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Thursday, July 7, 2022

Summer Scares: 8 Horror Books to Read This Summer

Whether nestled inside or stretched out under the sun, there are plenty of horror stories worth reading this summer for all ages and tastes. Brand new editions of familiar tales, true crime horror twists, slasher sequels, contemporary retellings of Gothic classics, and must-read genre-benders round out this summer’s reading list of the top horror books.

Here are eight horror books to keep you busy in the scorching summer months that pave the way to Halloween.

Paper Girls written by Brian K. Vaughan and illustrated by Cliff Chiang

The Eisner Award-winning sci-fi comic series has a series adaptation on the way via Prime Video, making now the perfect time to get acquainted. Four young paper girls find themselves on a time-hopping journey on the morning of November 1, 1988, when they discover a strange device in a basement. The teens learn that their future selves are at the front lines of a war threatening the fate of humanity. Paper Girls is nostalgia meets grim reality, presenting a more nuanced and complex adventure sci-fi series that’s available now in its entirety. This should do the trick if finishing “Stranger Things” left a gaping hole in your summer entertainment.

What Moves the Dead by T. Kingfisher

Mike Flanagan isn’t the only one taking on twisted retellings of Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Fall of the House of Usher.” T. Kingfisher’s ability to weave vivid, haunting tales of cosmic and Lovecraftian horror makes for a unique reimagining of Poe’s story. When retired soldier Alex Easton receives word that their friend Madeline Usher is dying, they rush to the Ushers’ countryside home. There they find weird fungal growths, possessed animals, and Usher family members behaving strangely.

The Daughter of Doctor Moreau by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Moreno-Garcia shifts through genres, blends, and reimagines them through a Mexican lens, from gothic romance to vampire noir and beyond. The authors latest gives a new take on the Island of Doctor Moreau, set in nineteenth-century Mexico. Moreno-Garcia’s lush worldbuilding and cultural perspective make familiar material feel fresh and gripping.

The Ghost That Ate Us: The Tragic True Story of the Burger City Poltergeist by Daniel Kraus – July 12

horror books ghost that ate us

Penned as a true crime novel that assembles interviews, evidence, footnotes, and accounts of a fast food haunting, The Ghost That Ate Us is full of surprises. It examines the bizarre case of a Burger City fire that claimed the lives of multiple victims and implicated another as the murderer. But Kraus digs deep to uncover the paranormal truth in an engaging novel that blends supernatural spookiness with the humorous absurdity of a poltergeist interfering with a burger joint. Because of the level of detail in the true crime formatting, this one is best enjoyed with a physical copy.

The Devil Takes You Home by Gabino Iglesias – August 2

horror books devil takes you home

A compelling genre-bender fueled by unbridled and sometimes righteous wrath. An inciting tragedy transforms a protagonist into a ruthless killer, sending him on a dangerous journey with threats real and fantastical. It’s part horror, part crime thriller, pure terror. Iglesias uses a fresh perspective to cast an unflinching eye on social issues, racism, and feelings of Otherness. More ingenious is how the author uses his deeply flawed protagonist to immerse the reader and confront them with social commentary. It’s a bleak thrill ride with no easy answers and no easy outs for any of its characters until its bittersweet end. You don’t want to miss this one, especially with an adaptation currently in the works.

Salem’s Lot by Stephen King (Movie Tie-In) – August 2 

King’s classic vampire novel gets a movie tie-in paperback release just ahead of the new adaptation’s theatrical debut. Writer Ben Mears returns to his hometown of Jerusalem’s Lot looking for book inspiration while getting his life on track. But he soon realizes that the town might be in the grip of dark forces beyond his imagination. Whether you’ve yet to sink your fangs into this particular novel or need a refresher, this summer makes for a great time to revisit.

Clown in a Cornfield 2: Frendo Lives by Adam Cesare – August 23

horror books clown in a cornfield

Quinn, Rust, and Cole are still reeling from their traumas of surviving the Kettle Springs massacre when it seems to be starting anew. The stakes are higher than ever, and nowhere is safe. Frendo is back with a new armed posse of fanatical supporters. This book is a violent and timely tale with thinly veiled yet compelling subtext that should resonate. It’s a breakneck slasher sequel that doesn’t waste any time getting to the action and suspense. Cesare understands slashers- and more importantly, slasher sequels- really well and crafts a strong narrative around the hardened survivors from the first novel. In true slasher sequel style, the body count is higher along with the brutal deaths that hurt. Whereas Clown in a Cornfield was a fun YA slasher, this sequel is a more mature, robust, and thrilling continuation that improves upon its predecessor.

Hocus Pocus: The Illustrated Novelization written by A. W. Jantha and illustrated by Gris Grimly– August 30

horror books hocus pocus

Look ahead and get into the Halloween spirit with the first-time novelization of the beloved Disney movie. This deluxe illustrated novelization is intended for all ages, from longtime fans to a younger generation. The real draw, perhaps, might be the artwork by renowned artist Gris Grimly.

The post Summer Scares: 8 Horror Books to Read This Summer appeared first on Bloody Disgusting!.


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