My Halloween 2017 Reread List
I’m going to confess that I haven’t been reading much. I’ve been dealing with… things. I’ll do a personal post after Halloween. Now, autumn is my favorite season. In no small part because of October and Halloween. In my part of the U.S.A. our weather is just starting to get really cool. Halloween is forecasted to be in the low 50’s for the high. My favorite weather. My favorite sound is dry leaves rustling around in the wind. I’m 34, have no kids, and live in an apartment where I get no trick or treaters, but I still put on my hooded cape and witch’s hat and walk around the neighborhood. Nothing thrills me more than seeing the little kids all dressed up, going from door to door, and everyone’s decorations.
And since I haven’t been reading much lately, I’d thought I’d ease back into things with a reread of my favorite spooky and chilling books. So, here I present, in no particular order, my list of Halloween 2017 rereads.
The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle
I’m a devoted fan of Sherlock Holmes and The Hound of the Baskervilles is arguable my favorite of Doyle’s stories.
Holmes and Watson are faced with their most terrifying case yet. The legend of the devil-beast that haunts the moors around the Baskerville family’s home warns the descendants of that ancient clan never to venture out in those dark hours when the power of evil is exalted. Now, the most recent Baskerville, Sir Charles, is dead and the footprints of a giant hound have been found near his body. Will the new heir meet the same fate?
Although Holmes reveals the completely non-paranormal motive behind the murder and the strange canine seen upon the moors, it’s still my favorite of the more spooky Holmes stories. As Holmes says in ‘The Adventure of the Sussex Vampire’, “This Agency stands flat-footed upon the ground and there it must remain. The world is big enough for us. No ghost need apply.”
Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake
Whenever I get asked my favorite book, Anna Dressed in Blood pops into my mind as a strong candidate. It’s probably may favorite YA book involving a ghost I’ve ever read.
“Cas Lowood has inherited an unusual vocation: He kills the dead.
So did his father before him, until he was gruesomely murdered by a ghost he sought to kill. Now, armed with his father’s mysterious and deadly athame, Cas travels the country with his kitchen-witch mother and their spirit-sniffing cat. They follow legends and local lore, destroy the murderous dead, and keep pesky things like the future and friends at bay.
Searching for a ghost the locals call Anna Dressed in Blood, Cas expects the usual: track, hunt, kill. What he finds instead is a girl entangled in curses and rage, a ghost like he’s never faced before. She still wears the dress she wore on the day of her brutal murder in 1958: once white, now stained red and dripping with blood. Since her death, Anna has killed any and every person who has dared to step into the deserted Victorian she used to call home.
Yet she spares Cas’s life.”
You can read my review of Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake here. It’s incredibly well-written and very deserving of the positive reviews it received when it was published in 2011.
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
Really, any of Neil Gaiman’s books would fit pretty well into a Halloween reread list. I also loved Coraline, The Ocean at the End of the Lane, and Neverwhere. Of course, we can’t exclude The Sandman graphic novels.
“After the grisly murder of his entire family, a toddler wanders into a graveyard where the ghosts and other supernatural residents agree to raise him as one of their own.
Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a normal boy. He would be completely normal if he didn’t live in a sprawling graveyard, being raised and educated by ghosts, with a solitary guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor of the dead. There are dangers and adventures in the graveyard for a boy. But if Bod leaves the graveyard, then he will come under attack from the man Jack—who has already killed Bod’s family…”
You can find my author feature for Neil Gaiman, including a video preview of The Graveyard Book, here. For some reason I can’t find the review I wrote for, although I’m pretty sure I did write one. Oh well. Gaiman’s books have this other worldly quality and a spookiness that make them great books to read for Halloween. The movie adaptation of Coraline is also on my list of not-so-scary movies to watch for Halloween.
The Dead Girls of Hysteria Hall by Katie Alender
A ghost story from the view point of the ghost. I was surprised with how much I love Hysteria Hall. It was a giveaway prize but I ended up really enjoying it. It was a unique ghost story of the type I had never read before.
“In this asylum, your mind plays tricks on you all the time…
Delia’s new house isn’t just a house. Long ago, it was the Piven Institute for the Care and Correction of Troubled Females—an insane asylum nicknamed “Hysteria Hall.” However, many of the inmates were not insane, just defiant and strong willed. Kind of like Delia herself.
But the house still wants to keep “troubled” girls locked away. So, in the most horrifying way, Delia gets trapped.
And that’s when she learns that the house is also haunted.
Ghost girls wander the halls in their old-fashioned nightgowns. A handsome ghost boy named Theo roams the grounds. Delia finds that all the spirits are unsettled and full of dark secrets. The house, as well, harbors shocking truths within its walls—truths that only Delia can uncover, and that may set her free.
But she’ll need to act quickly, before the house’s power overtakes everything she loves.”
You can read my review of The Dead Girls of Hysteria Hall by Katie Alender here.
Some other books I plan to reread this season are…
The Halloween Tree by Ray Bradbury – Creepy but almost impossible to find. I happen to own an ancient copy.
Dracula by Bram Stoker – Come on! You have to read Dracula. Or at least watch some of the movies. Bela Lugosi is my favorite of the fanged fiends but Netflix keeps taking the DVD out of rotation.
And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie – This one has always been my favorite of the murder mystery legend’s writing, although I find Christie’s style rather sterile and sparse for my tastes.
The Vampire Chronicles by Anne Rice – My favortie is, of course, Interview with the Vampire, but I’ve been meaning to read more of the series. I think there are a dozen books now. And I obviously need to rewatch the movie.
All the Harry Potter books by J.K. Rowling – Yeah. Movies too.
The Witches of Eastwick by John Updike – (giggle, snort) Yeah. I read it because of the movie. I’m not ashamed.
I might read some more stuff too. Definitely watch some movies. I’ve got nothing but time this coming weekend. Time, a library card, and temperatures in the low 50’s. There will be hot chocolate and much snuggling of a very put upon cat. Stay wicked, people.
Posted on October 25, 2017, in holiday post, To Be Read and tagged books to read in October, books to read to get into the Halloween mood, creepy books, ghosts, Halloween books, Halloween reread, list of spooky books, Sherlock Holmes, spooky books, spooky books to read for Halloween. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.