Oh, how I love this time of year! And what would October be without some seriously good spooky reading? Here are some ghost story novels that I highly recommend.
To see the Studio 5 segment, click HERE.
1. “Ghost on Black Mountain” by Ann Hite
Nellie Clay married Hobbs Pritchard. This one act sets off a chain of haunting, unforgettable events told through the eyes of five women. Beautifully written, with all the charm and magic of a good Southern tale, this book is hard to put down. Romantic, spellbinding, and the perfect fall read.
Content note: Some sexual references, brief sexual violence and spouse abuse, one F-word, and murder violence.
2. “Midwinterblood” by Marcus Sedgwick
Though not a traditional ghost story, this novel is a brilliant tale of living beyond the grave. Booklist calls it, “part love story, part mystery, part horror,” and one hundred percent amazing. At first you will be confused and then you will be amazed and not be able to stop reading. A stunning must-read.
Content note: Some violence and a few uses of foul language.
3. “The Night Gardner” by Jonathan Auxier
For a lighter read and a great choice for younger readers, pick up this new eerie book. Two abandoned Irish siblings travel to find work as servants in a strange, derelict English manor house. Soon they meet a mysterious stranger. This book is a ‘spine-chilling fable’ and a mesmerizing read.
4. “The Woman in Black” by Susan Hill
For more than 30 years, this story has been hailed as one of the best ghost stories ever written. Arthur Kipps travels to a small, strange English town to deal with the death of one of his law firms’ clients. Soon he encounters a ghostly woman dressed all in black and a mystery he wishes he could turn away from. Exceptionally eerie, with loads of unnerving images, “The Woman in Black” does not disappoint.
I also highly recommend the movie, with Daniel Radcliff. This is one rare case where the movie is better than the book (though the book is still a good read).
5. “The Haunting of Hill House” by Shirley Jackson
Another timeless classic, Shirley Jackson is praised as a master of ‘the cryptic, haunted tale.” The standard in haunted house fiction, this book takes the reader to Hill House, old and crumbling away. Dr. Montague is determined to find proof of psychic phenomena. But he and his companions get far more than they ever expected when they awaken the power of Hill House.
6. “The Haunting of Maddy Clare” by Simone St. James (not shown in segment)
In 1920’s England, young Sarah Piper lives a lonely, threadbare life. But that all changes when charming ghost hunter Alistair Gellis shows up looking for an assistant for a new, unusual case. The ghost of Maddy Clare, vicious and vindictive, is unlike anything Alistair –or Sarah – has seen before. The ghost in this book is so well done; she’s creepy, scary, and complicated. Author Simone St. James expertly evokes the time period and the landscape. Compelling, romantic, and enjoyable.
Content note: An R rated read. Two descriptive, detailed sex scenes, one steamy kissing scene, some foul language including a handful of F-words, and some violence, including mention of rape.