So there was a thing on Goodreads that made me feel a little excluded. This thing was hard to avoid seeing because they placed a big, ugly banner atop the website that was hard to miss. This thing was a link to their list of the Hottest Books of Summer. This list was anything but lukewarm for me, at best, because it excluded many genres and seemed a wee bit uninspired. I put out a snarky little tweet on Twitter to voice my frustration and Toni the Reader agreed that we should create our own epic list of books that showcased our horror love so here we are!
Well. the horror people came through! A giant thanks go out to the best read horror readers in the Twitterverse for making it possible to create this list that will enable us to spend all of our money and have a summer filled with horrorific goodness! The person(s) who recommended each title will be listed next to the the author name. This list would not exist without their input. Go follow these folks, if you don't already, because they know their stuff. Just click on any @link or author name to jump over to Twitter.
The "rules" were loose, simply list a book that will be released on/before summer ends, one you're hoping to read this summer or one you feel others should read this summer that you loved, or do both! New and old releases were included.
Click on any cover to learn more about the book at Goodreads where you can find all the buy links.. And I know you're going to want to buy a few!
I tried to list the books in the order of receipt and also tried to keep multiple author works together but I got real tired near the middle. If I missed your recommendation or screwed up anything, please know it wasn't intentional and let me know in the comments and I'll fix it Twitter makes it very hard to see everything and my eyes are very bleary right now.
Here they are! All the books horror fans think you should all be reading this summer! Which ones will you be reading?
KIN BY KEALAN PATRICK BURKE (@paperbacksnpugs, @sjgomzi)
"In the spirit of such iconic horror classics as The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Deliverance, Kin begins at the end and studies the possible aftermath for the survivors of such traumas upon their return to the real world — the guilt, the grief, the thirst for revenge — and sets them on an unthinkable journey... back into the heart of darkness."
SOUR CANDY BY KEALAN PATRICK BURKE ( @tonithereader, @sjgomzi, @barkbknonsense)
" a stomach-twisting ride through the depths of horror, breathing new life into an often-stagnant part of the genre" - Publishers Weekly, starred review."
BLANKY BY KEALAN PATRICK BURKE (@sjgomzi, @barkbknonsense)
"In the wake of his infant daughter's tragic death, Steve Brannigan is struggling to keep himself together. Estranged from his wife, who refuses to be inside the house where the unthinkable happened, and unable to work, he seeks solace in an endless parade of old sitcoms and a bottle of bourbon. Until one night he hears a sound from his daughter's old room . . ."
THE TENT BY KEALAN PATRICK BURKE (@freeman_ac)
"Hocking Hills, Ohio is an oasis for campers, hikers, nature enthusiasts, and for those who just want to get away and lose themselves in the wild. And as long as you follow your guide's advice and stay within the permitted areas, you can expect to survive the night. Because deep within the dark woods, something insidious awaits, something few have ever seen, something ancient, unknowable, and insatiable. If you go down to these woods today, you won't live to see the sunrise..."
THE EXORCIST BY WILLIAM PETER BLATTY (@Tonithereader)
"Four decades after it first shook the nation, then the world, William Peter Blatty's thrilling masterwork of faith and demonic possession returns in an even more powerful form. Raw and profane, shocking and blood-chilling, it remains a modern parable of good and evil and perhaps the most terrifying novel ever written."
THEY FEED by JASON PARENT (@barkbknonsense)
"The campgrounds are full tonight, and the creatures are starving. Before the night is over, they will feed. "
THE HUNGER by ALMA KATSU (@MotherHorror)
"Evil is invisible, and it is everywhere. Tamsen Donner must be a witch. That is the only way to explain the series of misfortunes that have plagued the wagon train known as the Donner Party. Depleted rations, bitter quarrels, and the mysterious death of a little boy have driven the pioneers to the brink of madness. They cannot escape the feeling that someone--or something--is stalking them."
THE OUTSIDER by STEPHEN KING (@MotherHorror, @barkbknonsense)
"An unspeakable crime. A confounding investigation. At a time when the King brand has never been stronger, he has delivered one of his most unsettling and compulsively readable stories."
BAD MAN by DATHAN AUERBACH (@MotherHorror)
"Reddit horror sensation Dathan Auerbach delivers a devilishly dark novel about a young boy who goes missing, and the brother who won't stop looking for him."
BEDDING OF BOYS by Edward Lorn (@MotherHorror)
"Regina Corsi is a monster, the vilest of predators. Her desire for young boys is only matched by the bloodlust that overcomes her once the sex is finished. But she’s grown hasty in her hunting. And only a special friend can keep her disturbing appetites a secret."
FOE by IAIN REID (@MotherHorror, @BookishMommy, @boxermommyreads)
"Told in Reid’s sharp and evocative style, Foe examines the nature of domestic relationships, self-determination, and what it means to be (or not to be) a person. An eerily entrancing page-turner, it churns with unease and suspense from the first words to its shocking finale."
THE SIREN AND THE SPECTER by JONATHAN JANZ (@MotherHorror)
"When David Caine, a celebrated skeptic of the supernatural, is invited by an old friend to spend a month in “the most haunted house in Virginia,” he believes the case will be like any other. But the Alexander House is different. Built by a 1700s land baron to contain the madness and depravity of his eldest son, the house is plagued by shadows of the past and the lingering taint of bloodshed. David is haunted, as well. For twenty-two years ago, he turned away the woman he loved, and she took her life in sorrow. And David suspects she’s followed him to the Alexander House. "
UNBURY CAROL by JOSH MALERMAN (@Gows33, @MotherHorror)
"Carol Evers is a woman with a dark secret. She has died many times . . . but her many deaths are not final."
WESTLAKE SOUL by RIO YOUERS (@charrlygirl)
"Westlake is in a permanent vegetative state. He can’t move, has no response to stimuli, and can only communicate with Hub, the faithful family dog. And like all superheroes, Westlake has an archenemy: Dr. Quietus—a nightmarish embodiment of Death itself."
HALCYON by RIO YOUERS (@BookDen, @BookHappy08)
"HALCYON is the answer for all Americans who want to escape, but paradise isn't what it seems."
COLD IN JULY by JOE LANSDALE ((@charrlygirl)
"Richard Dane shoots and kills a gun-wielding burglar in his living room. It's clearly a case of self-defense, but the dead man’s father, Ben Russel, doesn't see it that way. Russel wants to extract Old Testament-style justice: an eye-for-an-eye, a son-for-a-son. Straightforward menace takes a 90-degree turn, though, when certain unexpected truths come to light, and soon Dane and Russel find themselves working together for a common cause. Their investigation puts them at odds with the cops, the Feds, and the Dixie Mafia, but they’re determined to find the answers that lie at the end of a very dark and twisting path."
CHILLS by MARY SANGIOVANNI (ScifiandScary)
"It begins with a freak snowstorm in May. Hit hardest is the rural town of Colby, Connecticut. Schools and businesses are closed, powerlines are down, and police detective Jack Glazier has found a body in the snow. It appears to be the victim of a bizarre ritual murder. It won't be the last. As the snow piles up, so do the sacrifices. Cut off from the rest of the world, Glazier teams up with an occult crime specialist to uncover a secret society hiding in their midst."
BEHIND THE DOOR by MARY SANGIOVANNI (@charrlygirl)
"Some doors should never be opened . . . In the rural town of Zarepath, deep in the woods on the border of New Jersey and Pennsylvania, stands the Door. No one knows where it came from, and no one knows where it leads. For generations, folks have come to the Door seeking solace or forgiveness. They deliver a handwritten letter asking for some emotional burden to be lifted, sealed with a mixture of wax and their own blood, and slide it beneath the Door. Three days later, their wish is answered—for better or worse. "
DANDELION WINE by RAY BRADBURY(@charrlygirl)
"The summer of '28 was a vintage season for a growing boy. A summer of green apple trees, mowed lawns, and new sneakers. Of half-burnt firecrackers, of gathering dandelions, of Grandma's belly-busting dinner. It was a summer of sorrows and marvels and gold-fuzzed bees. A magical, timeless summer in the life of a twelve-year-old boy named Douglas Spaulding—remembered forever by the incomparable Ray Bradbury."
THE MOORE HOUSE by TONY TREMBLAY (@charrlygirl)
No blurbs yet but it looks to be a most excellent haunted house novel!
THE FISHERMAN by JOHN LANGAN (@charrlygirl, @sjgomzi)
"It’s a tale of dark pacts, of long-buried secrets, and of a mysterious figure known as Der Fisher: the Fisherman. It will bring Abe and Dan face to face with all that they have lost, and with the price they must pay to regain it."
LET'S GO PLAY AT THE ADAMS by Mendal W. Johnson (@charrlygirl & @barkbknonsense
"Surely, it was only a game. In the orderly, pleasant world Barbara inhabited, nice children -- and they were nice children -- didn't hold an adult captive."
DEVIL SHARKS by CHRIS JAMESON (@BookDen)
"A pleasure cruise in Paradise leads to a group of friends to a shark-infested Hell... "
DEATH HEAD VALLEY by DAVID CHARLESWORTH (@paperbacksnpugs)
"DEATH HEAD VALLEY is unabashedly written to feel like a novelization of an Eighties-esque slasher movie that was never made. The kills come thick and fast and will leave you reeling. This is extreme horror and not for the faint hearted. "
EXPERIMENTAL FILM by GEMMA FILES (@paperbacksnpugs)
"Experimental Film mixes painful character detail with a creeping aura of dread to produce a fictionalized "memoir" designed to play on its readers' narrative expectations and pack an existentialist punch."
DEATH OBSESSED by ROBERT ESSIG (@paperbacksnpugs)
"Remember those old VHS tapes with labels that said “banned in 40 countries” and “not for the faint of heart,” with titles like Faces of Death and Mondo Violence? Well, they’re back, only this time it’s a book. This book. Death Obsessed is Faces of Death with an identity crisis. Get ready for something mondo macabre! "
11/22/63 by STEPHEN KING (@paperbacksnpugs, @barkbknonsense)
"Finding himself in warmhearted Jodie, Texas, Jake begins a new life. But all turns in the road lead to a troubled loner named Lee Harvey Oswald. The course of history is about to be rewritten...and become heart-stoppingly suspenseful."
THE NIGHTMARE ROOM by CHRISTOPHER SORENSEN (@paperbacksnpugs, @Gows33 , & @barkbknonsense, @MrsRobEnglish)
"A boy in a basement, a man in a booth and a darkness that threatens to swallow them both..."
THE LORDS OF SALEM by ROB ZOMBIE (@paperbacksnpugs)
"From the singular mind of horror maestro Rob Zombie comes a chilling plunge into a nightmare world where evil runs in the blood..."
FROSTBITTEN by STEVE STREDULINKSY (@paperbacksnpugs)
"12 Hymns of Misery." Scheduled for release on July 1, 2018.
JAWS 2 by HANK SEARLS (@paperbacksnpugs)
"It's four years since the Long Island resort of Amity was terrorized by the monster killer shark... the nightmare story that thrilled the world as JAWS. — Out in the deep water there's a new and even more terrible predator from the ocean depths... — The female of the Great White Shark is even larger than the male. — Ravenously hungry, the death-dealing monster slices through the blue water towards the beaches of Amity..."
HE DIGS A WHOLE by DANGER SLATER (@paperbacksnpugs)
"Get a job. Get married. Buy a house. Cut off your hands and replace them with gardening tools. Dig a hole. Can you hear the worms calling? Keep digging."
UNHEIMLICH MANOEUVRE by TRACY FAHEY (@paperbacksnpugs)
"The Unheimlich Manoeuvre is a collection of short stories based around ideas of the domestic uncanny – the Unheimlich. The stories in this collection don’t fall into the conventional ‘haunted house’ bracket, but explore the psychological horror that occurs when home is subverted as a place of safety, when it becomes surreal, changes, and even disappears…"
GOD BOMB by KIT GONZO (@paperbacksnpugs)
"Somebody wants answers. North Devon, England. 1995. A born-again revival meeting in a public building. The usual mix of the faithful, the curious, and the desperate. And one other – an atheist suicide bomber. He's angry. He wants answers. And if God doesn't come and talk to him personally, he's going to kill everyone in the building.."
ENDLESS NIGHT by RICHARD LAYMON (@paperbacksnpugs)
"Jody is pretty tough for a sixteen-year-old girl. That's the only reason she's still alive - for now. She was sleeping over at her friend Evelyn's house when a group of killers broke in and tried to slaughter everyone. She saw Evelyn spitted on a spear, but Jody managed to escape, along with Evelyn's little brother, Andy. — Simon was one of the killers that gruesome night. His friends have left it up to him to find the only living witnesses to their massacre. Or else they'll butcher his family next. But Simon has his own reasons for wanting to get his hands on Jody..."
VIDEO NIGHT by ADAM CESARE (@paperbacksnpugs)
"Who knows more about fighting a monster invasion than a group of teenage horror fans?"
ENTROPY IN BLOOM by JEREMY R. JOHNSON (@Gows33)
"For more than a decade, Jeremy Robert Johnson has been bubbling under the surface of both literary and genre fiction. His short stories present a brilliantly dark and audaciously weird realm where cosmic nightmares collide with all-too-human characters and apocalypses of all shapes and sizes loom ominously."
MIND WRECK by JZ FOSTER (@Gows33 & @barkbknonsense)
"Has anyone ever told you how special you are? How great you could be at anything if you just put your mind to it? They were lying. There are people, Shadows, who really can do anything. They walk like gods among us, speaking with the dead and tearing their enemies apart with a simple thought. Some live unchained by death, and others live without the shroud covering what tomorrow brings. "
THE WICKED ONE by JZ FOSTER (@sjgomzi)
"You know, the best thing about nightmares is that they're not real. It's all just in your head, and as soon as you wake up, pop!It's all gone. You're safe.It's not like they could crawl out, creeping from your mind with long, slender fingers and milky yellow eyes sunken into heads with pointed horns bursting out.That'd just be insane."
THE CABIN AT THE END OF THE WORLD by PAUL TREMBLAY (@Gows33)
"The Bram Stoker Award-winning author of A Head Full of Ghosts adds an inventive twist to the home invasion horror story in a heart-palpitating novel of psychological suspense that recalls Stephen King’s Misery, Ruth Ware’s In a Dark, Dark Wood, and Jack Ketchum’s cult hit The Girl Next Door."
KILL CREEK by SCOTT THOMAS @Gows33, @barkbknonsense, @sjgomzi
"At the end of a dark prairie road, nearly forgotten in the Kansas countryside, lies the Finch House. For years it has perched empty, abandoned, and overgrown--but soon the door will be opened for the first time in many decades. But something waits, lurking in the shadows, anxious to meet its new guests. "
BROKEN SHELLS by MICHAEL PATRICK HICKS @Gows33
"When Antoine steps foot on Dangle’s car lot, it is with the hope of easy money. Instead, he finds himself trapped in a deep, dark hole, buried alive. If he is going to survive the nightmare ahead of him, if he has any chance of seeing his wife and child again, Antoine will have to do more than merely hope. He will have to fight his way back to the surface, and pray that Jon Dangle’s secrets do not kill him first. "
SHARKWATER BEACH by TIM MEYER @freeman_ac
"Beneath the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico, the biggest predator on the planet hunts, craving the flesh and blood of every creature it can sink its teeth into. Detective Jill McCourty receives a phone call from her old college professor when a mangled body washes up on the shores of Sharkwater Beach. Together they must discover what stalks the waters around the private island and stop it before it reaches the mainland. But how do you stop something so enormous, something so unique that it may have existed in another time? "
PRESSURE by BRIAN KEENE @freeman_ac
"Off the coast of tropical Mauritius, an ecological catastrophe with global implications is occurring. The ocean's floor is collapsing at a rapid rate. World-champion free diver and marine biologist Carrie Anderson joins a scientific expedition determined to discover the cause-and how to stop it. But what they uncover is even more horrific. Deep beneath the surface, something is awake. Something hungry. Something...cold. Now, the pressure builds as Carrie and her colleagues must contend with the murderous operatives of a corrupt corporation, an unnatural disaster that grows bigger by the day, and a monstrous predator that may spell the extinction of all mankind."
DREAM WOODS by PATRICK LACEY @freeman_ac, @barkbknonsense
"Follow your screams… When Vince Carter takes a shortcut to work he notices a billboard that nearly sends him into an oncoming van. The ad is for Dream Woods, New England’s answer to Disney World. It closed decades ago, but now that it’s back in business, Vince is eager to take his whole family, hoping the magic he remembers will save his failing marriage. "
BLOCKADE BILLY by STEPHEN KING @freeman_ac
"Even the most die-hard baseball fans don't know the true story of William “Blockade Billy” Blakely. He may have been the greatest player the game has ever seen, but today no one remembers his name. He was the first--and only--player to have his existence completely removed from the record books. Every effort was made to erase any evidence that William Blakely played professional baseball, and with good reason. Blockade Billy had a secret darker than any pill or injection that might cause a scandal in sports today. His secret was much, much worse... and only Stephen King, the most gifted storyteller of our age, can reveal the truth to the world, once and for all."
CHILDREN OF THE DARK by JONATHAN JANZ @freeman_ac
"Will Burgess is used to hard knocks. Abandoned by his father, son of a drug-addicted mother, and charged with raising his six-year-old sister, Will has far more to worry about than most high school freshmen. To make matters worse, Mia Samuels, the girl of Will’s dreams, is dating his worst enemy, the most sadistic upperclassman at Shadeland High. Will’s troubles, however, are just beginning."
EXORCIST FALLS by JONATHAN JANZ @sjgomzi
"This volume brings together the original novella that started it all—Exorcist Road—and an all-new full-length novel (Exorcist Falls) for a shattering experience in supernatural terror."
SIPHON by A.A. Medina @freeman_ac
". . .a workplace accident ushers in a bizarre, but empowering experience that evokes a new sense of self, forcing repressed memories to surface while encouraging him to pursue his fantasies with unconventional methods. "
NIGHT OF THE LIVING DUMMY by R.L. Stine @freeman_ac
"When twins Lindy and Kris find a ventriloquist's dummy in a Dumpster, Lindy decides to "rescue" it, and she names it Slappy. But Kris is green with envy. It's not fair. Why does Lindy get to have all the fun and all the attention? Kris decides to get a dummy of her own. She'll show Lindy. Then weird things begin to happen. Nasty things. Evil things. It can't be the dummy causing all the trouble, Can it?"
THE SHELL COLLECTOR by CHRISTOPHER GOLDEN @freeman_ac
"Out lobstering, Richie sees something nightmarish in the surf one day, catches a bare glimpse of it beneath the surface. He doesn't dare speak of it for fear of what others might say-he doesn't want to become the town crazy. But he's having a hard time sleeping at night, and several days later, while out hauling in his traps for the winter, Richie finds one of them stuck on something. When he finally hauls it up, there's a corpse attached, a corpse that has been eaten at by sea creatures, including something large . . ."
PROVIDENCE by CAROLINE KEPNAS @MotherHorror, @freeman_ac, @barkbknonsense
"A propulsive new thriller about the obsessive nature of love when an intensifying relationship between best friends is disrupted by a kidnapping."
CRUELTY by EDWARD LORN @sjgomzi
"On a lonely stretch of deserted Texas highway, Will Longmire breaks down. But he's not alone. In the dead of night, Innis Blake hits someone - or something - with her car. The figure should not be getting up. But it is. An unstoppable force is after Will and Innis. And before the night is over, both strangers will know the face of Cruelty. Forgiveness is only a few miles down the road, but safety is nowhere in sight. Every monster has its origins."
WIDOW'S POINT by RICHARD CHIZMAR @sjgomzi
"“This is a bad place. I don't think people are meant to live here.”"
N0S4R2 by JOE HILL @IainMacCallum2
"NOS4A2 is a spine-tingling novel of supernatural suspense from master of horror Joe Hill, the New York Times bestselling author of Heart-Shaped Box and Horns."
THE NECROMANCER'S HOUSE by CHRISTOPHER BUEHLMAN @IainMacCallum2
"Christopher Buehlman’s new novel—one of uncommon horrors hiding behind the walls of the house next door…"
THE LESSER DEAD by CHRISTOPHER BUEHLMAN @IainMacCallum2, @barkbknonsense
"The secret is, vampires are real and I am one.The secret is, I’m stealing from you what is most truly yours and I’m not sorry—"
THE SUICIDE MOTOR CLUB by CHRISTOPHER BUEHLMAN @boxermommyreads
"a chilling and thrilling tale of dark evil lurking on the lonely, open road..."
NIGHTWISE by ROD BELCHER @iainMacCallum2
"The acclaimed author of The Six-Gun Tarot and The Shotgun Arcana launches a gritty new urban fantasy series set in today’s seedy occult underworld"
MANDIBLES by JEFF STRAND @scifiandScary
"Fire ants. Even when they're normal sized, they're horrible, wretched insects whose sting causes burning pain. But these ants are far from normal. And the city of Tampa, Florida has become infested with the oversized creatures."
BEST HORROR OF THE YEAR, Vol. 10 edited by ELLEN DATLOW @ScifiandScary
"For more than three decades, Ellen Datlow has been at the center of horror. Bringing you the most frightening and terrifying stories, Datlow always has her finger on the pulse of what horror readers crave. Now, with the tenth volume of the series, Datlow is back again to bring you the stories that will keep you up at night."
TAMER ANIMALS by JUSTIN M.WOODWARD @SteveStred
"IT WAS JUST THE WORST NIGHT OF THEIR LIVES
From the moment they arrived, strange noises echoed around them… a sense that they were being watched pervaded the campsite… and that was just the beginning.
BONE WHITE by RONALD MALFI @Truebookaddict & @KealanBurke
"A landscape of frozen darkness punctuated by grim, gray days.The feeling like a buzz in your teeth.
The scrape of bone on bone. . .
SOMETHING BORROWED, SOMETHING BLOOD-SOAKED by CHRIST CARMEN @ErinAlMehairi
"In her debut collection, Christa Carmen combines horror, charm, humor, and social critique to shape thirteen haunting, harrowing narratives of women struggling with both otherworldly and real-world problems."
OBSCURA by JOE HART @losingandrea
"She’s felt it before…the fear of losing control. And it’s happening again. In the near future, an aggressive and terrifying new form of dementia is affecting victims of all ages. The cause is unknown, and the symptoms are disturbing."
CERTAIN DARK THINGS BY SILVIA MORENO-GARCIA (@boxermommyreads)
"Welcome to Mexico City… An Oasis In A Sea Of Vampires…"
RESURRECTION DREAMS BY RICHARD LAYMON (@barksbknonsense) Because no summer is complete without reading the underwater, burnt to a crisp, zombie boob-grabbing scene! You're welcome, haha.
"Recently released from a mental institution, Melvin is acting stranger than ever. His experiments with the dead have progressed and as soon as he can get Vicki - or rather her body - where he wants her, he can realize his most chilling dream of all..."
THE MOOR by SAM HAYSON (@RedLaceKitty)
"It begins with a ghost story around a campfire. Teenagers out on a walking trip, trying to act brave in front of each other. But as the walk gets underway and the boys begin to fall out, odd things start to happen."
WORSHIP ME by CRAIG STEWART (@Barksbknonsense)
"Something is listening to the prayers of St. Paul’s United Church, but it’s not the god they asked for; it’s something much, much older. "So there it is, enough horror goodness to keep you busy all summer long. If you read a book a day you might even be able to read them all before summer ends!