Reader’s Corner: My Favorite Halloween Reads

 

Halloween is my absolute favorite holiday!  I always go all out with decorating and when my kids were younger we did elaborate parties with all kinds of spooky treats.  So today as  treat for both you and me, I thought I’d share my favorite scary books–the ones you can’t put down and then have to leave the lights on because of!

Probably the first scary story I remember reading was The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and let me tell you–Ichabod Crane and the Headless Horseman scared the crap out of me as a child!  But it’s so delicious to be scared, isn’t it?  I guess that began my love affair with the horror genre.

These are in no particular order–I’ve loved reading them all–except I am saving my absolute favorite for last.  (And I have tried not to make this a promotional event for Stephen King, but he is my number 1 horror author.)

The Masque of the Red Death.  I found this story wonderfully scary at a very young age.  I was always fascinated by Medieval history and the Black Death and I bet it stems from reading this Edgar Allen Poe masterpiece.

Endless Night.  One of the Agatha Christie books I devoured as a teenager that really creeped me out.  Not a mystery so much as a chilling tale.  Brrr.  Even the title is spooky.

The Lottery.  Can’t remember when I first read this Shirley Jackson classic story.  The one lottery you don’t want to win.  And such an indictment of human nature.  Shivering as I type.

The Exorcist.  Yes, I saw the movie (this one makes that list too), but I read the book afterward and it scared the beejesus out of me too.  More on that tomorrow.

Midnight.  This was the second Dean Koontz book I ever read, and while it’s not particularly frightening, the transformations are eerie enough to make me think of Halloween.  The plucky little girl is also my favorite Dean Koontz heroine.  I so wanted to be her!  She rocked!

The Mist.  NOT the movie, but the novella.  Great scary stuff.  The movie was just depressing and the novella does not end that way.  You really should read it.  I always imagined it taking place in my hometown supermarket, which had a huge plate-glass front.  And to this day seeing fog un-nerves me.

The Stand.  Probably the second Stephen King novel I ever read.  I picked it up to read on vacation and promptly came down with a cold while reading it!  Boy, was I ever creeped out.  I’ve since read the expanded version as well and loved the made-for-TV movie (well done for a Stephen King).  A definite fave. 🙂

The House Next Door.  By Anne Rivers Siddons.  I read this because Stephen King mentioned it  as a good, scary read.  He was so right!  Talk about a haunted house!  A great, haunting tale of the South.

The Shining.  The book was so much more frightening than the Jack Nicholson movie.  I remember the ending (again, not exactly like the movie) that chilled me so much I had to put the book down–as if the evil would come through the pages and infect me!  Definite daytime read. 🙂

And my absolute Favorite Scary Book–It by Stephen King.  Love, love, love the characters and their interaction.  Those were the kind of friends I wish I’d had growing up.  But without the clown or the spider (always imagined it to be like the queen in Aliens!).

So those are my favorite scary reads for this Halloween!  I’d love to know what your favorite scary book is. Leave a comment and be entered to win a copy of E. Ayers’ Halloween Treat A Skeleton at Her Door.  Happy Hauntings!

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28 Responses to Reader’s Corner: My Favorite Halloween Reads

  1. Lindsay says:

    See my comment from yesterday regarding ghosts and scary stories

    Like

    • jennajaxon says:

      I saw. This was a funny thing that happened to me, but it scared the beejesus out of me at the time. And though I have had a run-in with a ghost, it was minor. I heard something in a building where I was the only living soul–I got out fast. LOL You should post about your life in a haunted house for halloween. 🙂

      Like

  2. D'Ann says:

    I love Halloween!

    My daughter and I love the cute little ghosties and wtichies. I do not like
    to be scared, and spook easily, so am not a fan of the books you mentinoed.

    Like

    • jennajaxon says:

      Aww, too bad, D’Ann. They are some good reads. Maybe you’ll like some of my favorite scary movies better. Not all of them are real scary, though some are hair raisers. Look for that post tomorrow. And thanks for stopping by the blog. 🙂

      Like

  3. What a fun post! I can remember growing up and how much fun we would have in school when getting our costumes together and walking the parade. There’s just soemthing fun about Halloween:)

    Like

    • jennajaxon says:

      Halloween has always been my favorite holiday. The costumes, the spooky atmosphere–the candy! I remember a lot of my costumes. Such fun! Thanks for dropping by, Mart. 🙂

      Like

  4. caseamajor says:

    I hate being scared! I hate scary movies and I WILL NOT read horror stories. But every once in a while usually during the Halloween season I will allow myself to watch a scary movie.

    Halloween is by far IMO the scariest. ***shivers***

    Happy Halloween!

    Like

  5. Brenda says:

    Jenna, we have four things in common.
    First, for some strange reason, I’m fascinated and freaked out about The Black Plague. I’ve studied and studied up on it.
    Second, The Stand really really got to me. I loved it. LOL, and if I would have come down with a cold or flu while reading it, I would have flipped out!
    Third, loved The Shining–the book, not so much the movie.
    Fourth, IT freaked…..me…..right….out! The book and the movie.

    Like

    • jennajaxon says:

      LOL That is freaky! I’ve never met anyone who was fascinated by the Black Death but me! I can’t wait for you to read my medieval–as soon as I get it revised, that is. The Black Death plays a major role in it. And so glad to find another Stephen King fan. I’ve found most people either love him or hate him. I’m glad we have the “love him” in common. 🙂

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      • Brenda says:

        I absolutely adore S.K. I’m in love with his mind, hehehehe.
        Ooooooh, Jenna, I can hardly wait to read your medieval story….when will it be out????

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      • jennajaxon says:

        I don’t know about his mind, Brenda. That’s got to be some pretty scary real estate! LOL I started revising the medieval this past summer but had to stop for other projects. I hope to begin the revisions again over Christmas. It’s a trilogy called Time Enough to Love and the separate books are called Betrothal, Betrayal, and Beleagured. It pushes some of the straight romance taboos, so it’s probably more historical romance blended with the steamy parts of the historical romance genre. I may have to self-pub it for this reason.:) I’ll keep you posted!

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  6. Brenda L says:

    Thanks for sharing Jenna. I will have to check them some of thsoe out.

    Like

  7. Sue says:

    I haven’t read all the books on your list. However in my flash fiction course last month we read the Lottery as a prime example. On another note, yes kids love to be scared. Yet today there is so much, let’s call it censorship, of reading material for children. This, to me, is a crime that kids don’t read even the classic fairy tales. End of speech 😀

    Like

    • jennajaxon says:

      Yes, and many schools have jettisoned the classics in favor of the “new” classics, which I find much darker than a lot of the stories I grew up with. Thanks for coming by, Sue. Glad to hear your speech! 🙂

      Like

      • Sue says:

        thanks – I’m not familiar with the “new” classics – how are they darker? I thought they are just totally watered down

        Oh, I still won’t read a Dean Koontz book – they are the scariest ’cause he uses every day life….

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      • jennajaxon says:

        By “new” classics I mean things like “The Road” and “The Hunger Games.” There are others that my girls told me about but I can’t remember the names. These are supposed to be brilliant books, but I still think they are very dark.

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  8. Oh, yeah, you reminded me of some of my old favorites! I’ve read most on that list. I remember having to read The Lottery as part of a high school English course and wondering how they got something good mixed up in the curriculum. 🙂

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    • jennajaxon says:

      LOL Andrea! Yes, I looked at my daughter’s reading list and it is pitifully lacking in the classics. The good reads were few and far between. I wonder if she has read The Lottery yet? Hmmm. Perhaps a suggestion for her Halloween weekend? Thanks for coming by!

      Like

  9. Lia Davis says:

    I love Halloween too. And spooky stories. 🙂 Great post!

    Like

  10. Your post’s timing is eerie for me. I never have nightmares, but last night I did. A monster was coming to get me! Of course, yesterday I read a scary ghost story, a free read from Blushing Books. I think it made an impression.

    My favorite scary storyteller is Dean Koontz. I love his happy endings, and his villains usually aren’t just monstrous, they’re human, too.

    Like

    • jennajaxon says:

      Dean Koontz is my second fave, after Stephen King. Loved his “Watchers,” probably my favorite of his books. Einstein is just wonderful. And yes, his HEAs are very satisfying. I especially loved “Lightning,” the very first book of his I read. Thanks for stopping by, Trish. Hope you’ve gotten over the willies by now! 🙂

      Like

  11. “It” is my all time favorite. Also loved the movie. Okay that might have been because John Boy was in it, but I loved the movie. The Headless Horsemen is second as a favorite.

    Like

    • jennajaxon says:

      “It” is incredible and I have passed my love of it to my younger daughter! She hasn’t read the book, but loves the movie. I was disappointed in the spider, but otherwise loved it. Thanks for stopping by! 🙂

      Like

  12. Jennifer Lowery~Author says:

    You hit on some good ones, Jenna! Anything from Stephen King is awesome! I haven’t had much time for reading this Halloween season, but I might try some of your recommendations. Great post!

    Like

    • jennajaxon says:

      Thanks, Jennifer! I haven’t had the time I wanted to read the spooky stuff as well. I’ve promised myself treats this weekend, however. E. Ayer’s A Skeleton at Her Door and Sleepy Hollow Dreams by Taryn Kincaid are my picks this year.

      Like

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