11:00 am EDT, July 13, 2020

The ‘You’ book series: Details on Book 3 and beyond for Joe

There’s going to be a lot more material for the You television series to adapt soon, as the book series is adding on You book 3 and 4!

If you didn’t know the Penn Badgley helmed hit television series, You, was based on a book series by Caroline Kepnes, you’re officially going to have a lot more to catch up on. According to EW the series will officially be expanding to both a third and fourth novel.

‘You’ book series list:

You book 1 – You (Published August 28, 2018)
You book 2 – Hidden Bodies (Published November 1, 2016)
You book 3 – Untitled (Release date: TBD)
You book 4 – Untitled (Release date: TBD)

About ‘You’ book series:

The You sequel, Hidden Bodies, was released in 2016, which the second season of You that’s currently streaming on Netflix loosely followed. However, there have already been some large departures between the TV show and the book series.

While You season 1 stayed fairly close to the source material, it did take at least one significant departure from the novel. The first book ends with Joe meeting a new girl in the book shop, beginning the cycle all over again. To spice things up a little bit and keep fans wanting more, the TV show ended with the reveal that Joe’s ex-girlfriend Candace was not only alive, but standing right in front of him!

Related: You season 2’s strength lies in its supporting characters

We now know that Joe did end up meeting a new girl named Love Quinn, played by Victoria Pedretti, but this only happened because Candace’s reemergence forced him to move to LA and adopt a new identity as Will Bettelheim. Things got extra interesting when Candace found him in LA and clued everyone into his real identity.

you, candace stone

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Unfortunately, Candace didn’t make it out of Joe’s clutches alive in the first book of the You book series, which is one major difference between the two stories. At least the TV show let her live until the end of season 2! However, that’s close to where the major differences stop.

Just like the Hidden Bodies book, season 2 of the TV series ends with Joe engaged to a pregnant Love. Sadly, the wedding will have to wait, because at the end of the second book, Joe is in jail!

If that epic cliffhanger doesn’t make fans hungry for a third and fourth book I don’t know what will. Luckily, we already have some information about book 3 in the You series to whet your appetites.

Author Caroline Kepnes gave EW a sneak peek of the next book in the series, saying “I feel so thrilled that I get to keep telling that story, because that wasn’t the end.” While I’m sure many fans would love to see Joe locked up in jail forever, we’re glad that wasn’t the end because we can’t get enough of his creepy, cringe-inducing story.

She continued by saying “Joe is really proud of himself because a lot of people in his position descend into darkness after having been through what he’s gone through in book two and then in the beginning of book three. And he decides that he’s going to be a better person and he’s very proud of himself for that. Having dealt with Love’s family and dating someone with this close relationship with their twin brother, he’s very focused on the idea that he should be the one with the family. But yeah, the main thrust of it is that he’s very proud of his strength.”

You season 2

Of course Joe has found a way to be all high and mighty about going to jail. This guy could make himself the hero in literally any story. Everyone could really use a little dose of his self-confidence.

Also, as if we couldn’t have guessed it, Kepnes has already confirmed that Joe will be getting out of jail very early on in the third book. She gave Rolling Stone a hint about what Joe would be up to when we see him again.

“Joe decides to live in a small community in the Pacific Northwest with a low crime rate. He volunteers in a local library. Joe thinks he can breathe in a small town because small town people are good people.”

She also gave a couple more hints about the story, saying “yes, the new book has a body count,” and “Joe meets a former grunge rocker.” She didn’t confirm whether or not the former grunge rocker would be a new love interest, but knowing the way Joe operates, there’s at least a 50% chance.

Despite all of this excitement, Joe will still be keeping his family close. Kepnes also assured Rolling Stone that “Joe Goldberg is a father now. And that’s a life-altering experience that motivates him to make the world a safer place.”

Joe trying to make the world a “safer place?” A body count? Yup. That adds up.


All of these hints are exciting, but they also seem to indicate that the show could be taking a larger departure from the books in the future. Since there’s no word yet on when You book 3 or season 3 will be available, it’s possible that the next installment of the TV series could even be released before the next book!

Like the Hidden Bodies book, You season 2 also ended on a cliffhanger, but a much different one. When we last saw Penn Badgley’s Joe he was moving into his new home with Love, but he was still looking longingly at his next door neighbor. Classic Joe.

The revelation that Love could be just as devious and destructive as Joe changed everything for him. He always seems to be able to justify his own actions, but he simply can’t comprehend that kind of behavior from the beautiful, pure object of his affection.

It seemed like he was going to leave her until she told him about the pregnancy. Joe has always been desperate for someone to take care of and he could never abandon a baby after the way his parents treated him, so despite his doubts about Love, he decided to stay in hopes of creating the family he never had.

Of course, it’s possible that the woman on the other side of the fence will not be Joe’s new love interest. In fact, we wonder if it might actually be his mother, since that storyline was left hanging in season 2. However, we’re sure it won’t be long before he finds a new woman to give all of his murderous attention to. And we can’t wait to see (and read) it when he does.

Are you excited to read ‘You’ book 3 and 4?

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