Top 10 Horror Books of 2016 – India

 

From ghosts to sprites, witches and much more, spooky horror stories have always been objects of fancy and intrigue in cultures across the globe. And Indian writers continue to live up to this trend. Although tricky territory, once navigated well, the genre of horror is the most fetching and enticing of them all.  Tales and legends from Indian households and historical inferences have continued to spark curiosity since the old days and this factor has enabled authors to establish their rapport with the readers. Here is a list of uncanny, spooky Indian Horror books from the 2016 collection. Have a look.

 

Afterlife: Ghost Stories From Goa

Centering around Fonsecas, an amicable family located in Goa, Mr. Fonseca is gripped with anxiety about his guests and finding suitable grooms for his daughters Carol and Joanna, both settled overseas. This book is an anthology of short stories revolving around immoral priests, rebirth, reincarnation, and also the paranormal activities in Catholic Goan households providing a social commentary on the same.

Read it For:
A poignant and socially relevant take on fables, legends and the penchant for the supernatural in traditional catholic goan households.
Don't Read it For:
if you’re looking for a spine chilling horror tale, this is not your thing.
What makes this book stand out?:
The treatment of stories is extremely personalized and the presentation as well as the take is socially relevant.

Ghost Stories of Shimla Hills

The hills have forever been backdrops for horror tales. And the Ghost Stories of Shimla Hills plays on the exact theme. With supernatural and paranormal tales recited by the natives of Shimla, this books is a collection of handpicked tales by Minakshi Chaudhry, who has travelled all throughout Himachal Pradesh and personally heard tales of ghosts, witches and haunted houses from the locals.

Read it For:
A traditional presentation of rustic ghostly legends at its best.
Don't Read it For:
If you’re looking for new age horror tales, you might want to avoid this book.
What makes this book stand out?:
This book was well received by readers mainly for its personalized treatment of stories and the traditional tales one has been exposed to since childhood strike a chord with the readers.

Ghost Stories from the Raj

If you ever wanted to get yoru hands on horror tales from the British times, this one should be your pick. Ghost Stories from the Raj is an anthology of short stories taken from British officers during the pre independence era. You will find that the book mentions details signaling towards the dominance of paranormal activity on daily lives of people. From drafting of legal documents to land disputes, everything revolved around ghosts and spirits. Moreover, you will find stories here that talk about people making shrines to guard themselves from man eating tigers and crop thefts.

Read it For:
An interesting take on the reverence for the supernatural existence in Indian societies and a social commentary on the same.
Don't Read it For:
If you don’t want a mild social take on the love for the supernatural and are looking for something scarier, don’t read this.
What makes this book stand out?:
The literary touch of Ruskin Bond makes the storytelling even more riveting.

A Face in the Dark

Hilly backdrops, Ruskin Bond, and paranormal tales, make the perfect combination for a bestseller. This book is a mystic collection of scary tales set around mountains, rivers, and the woods in and around Mussoorie and Shimla, known for many haunted sights and macabre horror tales. The treatment of stories is so casual and commonplace but equally scary and engaging.

Read it For:
This book is your perfect travel companion and the nonchalant uncanniness further raises the fear factor.
Don't Read it For:
If you’re bored of horror tales set in the hills, skip this one.
What makes this book stand out?:
Ruskin Bond has a reader base spanning across all ages. And the casual yet engaging storytelling makes this a must read.
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Maya’s New Husband

This story revolves around the outskirts of Mumbai haunted by evil spirits snatching away people and their body remnants found in unreachable spots in the city. Amidst this revolves the story of Maya Bhargava who remarries a man named Bhaskar Sadachari who is uncanny, strange, and hated by most. How the story unfolds to trap Maya into this labyrinth mystery is what this book is about.

Read it For:
A subtle, new age horror story with a romantic angle.
Don't Read it For:
The story is very heartbreaking.
What makes this book stand out?:
The journey of the protagonist coupled with the heart rending turn of events governing her life is something this book covers with aplomb.

Pisacha

This one too is a romantic demon versus angel story about a flesh eating demon with a softer, fragile side to him who yearns to unite with the lover of his previous human birth. As he finds his love reborn in a wealthy family in Mumbai, who is in love with another man. In order to be reborn as a human, he needs to battle an entourage of witches and monsters.

Read it For:
This is an out of the world saga of god versus devil and good versus bad with a gripping plot indeed.
Don't Read it For:
If the fairytale like saga of beauty versus the beast doesn’t interest you, avoid this book.
What makes this book stand out?:
The writer makes a stark contrast between the good and the evil while continuing to capture the grey areas of characters well.

Kumari Loves the Monster

Kind of a horror fetish, this book revolves around young, attractive women having affairs with demon figures. This is a bilingual account of romantic encounters filled with romantic verses and descriptions of everyday romantic activities of young, charming women and their monster boyfriends right from watching movies to eating snacks together or running at the beach.

Read it For:
If you enjoy the beauty versus the beast analogy, you will love this one.
Don't Read it For:
If immature cheesy demon human romance irks you, stay away from this one.
What makes this book stand out?:
This book is outlandish, peculiar to say the least, which is what makes it equally enticing to read.

En route Goa

This is a story about one of the scariest train journeys ever, a story about Karma, Redemption and Revenge. Revolving around 5 main characters, En route Goa is about a train journey to Goa with their individual stories cascading into the main plot to turn out into the scariest read of your life. There’s spirits, dead people, events of the past haunting the characters and much more.

Read it For:
A scary, frightening read that keeps you gripped on every page.
Don't Read it For:
If you’re impatient about unraveling mysteries and have a fear of scary plots, stay away.
What makes this book stand out?:
The element of mystery keeps the reader glued to this book. And yes, this one is very scary.

The Mine

With the most unique and dastardly storyline on the list, The Mine is a psychological thriller revolving around a mining establishment and the savage events that lead the workers to self mutilation, this book is written by a celebrated author popularly known as Greatbong known for his punches and excellent storytelling. The dark plot along with an impeccable writing style makes for an awesome read.

Read it For:
A chilling account of self mutilation and evil events.
Don't Read it For:
If mutilation and horrifying stories terrify you, you should avoid this.
What makes this book stand out?:
The fresh plot along with a riveting storyline and excellent narration.

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