This is one of my favorite posts to do every year. If you liked my post on Halloween books last year, you’ll definitely love some of the fresh titles guaranteed to give you chills!
Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the Broke and the Bookish, one of the cutest blogs that I continually stalk. It’s where bloggers get a topic every week and give their top ten books pertaining to that. This week’s is Top Ten Scariest Covers or Top Ten Halloween Books!
For me, a Halloween read is composed of a thrilling plot and a vivid mood. It can be dark, freaky in a hide-under-the-blankets kind of way or a thoughtful way that slips under your skin. So I hope y’all enjoy the selections I chose for that perfect pre-Halloween read!
1. Shadowlands by Kate Brian
I started reading this around midnight last night. Big mistake. I walked downstairs and then sprinted back up because I couldn’t stand to be alone in the dark after starting it. The imagery and horrifying scenarios kept me breathless and there was an edge to it, a hair-raising mood to it that reminded me so much of The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting. It’s hard enough for me to write this blog post without darting away to read another chapter. It’s one of those books you equally want to devour and savor – an eerie, thought-provoking read.
2. The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting
Told in a haunting dual perspective between Violet and the serial killer stalking the town, The Body Finder is an exciting read with hints of paranormal and synesthesia that build up to make a wonderful read. It’s absorbing, suspenseful, and the friendly romance between Violet and Jay kept it from being morbid. It’s an absolutely excellent read for the Halloween season.
3. Paper Valentine by Brenna Yovanoff
This book was set in the parched summer in a small town after a disturbing murder shatters its foundations. A curfew is instilled; paranoia sets in with the heat. It’s written so strongly, so rooted in setting, that the fear and adrenaline that comes with it is even more evocative. It’s that type of horror story that’s written so well that it almost makes you uncomfortable, so of course it’s a definite must on this list.
4. The Dark Divine by Bree Despain
A spellbinding tale of wolves, betrayal, and a broken family, The Dark Divine is not one to miss. It’s captivating and delicious – deep explorations into the heart of werewolf lore are spellbinding. The romance is sizzling and the action is fantastic, the perfect buildup for an explosive series. It’s painful at times and heartwrenching, and just an overall wonderful read.
5. A Touch Mortal by Leah Clifford
I absolutely adore this book (and the author)! It’s morbid and engrossing – memorable characters and an intricate backstory create a blunt and dramatic read. Leah Clifford masters plot twists effortlessly – you can’t put it down because it packs an emotional punch at the end of every chapter. It’s quirky and dark, a book that you will definitely find yourself rereading many times if it’s up your alley.
6. Nevermore by Kelly Creagh
For me, one of the gloomiest authors is Edgar Allan Poe. His stories are terrifying and this book matches them perfectly. Sardonic and grotesque, eerie and enthralling, Nevermore is a gothic mashup of some of his best stories. Even better, this combination weaves perfectly with a dark spin on a high school romance story. With allusions to some of his most hair-raising works and a sinister otherworld lurking beyond the edges of the prose, Nevermore is a scary read that will leave you aching for more.
7. The Diviners by Libba Bray
If you’re still high on the Gatsby craze from earlier this year but are craving a darker read, this is excellent for you – it’s spooky, descriptive in the littlest details, focuses on the occult, and is frankly not the type of book you want to read when you’re alone. Riddled with horrifying anecdotes and glitzy descriptions of the Golden Age, the multiple characters leave you guessing who to trust and who to believe in. Ominous undertones, intense action, and malicious motivations make for an exhausting and purely bewitching story.
8. Impossible by Nancy Werlin
This is one of my favorite books. It’s not scary but it’s enthralling: it explores fey and lore that hints at this incredible mood and tone. It gets under my skin so easily – the beautiful prose and interesting characters make it really such a book that never ceases to make me long for stories to be real. A colorful reimagining of the Scarborough Fair ballad make it a lyrical read that I will never forget, with enough edge to make it a little creepy before Halloween.
9. Blessed by Tonya Hurley
I have really mixed feelings about this one which is why I included it on the list. It really unsettled me, and that’s what a lot of people look for in a Halloween read. It’s eerie, macabre, and really somewhat shocking – it plays with a lot of different elements and makes me really question how on earth this was written. It’s freaky and I really was not sure how I felt about this when I was done with it. It’s been a year since I read it but I still think about it from time to time and debate sleeping with the lights on…
10. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
Fascinating photographs interspersed with a flawless narrative make for a dark and well-written read. I started this a few days ago and it’s definitely worth the hype. It’s tense and lovely, shadowy and thoughtful. It has a refreshing dose of history and a lingering sense of something not quite right. If you’re looking for an enjoyable, slightly spooky read, this one may be the perfect choice.