Being an inseparable part of literature, the horror genre has gained a much wider fan base over the years. People who are always searching for something thrilling and spine-chilling in books very much prefer reading horror books for their satisfaction.
The progress in the field of literature has provided the writers of the different genres a much wider scope and platform to showcase their talent and impress the readers with their amazing talent. The genre is not just concerned with paranormal elements and supernatural powers but its aim is to provide the audience with something terrifying and frightening to read.
The horror genre that has been in existent since the time literature started flourishing is much demanded and trending area of writing that has attracted a large number of readers. Those who love to watch horror movies also happen to love reading or listening to the horror stories.
People who are a big fan of this genre are always looking for some great books to read that will scare the bejesus out of them. So especially for you, we have made a list of a number of books written on the horror genre that will not let you sleep at night.
Read These Best Horror Books To Get The Actual Chills:
1. The Institute
The recently published horror novel by Stephen King has created much of a buzz since its release. Published in the year 2019, the book is a science-fiction horror that is considered as a classic just like Firestarter, another great work by Stephen King.
The story of the book follows the life of six supernaturally gifted children who are locked into ‘The Institute’, the harrowing facility. Since ‘It’, The Institute is the most terrifying story by Stephen King about the kids confronting evil. The New York Times number one bestseller will give you chills meanwhile providing a riveting story.
2. House of Leaves
House of Leaves written by Mark Z. Danielewski tops almost every horror book list. The book is considered to be one of the most terrifying and frightening tales ever written that will definitely keep you awake at night. The famous novel will tangle you into your own perception of the book as you start reading it.
The debut novel by the American author Mark Z. Danielewski has been translated into numerous languages. The unique typographical structure of the book House of Leaves makes it impossible to read it twice the same way.
The story of the book revolves around a young family who moves to Ash Tree. Soon they realize something is seriously going wrong and they felt that their house is bigger in the inside than it is on the outside. Read the book to know more exciting details about the story.
3. The Haunting of Hill House
The Haunting of Hill House written by Shirley Jackson is considered as her one of the best works. It has also inspired the works of greatest writers such as Stephen King and Neil Gaiman. Now a popular Netflix series, The Haunting of Hill House is rather seen as a cliche story but there should be another word for it and that is classic.
The spine chilling story about the power of fear revolves Elenor as a central character who decided to spend the summer in a mysteries hill house, joining her are two others and all of them begin their darkest journey with the house as the story moves forward.
4. We Need to Talk About Kevin
We Need to Talk About Kevin written by Lionel Shriver is one of the thrilling books that you will ever find in the horror genre. The story of the book revolves around the life of a boy who is apparently a serial killer. The little boy has killed seven of his class fellow, a friendly teacher, and a cafeteria worker.
His mother Eva who never wanted to have children and certainly not a serial killer as her child is terrified of her son’s horrific rampage. She doubts herself and her absent husband Franklyn for his behavior and thinks that it is a result of her own shortcomings. Now explore the story of how this mother handles everything and what more harm does Kevin causes.
5. The Girl Next Door
The horror genre is not just associated with the paranormal activity but it is about providing a spine-chilling story that you will not be able to forget for days. The Girl Next Door is another horrifying and chilling tale on the list that will give you goosebumps every time you read it.
The terrifying story of a girl who is held hostage and tortured by the neighbor children. Creepy enough, the book is based on a true story and shows us what people are really capable of. Written by Jack Ketchum, the book was published in the year 1989.
6. Carrion Comfort
Carrion Comfort written by Dan Simmons is another scary tale on the list that has stolen the peace of many minds. The story revolves around a man who believes that many catastrophes that happen in the world are a result of a secret society of powerful beings.
It follows various groups of people who are gifted with an ability that lets them have the psychic power to control others and force them to do certain things. And each time, these people with the ability to get someone murdered by their puppets, their power increases. Dive into this tale of power and horror that will give you an unforgettable experience of reading horror.
7. Exquisite Corpse
Exquisite Corpse by Poppy Z. Brite is considered as the author’s most famous novel, the story of which follows the life of two serial killers. These two serial killers initially try to kill each other but then end up being each other’s partner in crime (literally) and there starts the story of horrific violence and lust.
The duo of killers then begins their journey of kidnapping, torture of a gay man named Tran. The story is not just terrifying but it is equally cringe-worthy and will give you a hair-raising experience.
8. Hell House
In the horror genre, most of the people are fans of Stephen King but Stephen King himself is a fan of Hell House. In his own words, “Hell House is the scariest haunted house novel ever written. It looms over the rest the way the mountains loom over the foothills.”
Written by Richard Matheson, the book was published in the year 1971. The plot and storyline of the movie have also inspired many filmmakers who attempted its theatre adaption and tried to do them justice with the book with their screenplay.
The book deals with the afterlife experience and a haunted house. When the physicist, Lionel Berret, and his colleagues investigate the Belasco house they get to know exactly why it is referred to as a hell house.
9. The Ruins
The Ruins is another thrilling horror novel on the list that will make you curl your toes. The book was written in the year 2006 by Scott Smith and just two years later the book was converted into a movie of the same name. The American author chose the survival horror genre to write in where the protagonists or the main leads do everything they can to survive till the end of the story.
The theme of the book is set in Mexico and it will introduce a scary story of a group of friends and their survival in the Mexican Jungle. These people get trapped in the jungle and then face the horrors that follow it.
10. Something Wicked Comes This Way
Something Wicked Comes This Way is written by Ray Bradbury and it was published in the year 1962. Stephen King has called this dark fantasy novel, the best work of Ray Bradbury. The book will introduce with a traveling carnival who gets to the home of two thirteen years olds in their nightmarish experience.
The two best friends called Jim Nightshade and William Halloway explore the dark mystery that comes along with the Cooger and Dark’s Pandemonium Show comes to their town Illinois one week before Halloween.
11. Pet Sematary
It would be unfair to not add more Stephen King novels in the horror books list. The author has dedicated his entire career to write horror and thriller novels. Pet Sematary is considered one of his best works, which is soon going to be a major motion picture.
The book was first published in the year 1983 and it received the World Fantasy Award for Best Novel in 1986. The Guardian has called the book ‘So beautifully paced that you cannot help but be pulled in’. The book is about a man named Dr. Creed who recently found a house to move in with his family.
He felt everything is safe but behind his house goes a road, and when you follow the road you get to the Pet Sematary, a place where the children bury their pets. The place that looked sad but safe soon creates terror and will make your toes curl.
12. The Silence of the Lambs
The Silence of the Lambs is a horror novel written by Thomas Harris that is rather called a psychological thriller because of the way it plays with your head. The novel that was written in the year 1988 is said to be the sequel of his novel Red Dragon that was released in the year 1981.
The book is about a serial killer who is on a killing spree. The killer is capturing and captivating women then letting them starve for a long amount of time then will finally skin them. An investigation officer who is assigned this case takes the help of an imprisoned psychopath who with the help of his insights invites the investigation officer into his head and reveals some dark past of her life in exchange for the information about the serial killer.
The horror genre can definitely make your toes curl, with the haunted houses, dark places, mysteries, paranormal creatures and simply the silence around. Many talented writers have showcased their talents in this genre and presented with some really brilliant books. The books that will give you a spine chilling experience.
That’s the thing about horror books sometimes you don’t want to put them down for a minute and sometimes you just can pick it up due to the terror but always you enjoy them. The above-given books were some of the best books written in this genre, though there must be other equally good horror books available that you have known or read.
If you know any such best horror books please let us know about it in the comment section below. Also, we would love to receive your feedback on this one.