5 Killer Santa Stories that will Have You Screaming!

Horror can be found everywhere! Even in Santa Claus, and Christmas tales can have darkness found within them! With these stories, you might be scarred for life!

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"Secret Santa" "Klaus" "Krampus" "Killer Santa" "The Visitor" book title on the side with a creepy Santa looking inside the window.

If there’s any correlation, horror could be found in any holiday, so what better way to celebrate the holiday cheer than with some bloody Christmas novels. Instead of cozying up with a Christmas classic, try some horror-filled screamfest! Here are 5 Santa and Christmas horror novels to sink your teeth into!

1. Secret Santa by Andrew Shaffer

Secret Santa novel cover-- with a gift left ajar.

I love binge-worthy shows like The Office as much as I love Stephen King horror stories. So what better way than combining the two avenues to the world in the Secret Santa novel? 

Set in the 1980s in the publishing industry, Lussi Meyer is desperate to work in the world of publication. Blackwood-Patterson might not be the greatest fit, but Lussi somehow made the cut at this prestigious company. Her mission is to find the next horror superstar that is just as good or even better than Stephen King, Annie Rice, and Peter Straub. The horror genre is ranging in this decade, after all!

However, drama arises because Lussi’s new coworkers are horribly hazing her with “pranks.” It only worsens when the company does its annual Secret Santa gift exchange. Lussi would have settled for a simple gift card, but she got a demonic-looking object. It only worsens when her coworkers fall ill from dreadfully severe accidents. Lussi believes her gift might be the reason. With the help of Fabian Nightingale, her former author, they must figure out who sent her that horrid gift. Is it genuinely cursed, or is it a coincidence? Either way, she is set on saving Blackwood-Patterson before everyone falls victim, including herself.

2. Krampus: Shadow of Saint Nicholas by Michael Dougherty

Krampus: Shadow of Saint Nicholas-- book cover with Krampus looking over.

We’re all familiar with Santa Claus, but do you know Krampus? He’s the mythical counterpart of Saint Nick, and instead of punishing kids with coal, he has other methods. Michael Dougherty creates this grand graphic novel which expands the mythology of this evil Christmas creature. These three twisted tales of morality-driven storytelling will leave you wishing Santa could save you!

Instead of a wholesome Santa Claus, we got a drunken mall St. Nick that falls into mischief, a dysfunctional cop who gets mixed up with someone from his past, and a “scrooge” like townsman must face the shadows of his past as his house is getting invaded by the homeless. Krampus is here for punishments only.

3. Killer Santa by Tom Condit

Killer Santa book cover with "Santa" shushing-- smaller Santa in front holding an ax.

Do you love gore-filled slasher movies? If the answer is yes, you’ll love this slasher book! Follow Jordan as he ventures into the fatal role of Santa Claus at his local church’s Christmas festival! The problem is…he might not be a good match as Santa, but that won’t stop him as he kills his way– I mean, he flies his way through the skies!

4. Klaus: How Santa Claus Began by Grant Morrison and Dan Mora

Klaus: How Santa Claus Began book cover with Klaus in the winter.

Adventure into the first year of Santa Claus, and you’ll actually find out what Santa does the other 364 days of the year. Instead of the holy jolly Santa, we are greeted by an imaginative Santa with Viking lore and Siberian shamanism. And we may get other mythical creatures such as Krampus taking a guest appearance. Is he a friend or foe of Klaus?

With award-winning author Grant Morrison and Eisner Award-nominated illustrator Dan Mora, you can’t go wrong with this graphic series!

5. The Visitor: A Horror Novella by Sergio Gomez

The Visitor-- book cover with a person standing in front of a tree with a red background. Christmas horror.

On the night of Christmas, one of the worst snowstorms took place in Indiana. Five strangers are forced to wait it out at a small roadside diner, but unfortunately, the snow is not letting up one bit. With the temperature decreasing and snow raging setting on the street pavements, everyone’s a little on edge. However, that’s not everyone’s worry…it’s the sixth guest that enters the diner. Who said red was Santa’s color? It can and will be owned by a killer! Sergio Gomez gives us a novella no one should forget. 

Remember, Christmas and any holiday relating to happiness can always turn sour with a hint of darkness! Want more horror tales? Click here for Urban Legends! If you want more Christmas content? Find out the origin story of Santa Claus here!