting candor, Sheff traces the first warning signs, the attempts at rehabilitation, and, at last, the way past addiction. Whatever an addict’s fate, the rest of the family must care for one another, too, lest they become addicted to addiction.
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3. Tweak by Nic Sheff, narrated by Paul Michael Garcia

Tweak.

Nic Sheff was drunk for the first time at age 11. In the years that followed, he would regularly smoke pot, do cocaine and ecstasy, and develop addictions to crystal meth and heroin. Even so, he felt like he would always be able to quit and put his life together whenever he needed to. It took a violent relapse one summer in California to convince him otherwise.
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4. Boy Erased by Garrard Conley, narrated by Michael Crouch

Boy Erased.

The son of a Baptist pastor and deeply embedded in church life in small town Arkansas, Garrard was terrified and conflicted about his sexuality. While in college, he was outed to his parents, and was forced to make a life-changing decision: either agree to attend a church-supported conversion therapy program that promised to “cure” him of homosexuality; or risk losing family, friends, and his faith.
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5. First Man by James R. Hansen, narrated by Jeremy Bobb

First Man.

Soon to be a major motion picture, this is the first-and only-definitive authorized account of Neil Armstrong, the man whose “one small step” changed history. When Apollo 11 touched down on the Moon’s surface in 1969, the first man on the moon became a legend and American icon. 
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6. The Sisters Brothers by Patrick DeWitt, narrated by John Pruden

The Sisters Brothers

Hermann Kermit Warm is going to die. The enigmatic and powerful man known only as the Commodore has ordered it, and his henchmen, Eli and Charlie Sisters, will make sure of it. Though Eli doesn’t share his brother’s appetite for whiskey and killing, he’s never known anything else. But their prey isn’t easy, and on the road from Oregon City to Warm’s gold-mining claim outside Sacramento, Eli begins to question what he does for a living.
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7. Widows by Lynda La Plante, narrated by Ann Mitchell

Widows.

Facing life alone, they turned to crime together. A van heist goes disastrously wrong and three women are left widowed. When Dolly Rawlins discovers her gang boss husband’s plans for the failed hijack, an idea forms. Could she and the other wives finish the job their husbands started? As the women rehearse, it becomes clear that someone else must have been involved. Who was he? And where is he now?
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8. If Beale Street Could Talk by James Baldwin, narrated by Bahni Turpin

If Beale Street Could Talk.

Told through the eyes of Tish, a 19-year-old girl in love with Fonny, a young sculptor who is the father of her child. Tish and Fonny have pledged to get married, but Fonny is falsely accused of a terrible crime and is imprisoned. Their families set out to clear his name, and as they face an uncertain future, the young lovers experience a kaleidoscope of emotions-affection, despair, and hope.
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9. Girl Boy Girl by Savannah Knoop, narrated by Kristen Stewart

Girl Boy Girl.

In 2006, the New York Times unmasked Savannah Knoop as the face of the mysterious author JT LeRoy. A media frenzy ensued as JT’s fans, mentors, and readers came to terms with the fact that the gay-male-ex-truck-stop-prostitute-turned literary-wunderkind was really a girl from San Francisco, whose sister-in-law wrote the books. Girl Boy Girl is the story of how Savannah led this bizarre double life for six years.
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10. A Million Little Pieces by James Frey, narrated by Oliver Wyman

A Million Little Pieces

By the time James Frey enters a drug and alcohol treatment facility, he has so thoroughly ravaged his body that the doctors are shocked he is still alive. Inside the clinic, he is surrounded by patients whose friendship and advice seem stronger and truer than the clinic’s droning dogma of How to Recover.
He insists on accepting sole accountability for the person he has been and fights to survive on his own terms.
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On the same day that Roy Cady is diagnosed with a terminal illness, he senses that his boss, a dangerous loan-sharking bar-owner, wants him dead. Before Roy makes his getaway, he realizes there are two women in his apartment, one of them is still breathing. He takes her with him as he goes on the run to Galveston. The girl is too young, too tough, too sexy —and far too much trouble. They hide in the seascape of country-western bars and seedy hotels, a world of treacherous drifters, pickups, and ashed-out hopes.
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12. Through Black Spruce by Joseph Boyden, narrated by James Jenner and Ali Ahn

Through Black Spruce.

Joseph Boyden‘s first novel, Three Day Road, was a Today Show Book Club selection. Through Black Spruce is the exceptional follow-up to his acclaimed debut. Cree bush pilot Will Bird lies comatose in a hospital, while his wayward niece Annie arrives to sit in silent vigil by his side. Slowly their stories reveal two people previously separated by great distances, beaten and broken, and searching for some sense of where they belong in the world.
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13. Hold The Dark by William Giraldi, narrated by Richard Ferrone

Hold The Dark.

Three children have been taken from an isolated Alaskan village, including Medora and Vernon Slone’s son. Russell Core arrives to investigate the killings, and discovers the horrifying darkness at the heart of Medora Slone and learns of an unholy truth harbored by this village. As Russell Core attempts to rescue Medora from her husband, he comes face-to-face with an unspeakable secret.
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