In celebration of Teen Read Week, and to get you in the mood for Halloween, I have some good ghosties to share with you. I've been reading ghost books since I was in High School. Some of the creepiest ghost books I've ever read have to be Anne Rice's "Mayfair Witches" books – featuring vampires, witches, ghosts, and all sorts of bad things that go bump in the night. There's been a resurgence in supernatural YA books, partly attributed to the sensation that Twilight caused, but also, I believe, because a good scare is always in fashion. If you are a casual scary-book reader, these are NOT for you. However, if you like your books to stay with you in your nightmares, dare to read these creepy books!
Dreams of the Dead by Thomas Randall – After her mother dies, Kara and her father move to Japan, where he is teaching at a private school. Kara is befriended by Sakura, an outsider whose sister was brutally murdered. Other students begin to disappear, and Kara is having terrible nightmares… or are they real? The setting in Japan helps create the scary atmosphere in this book, which reminded me a little bit of the movie, The Grudge. That scary woman's face kept popping into my head as I read this one! There's a sequel out, too - Spirits of the Noh.
Miss Peregrine's home for peculiar children by Ransom Riggs – When his grandfather dies and leaves him a strange message, Jacob is compelled to discover the meaning. He ends up in a strange house on the coast of Wales, where he meets some peculiar children. The book is haunted by old black and white photographs that were the inspiration for the story. Creepy both in story and visually, this one would make a good read aloud by candle-light.
The Diviners by Libba Bray- If you are a regular reader of this column, you might have noticed that I am a bit of a Libba Bray fan. There's a reason for that –she is an awesome writer who seems to have an unlimited imagination. This book has one of the scariest ghosts I've encountered in some time. Meet Evie—a brash girl living in NYC in the roaring 20's. She happens to have a particular talent of being able to read objects – including the buckle from a murdered girl's shoe, which helps lead her to Naughty John—a ghost who has become corporeal and is murdering people. There's a whole cast of characters to love , plenty of humor, a great setting, and a nasty, nasty ghost. This is the first in a series, so stay tuned for further adventures with Evie. Check out Libba Bray's website for book trailers and other great info on this book.
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