8 Spook-tacular books to read this Halloween
What do ghosts do for fun? They listen to audio-BOO-ks!
Okay, so we’re not going to win any prizes for our jokes.
What we can do, though, is recommend some fang-tastic books for you to get your teeth into this Halloween! (Sorry, I really will stop with the puns now). Whether you’re looking for scary fiction, frighteningly real crime, or just something to make you laugh, this selection will have a book for you!
1. Frankenstein – Mary Shelley
Did you know it’s been 200 years since 18-year-old Mary Shelley first wrote Frankenstein? Thankfully, it’s still as popular as ever, and for good reason. This original science-fiction novel features Victor Frankenstein, a scientist who is obsessed with creating life itself. He plunders graveyards looking for material to create a new being that he famously shocks into life using electricity. A truly creepy classic!
2. The Woman in Black – Susan Hill
Now a adapted into a film starring Daniel Radcliffe, The Woman in Black started out as the eerie story of Arthur Kipps, a young solicitor summoned to a funeral. He has no inkling of the tragic secret of Eel Marsh House or the mysterious black-robed woman who haunts its shattered rooms, but he soon finds out. Full of atmosphere and spine-tingling horror, this is a proper ghost story.
Listening Books members can listen to this book on MP3 CD (book number 09153).
3. And Then There Were None – Agatha Christie
If you’re looking for a good murder mystery to spice up your Halloween, this is the one to pick. Ten strangers are invited to be guests at a weekend away on a private island off the coast of Devon. As the weekend progresses they start being picked off one by one. Tension mounts as the group realises the killer must be amongst them and only the dead are above suspicion. This BBC Radio 4 dramatisation features an all-star cast including Lynsey Marshal.
4. Classic Tales of Horror – Various Authors
This collection of eight classic horror stories features some of the most well-known horror fiction, such as W. W. Jacobs’ The Monkey’s Paw. This chilling tale tells of a monkey’s paw that grants three wishes to its owner, but every wish comes with terrible consequences making this an almost literal ‘be careful what you wish for’ story.
5. Good Omens – Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman
If you prefer your Halloween books less scary and more fun, Good Omens is a great place to start. Written by the late, great Terry Pratchett and Sci-fi and Fantasy legend Neil Gaiman, it has quickly become a modern classic. It’s the story of the end of the world: the Four Horsemen are riding motorcycles, frogs are falling, and Atlantis has risen again. Everything would be going to plan if it were not for the angel Aziraphale and the demon Crowley, who have come to rather like the human race. And in another tiny snag, someone has misplaced the Antichrist.
Listening Books members can listen to this book on MP3 CD (book number 00097).
6. Miss. Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children – Ransom Riggs
Sixteen-year-old Jacob grew up on his grandfather’s stories telling of a childhood during World War II at an orphanage for children with strange powers. Jacob isn’t sure whether to believe him, but when a horrific family tragedy sets Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. However, many of the children seem more than just peculiar. In fact, they may have been dangerous. Spine-tingling fantasy that has recently been adapted into a film directed by Tim Burton.
7. Before I Go To Sleep – S. J. Watson
This is a psychological thriller that will have you questioning everything you think you know. Christine Lucas loses everything every time she goes to sleep – her mind simply erases it. She cannot remember her name, her identity or her past. She wakes up every morning to her husband and doesn’t recognise him. And after she starts writing a journal, it becomes clear something is very wrong.
8. In Cold Blood – Truman Capote
If you’re more of a non-fiction reader, we’ve got some creepy tales for you too! Truman Capote’s controversial In Cold Blood is a comprehensive reconstruction of the 1959 murder of a Kansas farmer, his wife and both their children. It explores the circumstances of this true crime and the subsequent investigation. At its heart, the young killers Perry Smith and Dick Hickock are shown to be reprehensible and yet frighteningly human.
Listening Books members can listen to this book on MP3 CD (book number 00871).
What’s your favourite book to read at Halloween? Do you prefer a scary ghost story or an intense crime novel? Let us know in the comments!
All these books and plenty more are available for members to borrow from the Listening Books library.
This post was written by Abigail Jaggers