I am a tremendous wimp. So it really doesn’t take a whole lot to scare me. As a result, I tend to avoid anything that’s too scary or creepy because I don’t have the fortitude for it.
But, in getting in the spirit of Halloween (because I am most definitely not dressing up), I thought I’d share a few of my recommended spooky or just plain scary reads.
Summoning the Night by Jenn Bennett (Arcadia Bell #2)
This is the second in my new favorite Urban Fantasy series—I chose this one instead of the first book because 1) it’s way scarier than the first and 2) it takes place during Halloween. It also gives you a great excuse to read the very awesome first book in the series, Kindling the Moon.
Texas Gothic by Rosemary Clement-Moore
I recommend the hell out of this standalone upper-YA novel about a teenage witch. It’s a bit spooky, but not terrifying, and is also pretty darn funny. It’s a great choice for lightweights like me. Also, it’s features a completely fun rural Texas setting that I really enjoyed. (I have such a fondness for Fake Texas, as we know.)
And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
My book club read Ten, Gretchen McNeil’s retelling of Agatha Christie’s scary, scary novel this month. Those of us who had read the original agreed that the retelling didn’t come close to Agatha Christie’s absolutely terrifying book. I (stupidly) read this when I was no older than 12 and it scared the hell out of me.
Love Notes from Vinegar House by Karen Tayleur
I adore this awesome Australian gothic novel set in a seaside village. It’s old fashioned in the best of ways and is really a simple story about a girl and a creepy house. A near-perfect creepy read that most ages (I’d say middle school-age and up) should enjoy.
Die Softly by Christopher Pike
My book club also got involved in a very intense conversation about the relative merits of the Christopher Pike oeuvre. While the Final Friends series had a lot of support, as did “the one with the theater and the gun that was supposed to have blanks but didn’t,” this was my vote for creepiest 90s Christopher Pike novel. I contend that it’s a bit darker than a lot of the books and therefore is a stand-out. Laura and I are considering re-reading this one together.
Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane
This book scared me so badly when I read it. (The movie is really “meh” in comparison.) It’s set in the 1950s on a an island housing only a mental institution. Terrifying.
Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan
I’m a sucker for gothic stories (in case you haven’t noticed). Sarah Rees’ Brennan’s new series is almost old school in its gothicness, except she turns a lot of the character types on their heads. I loved it and so did the other CEFS ladies. It’s got just enough eeriness, but is never over-the-top.
There you have it, some spooky books to get you in the mood for Halloween.
So… what are some of your favorite creepy reads?