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23 Books to read before they hit theaters in 2015 — ranked

Just when we thought superhero movies were taking over the cinema, we discovered these 23 fantastic books were getting their own close ups this year. Since we’ve rated these novels in order of anticipation, number one should be no surprise.

1. Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James

fifty shades of grey

Image: Universal Pictures

Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan), brings literature student Anastasia Steele into his secret world of sex, bondage and need for control. Next month, we’ll have the chance to see if the movie lives up to all the hype.

Release date: Feb. 14, 2015

More: Fifty Shades’ ‘unusual behavior’ gets R rating: What does that even mean?

2. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins


Image: Lionsgate

Revolution takes flight when the “Mockingjay,” better known as Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence), defies the autocratic Capitol for the good of the common people.

Release date: Nov. 20, 2015 

3. The Martian by Andy Weir

The Martian

Set in the near future, an American astronaut, Mark Watney (Matt Damon) gets stranded on Mars and has an epic struggle to survive. With Ridley Scott directing, this film could be the best sci-fi movie of the year.

More: 5 Facts about Stephen Hawking that weren’t in The Theory of Everything

Release date: Nov. 25, 2015

4. In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex by Nathaniel Philbrick

In the Heart of the Sea

Image: Warner Bros.

Based on a real-life news story from 1820, the Essex was a whaling ship that was struck and sunk by a sperm whale. This true story was also part of the inspiration for Herman Melville’s Moby Dick. Chris Hemsworth, Brendan Gleeson and Cillian Murphy star in the whale-of-a-tale.

Release date: March 13, 2015

5. Insurgent by Veronica Roth


Image: Lionsgate

Tris (Shailene Woodley) continues her battle against the corrupt alliance which threatens to doom her secret society of outcasts.

Release date: March 20, 2015

6. The Revenant: A Novel of Revenge
by Michael Punke

The Revenant

A 19th-century frontiersman, Hugh Glass (Leonardo DiCaprio), demands vengeance against those who left him for dead after he was nearly killed by a bear. Directed by Alejandro González Iñárritu (Birdman), this could be pretty intense.

Release date: Dec. 25

7. True Story: Murder, Memoir, Mea Culpa by Michael Finkel

True Story

Image: 20th Century Fox

Michael Finkel (Jonah Hill) plays a down-on-his-luck journalist who befriends a mass murderer, Christian Longo (James Franco), and realizes they have a frightening connection.

More: All 15 of James Franco’s upcoming movies summarized in 140 characters or less

Release date: April 10, 2015

8. The Mortdecai Trilogy by Kyril Bonfiglioli


Image: Lionsgate

Charlie Mortdecai (Johnny Depp) is a mustachioed art dealer who begins searching for a stolen painting that may reveal Nazi secrets. The film is called Mortdecai.

Release date: Jan. 23

9. Black Mass by Dick Lehr and Gerard O’Neill

Black Mass

This is the real-life story of Whitey Bulger (Johnny Depp), a violent criminal and head of the Irish mob in Boston, who became an FBI informant.

Release date: Sept. 18

10. Brooklyn by Colm Toibin


Image: Wildgaze/Parallel Films

Set in the 1950s, a working-class Irish girl, Ellis Lacey (Saoirse Ronan) hopes to make a better life for herself in New York and finds love.

Release date: Jan. 26, 2015

11. The Choice by Nicholas Sparks

The Choice

Neighbors Travis (Benjamin Walker) and Gabby (Maggie Grace) find romance in spite of life’s challenges.

There is no release date yet.

12. The Ninth Life of Louis Drax by Liz Jensen

The Ninth Life of Louis Drax

The lines between reality and fantasy begin to blur when Dr. Pascal (Jamie Dornan) begins to treat a 9-year-old boy, Louis (Aiden Longworth), after a near-fatal accident.

13. The Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials by James Dashner

The Scotch Trials

Image: Fox

Having escaped from the Maze, the Gladers, including Thomas (Dylan O’Brien) and Teresa (Kaya Scodelario), find a dystopian world ravaged by disease and a dying sun.

Release date: Sep. 18

14. Paper Towns by John Green

Paper Towns

A young man, Quentin (Nat Wolff), and his closest buddies, take off on a road trip in search of Margo (Cara Delevingne), who’s disappeared under mysterious circumstances.

Release date: June 5th

15. Far From the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy

Far From the Madding Crowd

Image: Fox Searchlight

In this timeless story set in Victorian England, the bold Bathsheba Everdene (Carey Mulligan) has set her sights on three very different men: a sheep farmer, a soldier and a wealthy but older bachelor. Which one will truly love her back?

Release date: May 1, 2015

16. The Longest Ride by Nicholas Sparks

The Longest Ride

Image: Miramax

College student Sophia (Brit Robertson) has fallen for champion bull rider Luke (Scott Eastwood — yes, Clint’s very hot son), despite the fact she’s planning to take a job in New York. But everything changes when they cross paths with an older man who’s been in a terrible accident.

Release date: April 10, 2015

17. Serena by Ron Rash


Image: Magnolia Pictures

Also set in North Carolina, married couple George (Bradley Cooper) and Serena (Jennifer Lawrence) embark on building a timber empire in 1929. But when Serena discovers she can’t bear children, she begins a downward spiral into madness.

Release date: March 27, 2015

18. The Spook’s Apprentice by Joseph Delaney

The Seventh Son

Image: Legendary Pictures

In this fantasy story set in the middle ages, Young Thomas (Ben Barnes) studies to become an expert ghost and demon hunter under the tutelage of Master Gregory (Jeff Bridges). The movie is called Seventh Son.

19. Into the Forest by Jean Hegland

Into the Forest

Set in the near future in a society on the edge of an apocalypse, two young women (Evan Rachel Wood and Ellen Page) escape to an ancient forest where they struggle to survive.

20. Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

Dark Places

Libby Day (Charlize Theron) thinks she knows the gruesome details of her family’s murder that happened when she was only 7. But a secret crime-solving society called the Kill Club forces her re-examine exactly what took place all those years ago. The film also stars Nicholas Hoult and Christina Hendricks.

21. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

Image: Cross Creek

Austen’s tale of romance gets tangled when zombies invade England. Lily James plays Elizabeth Bennet and Sam Reilly takes on the delicious Mr. Darcy, who may or may not get his brain eaten by zombies.

There is no release date yet.

22. Where Rainbows End by Cecelia Ahern

Love, Rosie

Image: Lionsgate

Rosie (Lily Collins) and Alex (Sam Claflin) have been best friends since they were 5, growing up in Ireland. As a teen, Alex moves to Boston but still feels a deep connection to Rosie — could his best friend also be his soul mate? The movie is called Love, Rosie.

Release Date: Feb. 6

23. Me Before You by JoJo Moyes

Me Before You

Louisa (Emilia Clarke) begins to have romantic feelings about Will (Sam Claflin), a severely disabled young man who employs her.

Release date: Aug. 21, 2015

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