Best Scary Books for Teens

‘Tis the season… for ghosts, zombies, vampires, and more. For October, we have some great scary books on display in the Teen Scene! Here’s a list if you want to read more about them (or request one online if the one you want is checked out.)

World War Z by Max BrooksCoraline by Neil GaimanName of the Star by Maureen JohnsonUnwind by Neil ShustermanHold Me Closer, Necromancer by Lish McBrideThe Monstrumologist by Rick Yancey

  • The Demon Catchers of Milan by Kat Beyer
    After surviving being possessed by a demon, sixteen-year-old Mia leaves her family in New York to stay with cousins in Milan, Italy, where she must study her family’s heritage of demon catching in order to stay alive.
  • Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake
    For three years, seventeen-year-old Cas Lowood has carried on his father’s work of dispatching the murderous dead, traveling with his kitchen-witch mother and their spirit-sniffing cat, but everything changes when he meets Anna, a girl unlike any ghost he has faced before. (First in a series.)
  • The Diviners by Libba Bray
    Seventeen-year-old Evie O’Neill is thrilled when she is exiled from small-town Ohio to New York City in 1926, even when a rash of occult-based murders thrusts Evie and her uncle, curator of The Museum of American Folklore, Superstition, and the Occult, into the thick of the investigation.
  • World War Z by Max Brooks
    An account of the decade-long conflict between humankind and hordes of the predatory undead is told from the perspective of dozens of survivors who describe in their own words the epic human battle for survival.
  • Tenderness by Robert Cormier
    A psychological thriller told from the points of view of a teenage serial killer and the runaway girl who falls in love with him.
  • Coraline by Neil Gaiman
    Looking for excitement, Coraline ventures through a mysterious door into a world that is similar, yet disturbingly different from her own,
    where she must challenge a gruesome entity in order to save herself, her parents, and the souls of three others.
  • All the Lovely Bad Ones by Mary Downing Hahn
    While spending the summer at their grandmother’s Vermont inn, two prankster siblings awaken young ghosts from the inn’s distant past who refuse to “rest in peace.”
  • Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl
    In a small South Carolina town, where it seems little has changed since the Civil War, sixteen-year-old Ethan is powerfully drawn to Lena, a new classmate with whom he shares a psychic connection and whose family hides a dark secret that may be revealed on her sixteenth birthday.(First in a series.)
  • The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
    Dr. Montague, an occult scholar, and his team–Theodora, his assistant; Eleanor, a fragile young woman with a close acquaintance with the paranormal; and Luke, the future heir of Hill House–conduct an unusual research project in a reputedly haunted house.
  • The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson
    Rory, of Boueuxlieu, Louisiana, is spending a year at a London boarding school when she witnesses a murder by a Jack the Ripper copycat and becomes involved with the very unusual investigation. (First of a trilogy.)
  • The Walking Dead: Book One by Robert Kirkman
    Police officer Rick Grimes and a few human survivors battle hordes of decomposing zombies.(First of a series.)
  • Carrie by Stephen King
    A sixteen-year-old misfit, denied everything by her fanatical mother and abused by her classmates, unleashes her terrifying telekinetic powers on an entire town.
  • Hold Me Closer, Necromancer by Lish McBride
    Sam LaCroix, a Seattle fast-food worker and college dropout, discovers that he is a necromancer, part of a world of harbingers, werewolves, satyrs, and one particular necromancer who sees Sam as a threat to his lucrative business of raising the dead.
  • Rot & Ruin by Jonathan Maberry
    In a post-apocalyptic world where fences and border patrols guard the few people left from the zombies that have overtaken civilization, fifteen-year-old Benny Imura is finally convinced that he must follow in his older brother’s footsteps and become a bounty hunter. (First of a trilogy.)
  • The Haunting by Joan Lowery Nixon
    When her mother inherits an old plantation house in the Louisiana countryside, fifteen-year-old Lia seeks to rid it of the evil spirit that haunts it.
  • Dead is the New Black by Marlene Perez
    While dealing with her first boyfriend and suddenly being pressed into service as a substitute cheerleader, seventeen-year-old Daisy Giordano, daughter and sister of psychics but herself a “normal,” attempts to help her mother discover who is behind a series of bizarre attacks on teenage girls in their little town of Nightshade, California.(First of a series.)
  • Tales of Mystery and Imagination by Edgar Allen Poe
    Edgar Allan Poe, “the father of the detective story” and a master of horror, is one of the greatest American short story writers. In these stories we meet people struggling with fear, revenge, mental illness and death. Which of them will win–and which will lose–their battles?
  • Daybreak by Brian Ralph
    Told through the perspectives of a silent observer, a one-armed companion guides the reader through a post-apocalyptic world with a zombie-infested landscape.
  • Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, collected by Alvin Schwartz
    Stories of ghosts and witches, “jump” stories, scary songs, and modern-day scary stories.
  • Lord Loss by Darren Shan
    Presumably the only witness to the horrific and bloody murder of his entire family, a teenage boy must outwit not only the mental health professionals determined to cure his delusion, but also the demonic forces only he can see. (First in the Demonata series.)
  • Unwind by Neil Shusterman
    In a future world where those between the ages of thirteen and eighteen can have their lives “unwound” and their body parts harvested for use by others, three teens go to extreme lengths to uphold their beliefs–and, perhaps, save their own lives. (First of a trilogy.)
  • Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
    A monster has been loosed upon the world–superhumanly strong, inhumanly vicious. Its inventor knows he must find and destroy it – halt its career of terror and murder! But as Victor Frankenstein, the mad scientist, pursues his monster through the night, he hears the echo of its fearsome voice: “You are my creator, but I am your master. Obey!”
  • The Marbury Lens by Andrew Smith
    After being kidnapped and barely escaping, sixteen-year-old Jack goes to London with his best friend Connor, where someone gives him a pair of glasses that send him to an alternate universe where war is raging, he is responsible for the survival of two younger boys, and Connor is trying to kill them all.
  • Dracula by Bram Stoker
    Presents the tale of a bizarre Carpathian count who drinks human blood to stay alive, and the Englishman who knows his secret.
  • The Monstrumologist, edited by Rick Yancey
    In 1888, twelve-year-old Will Henry chronicles his apprenticeship with Dr. Warthrop, a New Escientist who hunts and studies real-life monsters, as they discover and attempt to destroy a pod of Anthropophagi.
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