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Young Adult Literature

2023 YA Book-to-Movie Adaptations For Your To-Be-Watched List

Kelly Jensen

Editor

Kelly is a former librarian and a long-time blogger at STACKED. She's the editor/author of (DON'T) CALL ME CRAZY: 33 VOICES START THE CONVERSATION ABOUT MENTAL HEALTH and the editor/author of HERE WE ARE: FEMINISM FOR THE REAL WORLD. Her next book, BODY TALK, will publish in Fall 2020. Follow her on Instagram @heykellyjensen.

It’s hard to believe the time has come to start thinking about the new year, but it’s true. Whether or not you’re mentally ready, a bright spot is that we look to have a pretty stellar year packed with awesome adaptations of your favorite young adult books. These 2023 YA books to movies will have you head over heels. From queer romance to a coming-of-age graphic novel, a historical romp to a dystopian prequel to get blockbuster treatment, there’s something for everyone coming to screens soon.

The slate of YA adaptations in 2023 is promising for representation, but it should be noted that we’re still no where near representative of either the YA reader world at large nor the category of YA literature itself. We can only hope that the adaptations being slated for future years continue this growth trend and we’re able to enjoy as much inclusivity as possible as films and series from YA books continue to flourish. There are boatloads of YA books that have had option for development into film or TV announced, so now we wait to see them come to fruition.

This look at 2023 YA books to movies and YA books to series specifically focuses on the adaptations that are either currently filming, are in post-production, are completed, or have scheduled release dates. Titles currently filming may not release in 2023, but there is a chance they’ll hit in late summer or fall, while films in post-production are closest to release and will likely see a 2023 date. Dates are listed where possible, but note they could be tentative, given any number of circumstances.

2023 YA Books-to-Movies for Your Viewing Plans

american born chinese book cover

American Born Chinese by Gene Luen-Yang, Disney+ Series

Jin Wang is pretty average. At least, he was your “average” high schooler in an immigrant family, until he crossed paths with a new student on the first day of the new school year — a student who is also an immigrant — and suddenly, the two of them are battling Chinese mythological gods.

This series stars Michelle Yeoh, Ben Wang as Jin, and Ke Huy Quan.

aristotle and dante discover the secrets of the universe

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by BENJAMIN ALIRE SÁENZ

Know that this film has already debuted on screens at the Toronto International Film Fest, but it has yet to be distributed and released to a wider audience. That will most likely happen in 2023. No details are available as of writing.

Set in El Paso, Texas, in 1987, this award-winning novel follows two lonely Mexican American boys through friendship, self-discovery, and, ultimately, love. The film stars Kevin Alejandro, Veronica Falcón, and Eva Longoria, and it has wrapped up production. Lin-Manuel Miranda, who voiced the audiobook, is one of the co-producers on the film.

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes cover

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins, November 17, 2023

Starring Viola Davis, Peter Dinklage, Hunter Schafer, and more, this film is sure to get the blockbuster treatment when it releases in November. This is the prequel to The Hunger Games series and follows what happens in the 10th annual Hunger Games when Coriolanus Snow begins to mentor…and fall for…the female tribute from District 12.

loveboat taipei book cover

Loveboat, Taipei by Abigail Hing Wen

Currently in post-production — it began filming in December 2021 — the story follows 18-year-old Ever Wong. She’s been sent to Taiwan from Ohio in order to up her skills in all things Mandarin, but turns out this is far from the intense schooling anyone thought it would be.

Ashley Liao plays Ever in the adaptation.

My Lady Jane cover

My Lady Jane by Brodi Ashton, Cynthia Hand, and Jodi Meadows, Prime

Being developed for Prime, Emily Bader plays Lady Jane Grey. Though she is unhappy her mother is selling her to marriage to Guilford Dudley, Jane discovers he has a secret that has the potential to get them both killed. It also doesn’t help that her cousin King Edward is under threat of murder as well. Using her wit, her tongue, and her heart, she may be the lady who saves herself first and foremost.

This historical series is packed with heart and humor.

my life with the walter boys book cover

My Life with the Walter Boys by Ali Novak, Netflix

Novak’s book was originally written on Wattpad and is now being made into a film. It follows Jackie, a Type A who hates surprises, when she learns that her family has been killed in an accident. To make matters worse, her entire life is being uprooted as she’s sent to Colorado to live with her new guardians, the Walters, who happen to have 11 sons.

the summer i turned pretty book cover

The Summer I Turned Pretty (Season 2) by Jenny Han, Prime

The first season of Han’s debut YA series won fans over last summer, and the second season was immediately a go. There are few details as of yet, but keep an eye out for a potential summer release.

Shadow and Bone Leigh Bardugo

Shadow and Bone (Season 2) by Leigh Bardugo, Netflix, March 16

Season 2 of the popular show that marries both of Bardugo’s YA blockbuster series was announced in June 2021. It’s coming back for season 2 early in 2023, so you won’t have to wait too long.

the cover of Turtles All the Way Down

Turtles All The Way Down by John Green, HBO Max

Currently in postproduction, it’s possible that 2023 will bring a new adaptation of a John Green YA book to the screen. Turtles follows Aza Holmes, who struggles with intense anxiety. When she reconnects with her childhood crush, the two team up to solve a mystery related to a fugitive billionaire and Aza wrestles with what it is to have mental illness and how she can — or can’t — find “normal.” Isabela Merced plays Aza and Felix Mallard plays Davis.

Uglies by Scott Westerfeld book cover

Uglies by Scott Westerfeld, Netflix

Westerfeld’s book, the first in a series, had many production updates throughout 2022, and it seemed like it might hit screens. But it didn’t, so fingers crossed 2023 is the year it happens.

Set in a world where a standard operation removes physical differences in order to make everyone pretty, the series has kept readers hooked long enough to not only stay in print but also to bring about a spinoff series, The Impostors. It’ll be fascinating to see how this one plays out on screen to contemporary audiences.