10+ Best Horror Books of All Time


Horror, the weapon that one uses to keep tabs on children, keep adults alike on their toes and the word that spawned generations of the most unforgettable characters ever created in human history like Dracula, Frankenstein and also serial killers and the others, is an age-old word. Every light has it’s darkness and so this sensation, starkly opposite to that of happiness and glee, but involving more than just sadness is probably the reason why one started counting heartbeats. We can say the number of heartbeats we have is a measure of the horror we are experiencing. But this is an altogether different world that when one gets into, it’ll become very difficult to come out. But it is very addictive all the same. Horror movies are probably the best thriller and detective movies combined as they have elements of these genres and more too, rolled into them. Coming to the books of fright, the chilling sensation that one feels when he/she experiences unknown and mysterious happenings, they are marvels of writing as it is not just a simple story that can keep alive a horror book, it is the way it is written that sends chills up peoples’ spines. So here we present to you some of the best voted and sure shot chill-senders, the best horror books that you ought to experience at least once in this lifetime. So keep your heartbeat-meter by your side and delve into the world of the sinister.

The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories

The master of classic horror, H.P.Lovecraft, as acknowledged by our present horror greats like Stephen King gives us a combination of his lethal other-worldly tales that will surely give us the creeps. This is a collection of short stories, put systematically in a chronological order that will start creeping from the very bottom of our spine to the very top by the time we are done. But unlike some of the modern horrors,  these tales, devoid of gore and blood, but consisting of just plain mystic and cosmic horror will still manage to get you. This is a sort of a ride through the development of all his stories, right from his early tales to his most famous and scary ones.

The October Country

Ray Bradbury, known for his metaphorical writing of horror stories, presents to you a collection of his famous short stories. These stories slowly progress stirring that fear hidden inside our minds by prodding at the human psyche and inserting supernaturalism into the stories as one goes on. Also, the recent versions feature an introduction by the author himself, wherein he talks about writing in general in an essay-like fashion. This book dealing with dark forces and the unknown also has a somewhat poetic side attached to it, which makes it even more interesting.

Ghost Stories of an Antiquary

This is another collection of ghost stories penned by M.R.James, in the starting of the twentieth century, but still creating ripples in today's world. This book contains eight stories, each dealing with forces beyond comprehension. Interestingly, one of the tales might have been directly taken from the author's life, but the narration, which is mostly a second or third person, is intensely both satisfying and horrifying at the same time. This is a prime example of traditional horror and a must read for fans.

What will you do when you get abducted and locked up in an unknown place, not for any ransom or leverage, but just because your captor is obsessed with you. Well, that is the position Miranda is thrown into one fine day. Now she is on her own and must find ways to get into the head of her captor, an uneducated and unemployed man whose hobby is catching butterflies. She has to fight for her survival and gain her freedom keeping wary of her raving captor. This book does not deal with any supernatural elements, but with the human mind and the terrors of the same.

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House of Leaves

Leaf, a symbol of life is surprisingly used in the title of this gravely horrifying tale which will leave noticeable impressions of death on the readers. A book that had for a long time been passed around in a heap of papers or maybe shown as a glimpse occasionally on the net is finally available in a palpable form. It deals with a family that moves into a new house under pleasant circumstances, but slowly they start to experience unnatural experiences as the house itself starts showing ominous omens.

The Shining

This book, a nugget in the world of supernatural and demonic, is a must read for anyone even remotely interested in horror, forget about enthusiasts. This story, famously directed into one of the scariest movies ever, even has rumours suggesting inhuman events occurring around those cast in the movie. It deals with a five-year-old boy as a protagonist who has psychic powers and has mysterious visions. These become impossible to control once his father is handed over a hotel to take care of and slowly inexplicable events start occurring, all pointing toward the involvement of the hotel, which seems to start developing a life of its own with great evil seemingly lurking beneath it's very foundations, waiting for the right moment to shine.


There is not much to say about this book except that this classic, penned by Bram Stoker, is one that each and every one of us lived and grew up with. Although this book definitely does not generate happy moments, the legend of The Dracula has long surpassed the puny lifespan of mankind. It is this mystical and mythical being that people depended on to bring forth and depict the darker side of our creator and also to generate a sense of fear and terror in generations ranging from the once-glorious royal kings to modern-day technocrats. Well basically this story deals with the legend, or more or less is responsible for the birth of the legend and will definitely keep the readers on tenterhooks, re-instigate their childhood fears and transport them back to the dark, damp and dreaded world of the blood-thirsty Dracula.


Coraline's life is turned completely upside down the moment she opens the mysterious backdoor she finds in her new home. The back door leads to a completely different new world eerily the same as her own, but polar opposite in all the characteristics. She has her excessively caring "other" parents looking after her every need, and she is driven mad with ecstasy. Her alternate-world parents are all but a dream come true for any child, but for one thing, they have black haunting button eyes. Rapidly this paradise starts turning into hell and Coraline is thrust into a quest to save her own parents, when slowly the "others" start behaving erratically and an inevitable chain of events make her realize that the situation is everything but good. It's the hard way that Coraline learns that some doors are not meant to be opened.

The Girl Next Door

Jack Ketchum wrote this book for only one purpose- To horrify the readers, but not in a ghostly or supernatural sort of way. To appall the human mind of its own kind's ghastly thinking and to show the extreme side of us humans. This book will psychologically affect you with its violence, but still it is a good read as this will be an experience you will never forget. It is the tale of two sisters held captive by their deranged aunt who forces upon them her torturous methods according to her fancy, which(this irrational hatred) slowly spreads across the whole town. But not everyone is consumed by darkness, as there emerges an unlikely person with an unlikely opportunity to break these seemingly impervious barriers of darkness.

Summer of Night

Well this goody tale of five young friends who have a relationship as strong as iron, takes a direly dramatic turn when a strange set of events start occurring in their town. They have yet to realize that this is not the first time something had happened there, but they were clouded from it all the while until then. Strange and sinister evil lurking behind in that town, they keep seeing mysterious things and are followed by arcane forces. They must solve the case before they get engulfed by the town as another of it's victims. It is Dan Simmons' narration that will catch the reader's eye. Although the story sets in late at an unexpected time, the mental picture that Simmons provides of this town will remain etched forever in the reader's mind. And as the title says, for more effect let summer pass by before you start.

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