Saturday, October 31, 2009

Halloween: Not For the Faint of Heart

I must admit, I am not a big Halloween fan.

Don't get me wrong, I love to dress up. I particularly loved the year I dressed as a pillow - stuffed with newspaper.

And I definitely love candy. My silver teeth will tell you that.

What I don't love? Scary stuff.

I don't like being afraid. I avoid the haunted houses and forests. I get particularly spooked by scary movies (even the ones most people don't think are scary). And I don't read horror novels. Books that are scary have never been favorites of mine. In fact, if I am reading one that is particularly intense or frightening, I have to read something mellow and calm before bed so I don't have nightmares.

Basically, I'm a chicken. Which is why I haven't been participating in any Halloween challenges or reading any scary books to celebrate.

But, I have put together a list of some of the "scary" books I have read. I would call this "the list of suspenseful books for those who don't like being scared," but that is just too long and convoluted. These books are more suspenseful, intense, or mysterious than scary. Here they are:

Supernatural/Paranormal: Are they really out there?

Brooklyn Bridge by Karen Hesse (there's a ghost!)
The Demon's Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan
The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
Heir Trilogy by Cinda Williams Chima
Impossible by Nancy Werlin
Midnighters series by Scott Westerfeld
Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare
Need by Carrie Jones
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith
Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater
Silver Phoenix by Cindy Pon
Skulduggery Pleasant by Derek Landy (c'mon he's a skeleton!)
The Underneath by Kathi Appelt
Wildwood Dancing by Juliet Marillier

Nail-Biters: On the edge of your seat

Hunger Games series
Alcatraz series (nothing scarier than evil librarians, right?)
Epic by Conor Kostick
Inkheart trilogy by Cornelia Funke
Little Brother by Cory Doctorow
Unwind by Neal Shusterman

Mysteries: solve me!

A Circle of Souls by Preetham Grandhi
Jamaica Inn by Daphne Du Maurier
The London Eye Mystery by Siobhan Dowd
What I Saw and How I Lied by Judy Blundell

What's your favorite type of "scary" book?

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  1. I can't remember specifically scary books. I like suspenseful books I guess. I remember being scared while reading Dracula, but I can't remember much of that book now.

    Robin Cook writes some great ones.

  2. Amy, my mom was freaked out by Dracula and I haven't ever read it. I did like Frankenstein, but I don't think that one is as scary as the movies try to be.

  3. I would add "Sunshine" by Robin McKinley to the paranormal list, one of my favorite 'not-quite-but-almost-our-world-paranormal-urban-fantasy" reads. GirlGeniusOnline (www.girlgeniusonline.com) "adventure-romance-mad science" is a great steampunk graphic novel series and includes monsters. For something really scary, but also very well done, try Max Brooks' "World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie Wars". Definitely not one for the kids, though.

  4. Andie, thanks for the suggestions! I have heard lots of things about Sunshine, but haven't picked it up yet.

  5. I don't like scary stuff either, but movies terrify me much more than books. I can usually read scary books because in written format I can still distance myself enough from it so it doesn't scare me too much... but my favourite type of scary book is the gothic books. Not too scary, but just enough of that delicious spooky atmosphere to get you sitting on edge.

  6. Court, absolutely! Movies are so much harder to escape the scariness. At least with a book you aren't seeing the scariness in vivid imagery (unless you have a much better imagination than myself).


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