The haunting season is upon us, making this is the perfect time to pick up something spooky to read! And we’ve got just the thing to scare your socks off. Whether you’re looking for something genuinely chilling or something a little bit tamer, we have all the horror you could ask for wrapped up in this one little blog post. So read on, get scared and don’t forget to pick up the book of your nightmares this Halloween.
Aliens: Bloodlines by Philip Kennedy Johnson & Salvador Larroca
(Marvel, 9781302926144, p/b, £14.99)
The Aliens are back and this time Marvel is taking the helm! Writer Philip Kennedy Johnson brings us an achingly bitter and terrifying tale in Bloodlines. With Salvador Larroca as artist to bring this story to impossible, unnerving life there isn’t much more you could ask for with the return of our Xenomorph friends. A traumatised father fights tooth and nail against the bleak apathy of space to save his son from the fate that almost took his own life. No one is safe. No one is innocent. And no one can hear you scream.
A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night by Ana Lily Amirpour
(Behemoth, 9781732299269, p/b, £8.99)
Next on our list is the graphic novel adaptation of the critically acclaimed “A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night”. Written by the original screenwriter and director, Ana Lily Amirpour brings exactly the same stylised, moody and disconcerting dread to the page as she did the screen. In Bad City, an Iranian ghost town and a bastion of depravity and hopelessness, a vampire named The Girl stalks the town’s most unsavory inhabitants. Lonely Autumn evenings were made for sequestering yourself away with dark stories like this one.
The Cursed Carnival and Other Calamities by Rick Riordan et al
(Rick Riordan Presents, 9781368070836, h/b, £14.99)
For younger readers (ages 8-12) and the kids at heart, we have an anthology including some of the best children’s authors of today writing original spooky tales for the season. These bookish behemoths have all used characters from their popular ‘Rick Riordan Presents’ titles in these stories. Once again writing from an own-voices perspective about characters of Indian, Korean or African descent among many other international cultures. But an all-new, all-original character will appear in Rick Riordan’s own submission to the collection. Who will it be? You’ll have to read and find out!
The Dark Horse Book of Horror by Mike Richardson et al
(Dark Horse Comics, 9781506728643, p/b, £20.99)
Another anthology, but for the classic horror-loving crowd this time. Dark Horse has collected stories from all over it’s archives that cover wicked witchcraft, ghastly ghosts, and the risen dead! These pitch-black tales come from comic masterminds like Mike Mignola, Evan Dorkin, Jill Thompson, Gary Gianni, Robert E. Howard and more. Now available for the first time in paperback, these haunting shorts have lost none of their spine-tingling genius with time so be prepared to scream.
Extra Salty: Jennifer’s Body by Frederick Blichert
(ECW Press, 9781770415898, h/b, £10.95)
I don’t know about you but Jennifer’s Body is one of my favorite Horror-Comedies. It’s right up there next to “Tucker and Dale vs. The Forces of Evil” and “Cabin in the Woods”. To celebrate the current JB renaissance we’re witnessing, ECW Press have brought out an amazing breakdown of the flick. Inside, Blichert discusses why Jennifer’s Body is so much more than people first assumed, how the movie was set up for failure and chronicles its comeback in the wake of shifting attitudes toward women, abuse, queer love, and female friendship.
Realm of the Damned by Alec Worley
(Werewolf Press, 9781527275966, p/b, £19.99)
The notorious Realm of the Damned trilogy is collected here in a single blood-soaked grimoire. This series is a guts-and-gore retelling of multiple horror icons through the ages. And takes us from the early 15th century to the series’ own apocalyptic conclusion. With witty one-liners and the kind of kill-shots that could make you lose your lunch this is an amazing series to pick up if you like to take your European history a little more vampire-filled.
Tell Me I’m Worthless by Alison Rumfitt
(Cipher Press, 9781838390020, p/b, £19.99)
Tell Me I’m Worthless is a book that everyone in the office is obsessed with and everyone on the internet seems to be raving about. A uniquely British Haunted-House story that discusses the social and mental horrors of modern society through a main cast of queer, trans and female characters. It’s not all metaphysical in here though, there’s a fair amount of gore and spooks and Alison Rumfitt keeps you in an oppressive sense of danger throughout the read. Like a lot of the other books on this list, it comes with some trigger warnings but this one does go out of it’s way to get really twisted. So keep that in mind if you pick it up.
Red Room: The Antisocial Network by Ed Piskor
(Fantagraphics, 9781683964681, p/b, £15.99)
That said, nothing tops outlandish gore like Red Room. This splatterpunk, cyber-crime dystopian graphic novel explores the world of dark web snuff creators. This first volume contains interconnected stories peeling back the skin on the ugliest parts of humanity. Ed Piskor explores the innerworkings of the killers, the victims and the organisers of this livestream murder business in amazing detail making you question everything. Who’s to blame? Who’s truly blameless? Who would read this?
The Evil Dead: 40th Anniversary Edition by Mark Verheiden
(Dark Horse, 9781506727745, p/b, £15.99)
Another horror movie staple people have been talking about lately is Evil Dead. 2021 marks the 40th anniversary of this giant and this exciting expansion on the film is the ultimate fan item to celebrate with. Relive Ash’s first visit to the cabin and experience again finding the Book of the Dead, discovering the deranged deadites and the possession of his girlfriend and friends. The most major of bummers that truly turned ‘the perfect place to get laid’ into a house of fear and fury. Including unexpected extra scenes, amazing stills and a new afterword from Mark Verheiden, this is a great piece of cinema history.
Dracula: Son of the Dragon by Mark Sable & Salgood Sam
(Dark Horse Comics, 9781506724423, p/b, £16.99)
Sink your teeth in to this blood-soaked epic of the real-life Vlad the Impaler’s transformation into the vampire Dracula. If you’re horror nerd heart is craving a little more actual nerdery look no further than this part historical-fiction part horror-fantasy graphic novel brought to you by Mark Sable. The gloomy and atmospheric illustrations will whisk you away to a scarier bleaker time, and the story will hook you there for days.
That brings us to the end of our Halloween recommendations for the year and we really crammed a lot of greatness in to this post. If all of that can’t keep you busy for the rest of the spooky season, I don’t know what will. If you’re looking for something a little bit less horror heavy though, take a look at our other blog posts for the month. Our Book of the Month, Graphic Novel of the Month and Black History Month New Releases are all live now. And please leave a comment with any great horror titles you’ve been reading.