Spooktacular Seasonal Selections: Halloween Edition

 

As Halloween night approaches, we look with anticipation for the darker kind of stories. We want the thrill of peeking through our fingers as a madman stalks us from within the house. We want the creepy crawlies, purple people eaters and the three legged beasties. So where to turn for a disturbingly delicious ghost story? To these indies of course!

Band of Demons is the second book in Rob Blackwell’s Sanheim Chronicles. After overcoming his ultimate fear and taking on a new form, Quinn O’Brion is back with a vengeance; and his beloved Kate Tassel. They intend to defend the title they earned in A Soul to Steal. Will they win the battle against Sanheim and retain the moniker Prince of Sanheim, or will they lose it to another pair of equally frightful forces?

In book one, we met The Headless Horseman and were ensconced by ancient Celtic mythology. Band of Demons delves deeper, bringing ancient Irish lore to the forefront of our already twitching minds. Sanheim, Horseman, ghosts and creatures…this is the perfect book for Halloween.

Alice in Deadland is an Amazon Bestseller by Mainak Dhar that paints quite a bleak picture of the future. More than fifteen years after the world as we know it has become nothing but a wasteland, Alice fights for humanity in a war against the undead Biters. Upon following one into an underground hidey hole, she discovers things that will change the world as she has always known it.

There is a prophecy to be fulfilled, based on the last existing book: Alice in Wonderland. Sufficiently creepy and check on the people eaters. Like this one? Book two is also available, check out Through the Killing Glass.

Cemetery Things by Keith Latch is just the right amount of unsettling to get you squirming in your Jack-O-Lantern carving seat.

There is a place called The Devil’s Graveyard and it steals people from their loved ones. After countless murders, a teenager is killed and this is the last straw. Enter Brent, the brother of the deceased, hell bent on revenge. Also meet Crenshaw Poe, an aptly named former Baptist minister who is now purely evil. Crenshaw seeks souls to populate his lair at Autumn Ridge Cemetery. Scared yet? For just a buck on Amazon, you can feel the full fright factor.

 

Halloween is a collection of horrific tales compiled by editor Paula Guran.

Spooky stories by Charles de Lint and Joe R. Lansdale sit beside tales of terror by Peter Straub and H.P. Lovecraft.

Merging classic creepy and macabre mystery, the result is a varying array of tricks and treats for young and old. Whether a lingering tingling on the back of your neck is what you seek, or fun folklore whets your appetite, you will likely find something to indulge in here. Go ahead, take a bite.

 

 

Creepy 2: A Collection of Scary Stories by authors Jay Crow, Jeff Bennington and Katie M. John is a treat for the darkest nights of the year. Craving something creepy for when the freaks come out at night?

Look no further. This is a collection of both ghost stories and real life tales of haunting. Krow is a paranormal investigator; Bennington provides the scary short stories along with top 10 bestselling UK author, John. Just the right mix of disturbing for the diverse reader looking for that fine line between fiction and real life frightful…the line is thin this time of year.

 

The Mortician’s Wife by Maralee Lowder takes place in Dunsmuir, a small town in Northern California.

There is a haunted house—the Old Mortuary—home to a woman named Ada who harbors horrific secrets and has been hiding away from the world for decades.

Murder upstairs, bodies in the basement and the bad behavior of Horace Carpenter all equal one of the most haunted houses in the country. Dare we open the door? Bring your nightlight when you do, the spirits are restless.

 

Asylum by Elizabeth Cameron is the story of an almost forgotten institution that looks like it has risen from medieval times: Island View Hospital, home for the criminally insane.

Mia Daniels is assigned a patient study; a baby is born to an addict and is sent to the hospital with extreme deformities and an extremely short life expectancy. Mia meets Jennifer, a young patient of the institution imploring her help as Mia tries to complete her study. Can Mia withstand the psychological terror that lurks around every corner? Don’t forget to take those meds…

 

Apparition by bestselling author Michaelbrent Collings is frightening right from the start. The cover will even scare the bejeesus out of you.

Shane Willis is on the brink of discovering an evil that lurks in the hearts of parents—parents, who kill their children. This evil feeds on the blood and despair of children as they lay dying.

It is hidden from most because they can’t see the Apparition…can you?

 

 

Creatures by Gerry Griffiths is a smorgasbord of the creeping unknown, crawling mutations and all the lurking monsters we try not to envision in the spaces beneath our beds.

Perhaps Griffiths is on to something when he implies that the scariest creatures out there are those of the human persuasion.

Creatures is a bountiful book, comprised of twenty-two short stories that cross the genre borders into Horror, Thriller, Science Fiction, and Fantasy. Variety is the slice of life this season.

 

Caged by Amber Lynn Natusch introduces Ruby, who has lost her family and is finding herself. What she discovers is downright horrific.The dilemma becomes whether she can harness the scary things she finds out before they take over any more than they already have. From Caged: “I stood in the middle of the room, unmoving – I barely breathed. My life had just become surreal, impossible, and one enormous lie. I needed to go, to run somewhere, anywhere to beat back the reality that was rapidly closing in around me. The image of him was burned into my retina, flashing over and over again like a warning. He was trapped somewhere between human and decidedly not, and I realized that was my new reality. I was too.” What’s Halloween without some inner creatures exposing their true nature?

While you may think it’s harder to get scared as an adult, these tales of disconcert are here to prove you wrong. So when you settle in with a glass of O Negative this All Hallows Eve, be sure to lock those doors, draw the shades and have your trusty talismans readily available. It never hurts to add garlic to your pizza or get that Poland Spring a nice blessing… it’s up to you if you want to melt down those silver candlesticks.