10 Spooky Stories You Need To Read

Personally I’m not a huge fan of scary stories. I haven’t read much in this genre since R.L. Stein’s Fear Street Series, so this list is based off of the hours of research I’ve done to give you the best ten spooky tales I could find based off of reviews from as many platforms as I could find. If you have a book that should be on this list, add it to the comments and we can look into adding more titles in a later revision. Due to the fact, I may not have read many of these titles, I will pull in summaries from the publisher’s to help give you a better idea if you should read the book or not.

1.) Red Rain by R.L. Stine

red rain.jpgSpeaking of R.L. Stine, this title appears on several lists across the interwebs, which means there is something to this tale that is spooky and will get you into the Halloween mindset. This tale is in fact perfect for those adults who enjoyed reading Goosebumps in their childhood

Summary from the publisher’s website:

After travel writer Lea Sutter barely survives a merciless hurricane on a tiny island off the South Carolina coast, she impulsively brings two orphaned twin boys home with her to Long Island. Samuel and Daniel seem amiable and intensely grateful at first, but no one in Lea’s family anticipates the twins’ true evil nature—or predicts that within a few weeks’ time her husband, a controversial child psychologist, will be implicated in two brutal murders. 

2.) The Shining by Stephen King

the shiningI couldn’t have a complete list if I didn’t include this book. I have had friends who have read this book and have actually lost sleep from how much this book spooked them.

Summary from Stephen King’s website:

Jack Torrance, his wife Wendy, and their young son Danny move into the Overlook Hotel, where Jack has been hired as the winter caretaker. Cut off from civilization for months, Jack hopes to battle alcoholism and uncontrolled rage while writing a play. Evil forces residing in the Overlook – which has a long and violent history – covet young Danny for his precognitive powers and exploit Jack’s weaknesses to try to claim the boy.

3.) The Witching Hour by Anne Rice

As I stated earlier, I have not yet read these titles, but Anne Rice is an author I can remember seeing my sister and mom read when I was a child. If you are a fan of Deborah Harkness’s A Discovery of Witches, you may find that you enjoy this series.

the witching ho ur.jpgExcerpt of the summary from the author’s website:

The first in the Mayfair Witches series, The Witching Hour introduces the fictional Mayfair family of New Orleans, generations of male and female witches. This tight-knit and deeply connected family, where a death of one strengthens the others with his/her knowledge. One Mayfair witch per generation is also designated to receive the powers of “the man,” known as Lasher. Lasher gives the witches gifts, excites them, and protects them. Unsure as to exactly what this spirit is, the Mayfair clan knows him variously as a protector, a god-like figure, a sexual being, and the image of death. Lasher’s current witch is Deirdre, who lies catatonic from psycological shock treatments.

4.) The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena

the couple next doorThis is one of those books that everyone at work has talked about and its constantly on my to-read list and it definitely seems like a title that lives up to its hype. Maybe this Halloween I will take the time to read this dark, twisting tale.

Excerpt of the summary from the author’s website:

A chilling suspense debut about a young couple and their apparently friendly neighbors—a twisty, rollercoaster ride of lies, betrayal, and the secrets between husbands and wives…

Anne and Marco Conti seem to have it all—a loving relationship, a wonderful home, and their beautiful baby, Cora. But one night when they are at a dinner party next door, baby Cora goes missing. Suspicion immediately focuses on the parents. But the truth is a much more complicated story.

Inside the curtained house, an unsettling account of what actually happened unfolds. Detective Rasbach knows that the panicked couple is hiding something. Anne and Marco each discover that the other is keeping secrets, secrets they’ve kept for years.

What follows is the nerve-racking unraveling of a family—an addictive tale of deception, duplicity, and unfaithfulness that will keep you breathless until the final shocking twist.

5.) The Dark Net by Benjamin Percy

The fact that the internet is such a vast part of our daily lives is always a difficult concept to wrap one’s head around. With over 3 billion people* accessing the internet, you never know with what or whom you are interacting.

the dark net.jpgExcerpt of the summary from the author’s website:

The Dark Net is real. An anonymous and often criminal arena that exists in the secret, far reaches of the Web, some use it to manage Bitcoins, pirate movies and music, or traffic in drugs and stolen goods. And now, an ancient darkness is gathering there as well. These demons are threatening to spread virally into the real world unless they can be stopped by members of a ragtag crew:

– Twelve-year-old Hannah, who has been fitted with the Mirage, a high-tech visual prosthetic to combat her blindness, wonders why she sees shadows surrounding some people.

– A technophobic journalist named Lela has stumbled upon a story nobody wants her to uncover.

– Mike Juniper—a one-time child evangelist who suffers from personal and literal demons—has an arsenal of weapons stored in the basement of the homeless shelter he runs.

– And Derek, a hacker with a cause, believes himself a soldier of the Internet, part of a cyber army akin to Anonymous.

They have no idea what the Dark Net really contains.

the heart shaped box.jpg6.) Heart-Shaped Box by Joe Hill

This is the debut novel from Stephen King’s son and if you enjoy Stephen’s works, you should definitely give Joe’s books a try.

Excerpt of the summary from the author’s website:

Judas Coyne is a collector of the macabre: a cookbook for cannibals . . . a used hangman’s noose . . . a snuff film. An aging death-metal rock god, his taste for the unnatural is as widely known to his legions of fans as the notorious excesses of his youth. But nothing he possesses is as unlikely or as dreadful as his latest discovery, an item for sale on the Internet, a thing so terribly strange, Jude can’t help but reach for his wallet.

the kept woman.jpg7.) The Kept Woman by Karin Slaughter

To be honest, I wasn’t sure if I was going to personally like Karin Slaughter’s works. I first listened to The Good Daughter on audio, not really knowing what the book was about. These books do get a little graphic but they also set the tone for how the book is going to read. After finishing that book I have listened/read several others and she is definitely one of my go-to authors for thrillers.

Excerpt of the summary from the author’s website:

With the discovery of a murder at an abandoned construction site, Will Trent of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation is brought in on a case that becomes much more dangerous when the dead man is identified as an ex-cop.

Studying the body, Sara Linton—the GBI’s newest medical examiner and Will’s lover—realizes that the extensive blood loss didn’t belong to the corpse. Sure enough, bloody footprints leading away from the scene indicate there is another victim—a woman—who has vanished . . . and who will die soon if she isn’t found.

8.) Night Film by Marisha Pessl

At first, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to add this title to this list. Again, I have yet to read this book, but it came across my desk at work and it piqued my attention. If you pull up some popular Readalike recommendation websites, you may not come across this book (unless night film.jpgthis is your favorite genre) which is why I ended up adding the title to this list.

Excerpt of the summary from the author’s website:

On a damp October night, 24-year-old Ashley Cordova is found dead in an abandoned warehouse in lower Manhattan. Though her death is ruled a suicide, veteran investigative journalist Scott McGrath suspects otherwise. As he probes the strange circumstances surrounding Ashley’s life and death, McGrath comes face-to-face with the legacy of her father: the legendary, reclusive cult-horror film director Stanislaus Cordova–a man who hasn’t been seen in public for more than thirty years.

9.) Ghost Story by Peter Straub

Ighost story.jpgf you enjoy reading Stephen King, Joe Hill, Ted Dekker and the likes then give Peter Straub a try.

Excerpt of the summary from the author’s website:

In life, not every sin goes unpunished.

For four aging men in the terror-stricken town of Milburn, New York, an act inadvertently carried out in their youth has come back to haunt them. Now they are about to learn what happens to those who believe they can bury the past — and get away with murder.

10.) The Starter House by Sonja Condit

Here’s one final book you may or may not know about. Condit is also along the lines of King and Dean Koontz. This story is considered ‘creepy yet compelling’ if you’re using Novelist’s recommendations for genre. If I were into creepy books, I definitely would pick up this read during this Halloween season.the starter house

Excerpt of the summary from the author’s website:

In the vein of Heart-Shaped Box and The Thirteenth Tale, Starter House is a haunting and skillfully told debut novel about a newlywed couple and their first home — a home that seems to be haunted by a very malicious ghost.

I hope you find at least one title to get you through the Halloween season from this list. As mentioned earlier, if you know a title that should be added, please add it in the comments below!

*Time  (2015) Here’s How Many Internet Users There Are

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