...And so continues our Halloween roundup, with more seriously scary books for junior to teen and young adult readers. For picturebooks through to early reader and dyslexia friendly, see pt. 1. And don't forget, if you're feeling brave we're hosting Halloween story readings on Oct 31st from 4pm, with selected stories and poems suitable 7+yrs.
Through the Woods by Emily Carroll
A collection of chilling short stories in graphic novel format, Through the Woods draws heavily on the more macabre elements of fairytales. The illustrations by are vivid, shocking and a perfect match for the writing. You won't have seen anything quite like it.
Lockwood & Co. series by Jonathan Stroud
Set in an alternative Victorian London, plagued by an epidemic of hauntings, the Lockwood books are dark and funny adventure stories. The third book in the series, The Hollow Boy, reveals a great deal more about boy detective Lockwood and his relationships with his partners, Lucy and George, as they face their toughest case yet.
Tales of Terror books by Chris Priestley
These books (which by no means need to be read in order) consist of original, beautifully crafted short horror stories set within longer narratives. In Uncle Montague's Tales of Terror, a child narrator pays a visit to his mysterious uncle Montague, drawn to his curious peculiar and terrifying stories. Each has a ring of truth about them, but still they must only be stories, musn't they? Otherwise how could Uncle Montague know such things?
Carmilla by Sheridan Le Fanu
This is a classic but much underrated vampire story that pre-dates Dracula, and it's my hot tip for a genuinely spooky and well written slice of gothic fiction (also, at less than 100 pages, it's short and sweet!) The narrator, a young girl, lives with her father in a remote Swiss castle amid peaceful surroundings, until a stranger's coach crashes nearby and they take in a mysterious young girl. Carmilla is about the same age as our narrator, remarkably beautiful and charming. The pair become best of friends. But then a series of mysterious deaths start to plague the neighbouring village. Yep.
And of course, when you're ready for them, the exquisite tales of Edgar Allen Poe, the obsession of M.R. James and the downright wierdness of H. P. Lovecraft await. Happy screaming! I mean, reading...