5 Books to Get you in the Halloween Spirit

Books are very special in that they can perfectly encapsulate a specific feeling, mood and seasonal setting, so by reading different books you can get in certain moods. We’ve picked a selection of books perfect for this time of year to get you in the Halloween spirit no matter what that means to you--spooked, cozy, reminiscent, etc, we’ve got it. 

  1. 1. Classically Scary: The Shining by Stephen King

    I'm sure we’ve all heard of Stephen King’s horror story, The Shining, but have any of us actually read the infamous book? If you truly want to be spooked, this is the book to read. It’s about the main character Jack Torrance and his family, who runs a hotel in its off-season. As you can imagine it would in an empty hotel in a remote location, spookiness ensues. To make the experience of reading this book extra spooky, turn out all the lights (except, of course, that one that lets you see your book) and let the sounds of an empty house be the background noise for your reading.

  2. 2. Witches, Vampires, and More: A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness

    This novel is on the more fantastical side of Halloween, where witches and vampires and demons come out at night. It’s like an adult version of Halloweentown where unlikely bonds must be formed in order to prevent information from getting in the wrong hands. After the main character accidentally stumbles across a magic, alchemical writing, she finds herself at the center of an ancient power struggle. Read this book if you’re in the mood for some Halloween-esque fantasy containing all your favorite mythical creatures you used to dress up as when trick-or-treating as a child.

  3. 3. Magic, Circuses, and Duels: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

    This book is a whimsical tale about a mysterious circus, star-crossed lovers, and a magical competition. The book’s beauty comes from the way it’s written; the prose reads as if it’s a spell, emphasizing the essence of the novel. It’s best to read this book not knowing much about it because it’s like being right there with the main characters, Celia and Marco, who are also unaware of the twistedness of the events that will decide their fate. 

  4. 4. A Cozy Suspense Story: A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro

    If you are not a fan of scary stories or anything too unnerving, but still want something suspenseful, this is a great book to read during this season. It’s mysterious, but also comforting because it’s still very much a character-based story. It is a retelling of Sherlock Holmes, where the main characters are the descendants of Sherlock and Watson from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s classic novels, who attend boarding school together. In this first book in this series, the main characters, Charlotte Holmes and Jamie Watson are being framed for murder and they have to unravel a mystery in order to clear their names. A perfect read for fans of an adventurous mystery.  

    ** trigger warning: some talk of rape and substance abuse**

  5. 5. It’s not Halloween/Fall without it: Harry Potter by JK Rowling

    Harry Potter has the most vivid and cozy fall and Halloween scenes that make you feel as if you’re right there in the Great Hall, having a feast at the Gryffindor table. JK Rowling perfectly captures the spirit of the season: rainy weather, cozy fireplaces, spooky ghosts, etc.; so that even here in SLO, where the weather remains a consistent 75-80 degrees, we can feel like we’re cozied up next to the fireplace, listening to the rain patter against our windows. 

Check out these books this spooky season. Let us know what you think about these selections in the comments down below!