It’s been a while since I’ve participated in Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, and I’m happy that today’s theme revolves around Halloween. Since I love horror stories, and I’ve been reading them since I discovered Stephen King in high school, this is a fun theme for me! So here are the top ten books that I feel could put anyone in the Halloween spirit:
Oldies But Goodies (otherwise known as “classics”):
1. Rosemary’s Baby by Ira Levin. This is one case where the movie is just as good as the book (in my opinion, of course). Either way you enjoy this story, it will scare the pants off you!
2. The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson. It’s been years since I first read this classic haunted house tale, and it’s probably time for a re-read. Haunted house stories always scare me. I guess it’s the feeling that you might be trapped inside with whatever bad thing lives there…
3. Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury. I read this as a kid and it terrified me! Bradbury has a wonderful way of evoking memories, and every time I see this book I think of Halloween.
Books That Scared Me In My Younger Days:
4. Watchers by Dean Koontz. This was the first Koontz book I ever read, and boy was it a doozy! I was flipping pages almost faster than I could read them.
5. Ghost Story by Peter Straub. Straub is a master of creating mood, and this is another haunted house story that is hard to forget once you read it.
6. The Shining by Stephen King. Honestly, I could have made this entire list up of King’s scariest novels, but I decided to pick just one. The Shining was my very first King book, and it was responsible for setting me on the path to becoming a book collector and horror geek. And the movie’s great, too.
The “New” Classics:
7. Breed by Chase Novak. I just read this terrific horror story about genetic mutation (you can read my review here) and it’s a perfect scary read for the Halloween season.
8. Heart-Shaped Box by Joe Hill. Hill’s first novel is about a man who purchases a ghost from an online auction, and the nasty things that ensue. It made me a Joe Hill fan for life. If you’re one of the many people who are anxiously awaiting Joe’s new book NOS4A2 (which doesn’t come out until next April), it might be time to re-read this one.
9. The Road by Cormac McCarthy. A post-apocalyptic novel without any supernatural elements? The Road is one of the most heart-wrenching and terrifying books I’ve ever read.
10. Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris. And just for fun, if you haven’t read any of the Sookie Stackhouse novels, try this one. The first and best of the series, it’s full of southern charm and humor, but has a deadly serious side as well. If you’re a True Blood fan, you’ll recognize the characters and the story, but that’s about all the two have in common.
Have you read anything on this list? I’d love to compare lists. Let me know what you think!