I don't know about you guys, but summer is definitely not my ideal time of year.
Between the longer days, the hotter weather, the brighter colors, and the general giddiness of the people around me, I just want to crawl back into my crypt and not come out until the first autumn leaf hits the ground. Unfortunately I can't but I have a few suggestions for books that will help keep a chill in your spine.
Dread Nation by Justina Ireland
This alternate history tale imagines that the dead rose up from the battlefield at Gettysburg, resulting in laws that force black, Native American, and mixed-race children to devote themselves to anti-zombie combat. One young woman caught up in this grim reality secretly plans a better life for herself—until she’s caught up in a conspiracy even scarier than the rampaging undead.
One Way by S.J. Morden
A crew of workers—all ex-cons—constructing a new base on Mars start falling victim to deadly “accidents” that don’t quite add up. Can the remaining astronauts (including the savviest among them, a former architect who did time for murder) figure out who’s picking them off before they’re all laid to waste?
Unbury Carol by Josh Malerman
A woman with an odd condition—her many “deaths” over time are actually deep comas from which she eventually awakens—is caught between the two men in her life: her unscrupulous husband and the outlaw who truly loves her. And, of course, she’s also caught between the world of the living and the world of the dead, a place she’s determined to fight her way out of once and for all.
The Atrocities by Jeremy C. Shipp
In this Gothic tale, a governess arrives at her new post only to find that her young student is actually a ghost.
The Hunger by Alma Katsu
Everybody knows about the Donner Party, the real-life wagon train that infamously turned to cannibalism when they were unexpectedly snowed in and their rations ran out. But what if, as this book imagines, there was something supernatural that also played a part in that fateful journey? Something evil, perhaps?
Frankenstein in Baghdad by Ahmed Saadawi
A man in US-occupied Baghdad puzzles together a corpse from body parts he finds in the streets—intending to make a political statement, but accidentally creating a monster that hungers for human flesh. A hit overseas, Saadawi’s book has already won the International Prize for Arabic Fiction and France’s Grand Prize for Fantasy.
Get it here
Haunted Nights, edited by Lisa Morton and Ellen Datlow
For you Halloween fans, this anthology kicks off with 16 new horror tales exploring the most horrifically wonderful time of the year. Authors in the trick-or-treat mix include Seanan McGuire, Jonathan Maberry, Garth Nix, Jeffrey Ford, Brian Evenson, and Stephen Graham Jones.
Strange Weather: Four Short Novels by Joe Hill
The author of The Fireman presents four terrifying tales, exploring such horrors as: a Polaroid camera with supernatural powers; a skydiver who gets trapped by a hostile cloud; a storm that dumps a deluge of deadly glass nails instead of rain; and a near-miss mass shooting in a shopping mall.
The Best of Richard Matheson by Richard Matheson
The hugely influential author, who died in 2013, gets a new “greatest-hits” collection of his iconic short stories, curated by rising horror talent Victor LaValle (The Ballad of Black Tom)
Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant
The author (Mira Grant is a pen name used by the award-winning Seanan McGuire) returns with an aquatic mystery about a ship that vanishes while its crew is filming a mockumentary (or is it?) about ancient mythological sea creatures.
If we missed any other great summer reads, let us know in the comments. Happy scares!