My FAVORITE part of October is getting the chance to recommend some of my favorite horror books to you all! I mean to be honest I can recommend these whenever I want but it’s more fun to do it in October!
These are all books that fall 100% into the horror genre in my opinion whether they’re actually terrifying or just an entertaining read or whether they’re full of spirits/monsters or deal with serial killers and slashers.
***I will be doing another post here soon of Halloween Recommendations for those of you who want a book that isn’t necessarily scary or horror! So some “non-spooky” books!***
Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake
This is about a male teen, Cas, who hunts ghosts in his spare time and now he’s on the hunt for Anna, a vengeful spirit who murders anyone who sets foot in her home. Except she spares Cas’s life.
I highly, highly recommend this for any other Supernatural fans out there as it really has the feel to the story!
Slasher Girls & Monster Boys stories selected by April Genevieve Tucholke
A YA horror anthology with some top notch stories! There were only a couple of duds in here but for the most part they were all excellent and definitely scary.
The Girl from the Well by Rin Chupeco
This story follows a vengeful spirit who wreaks havoc on those who murder or do harm to children. She meets a strange boy the sucks her in but the boy has a dark secret that she wasn’t expecting…
Okay so with this one I know a few people didn’t enjoy it but I am absolutely terrified of any stories that are even remotely reminiscent of The Ring or The Grudge and have disjointed bodies crawling out of things. That’s all one big nope for me so naturally this story scared the shit out of me!
The Dead House by Dawn Kurtagich
This is a psychological thriller with a creepy twist, is it supernatural or is it something else? The story is told through video transcripts, journal entries, and newspaper clippings and the events all lead up to what ends in mysterious fire that killed three students and one, Carly Johnson, disappeared. In the ruins they find a diary that belonged to Carly’s twin sister, Kaitlyn, except Carly didn’t have a twin…..
I recommend this one for people who want more suspense than horror, it gets a little creepy but never anything super scary!
Alice by Christina Henry
Trigger Warnings: Rape and other graphic violence
This is one where people are the monsters and it’s very violent and graphic. It’s a retelling of “Alice in Wonderland” that’s very dark and gritty I definitely don’t recommend this to the faint of heart, you’ll have to steel your stomach for this one. However, I recommend it to anyone who thinks they can brave it because it is still an excellent story!
Through the Woods by Emily Carroll
You wouldn’t think that a graphic novel compiled of several short stories would be that scary but it is, it really is! These stories are open ended for the most part and that leaves more to your imagination in which case you’ll probably scare yourself thinking of it like I did! The illustrations are both terrifying and beautiful at the same time.
I highly recommend this if you’re looking for a quick horror read and you don’t mind open ended stories.
A Drop of Night by Stefan Bachmann
This is kind of a thriller/action-adventure/horror all rolled into one. It follows a group of teens who are invited to help explore a recently discovered underground palace in France. However, there’s something else waiting for them in the depths of the palace.
Kind of an odd story but I definitely recommend it for anyone looking for a very fast-paced, suspenseful read!
The Monstrumologist by Rick Yancey
A boy named Will Henry finds himself studying under Dr. Pellinore Warthrop who happens to be a monstrumologist, someone who studies monsters.
Pretty straight forward, this is a historical fiction and it’s a pretty dark horror story because on top of the creepy monsters there’s also just a lot of gore in general. You may get squeamish!
Daughters Unto Devils by Amy Lukavics
Honestly this is one of my favorites on the list!
It’s about a pioneer family who moves out onto the prairie with a teenage daughter who is desperately trying to hide her pregnancy. However, they arrive and find a new home that was abandoned with the walls and floors covered in blood and they’ve heard rumors of the prairie being tainted by evil.
This is a wonderful mix of terrifying, gory, and twisted. You definitely will not see the twists coming at all! I recommend this one for the horror lovers out there who want to be scared silly, this one is a treat!
Welcome to the Dark House by Laurie Faria Stolarz
A group of teen contest winners all get whisked away out into the middle of nowhere to meet horror director Justin Blake. However, things start to get weird and soon they’re all trapped in a game of nightmares.
This reads exactly like a classic slasher horror movie so if you’re a fan of those you’re probably going to love this one! It’s entertaining but don’t expect a lot of depth.
And the Trees Crept In by Dawn Kurtagich
One of my other favorites plus I love the cover!
Two girls, Silla and Nori, arrive at their aunt’s manor in the forest and soon learn that everything is not right and the manor may be cursed. They aren’t allowed to enter the woods, the trees feel like they’re closing in around the house, and there’s a strange man with no eyes who Nori plays with in the basement at night…..
So creepy and so good! The Creeper Man will definitely be haunting your dreams after reading this one….
The Merciless by Danielle Vega
Four girls gang up on an outcast tying her up and attempting to perform an exorcism on her. However, it’s more torture than anything else and Sofia, the new girl, wants out but if she goes against the others she may be next…
This one isn’t too creepy or scary but it definitely is full of twisted mean girls, gore galore, and some demonic possession!
If any of those things interest you I’d recommend checking this one out!
The Women in the Walls by Amy Lukavics
Lucy and Margaret are cousins who live with their respective parents in a mansion in the middle of the woods, one day Margaret’s mother goes missing and she slowly starts to believe she can hear her dead mother’s voice in the walls. Lucy watches as Margaret slowly goes insane and she soon starts hearing voices as well and must confront the legacy that has marked the women in her family for generations.
Not as good as “Daughters Unto Devils” but still very twisted and creepy! Most of the book is a bit slow but the ending makes it all worth it!
Dreamfall by Amy Plum
A group of teenagers enter an experiment that is supposed to help cure their insomnia but instead find themselves all trapped within a dreamworld made up of their worst nightmares.
I thought this was going to be more sci-fi than anything but was surprised by how scary it actually got! There are definitely some very creepy nightmares the kids have to make it through.
Night Film by Marisha Pessl
This one can be both scary horror and suspenseful thriller, there are some supernatural elements to the story and the situations themselves can get pretty terrifying.
A journalist, Scott McGrath, investigates the death of Ashley Cordova, the daughter of the mysterious horror film director Stanislas Cordova. He believes there’s more to her death than anyone knows and as he digs deeper he discovers more and more disturbing things about the family and wonders if he may be next.
If you want a very dark, gritty, and terrifying thriller this one is for you. It’s extremely compelling and fast paced.
The Hollow Girl by Hillary Monahan
Trigger Warning: Rape, violence, and gore
A Romani girl studying herbcraft under her Gran’s teaching befriends an outsider but on her way home one day they are both jumped and brutally assaulted leaving her friend on the brink of death. She must now utilize her dark witchcraft to extract body parts from the boys who wronged her in order to save her friend.
If revenge stories are up your alley this one is very satisfying and I loved the addition of the witchcraft. However, if you can’t handle gore or graphic violence maybe leave this one alone.
Have you read any of these? What did you think?
Are you going to give any of these horror books a try?
What are some of your favorite scary horror books?
Let me know in the comments!