Intro To Horror | My Fave Beginner Scary Books

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New to horror? Here’s my list of top 5 ‘intro to horror’ books. Even if you’re not a horror newbie, I hope you’ll find a new book to read here!

The Shining book/movie comparison video I mentioned:

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Sameer Shakya says:

The Haunting in Hill house is so atmospheric. I was creeped out reading it. Especially that door scene.

Davie Donna says:

The fact that you said Kubrick's brilliant film was just about a haunted hotel made me laugh out loud. Kubrick's film is much more nuanced and open to interpretation than the book, which is good but in a very different way. The book is actually the "shallower" of the two works as its almost entirely about an alcoholic justifying domestic abuse.

Asphyxiadyslexia says:

Great List! I loved the Netflix adaptation of 'Haunting of Hill House', definitely can't wait to read it. Have you ever seen the Shining miniseries that follows the real adaptation of the book?

Bedtime Stories UK says:

Hey! We'd love your opinions over here at Bedtime Stories UK! 🙂 If you love short horror stories then we have original content uploaded at least once a fortnight! That way you get a nice new spooky story, but aren't completely bombarded by notifications. Come join us and settle in fora gruesome collection of tales. And if The Book Was Better wishes to come and join us too, we'd be even more thrilled! 🙂

Diana says:

I just came to say that We have always live in the castle is way better than The Haunting of Hill House.

Jaishree Singh says:

great vid. thanks

Norman Albertson says:

Kudos for finding The Other. I read it years ago but still remember the chills it gave me. Have read all your recommendations except The Elementals. The Little Stranger is a very subtle story. Great list. New subscriber!

Dave Edmunds says:

Great review. I always recommend Night Shift by King as a good introduction to horror. Some excellent short stories in there.

dazey Evans says:

Dark Matter by Michelle Paver. Best ghost story I have ever read [and I have read loads]

Taylor Talks Tales says:

Awesome picks! I've been wanting to read The Elementals for a long time.

Bhavini Pandey, 14 says:

I would like to recommend Frozen Charlotte by Alex Bell…it's so good you must read it …it's so chilling

Donald Scott says:

Nice list; couldn't agree with you more, have thought Michael McDowell was great and VERY underrated since I was reading him back in the 1970s. Glad someone is bringing his work back into print!

John Coffey says:

The scariest books are the ones that challenge you to consider your own mortality. Books like When Breath Becomes Air, How We Die, and The Denial of Death. These are all non fiction and probably not what you meant when you asked for recommendations, but they're all very well written and very moving. I find it more difficult to get through any one of these than anything by the King.

Geraldine Reads says:

Came over here from Rachel's channel! I really liked the Shining! I have to read the Little Stranger, it sounds so good!

Gabriel The Magolor Main says:

Curious if you watched The Haunting of Hill House on Netflix and what you thought. I haven’t read the book. I thought the series was outstanding. I really think a lot of that has to do with how much freedom the writer/director/editor had, because he had so many roles he had so much control. It was like a full vision being realized completely, the editing could have broken the story, but it made it!

I feel you with reading scary books when your child is a baby. I was reading a lot of them and being up in the night that much made me really freaked out. I went on to some others for a while because I realized I was just getting more scared than I normally do! My son was also born super early, at 28 weeks, so the whole first year was really stressful. And horror is usually a way for me to escape whatever’s happening. In a breakup I wouldn’t want to watch a romance movie, horror movies made me feel much better. But maybe at that time, with hormones, w/ the hospital stuff, and then w/ constantly waking up at night and being on minimal sleep, it was too much on my psyche.

read by kate says:

such a good list! it made me so excited to pick some of my fall reads out early!


Subscribed, been reading horror novels for a long-time, check out Bentley Little, i love his books.

Naz al-Ghul says:

Anyone got a recommendation for Werewolves?

Croatz says:

Does anyone know of any good sci fi channels on booktube? Sci fi and horror are the only two genres I read. Great video!

Linda De Pasquale says:

‘Salem’s Lot…loved it! I have to try The Shining. The Elementals sounds great! Very interesting video!

John McDowall says:

GOOD LIST! You should check out 'Burnt Offerings' by Robert Marasco if you haven't already, and I'd also recommend 'The Ritual' which has been Netflixed recently, but obviously the movie is worse than the book, which had some really good true horror in it.

Talking About Games says:

Awesome recommendations, I definitely need to read The Haunting of Hill House one of these days. About The Shining, I think the mini-series did a great job at being closer to the book's storyline; if you have yet to see it, I recommend it.

As to my beginner book recommendations, those would be:

– "Hell House" of course, love the atmosphere and the mystery surrounding it. A group of paranormal investigators try to bite more than they can chew, what's not to love?
– "The Case of Charles Dexter Ward", which is more of a novelette, but features ghastly encounters and obsessive sorcery; it feels somewhat heroic at times, very uncharacteristic of the master of weird-cosmic horror, H.P. Lovecraft.
– Clive Barker's Books of Blood, horrifying, absurd, funny and deviant, it's a really good collection of modern horror in its more raw and undiluted form. Rated R.
– "I am Legend", unlike the film, this survival horror book could be seen as a philosophical study on alienation, a really good take on vampires and their potential threat as a horde.
– "Dracula", the book that started it all for vampires in classic horror; gothic romance at its finest, this one semented the journal-like type of narration in horror fiction.

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