The movie or the book first?
I prefer to read the book first so that afterwards I get the reward of seeing the movie. Plus, I find the book is usually better than the movie.
For example, the Harry Potter movies are pretty close adaptions to the books by J.K.Rowling, but the filmmaker still deleted some scenes. However, The Neverending Story wasn’t quite the same…
A few years ago I read The Neverending Story by Michael Ende. After winning the School Spelling Bee, I was awarded the movie. I was disgusted - they had left out half the book. The novel had a lion-like monster at the end which I wanted to show my lion-obsessed little brother, but it wasn’t in the movie. He saw that I was upset at the end when the Roadshow Films logo appeared on the screen. That ‘upside-down triangle’ has continued to traumatise him for years to come!
The Secret Garden was entirely different to the story by Frances Hodgson Burnett. Surprisingly, the movie was a lot better than the book. It wasn’t so bad that each Mary Lennox had different features such as eye colour and hair colour, but the movie had an earthquake that took away her parents and in the book it was an illness called cholera. Overall, the book was more complicated and a little disappointing.
I have just finished A Little Princess also by Frances Hodgson Burnett, but this time it was brilliant. I wonder what the movie will be like?