Great Summer Reads With Carol Jago: Take a Book to the Movies! for Grades 6-8

Carol Jago Blogs 3 1

When books are engaging, filmmakers inevitably want to try their hand at adapting them for the big screen.

Dear Readers,

Watching the movie version of a book can be a jarring experience. The three stories in this week’s post are extraordinary examples of film adaptations that expand the viewer’s reading experience. Rather than asking yourself, “Which is better?” think about how they diverge and where they converge. The links to additional resources may give you ideas.

Happy reading!



Adventure Fiction by Jason Reynolds

Miles is a pretty typical teen: eating dinner with his parents on Sundays, playing video games with his best friend, crushing on girls, listening to boring teachers at his fancy school, and…oh yeah, being Spider-Man! Lately, though, he’s been having vivid nightmares, and his spidey-senses tell him something is up! His friends and family could all be in danger.


Fiction by R. J. Palacio

August Pullman was born with a facial deformity that has kept him home...until now. Facing all the normal terrors of middle school along with the challenge of finding his own place in the world, Auggie ends up teaching a whole community what it means to be kind. The book and movie have inspired the national “Choose Kind” movement.


Romance Fiction by John Green

You may not think that a story about a cancer kids support group could make you laugh, but then you haven’t met Hazel yet. Both the book and the movie explore what it means to live and to love even when you know time is short. Don’t be surprised if John Green becomes your new favorite author. The good news is that he has written many more novels.

As you read these titles, consider:

  • What internal and external struggles do the characters face? How do they overcome them?
  • How does watching the film version of a story enhance our understanding?

Try one of these activities to take your reading to the next level:

  • Use these discussion questions to talk about the Miles Morales book. Then, watch the film version and discuss the differences. Which version did you prefer, and why?
  • Discover more about Auggie’s condition and other Craniofacial Differences. Then, watch the film version of Wonder. How are some of the other people featured on the website similar to Auggie and what he experiences?
  • Science Connection: Learn more about The Fault in Our Stars characters’ illnesses and explore how our bodies work.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of HMH.

Note: HMH is not responsible for the content of third-party websites.

Photo of Carol Jago provided by ©Andrew Collings

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