A few days ago, author and all around awesome fellow, Neil Gaiman, proposed that folks ought to celebrate Hallowe'en by gifting scary stories upon each other. Being a lover of books and creepy tales myself, I thought this was a brilliant idea. You can then understand my elation upon discovering that Neil and his trusty webgoblin and webelf put together this helpful site dedicated to informing the masses about the noble tradition. In honor of this ancient time honored tradition, I present you with my selection of lovely creepy and scary books that would make excellent All Hallow's Read gifts this season.
1.) Anything by H.P. Lovecraft - Quaint, strange, and creepy tales of yesteryear. Now would be an excellent time to introduce your loved ones to the Great Old Ones. Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn!
2) Ancestor by Scott Sigler - Juicy, blood and entrails soaked monstery goodness. This is what happens when genetic engineering goes so very horribly wrong. This is recommended for adults that have a strong stomach, and love some good ol' monster crunching fun.
3) Soulless by Gail Carriger - OK, so this isn't a "scary" book, per se, but it does contain a plethora of werewolves, vampires, and evil mad scientists. Plus, it's brilliantly amusing and dreadfully entertaining. One of the most satisfying books I've read in a long time. I would recommend this for your lady friends and definitely someone of mature persuasions since there is some nookie at the end.
4) Scary Stories to Tell in The Dark by Alvin Schwartz - A creepy and gross collection of scary short stories for the younger audience. This is a set of a stories I enjoyed in my youth. These stories would be good for the young teenager, but probably not for the very young.
5) The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman - A fabulous novel about a boy who is raised by the ghosts of a graveyard. A charming and wonderful read. While there are a few scary parts that might upset the very young, this story works well for all ages. What I love about this book (aside from the excellent story) is that each chapter can stand on its own as a short story which would make it an excellent choice for bedtime reading fun.
6) B.R.P.D. Comic Series by Mike Mignola et al. - Side tales from the Hellboy universe, this series deals with creepy story about the secret agency B.R.P.D. and its occult threats. Recommended for the comic book and Lovecraft mythos lovers.
7) Personal Effects: Dark Art by J.C. Hutchins - A dark and creepy psychological thriller. This is fascinating story about an art therapist for the extreme mentally messed up. His latest patient is seriously creepy with the weirdness creeping into the therapists non-work life. This is recommended for adults who like some mind twisting mayhem.
8) The Gashlycrumb Tinies by Edward Gorey - A lovely, albeit morbid, alphabet book about the unfortunate and unusual misfortunes and maladies of some very dire children. Personally, I loved this book with its humorous, yet fatal, child accidents, and its delightful pen illustrations. However, I was a very odd child, so it's probably best to judge for yourself on whether this would be appropriate for young ones. Still, it's a delightfully Hallowe'enie masterpiece.
9) The Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling - Really, I shouldn't have to explain this one. If one of your friends or family hasn't read these yet, now would be a most excellent time to get them hooked on the series. Expecto Patronum!
10) There's a Zombie In My Treehouse by Ken Plume et al. - A chuckle inducing children's story with a family that meets a mysterious end. What would you do if you suspected that there was a zombie in your treehouse? What would any of us do? We would warn, of course, but do you think that would help? A delightful story with wonderful illustrations by Len Peralta.
And with that, have a very happy and scary story filled All Hallow's Read, everyone!