It’s that time of year again when witches are flying, ghosts are haunting, pumpkins are carved, and trick-or-treaters are anxiously waiting to grab their candy. In celebration of Halloween, we’d like to highlight some YA books with scary themes. It’s hard for me to believe that so many people love to read scary books, but horror, thrillers, and suspense are incredibly popular genres. As horror master Stephen King once said, “I recognize terror as the finest emotion… and so I will try to terrorize the reader. But if I cannot terrify him/her, I will try to horrify; and if I cannot horrify, I’ll go for the gross-out.” So here are quotes from books that like King, terrorize, horrify and maybe even gross out:
But these weren’t the kind of monsters that had tentacles and rotting skin, the kind a seven-year-old might be able to wrap his mind around–they were monsters with human faces, in crisp uniforms, marching in lockstep, so banal you don’t recognize them for what they are until it’s too late.
“Anna Dressed in Blood” by Kendare Blake:
I’ve seen most of what
there is to be afraid of in this world, and to tell you the truth,
the worst of them are the ones that make you afraid in the
light. The things that your eyes see plainly and can’t forget
are worse than huddled black figures left to the imagination.
Imagination has a poor memory; it slinks away and goes
blurry. Eyes remember for much longer.
“The Monstrumologist” by Rick Yancey:
There are times when fear is not our enemy. There are times when fear is our truest, sometimes only, friend.
“Fiendish” by Brenna Yovanoff:
But what Davenport had been born into had taken so much from her, leaving her with just the wickedest and the worst. Her father had given her life, and then taken every scrap of joy or freedom, and even now that he was dead, all he had left her with was a deep, abiding hatred for what she was.
“Rot and Ruin” by Jonathan Maberry:
They held each other and wept as the night closed its fist around their tiny shelter, and the world below them seethed with killers both living and dead.
“Asylum” by Madeleine Roux:
It was a house for those who could not take care of themselves, for those who heard voices, who had strange thoughts and did strange things. The house was meant to keep them in. Once they came, they never left.