Books That Inspire


Books That Inspire 2014


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The theme for the 2014 Books That Inspire exhibit is books into film. Avid readers often leave movie adaptations of their favorite books noting plot and character differences and lamenting to their friends that the book was better. As Brazilian author Paulo Coelho explains, "The book is a film that takes place in the mind of the reader. That's why we go to movies and say, 'Oh, the book is better.'" However, on rare occasions film adaptations capture our imaginations in new and exciting ways and bring the author's world to life in ways that allow us to experience the story afresh. It is these works that we are highlighting in this exhibit.

Some selections provide insight into social issues and glimpses into our history. OU President David Boren's selection, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, won a Pulitzer Prize for Literature as well as a number of Oscars for the film adaptation. John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath helps Oklahomans understand the devastation their ancestors faced during the Dust Bowl and Great Depression.

Other selections create intricate worlds for the audience to inhabit with the author. J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings was awarded the International Fantasy Award in 1957 while the more recent film series based on his work has won and been nominated for numerous prestigious awards. Orson Scott Card's Ender's Game is a futuristic look at Earth after alien invasions.

As you browse the exhibit and read the selected essays, I hope you will find a book, a film, or idea that interests and inspires you.


Rick Luce
Dean, University Libraries
Peggy V. Helmerich Chair
Associate Vice President for Research, Norman Campus