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Best Horror Books

Recommendations from 49 articles, Emma Watson, Richard Branson, Anderson Cooper and 40 others.
Best Horror Books
100 books on the list
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House of Leaves book cover
House of Leaves
Mark Z. Danielewski - 2000-03-07
Goodreads Rating
Years ago, when House of Leaves was first being passed around, it was nothing more than a badly bundled heap of paper, parts of which would occasionally surface on the Internet. No one could have anticipated the small but devoted following this terrifying story would soon command. Starting with an odd assortment of marginalized youth—musicians, tat...
It book cover
It
A Novel
Stephen King - 2017-07-11 (first published in 1986)
Goodreads Rating
Welcome to Derry, Maine ...It’s a small city, a place as hauntingly familiar as your own hometown. Only in Derry the haunting is real ...They were seven teenagers when they first stumbled upon the horror. Now they are grown-up men and women who have gone out into the big world to gain success and happiness. But none of them can withstand the force ...
The Exorcist book cover
The Exorcist
40th Anniversary Edition
William Peter Blatty - 2011-10-04 (first published in 1971)
Goodreads Rating
Four decades after it first terrified the world, William Peter Blatty’s The Exorcist is back! An extraordinary classic work of horror and dark paranormal suspense. In this stunning 40th Anniversary Edition, a desperate mother and two priests fight to free the soul of a little girl from a supernatural entity of pure malevolence....
The Shining book cover
The Shining
Stephen King - 1990-05-01 (first published in 1977)
Goodreads Rating
Jack Torrance's new job at the Overlook Hotel is the perfect chance for a fresh start. As the off-season caretaker at the atmospheric old hotel, he'll have plenty of time to spend reconnecting with his family and working on his writing. But as the harsh winter weather sets in, the idyllic location feels ever more remote...and more sinister. And the...
Recommended by
Devon SawaElla Dawson
Pet Sematary book cover
Pet Sematary
Stephen King - 2018-12-04 (first published in 1983)
Goodreads Rating
When Dr. Louis Creed takes a new job and moves his family to the idyllic rural town of Ludlow, Maine, this new beginning seems too good to be true. Despite Ludlow’s tranquility, an undercurrent of danger exists here. Those trucks on the road outside the Creed’s beautiful old home travel by just a little too quickly, for one thing…as is evidenced by...
Bird Box book cover
Bird Box
A Novel
Josh Malerman - 2015-02-10 (first published in 2014)
Goodreads Rating
Written with the narrative tension of The Road and the exquisite terror of classic Stephen King, Bird Box is a propulsive, edge-of-your-seat horror thriller, set in an apocalyptic near-future world—a masterpiece of suspense from the brilliantly imaginative Josh Malerman.Something is out there . . . Something terrifying that must not be seen. One gl...
A Head Full of Ghosts book cover
A Head Full of Ghosts
A Novel
Paul Tremblay - 2016-05-10
Goodreads Rating
A chilling thriller that brilliantly blends domestic drama, psychological suspense, and a touch of modern horror, reminiscent of Mark Z. Danielewskis House of Leaves, John Ajvide Lindqvists Let the Right One In, and Shirley Jacksons The Haunting of Hill House.The lives of the Barretts, a normal suburban New England family, are torn apart when fourt...
Recommended by
Stephen King
The Silence of the Lambs book cover
The Silence of the Lambs
Thomas Harris - 1991-02-15 (first published in 1988)
Goodreads Rating
Hannibal Lecter. The ultimate villain of modern fiction. Read the five-million-copy bestseller that scared the world silent. The Silence of the Lambs. A young FBI trainee. An evil genius locked away for unspeakable crimes. A plunge into the darkest chambers of a psychopath's mind--in the deadly search for a serial killer. - back cover...
Recommended by
Greg Iles
Let Me In book cover
Let Me In
John Ajvide Lindqvist - 2010-01-01 (first published in 2004)
Goodreads Rating
Set in 1981, Let Me In is the horrific tale of Oskar and Eli. It begins with the grisly discovery of the body of a teenage boy, emptied of blood. Twelve-year-old Oskar is personally hoping that revenge has come at long last -- revenge for all the bad things the bullies at school do to him, day after day. While Oskar is fascinated by the murder, it ...
Recommended by
Stephen King
Ghost Story book cover
Ghost Story
Peter Straub - 2020-09-08 (first published in 1979)
Goodreads Rating
In life, not every sin goes unpunished.GHOST STORYFor 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....
Hell House book cover
Hell House
Richard Matheson - 1999-10-13
The Hunger by Alma Katsu
Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
Coraline by Neil Gaiman
Rosemary's Baby by Ira Levin
Ring by Koji Suzuki
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark by Alvin Schwartz
We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson
Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury
White is for Witching by Helen Oyeyemi
Drácula by Michael Burgan
Carrion Comfort by Dan Simmons
Penpal by Dathan Auerbach
Broken Monsters by Lauren Beukes
Boy's Life by Robert McCammon
The Institute by Stephen King
Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy
Misery by Stephen King
Bad Seed by From William March'S Novel Maxwell Anderson
I Am Legend by Richard Matheson
NOS4A2 by Joe Hill
Her Body and Other Parties by Carmen Maria Machado
Wylding Hall by Elizabeth Hand
HEX by Thomas Olde Heuvelt
Uzumaki by Junji Ito
The Complete Tales and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe by Edgar Allan Poe
The Stand by Stephen King
Books of Blood, Vols. 1-3 by Clive Barker
Dread Nation by Justina Ireland
Ghost Summer by Tananarive Due
Psycho by Robert Bloch
The Terror by Dan Simmons
We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver
The Passage by Justin Cronin
Songs of a Dead Dreamer and Grimscribe by Thomas Ligotti
The Call of Cthulhu by H. P. Lovecraft
The Other by Thomas Tryon
I Have No Mouth & I Must Scream by Harlan Ellison
The Silent Companions by Laura Purcell
Fledgling by Octavia E. Butler
The Changeling by Victor Lavalle
The Girl Next Door by Jack Ketchum
Last Days by Brian Evenson
The Invited by Jennifer McMahon
The Luminous Dead by Caitlin Starling
Naomi's Room by Jonathan Aycliffe
The Twisted Ones by T. Kingfisher
Disappearance at Devil's Rock by Paul Tremblay
The Monster of Elendhaven by Jennifer Giesbrecht
The Cipher by Kathe Koja
A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Swan Song by Robert McCammon
1984 by George Orwell
The Witches by Roald Dahl
From Hell by Alan Moore
The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe
The Library at Mount Char by Scott Hawkins
The Hot Zone by Richard Preston
Full Throttle by Joe Hill
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
Asylum 3-Book Box Set by Madeleine Roux
The Witching Hour by Anne Rice
Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff
Creature by Hunter Shea
In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier
The Butterfly Garden by Dot Hutchison
Things We Lost in the Fire by Mariana Enriquez
I Am Watching You by Teresa Driscoll
The Elementals by Michael McDowell
Bad Girls Don't Die by Katie Alender
The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James
Summer of Night by Dan Simmons
Wounds by Nathan Ballingrud
Sefira and Other Betrayals by John Langan
Herokiller by Paul Tassi
Endless Night by Richard Laymon
Wakenhyrst by Michelle Paver
Mongrels by Stephen Graham Jones
A Cosmology of Monsters by Shaun Hamill
The Ballad of Black Tom by Victor Lavalle
The House Next Door by Anne Rivers Siddons
Petra's Ghost by C. S. O'Cinneide
The Rust Maidens by Gwendolyn Kiste
The Lost Causes of Bleak Creek by Rhett McLaughlin
The Girl from the Well by Rin Chupeco
Shutter by Courtney Alameda
The Red Tree by Caitlin R. Kiernan