Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature/meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is Top Ten Books to Read for Halloween. I’m at a bit of a disadvantage with this topic, because I really don’t like horror or creepy books as a general rule, but there are some seasonal books I enjoy at this time of year. I’ve put them in age order from child to adult; otherwise, they’re not ranked.
The Grey King,
the fourth in Susan Cooper’s Dark is Rising quintet, takes place in October; the action culminates “On the day of the dead, when the year too dies…
” — in other words, Halloween. A wonderful late MG/early YA fantasy, but you should probably read at least The Dark is Rising
Elizabeth Marie Pope’s The Perilous Gard, a YA historical novel set in Tudor England, loosely adapts the story of Tam Lin. It also takes place in the months leading up to All Hallows Eve. Atmospheric and suspenseful, with just the right touch of magic and romance.
A Discovery of Witches
begins in September and goes through All Saints Day. (In fact, there’s a real-time re-read going on right now on Deborah Harkness’s Facebook page.) With its combination of witches, vampires, daemons, conspiracies, alchemy, and magic, it’s a perfect Halloween read. (review)
Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None
strands 10 strangers on an island. As one after another dies, the remaining suspects and the reader are left wondering who the murderer is — and if anyone will get off the island alive. Not exactly a Halloween story, but more than creepy enough to qualify. Christie’s Hallowe’en Party,
on the other hand, involves a murder which takes place literally at a Halloween event.
Finally, to make it a Halloween-appropriate baker’s dozen, I’ll throw in
Lisa Van Allen’s 2013 novel (which is neither scary nor creepy) doesn’t fit the typical ‘Halloween book’ mold; it’s neither scary nor creepy, and there are no murders. There is, briefly, a ghost; there is something that may or may not be magic; and the whole thing takes place against the backdrop of Tarrytown (yes, Irving’s Tarrytown) around Halloween. Besides, it’s a wonderful novel. (review)