Best Horror Books to Read

For this list of the best horror books, we’ve compiled some of the most renowned authors not only within the genre itself but in literature as a whole. Authors like Mary Shelly and Stephen King. These novels were written between 1818 and 2009. They are dark. They deal with the very worst of human nature. They include murder, violence, and chilling secrets.


By Mary Shelley

Published in 1818, this story written by the incredible Mary Shelley is about Frankenstein and his monster. This novel is a gothic horror story that shows the dangers of science and how society is often the created of its own monsters. The book is about Dr. Frankenstein, a scientist set upon discovering the secret to bestowing life. When his experiment is successful he is horrified at the creature he created. Tormented by the people who see him, the creature turns from innocents to murder. Mary Shelley is a fantastic writer who has broken boundaries by writing in this genre as a women in the 1800’s.


By Bram Stoker

This book, published in 1897 by Bram Stoker, is about the great Count Dracula. This book tells the story of one of the most popular characters of the horror genre. Dracula is a creature of the night that feeds off the blood of the innocent, helpless, and beautiful. Dracula also reflects the age into which his character was born, showing the corrupt desires that are part of the human condition. Bram Stoker will forever be a literary generous for his creature and storytelling ability.

The Shining

By Stephen King

You cannot have a list of horror novels without including at least one on Stephen King’s books. The Shining, purplish in 1977, is about Jack Torrance as he takes a new job at the Overlook Hotel. It’s slow season so he should have time to write and spend time with his family. But things do not go as planned. But only five-year-old Danny Torrance seems to notice that dark, strange and sinister things are happening all around them. Stephen King is one of the most renowned authors in this genre, anyone wishing to read great horror novels should also look at his vast collection, like It, Carrie, The Stand, and others.

World War Z

By Max Brooks

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War was published in 2006 by Max Brooks.  It is the personal accounts of those who survived world war z, the zombie apocalypse that nearly wiped out all of humanity. This collection of stories illustrates the struggle, danger, and horror of being face to face with the destruction of the human race. Max Brooks has put these stories together so that the human factor does not get taken out of history, hopefully keeping history from repeating itself.


By Joe Hill

Ignatius Perrish was born into privilege and led a life of happiness, but when the love of his life is raped and murdered his life spirals. The people around him think he did it and only escaped prison because of his privilege. After a night of drinking, he wakes up with horns on his head. With everyone turning against him all he has left is the devil that seems to be inside. Author Joe Hill published this novel in 2009. It is the dark tale of a man with no choices left and a horrifying murder that needs to be solved.


About the Author

My name is Emerson Rose Craig. I am a creative writing student and aspiring novelist. I love fantasy, historical literature, sci-fi and classic literature but will read whatever I can get my hands on. I also write in all of these genres and more for inspiration does not limit itself and neither will I. If you ask me what my favorite book is I will not answer because picking a favorite book is, to me, like picking a favorite star.