“The Tearsmith”: The Biggest Differences Between The New Dark Romance Movie and Bestselling Book

The new film, now streaming on Netflix, is based off of Erin Doom's Italian bestseller of the same name

<p>Netlix</p> A still of Nica from


A still of Nica from 'The Tearsmith.'

Ready for the next Twilight?

Erin Doom's Italian bestseller The Tearsmith has arrived stateside to give the popular franchise a run for its money. The spine-tingling romance story follows Nica and Rigel, both orphans at The Grave who are adopted by the same family. While Nica is as naive and innocent as a harmless butterfly, Rigel is often compared to the volatility of a wolf.

Unbeknownst to Nica, Rigel has been harboring an undying love for her since the day she stepped into the orphanage at 5 years old. Though she's terrified of his aggressive nature, Nica can't help but be intrigued by Rigel's hidden vulnerability and a bond begins to form between the two — hindered only by the fact that they're about to be siblings.

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Related: One Day: The Biggest Differences Between Both Adaptations of David Nicholls' Romance

Now adapted into a movie streaming on Netflix, The Tearsmith, which was filmed in Italian with English subtitles, is spreading to new audiences looking for their next romantic fix.

Here's everything to know about the differences between the book and the movie adaptation. Some light spoilers ahead, for those who haven't yet discovered the magic of either version.

The abusive matron is still at the orphanage



In the book, Nica and Rigel often talk about their complicated history with the matron from their childhood, Margaret Stoker. While Nica was brutally abused by the matron, Rigel was her favorite and the only child spared from her abuse — which only exacerbated his feelings of isolation and shame.

In the movie, the same relationship with the matron exists, but unlike the book where she was replaced by Mrs. Fridge when Nica was 12, Margaret was still the matron when Nica and Rigel were adopted.

Nica and Rigel's relationship developed more quickly in the movie



The novel is a whopping 550 pages and it isn't until around halfway through that a physical relationship starts between Nica and Rigel, after much tension and build-up. However, given the runtime of the movie is an hour and 45 minutes, the relationship is sped along much faster onscreen.

Rigel is prone to headaches and severe fevers and, early in the book, he experiences a fever that causes him to pass out, leaving Nica to take care of him while their adoptive parents are out of town. While the same scene happens in the movie, it is also the first time Nica and Rigel get together physically — whereas in the book, Rigel is asleep and Nica merely sees his vulnerability for the first time.

Chaos ensues at a school dance rather than at a party



There is a raving animosity between Lionel, who has a romantic interest in the clueless Nica, and Rigel, who doesn't trust his rival (and let's face it, he's jealous). In the book, the rivalry culminates in the final scene where Rigel and Lionel get into a massive fight.

However, in the movie, it all comes to a head during the climax of the film at the school dance — which does not happen in the book. Instead, a similar chaotic scene happens when Nica attends Lionel's party, where a drunk Lionel is aggressive toward her.

At the dance, Lionel is the sober one while Rigel fends off an inebriated Nica. A near-fatal incident that occurs at the end of the book happens directly after this scene — after Nica and Rigel have sex for the first time (which is also not when it happens in the book!).

Though Asia is a minor character in the book, she is important to the story as Nica stands up to her and proves that she's not there to replace her adoptive parents' deceased son, Alan, but rather to bring them new joy. Asia, who was in love with Alan before his death, has a hard time accepting her and is brusque and rude to her.

In the film adaptation, Asia's character is the same but she is not developed and is only in two scenes: the initial scene where she reacts poorly to Nica's presence and the final scene where she accepts Nica. Her friendship with Adeline is ignored and her story as a law student (and Adaline's love story) is also not portrayed in the film.

The story has a somewhat different ending



The plot still ends with Nica testifying against Margaret (but no spoilers on the outcome of that testimony!), but it's in a slightly different, more condensed order than the book.

In the book, Nica sits by a comatose Rigel's side for months, telling him stories and attempting to rouse him.

How this dark fairytale come to end? You'll just have to read—and watch—to find out.

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