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23 Books That Are Actually Really, Really Scary

These books will surely give you a fright!

We recently asked members of the BuzzFeed Community to tell us their favorite horror book as part of our Page Turners reading club. Here are some of their spooky suggestions:

1. Pet Sematary by Stephen King

Double Day

"Not only is the book about supernatural terror (a cemetery that brings things back to life, but makes them evil? Yeah, no thanks!), but it also takes a huge emotional toll. It really makes you question the lengths you would go to for the ones you love."

fillionfan4002

Get it on Amazon for $8.99+, Barnes & Noble for $13.60+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

2. The House of Leaves by Mark Danielewski

Penguin Random House

"It scared the absolute crap out of me. I'm not one to be startled by things, but at one point while reading this book, I had to turn on all of the lights in my house just to feel OK."

thomash26

Get it on Amazon for $17.56+, Barnes & Noble for $18.15+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

3. You by Caroline Kepnes

Simon and Schuster

"Without a doubt, it's the most unsettling thing I’ve ever read. Mainly because it shows how accessible we make our lives online. It makes me think twice about the information I put on social media, or even give a stranger my name."

ashleyb45117aad8

Get it on Amazon for $12.80+, Barnes & Noble for $10.90+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

4. Bird Box by Josh Malerman

HarperCollins

"This book is super high up on my list of best horror books in terms of creativity, slow burn terror, and ideas that have haunted me for weeks. This story is set in a not-too-distant dystopian future where humankind has resorted to wearing blindfolds 24/7. If a person happens to open their eyes at the wrong time, they'll be faced with a sight so terrifying there is no chance of survival. It’s fast-paced in the way of a mystery/thriller and disturbing in the vein of old-school horror."

bethk4c5b632c0

Get it on Amazon for $14.39+, Barnes & Noble for $15.11+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

5. The Guardian by Nicholas Sparks

Grand Central Publishing

"It's actually scary as shit. I couldn’t read it alone at night."

rebekahd4d938dd7e

Get it on Amazon for $7.99+, Barnes & Noble for $8.99+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

6. Haunted by Chuck Palahniuk

Double Day

"It's an anthology/novel hybrid where a group of aspiring authors isolate themselves in a rundown movie palace, which is supported by an unknown host. The through-line story is spooky, but not horrific. The anthology of the fictional authors' stories, however, contains some incredibly disturbing stuff."

hannahc20

Get it on Amazon for $11.02+, Barnes & Noble for $15.26+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

7. Blood Memory by Greg Iles

Pocket Star

"It's one I could read over and over again and still be completely horrified by it. The book is set between the sleepy antebellum town of Natches, Mississippi and the mysterious city of New Orleans."

abigaeljoyceanderson

Get it on Amazon for $19.84+, Barnes & Noble for $9.99+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

8. The Silent Companions by Laura Purcell

Penguin Random House

"I recently read this book and found myself launched into the gothic world of mystery and otherworldly characters Purcell created. I was unable to put down the book, but I was also afraid to look over my shoulder. I recommend this book to anyone who likes history, ghosts, stunning storytelling, and has an affinity for large, spooky houses."

hhuffines

Get it on Amazon for $6.88+, Barnes & Noble for $14.40+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

9. Naomi's Room by Jonathan Aycliffe

HarperCollins

"This is the only novel (other than Stephen Kings's IT) which has ever legitimately scared me. A man's daughter goes missing and is eventually found dead. At the same time, he and his wife begin experiencing strange things going on in their home. The end takes an abrupt shift for the brutal, but most of the book is chillingly haunting."

kathryno6

Get it on Amazon for $7.99+, Barnes & Noble for $7.99+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

10. Intensity by Dean Koontz

Headline Publishing Group

"This book had me on edge literally within the first couple pages and kept me there the entire time. It's one of those stories that's terrifying because it's totally something that could happen, rather than being paranormal. It's been at least a decade since I read Intensity and I still get creeped out thinking about it."

lighcoris613

Get it on Amazon for $8.99+, Barnes & Noble for $9.44+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

11. The Troop by Nick Cutter

Simon and Schuster

"This book's about some Boy Scouts who are on an island for an overnight camping trip when extremely invasive parasites that cause unrelenting hunger invade the troop. I'm scarred for life. I don't know which is worse — the people who are affected by the parasites or what happens to the ones who aren't."

g33kmom

Get it on Amazon for $13.42+, Barnes & Noble for $15.29+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

12. Cujo by Stephen King

Viking Press

"In the book, you're inside Cujo's mind as the rabies takes over him. You start off in the head of a dog who loves his family, and then you experience in first person his rapid psychological deterioration. When the dog begins slaughtering people, it's both heartbreaking and horrifying, especially as a dog lover. Cujo is my favorite horror book because it's the only one I've never been able to finish."

ccarrlegal

Get it on Amazon for $11.55+, Barnes & Noble for $15.30+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

13. The Dwelling by Susie Moloney

Simon and Schuster

"This book gives me goosebumps every time I read it (and I have read it a few times). The most unnerving part is how the house itself becomes a character with its own malevolent presence."

loolibye

Get it on Amazon for $17.88+, Barnes & Noble for $26.95+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

14. Perfect Days by Raphael Montes

Penguin Books

"The horror in this book isn't in the supernatural, but in the psychopathic perspective of the narrator as he pursues the woman he loves. I read this book in one evening, and when I was done I wanted to throw it across the room. I still think of this story to this day and it chills me."

v45be1af10

Get it on Amazon for $10.87+, Barnes & Noble for $14.40+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

15. Carrion Comfort by Dan Simmons

Dark Harvest

"It's really dark and disturbing — partly because of the general story, but also the disregard for human life and the blunt racism from some of the characters that make you feel uneasy as fuck. But man, it's good."

ihavetwelvepercentofaplan

Get it on Amazon for $22.71+, Barnes & Noble for $23.63+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

16. The Call by Peadar O’Guilin

David Fickling Books

"I am a veteran horror fan and an avid reader of psychological thrillers and true crime, and to this day the one book that has legitimately given me nightmares is this book. It’s an Irish YA novel about a world where everyone at some point between the ages of 13 and 18 is kidnapped. They're then taken to the hellish 'Grey' realm, where they must fight for survival for 24 hours. O’Guilin really makes his readers imagine what it would be like to live with this horrifying fate hanging over you 24/7, and that feeling will crawl under your skin and stay with you for days."

knoelmoore

Get it on Amazon for $9.99+, Barnes & Noble for $9.99+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

17. The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor

Penguin Random House

"I just finished reading this book and adored it. It's spooky and full of twists — it's a really, really good read."

jamber44

Get it on Amazon for $10.57+, Barnes & Noble for $24.30+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

18. Endless Night by Richard Laymon

47 North

"This book was SOOOOOOO disturbing. Every little sound had me jumping out of my skin for a solid week after I read this."

amandarpi

Get it on Amazon for $6.99+, Barnes & Noble for $13.46+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

19. Hostage to the Devil by Malachi Martin

HarperCollins

"The author was a Jesuit priest and a real-life exorcist. I am normally skeptical of the existence of the devil and demons, or anything religious really, but Martin seems very credible and convincing. Years after reading this book, the stories are still vivid in my mind and it still scares the hell out of me."

shinysaruh

Get it on Amazon for $14.44+, Barnes & Noble for $16.19+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

20. Gerald's Game by Stephen King

Viking Press

"It's so genuinely terrifying. It's a slow burn and on more of the psychological side, but it kept me up at night!"

hjw1495

Get it on Amazon for $11.55+, Barnes & Noble for $15.30+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

21. Heart Shaped Box by Joe Hill

William Morrow and Company

"I'm a REALLY tough scare, but I read this on a Sunday morning at a coffee shop, sun shining bright, and I started to wig out. I looked around the coffee shop wondering why everyone was acting so normal and cheery when everything to me seemed scary and dreadful. It was the best reading experience I've had since I was a (much easier to scare) tween."

—Liz Marsh, Facebook

Get it on Amazon for $14.00+, Barnes & Noble for $15.29+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

22. The Passage by Justin Cronin

Ballantine Books

"It’s a post-apocalyptic horror story with mutant vampire monsters. It's the only book that has literally given me nightmares."

kallies4044bd592

Get it on Amazon for $19.99+, Barnes & Noble for $17.01+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

23. And finally, The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris

St. Martin's Press

"It's a terrifying, intimate, and suspenseful thriller. A good book makes me forget time and reality — it takes me to a different place. Every time I re-read this, I'm on the edge of my seat, even though I know how it ends!"

buzz4cha

Get it on Amazon for $7.99+, Barnes & Noble for $8.63+, or a local bookseller through IndieBound here.

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Page Turners is our book group where you get to suggest and choose your own books each month. Join the Facebook group to get in on the discussion, or tell us what you're reading in the comments below!

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