Halloween reads, ranked from slightly unsettling to absolutely terrifying.
There may be some Halloween fun we leave behind with adulthood but adding seasonal reads to your tbr is a great way to get into the spirit. Easily spooked? Not to worry, we’ve got the book for you. Want your reading to chill you to the bone? We’ve got the book for that too. Here are our favourite Halloween reads, ranked from slightly unsettling to absolutely terrifying.
As Elizabethan England reels from the clash of religious and renaissance ideas, a young pregnant woman dies.
Her doctor William Gilbert – the epitome of the renaissance scientist – is accused of the murder, and must use all of his intelligence and rationality to save his own skin and come to terms with his altered view of the world.
This novel will take you into the dark heart of Elizabethan England – spooky, yes, but historically distant enough to prevent nightmares.
Detective Michael Brennan has no time for ghost tales. So, when he finds himself investigating the case of ‘medium’ Alice Goodway, he embarks on the inquiry with no small degree of scepticism. But just as he considers how to proceed, a murder takes place in Alice’s home.
Old wounds are opened and painful memories shared as Brennan narrows down the suspects using clues from both the living and the dead.
This Victorian whodunnit is devilishly plotted but makes for an evening that’s as cosy as it is chilling.
Chimney sweep Tom Wasp meets the beautiful Bessie Barton while modelling for an artist. Grief-stricken when her body is found on the banks of the Thames, Tom tracks her past through London’s seamiest quarters and discovers a monstrous shadow.
Guided by his faith that there is good left in this world, Tom continues his hunt for the truth.
The vicious murderer lurking in London’s dark underbelly has the same shiver-inducing quality as a Dickens villain, but shouldn’t have you sleeping with the light on.
In the dying days of World War Two, the Red Army pick their way through the detritus of a dying Berlin. Stumbling upon the smoking remains of a Nazi bunker, they find something inside that eclipses the horror of even the worst excesses in the city above them.
Seventy years later, an investigation opens into a series of blood-chilling crimes that have roots in the distant past.
This novel will leave you with more sadness than scares, but with its spooky opening and sinister themes, it’s a perfect poignant read for Halloween.
When she meets Cassandra Rose, Annabelle is offered a way out of the life in which she feels trapped.
Through hypnosis, she’s encouraged to unearth repressed memories and face her childhood demons. But as the boundaries between hypnosis and reality dissolve, Annabelle becomes increasingly vulnerable to much darker forces.
Sophia Spiers cherry-picks the fears and threats that lie within the walls of our homes and minds, exploring how they can be exploited and abused by those closest to you. Chilling.
When Kate Kinley finds bruises on her mother’s arms she assumes the worst. Her mother insists that nothing is wrong. But has her dementia made her forget what really happened?
In desperate need of someone she can trust, Kate’s isolation and paranoia grow as the closest people in her life become key suspects.
This heart-stopping novel is guaranteed to leave you breathless and keep you up at night – whether with nightmares or because you just can’t put it down.
Ella Fallon and Ed Leeming were born brilliant but ugly. At California’s most exclusive college their lives are made a misery – primarily at the hands of the beautiful Scott Stockton.
Ella and Ed would kill to have what Stockton has. And Thomas Startz, the ‘body remodeller’, may be their answer. But at what cost?
Knife Edge might just be the most terrifying psychological thriller you read this year. Intense, complex, and twisted, it’s perfect for fans of Dean Koontz and Stephen King.
A remote farm on the Yorkshire moors. Check. A painful lonely past. Check. A rain-swept night and a dishevelled figure. Check and check.
At first terrified by the stranger – who has no memory of anything except the fact that he needs a place to hide – Carole finds something in him that answers a deep-seated need of her own.
Both dream of escape. Of redemption. And both are about to step into a nightmare.
The Locust Farm has all the elements needed for a seriously bone-chilling read.
Fancy reading something scary this year? What level of creepiness will you be going for? Find us on socials and let us know.