Halloween Reads

10 Eerie Books to Read for Halloween

With today being the first official day of autumn, it’s time to break out the pumpkin spice candles, fuzzy knit sweaters, and jack-o-lantern carving tools. It’s also time to break out the Halloween reads, in addition to some candy. Here are ten eerie books to celebrate the Halloween season.

1. ‘Ninth House’ by Leigh Bardugo

 

Ninth House

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Ninth House follows Alex Stern as she navigates her freshman year at the prestigious Yale University. Her path there was anything but conventional. After dropping out of school, getting involved with a drug-dealing boyfriend, and working multiple dead-end jobs, college was the last thing on Alex’s mind. However, there are some things she can never forget, no matter how hard she tries—like being the sole survivor of a multiple homicide. Or the Grays. The Grays are everywhere. Plucked from her hospital bed by a second chance at life, Alex arrives at Yale with the task of overseeing the activities of the magical and mysterious secret societies. Their ‘tombs’ have produced some of the richest and most powerful people who walk the earth, but their occult practices are spine-chillingly sinister. The magic they use frightens the living and taunts the dead. Amongst it all, Alex can’t help but wonder why she was chosen, or why her benefactors seem so nonchalant about murder.

 

2. ‘Tuesday Mooney Talks to Ghosts’ by Kate Racculia

 

Tuesday Mooney Cover

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Tuesday Mooney is the equivalent of Wednesday Addams all grown up. Her favorite color is black, she only socializes when necessary, and prefers to spend her time watching Twin Peaks. However, the death of Vincent Pryce soon upends Tuesday’s entire world. The eccentric Boston billionaire leaves behind a legendary scavenger hunt in his beloved city, all inspired by his literary hero: Edgar Allen Poe. Even cynical Tuesday isn’t immune to the allure of this puzzle. How could she be when the prize is a share of Pryce’s wealth? With a diverse team of individuals by her side, Tuesday sets out for an adventure filled with ghosts from the past, the eeriness inherent to all things Edgar Allen Poe, and hope for what she’ll find. Tuesday Mooney Talks to Ghosts will take you on a thrilling journey through a city known for its historic haunts.

 

 

3. ‘The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein’ by Kiersten White

 

Dark Descent Cover

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The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein offers a brilliant retelling of Mary Shelley’s classic through the perspective of the central, missing voice: Elizabeth Lavenza. At first, Elizabeth believes being brought into the Frankenstein home is her saving grace. The promise of consistent meals and a break from the bruises spattering her arms is more than enough reason to be grateful. She also finds comfort in being young Victor’s friend. His perpetual frown seems to only turn upwards around Elizabeth. However, their relationship doesn’t remain so innocent as the two grow older. Elizabeth must learn how to quell his temper and entertain his nefarious experiments. It’s the only way to guarantee her own survival. She’s indispensable to the Frankenstein family, which makes Victor and his darkness impossible to escape.

 

4. ‘I Killed Zoe Spanos’ by Kit Frick

 

Zoe Spanos Cover

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Anna Cicconi wasn’t expecting to walk into a murder mystery when she took a summer nannying job in Herron Hills. Her hope for a fresh start is quickly squashed when she learns that Zoe Spanos has been missing since New Year’s Eve. The community hasn’t been able to relax since, and Anna’s striking resemblance to Zoe surely isn’t helping. Anna decides to investigate Zoe’s case. Her findings convince her of one thing: she knows what happened to Zoe Spanos. When Zoe’s body is found in a lake two months later, Anna confesses to her murder. However, Missing Zoe podcast host Martina Green isn’t convinced Anna did it. I Killed Zoe Spanos will keep you searching for the truth.

5. ‘Mexican Gothic’ by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

 

Mexican Gothic Cover

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Noemí Taboada has always thought her cousin had a flare for the dramatic. As such, Noemí isn’t quite sure what to make of her cousin’s panicked letter or the pleas for rescue from a certain doom. It’s enough to bring Noemí to High Place, a secluded estate in the Mexican countryside. In most cases, she’d be the last person chosen for a rescue mission. Her life as a fashionable debutante doesn’t exactly translate to detective work. Noemí isn’t sure what she’ll find at the old house, or what her cousin’s new husband and his father will make of her presence there. She doesn’t let herself be deterred by the slightly ominous aura rolling off the two men, or even by the loom of the house itself. Things change as she digs deeper into the history of the estate. Mexican Gothic invites a descent into a world of madness, secrets, and violence so alluring that High Place may never lose its hold.

 

 

6. ‘The Graveyard Book’ by Neil Gaiman

 

the graveyard book cover

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Originally published in 2010, the 10th anniversary of The Graveyard Book marks a new edition that includes a foreword by Margaret Atwood and other bonus content. This famous YA novel tells the story of Nobody Owens, who goes by Bod. Bod likes to think that he’s normal, save for the tiny detail of being raised in a graveyard by ghosts. There’s also the fact that his guardian isn’t quite living but also not quite dead. Bod has his fair share of adventures within the graveyard, each with their own creepy implications. However, none compromise his safety. It’s when Bod leaves the graveyard that he has a cause for fear: the man Jack. Jack killed Bod’s family, and there’s no telling what the murderer would do next.

7. ‘Witches’ by Roald Dahl

 

Witches

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At only seven years old, Luke loses his parents to a horrific car accident and is sent to live with his grandmother in Norway. Grandmamma loves telling Luke stories, specifically stories about witches. Real witches. They’re cruel creatures by nature, but there’s nothing they hate as a much as human children. Witches aim to kill. As a retired witch hunter herself, Grandmamma knows all the signs to recognize the secret societies of dangerous women—which are all lead by the evil Grand High Witch. Despite paying close attention to his grandmother’s stories, Luke is far from prepared when he faces the Grand High Witch and her plan for England. An absolute classic, Witches embodies the perfect mix of excitement and nostalgia for any age on Halloween.

 

8. ‘The Haunting of Hill House’ by Shirley Jackson

 

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The Haunting of Hill House has been breeding nightmares since 1959. Shirley’s Jackson masterful hand at terror never gets old. The infamous Hill House brings together four unique seekers. Eleanor’s close relationship with ghosts has left her skittish and solitary. Dr. Montague arrives with his assistant Theodora in hopes of finding scientific evidence of the paranormal. Meanwhile, Luke is the unlucky heir to the wicked four walls. Their stay seems uneventful at first, outside of a few creaks and moments that make their hearts jump. That comfort doesn’t last long. Hill House plans to take one of them. Which one…you’ll have to see.

 

 

9. ‘The Whisper Man: A Novel’ by Alex North

 

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Tom Kennedy moves himself and his son Jake to a new town after his wife’s death. He hopes that Featherbank will offer them a fresh start. Unfortunately, the town isn’t as healing as it seems. Featherbank was turned upside down when five of its residents were murdered twenty years prior. The serial killer responsible for it all was penned ‘The Whisper Man’ after his tactic of whispering by the windows of his victims. That was how he lured them out at night. It isn’t long after Tom and Jake are settled in that a young boy disappears, and the clues begin to look chillingly similar to the murders two decades ago. The original Whisper man has already been caught; nobody said anything about an accomplice. The Whisper Man will keep you on the edge of your seat as Jake begins to hear whispers by his own window.

 

10. ‘It: A Novel’ by Stephen King

 

IT

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This wouldn’t be a complete Halloween book list without Stephen King, and what’s creepier than a sinister clown? After 28 years, seven adults return to the quiet town of Derry, Maine. Their return comes from a promise they made as teenagers after battling the horror that lived in Derry’s sewers—the horror that emerged to prey upon children. Despite enjoying their own success and happiness as adults, the seven can’t ignore the memories that surface with the news that children are being murdered again. So, they have to go back. Can you conquer It?

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