For a special Halloween edition of my Top 5 Recs posts, I had to ask my friend Aisling for her spooky book recs. I couldn’t think of anyone better for this month. Ash and I have worked together many times on blog posts over the years. I trust her with everything gothic, vampire, supernatural, and horror. I hope you enjoy this guest post, and find something to read this Halloween Season!
This post includes some affiliate links with the Bookshop, please consider using these links to purchase any of the books recommended that you are interested in as 10% of sales go to Artie (which helps keep the blog and other online content running) as well as supporting the authors and independent bookshops.
Aisling is a 20-something-year-old Irish blogger who loves reading all things that go bump in the night. She’s also passionate about sustainability and coffee. (she/her) You can find her blog at http://thisdreamsalive.com
As much as I love a good Halloween movie, nothing is better than curling up with a pumpkin spice latte and enjoying a good Halloween book. So without further ado, here are my favourite Halloween books.
The Lost Girls by Sonia Hartl
The Lost Girls has been described as a sapphic, vampiric version of John Tucker Must Die.
Elton turned Holly into a vampire in the 80s, promising her forever only to leave her alone. Holly is left with permanently crimped hair, a teenage complexion and working in fast food joints seemingly forever. Elton’s other exs, hatch a plan to stop the cycle to save another girl from having the same fate and recruit Holly.
My favourite thing about the vampire genre is when authors make their vampires unique. In The Lost Girls, the girls have heirlooms, something grounding them to their human selves. If they destroy their heirlooms they can kill the person who turned them but the cost is, they lose all their human memories.
Ghost Squad by Claribel A. Ortega
Ghost Squad is a fun middle grade story ideal for younger readers. Personally, while I enjoyed it (and still read a lot of YA as an adult) this particular book was something I felt too far away from in terms of age to really click with.
With that said, it’s a still a great Halloween book, especially for younger readers or those who want something that feels youthful which is why it deserves a spot on this list.
Its about Lucely Luna, who can see ghosts. In fact, ghosts are a huge part of her life since her dad runs a ghost tour. But they’re struggling to make ends meet. Lucely tries to take things into her own hands to save her family and ancestors.
I could only find Witchling by Claribel A. Ortega… but if that might interest you, grab a copy here.
Hocus Pocus & The All New Sequel by Janatha A.W. Griffin
Did you know there was a Hocus Pocus sequel… before the Hocus Pocus sequel. The book came out in July 2018 to mark the films 25th anniversary but honestly, I doubt Disney is going to make the film follow the same plot.
It’s about Max and Allison’s daughter, Poppy, as she grows tired of her parents overprotective ness and fear of Halloween. Poppy sneaks out of her parent’s Halloween party with her friends to see the Sanderson house for herself.
Its also queer, more visiblely queer than side characters making passive comments about being in same sex relationships in some of Disney’s newer films, which is why I doubt Disney would want its wider audience seeing a movie about this particular book.
Zom-b by Darren Shan
Tropes are a vital part of literature but one thing I’ve always felt about zombies, is they’re more confined by them than other supernatural creatures like vampires are. For me, an apocalypse story can be hard to get into since we see them all the time.
There’s just no avoiding the same apocalypse tropes but what I enjoy about Darren Shan is that he makes it deeper. He uses the story to instil in his readers that you can be better than the circumstances you were raised in, and calls out racism and xenophobia.
Given that a lot of horror tropes actually have racist origins, it’s good to see an author use their work to be anti-racist.
Plus, after the first book, the series really takes an interesting direction.
Militia Of The Lost by Laurence Beveridge
As far as vampire books go, Militia Of The Lost is one of my favourites because the vampires don’t overtake the dystopian element, they’re just a fun addition.
The book is set in a futuristic Grandomnia, which used to be London. A young man who finds himself with amnesia gets sucked into a twisted love story, overthrowing the monarchy, and confronting who he really is.
Beveridge is in the band Fearless Vampire Killers so the main characters are based on the band themselves and Grandomnia is a huge part of their lore. You don’t need to be a fan of FVK to get this book. It will mean more if you’re a fan because some characters and lines will have more significance, and little easter eggs here and there, but it’s still a strong story and you won’t be lost.
I hope you found something to read in this post! Check out my other 5 Top Recs posts. Piper recommended a horror book that might take your fancy. If you’re looking for more TV, Film and Book recs for the spooky season then these might be for you: Check out this a little spooky and a little gay TV and Films post on my blog, also the Youtube version recommending books similar. If you’re more of a gamer or enjoy watching gaming livestreams, have a look at my Favourite Spooky Video Games post. I’d also recommend checking out my review on Cemetery Boys, a great combination of mystery and supernatural plot points. If you’re more of a true crime person, I have a list of my favourite True Crime YouTubers and Podcasts. And finally, films for Halloween lovers who don’t like scary movies.
If you have any burning recommendations for any kind of Spooky Media, please drop them in the comments!
Don’t forget to check out Aisling’s blog where you can find more posts on book and movie recommendations and reviews. But also more content like mental health, eco-friendly living, music, and tonnes more.