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Rilù
Writer, book blogger, tea drinker, late night snacker.
Professional cryer who spends way too much time online, eating books for breakfast.

Basically, your bookish best bud.

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Spooky Books to Snag When it's Time to (Trick or) Treat Yourself


Spooky season is my favourite time of the year - it goes hand in hand with the Christmas holidays - and even though I wasn't raised on Trick or Treat and scary costumes (the downsides of living in Italy) I was definitely obsessed with anything Tim Burton, vampires, witches and creepy stuff.

I've been introduced to the spooky world pretty early on, mainly through movies like Edward Scissorhands or Dracula so it was no surprise to anyone when I became obsessed with Buffy during my teen years. From there, it was a constant research of the creepy, the spooky, the paranormal - the fact that I have a family of ghost-seers and clairvoyants somewhat clarifies my case.

Even now, as I'm getting older, I can't help by being drawn by those dark, moody novels that often take place is haunted mansions and creepy woods, I live for it and if you're the same, if you wait all year in anticipation for October then I think this is the kind of post that has your name written all over it.

Night's Creatures.

Starting off with some good old blood-suckers, there are so many spin-offs and retellings of the world-wide known Dracula, so if you're a fan of that old-style vampire vibe then *Dracula's Child by J.S.Barnes is the one for you. 
It follows Jonathan and Mina Harker - yes, those from the OG story - and their son as they return to England and try to live ordinary lives but shadows keep following them, a new evil is arising. I am so excited about his one and if you're into longer books then you're in for a (trick or) treat!

But if you're more of a doomed love story person, one that takes place in a remote school where things are a bit creepy and secrets are at the heart of the story then you need to read Evernight by Claudia Gray. It's an old one and it gets spookier as you get to book four but vampire romance and a bit of forbidden love? Sign me up!

Witches

I love books about witches. I love spooky spells and that general feeling of belonging somewhere special: a forest, a house with dark walls and candles, a coven. When it comes to witches, there's this sort of sense of integration, secrets, community that really excites me and this is why I was immediately drawn by Spellbook of the Lost and Found in the first place. The way Moira Fowley-Doyle narrates these mystical events is so fun and kinda creepy but in a good way. It's about friendships and things that get lost and secrets not meant to be found and the past that knocks on the door in the form of an ancient spellbook.

But if you're all about secrets and family and weird, mysterious characters then The Graces by Laure Eve is what you're looking for. I've read it in one day - to be fair, I didn't have Internet connection that day, so that's probably why! - and I'm waiting for the best time to read the sequel. It's about River, a lonely girl who is obsessed with the Graces, a family of witches and she'll do everything to be a part of them, to finally belong.

And then, if you still want to read about witches but in a more folkloristic way, *The Virago Book of Witches is a perfect read. It includes stories about witches all over Europe, their many forms and legends. This book is a celebration of all these women, powerful, angry, fun. Plus, a stunning cover is the perfect wrapping for what's inside!

Ghosts

Since watching The Haunting of Bly Manor, I've been itching to read more books about ghosts. Now, I love being spooked but there's a fine line between spooked and scared that I really don't want to cross. Speaking of Bly Manor, why don't you go ahead and have a binge of both The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson and The Turn of the Screw by Henry James! If you loved both seasons then you might want to read the books too!

I haven't read many ghost stories, mainly because I believe in them (ghost-seers/clairvoyants family, remember?) so I really don't want to go push anyone's buttons here. But after I got sent *The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton a few months back, I keep looking at it - and its gorgeous cover! - and somehow I never pick it up. It's a chilling collection of stories about ghosts where Wharton dives into the hauntings, the supernatural, the creepy.
They are pretty old so you can count on that old-school factor that never goes out of style.

The Classics 

Obviously, no spooky list is complete without some good classics. As much as I love my retellings and modern creepy reads, I think there's something pure and unreachable that only a good old classic can give you. 
Starting off with two of my favourites: Frankenstein by Mary Shelley and Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
When I first read Frankenstein back in High School, I couldn't believe the craft Mary Shelley has woven so perfectly, especially as a new novelist and a woman at her time. I was so enamoured by how the events of her life led her to write this glorious masterpiece, full of hurt, anger and sadness. Mary Shelley was so ahead of time, her story is yes a classic but also so modern and relatable to our current society that is kinda scary to think about. 
And then Wuthering Heights with its moody vibe, the darkness, the passion, the love between Cathy and Heathcliff even though very rough and for some people wrong and abusive, is so full of heart and desire and drama that it's easy to understand why I love it so much.

But if you're on a mystery/spooky hunt then Dracula by Bram Stoker is a good bet for you, followed by Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier for the ghost-in-the-mansion kinda feels.

Spooky 

We're almost at the end of this very long post but how could I leave you without some more spooky books to add to your TBR? These books don't fit in any of the previous categories, they're outsiders and as such, even spookier than all of those we've already talked about. 

Starting off with my favourite read of 2019: *The Devouring Gray by Christine Lynn Herman. Oh boy. If I had to pick one book out of this list to read for the rest of my life, I think it would be this one. It has those small-town secrets, scary legends, dark woods that hide something sinister and powerful, angsty teens with a love for trouble. It is such a fun ride! 

Another one I really loved and got my brain twisted and confused and my heart palpitation on high, it's *Other Words for Smoke by Sarah Maria Griffin. It has secrets and an awl inside a wall, a very weird aunt, a talking cat and a house that is a character on its own. Creepy and wonderful, it's a book to get lost into. 

Two new additions to my creepy shelf are *The Ghost Tree by Christina Henry and *Bone Harvest by James Brogden. Both mysterious and intriguing, both spooky af! Think about dark secrets, shadows, monsters dragging human remains through the woods, weird symbols on the wall drawn in blood, these books have it all! 
They're more on the horror side without being too scary, keeping that creepy feeling that keeps you from sleeping at night but after all, you're here for a reason, aren't you?



*this post contains gifted books but all opinions are my own.

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