Most of the time, novels are adapted into movies. However, did you know that there are also novels adapted into TV shows? There are adaptations that completely follow the novel while there are those that are only loosely based on their novel counterpart. Some adaptations have earned great success, such as Game of Thrones, due to great cinematography and warm audience reception. Others, though, can be left to your imagination.

Here are some of the novels-turned-TV series that you should check out:

Game of Thrones

The Game of Thrones TV series is a popular show featured in HBO since 2011 based on the book of the same name penned by George R. R. Martin. The plot of the TV series closely follows the plot of the novel, but is much more concise than the book. Currently, there are seven aired seasons, with the eight season slated to air this coming 2019.



Dexter follows the story of Dexter Morgan, a forensic technician who specializes in analyzing blood spatter pattern in crime scenes. For people living within the bounds of law, that kind of job is normal. However, Dexter Morgan isn’t your average police worker. He lives a secret life as a vigilante serial killer, only aiming for heinous criminals of society. Based on Jeff Lindsay’s Darkly Dreaming DexterDexter started airing way back in 2006 and has eight seasons all in all.



A British TV crime drama, Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman give life to the popular investigative duo Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson respectively in Sherlock. The series started its broadcast back in 2010. This BBC TV series is based loosely on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes.



Bones, a police procedural drama that started airing last 2005, is loosely based on Kathy Reichs’ Temperance Brennan book series. This TV show revolves particularly around the main characters solving cases by examining the human remains – bones – of possible murder victims. The series has a total of 12 seasons, with the final episode airing last March 2017.


The Magicians

From Lev Grossman’s The Magicians comes a very magic-filled American TV series, The Magicians. The series follows the adventure of Quentin Coldwater as he gets admitted into Brakebills University for Magical Pedagogy, a school for magicians. You might think of a Harry Potter-esque world but it is actually similar to an Ivy League environment – but with magic! First aired last December 2015, the series currently has three seasons you can watch.


The Handmaid’s Tale

The Handmaid’s Tale, based on Margaret Atwood’s novel with the same name, is a dystopian tale of women being subjugated to servitude by power-hungry leaders to deal with the world’s increasing fertility problems. Elisabeth Moss stars this show which first premiered last 2017. Currently, this show has two seasons, with the second one bound to air this coming April 25, 2018.


The 100

A post-apocalyptic sci-fi TV series, The 100 tells a story of the survivors after Earth suffered from a nuclear apocalpyse. After staying on a space habitat for many years, 100 juveniles were sent back to Earth to test if it is already inhabitable. Loosely based on Jason Rothenberg’s novel of the same name, the series, which premiered last March 2014, now has four seasons, with a fifth one set to premiere this coming April 2018.



If you are into time travel stories, then the Outlander TV drama series is one you ought to watch. This is based on the Outlander book series written by Diana Gabaldon. It has three seasons, with the third one concluding last December 10, 2017.


The Vampire Diaries

If you love L. J. Smith’s The Vampire Diaries, then watching the supernatural TV drama of the same name should excite you. This drama, just like the novel, follows the adventures and love triangle story of Elena Gilbert, an average teenage girl, and Stefan and Damon Salvatore, both hundred-year old vampires. The TV series has been very successful, spanning eight seasons.


The Originals

A spin-off of The Vampire Diaries, The Originals focuses more on the three Mikaelsons siblings, specifically Klaus. Most of the episodes of the series showcase battles involving vampires, witches, and werewolves. The series already has four seasons. The fifth one, which is also the last season for the series, is set to premier on April 18, 2018.


13 Reasons Why

13 Reasons Why uncovers the mystery surrounding the suicide of Hannah Baker. Based on Jay Asher’s 2007 novel with the same title, 13 Reasons Why only has one season with 13 episodes but it has been renewed for a second season and is scheduled to premier this 2018.



If you have read The Mortal Instruments authored by Cassandra Clare and liked it, then you will definitely love Shadowhunters as it is loosely based on that novel. The TV show introduces Clary Fray and her adventures upon learning that she is one of the Shadowhunters born to protect humans from demons. Shadowhunters already has two seasons aired on Freeform and a third one is set to premier on March 2018.


Pretty Little Liars

Pretty Little Liars is a TV show falling under the teen mystery thriller genre. The show focuses on the circumstances and relationships of five teenagers who, for the sake of friendship, shared their darkest secrets with each other. After the leader of their group disappeared, these secrets were then used against them by an unknown individual. Pretty Little Liars came from the book series of the same name penned by Sara Shephard. It has a total of seven seasons.


Watch these shows and see for yourself if they are up to standard, just like what we imagined when reading the books. Do you have other books-turned-TV shows in mind? Share them here!