1. Thin Air by Michelle Paver

In 1935, five Englishmen set off from Darjeeling with one goal in mind: to climb Kangchenjunga, the third highest peak on earth. But they are plagued by memories of a similar, failed expedition, and haunted by what walks in the dark at the peak’s sacred summit.

A chilling, gripping ghost story that will keep you reading long past your bedtime, beware of reading this book when alone in the house.

2. The Woman in Black by Susan Hill

Solicitor Arthur Kipps travels to the small village of Crythin Gifford in order to deal with the affairs left behind by his deceased client, Alice Drablow. When he arrives at her isolated house, he discovers a story of terrible tragedy – and soon realises that he is not alone.

The story that inspired a (brilliant) play and a (terrible) film is best told in book form. This book will have you jumping at the smallest noises and glancing out of your window to see if anything waits out there in the dark. Not to be read if you have a rocking chair in your home…

3. The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson

Four people arrive at Hill House to take part in an experiment conducted by occult scholar Dr Montague in order to find solid proof of psychic phenomena. What could go wrong?

An oldie but a goodie, this book plays on the question of whether the supernatural events taking place in the house are because of ghosts, or because of the characters’ active imaginations. You decide, at your own peril…

4. Bird Box by Josh Malerman

Malorie lives with her two young children. For the past four years, whenever she ventures outside she must do so blindfolded. If she catches a glimpse of what’s out there, it will mean disaster for both her and her children.

Not a ghost story but still a truly frightening book to enjoy this Halloween. We never find out what lurks behind the blacked-out windows, and that only makes the book more terrifying. Use your imagination to fill in the gaps.

5. The Witches by Stacey Schiff

In Salem, 1692, witchcraft hysteria spread with such fierce intensity that, within a year, 19 people were hanged for the crime of being a witch.

If non-fiction is more your style, this is a great book to settle down as we approach October 31. Schiff examines the causes and consequences of this infamous example of mass hysteria with impeccable attention to detail. Perhaps you’ll learn that truth is scarier than fiction.

6. Wolf Winter by Cecelia Ekback

Two young sisters find a dead man near to their home on isolated Blackåsen Mountain. They say he was killed by a wolf, but what wolf makes wounds so cleanly?

This novel is bursting with atmosphere, with the Nordic setting adding another layer to this chilling, suspenseful tale. You’ll find yourself feeling cold even if the sun is shining outside.

7. The Watchers by Neil Spring

Robert Wildling is forced to return to his hometown, nicknamed The Broad Haven Triangle, to investigate strange sightings by the locals. In so doing, he must confront the secrets of his own past.

A unique story based on true events, with a stunning conclusion and an unpredictable plot, this is for those who like their Halloween stories to be a little more otherworldly. Fans of Netflix series Stranger Things will especially enjoy it.

8. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

After a horrific family tragedy, 16-year-old Jacob travels to a remote island off the coast of Wales with his father. There he will discover a house in ruins that appears abandoned, but is anything but…

A more light-hearted Halloween read, Riggs’s combination of text with genuine Victorian photographs makes for an original and intriguing read that will make you glad to learn that this is the first book in a trilogy.

9. The Taxidermist’s Daughter by Kate Mosse

In 1912, Sussex, a woman’s corpse is found in the village churchyard. The dead woman awakens unpleasant memories for Connie, and she discovers she may hold the key to discovering the murderer.

This book is perfect for this time of year. The story builds up to a thrilling conclusion as a devastating flood sweeps through the village and Connie fights to piece the clues together before it’s too late. Not for those with weak stomachs.

10. Ghost by Louise Welsh

This collection of 100 ghost stories features short stories from Edgar Allan Poe, Mary Shelley, William Faulkner, Bram Stoker, H.P. Lovecraft, Kate Atkinson, Hilary Mantel, Angela Carter, Stephen King and many more.

Don’t have time to read an entire book this Halloween season? Dip into these easy-read short stories. With haunted houses, tales of cannibals, mysterious counts and restless souls, you’re sure to find something to send a shiver down your spine.