Top Ten Tuesday: Halloween Reads

toptentuesday Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish (click the image to visit them) who pick a different topic each week.

For obvious reasons, this week the topic is: Top Ten Books/Movies To Read Or Watch To Get In The Halloween Spirit OR Top Ten Characters Who I Would Totally Want To Be For Halloween

I decided to go for Top Ten Halloween Reads, and I’ve split it between books I want to read, and books I have read and want to read again or recommend.

Books I Want to Read

1. An English Ghost Story by Kim Newman

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A dysfunctional British nuclear family seek a new life away from the big city in the sleepy Somerset countryside.

At first their new home, The Hollow, seems to embrace them, creating a rare peace and harmony within the family. But when the house turns on them, it seems to know just how to hurt them the most—threatening to destroy them from the inside out.

2. We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson

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Merricat Blackwood lives on the family estate with her sister Constance and her uncle Julian. Not long ago there were seven Blackwoods – until a fatal dose of arsenic found its way into the sugar bowl one terrible night.

Only Merricat can see the danger, and she must act swiftly to keep Constance from his grasp.

3. The Halloween Tree by Ray Bradbury

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A fast-moving, eerie…tale set on Halloween night.

Eight costumed boys running to meet their friend Pipkin at the haunted house outside town encounter instead the huge and cadaverous Mr. Moundshroud. As Pipkin scrambles to join them, he is swept away by a dark Something, and Moundshroud leads the boys on the tail of a kite through time and space to search the past for their friend and the meaning of Halloween.

After witnessing a funeral procession in ancient Egypt, cavemen discovering fire, Druid rites, the persecution of witches in the Dark Ages, and the gargoyles of Notre Dame, they catch up with the elusive Pipkin in the catacombs of Mexico, where each boy gives one year from the end of his life to save Pipkin’s.

4. Roald Dahl’s Book of Ghost Stories by Roald Dahl

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Who better to investigate the literary spirit world than that supreme connoisseur of the unexpected, Roald Dahl?

Of the many permutations of the macabre, Dahl was always especially fascinated by the classic ghost story. For this superbly disquieting collection, he selected fourteen of his favorite tales by such authors as E.F. Benson, Rosemary Timperley, and Edith Wharton.

5. Eating Sarah by Jaret Martens

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Ever since childhood, all Sarah wanted was to participate in the Hunt—a monthly ritual in which her people sneak into a nearby city to gather food. Only in Sarah’s world, that food is human.

After her first Hunt ends in catastrophe, Sarah is forced to prepare their captives for slaughter. While this once would have been an easy task, recent events have caused Sarah to question whether or not she’s still capable of murder. Worse, she finds herself caring for Troy: a captive she knows she will be forced to kill.

But she can’t leave. Doing so would mean the deaths of both Troy and her family. With cannibals turning up dead—and suspicions of mutiny rising—Sarah and her family must be more careful than ever.

Yet there’s something not quite right about her family . . . Something that might just get her killed.

Books I Want to Reread/Recommend

1. Zombies Vs Unicorns

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It’s a question as old as time itself: which is better, the zombie or the unicorn? In this anthology, edited by Holly Black and Justine Larbalestier, strong arguments are made for both sides in the form of short stories.

Half of the stories portray the strengths–for good and evil–of unicorns and half show the good (and really, really bad-ass) side of zombies.

Contributors include many bestselling teen authors, including Cassandra Clare, Libba Bray, Maureen Johnson, Meg Cabot, Scott Westerfeld, and Margo Lanagan.

2. The Crow: The Lazarus Heart by Poppy Z. Brite

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At our human limits, when we’ve gone as far as flesh and imagination can take us, we meet the Eternal One. The Crow.

Immemorially old, and inconsolable, he is there only for those who seek both revenge “and” love, and are willing to go all the way–and beyond.

The Lazarus Heart.

Five, four, three, two … Jared Poe counts the days on Louisiana’s Death Row. The controversial S&M photographer has been condemned to die for killing his lover. He doesn’t know who did it. Only that he didn’t.

Can he clear his name and find the real killer in time?

3. The Gates by John Connolly

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Young Samuel Johnson and his dachshund, Boswell, are trying to show initiative by trick-or-treating a full three days before Halloween which is how they come to witness strange goings-on at 666 Crowley Road.

The Abernathys don’t mean any harm by their flirtation with the underworld, but when they unknowingly call forth Satan himself, they create a gap in the universe. A gap in which a pair of enormous gates is visible. The gates to Hell. And there are some pretty terrifying beings just itching to get out…

Can one small boy defeat evil? Can he harness the power of science, faith, and love to save the world as we know it?

4. The Pool by T.S Rue

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Dying for help…

A moment later Eric surfaced in the middle of the pool. “Ta da!” he said, treading water. “I touched the bottom. Have I made my point? There’s nothing to be scared of.”

The words had hardly left his lips when his eyes widened in alarm. He thrashed wildly towards the side of the pool.

Then he began to scream…

5. Trick or Treat by Richie Tankersley Cusick

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From the author of The Lifeguard comes the exciting suspense novel about Martha.

Not long after Martha moved into the Bedford house, the phone calls began: Trick or treat, Martha. You’re dead. Elizabeth Bedford had been murdered one year earlier, on Halloween night, in the very same room. The murderer was never found, and now the killer is back–for Martha.

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16 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Halloween Reads

  1. Think Im gonna pick up a copy of We have always lived in a castle today, actually- was looking at it in waterstones yesterday. I really want to read some Shirley Jackson and that just sounds intense!

  2. Those recommendations sound really nice. I haven’t read any of these books but have heard great things about We Have Always Lived in the Castle.

  3. OK, sign me up for any or all of your to-read books! A good friend of mine just pushed the Shirley Jackson at me again this week, and I really do want to find time for it. The Kim Newman sounds amazing too!

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