Exceptional literature can introduce us to many surprising
things: Unforgettable plot twists, passionate romances, or amusing beasts that
feel real within our imaginations. But meticulously articulated novels can also
keep us up all night, chill us to the bone, and can also scare the living
daylights out of us. While some people refrain from indulging in scary stories,
other readers live for horror; they find mini-adrenaline rushes and
skin-crawling scenes irresistible.
The horror genre gained popularity in the 1960s, thanks to a few extremely successful and amazing books that morphed into the novels we see and read now. Horror reads are marked by gory, unsettling, and menacing scenes that invoke a psychological reaction in the reader. Horror books have been part of the literary world for years, but it seems like horror in all its mediums has been on the upswing lately. Maybe people now realize just how satisfying it is to settle into a scary story. To help you embark on your bone-chilling journey, we’ve put together a list of the best horror books of all time; scroll down to know more!
The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
Haunting house pops in your head instantly when you think
about clichés in horror fiction; an idea done so many times is an unintentional
parody. However, Shirley Jackson is not an ordinary writer, and she takes the
concept of the haunted house and perfects it. The Haunting of Hill House is by
far the best-haunted house story ever written. The scares come not just from
the malicious actions of a house that seems sentient and angry but from the
claustrophobia one experience from the novel’s unreliable narrator, Eleanor.
Whose descent into a whirlwind of madness is slow and excruciating and only
begins after a reader have been lulled into a false sense of security by the
seeming relatability of her early persona.
The Bad Seed by William March
The Bad Seed, published in 1954, is an instant bestseller
and finalist of the National Book Award. It’s eerily plausible and a wholly
distressing portrait of a seemingly naïve and innocent little girl named Rhoda,
who always seems to be at the centre of terrible accidents. Her mother’s
realization that Rhoda may be the cause of ongoing ‘accidents’ and her
potential hand in that sits at the novel’s controversial and unsettling centre.
The Bad Seed unsparingly builds towards its shocking climax in a way that few
other similar novels have matched.
It by Stephen King
Nobody can discuss ‘horror’ without mentioning Stephen
Kings’ contribution to the genre. “It” is a popular horror book, and it’s about
seven adults returning to their hometown to face an evil they first discovered
as teenagers. An uncertain, shape-shifting terror they call “It”. If you’ve
read other Stephen King novels, the town of Derry, you’d know how Maine appears
again and again, but it all began with “It.” If you want to invest your time in
some monster of a book, then “It” is that one book that you’d refuse to put
down, it is a must-read, terrifying masterpiece.