Recently I found two digital books that I could download to my Kindle from our local library. Both had been made into movies: Nomadland: Surviving America in the Twenty-first Century and Let Her Go.
Now every time I receive a package from Amazon, I wonder if some tired retiree from an rv camp had some part in it. The book, written by journalist Jessica Bruder, follows (literally at times in her own van) real-life nomad Linda May, a 64-year old grandmother, who found going on the road a last choice after she lost everything in the Great Recession. It is written in documentary style. Some of the travelers find seasonal work at rv parks, national campgrounds and Amazon warehouses. Apparently Amazon likes older workers because they are dependable, don’t demand much and are willing to work part-time in conditions that are not ideal for senior citizens: fast-paced where employees are tracked for efficiency.
The movie, directed by Chloe Zhao, is a fictionalized version of the book. The main character, played by Frances McDormand, is purely invented and she plays on the background of real characters and events from the book. There are three characters from the book who play themselves in the movie including Linda May who is the one the author mainly followed. Scenes from working at Amazon are filmed in a real Amazon warehouse; Amazon fares better in the movie than in the book in my opinion. I have not seen the movie and only read reviews about it and viewed the trailer. Here is a link to the movie trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6sxCFZ8_d84
Let Him Go, written by Larry Watson and published in 2013, is a novel set in South Dakota and Montana in the 1950s. The opening chapter has the wife packing to go somewhere on a mission: husband (a retired sheriff) is given the option of going along. He opts to go even if it means walking off a job that is below his skills. Their son had died a few years before and his widow had remarried soon after, taking their young grandson with her and the new husband. The grandmother learns that all is not well with the child in his new environment with the domineering step-father. Determined not to lose contact with the child, protect him if necessary and even bring him back, the couple takes off. The husband is reluctant but goes along to support his wife. Diane Lane and Kevin Costner play the grandparents in the movie.
From reading reviews and watching the movie trailer, the movie appears to follow the book closely. I have not seen this movie either. Here is a link to the movie trailer – https://youtu.be/GfMkjdIc24I
Do you prefer to read the book first and then see the movie or see the movie and then read the book? Or do you think one version is enough? I always think the book is better. Some movies make me want to do more research if it involves history.