When Halloween is right around the corner, it’s easy to slip into the spooky spirit and figure out the best mystery novels to pick up. Sure, we could revisit one of those classic mystery novels — rereading pretty much any of Stephen King’s books is good for a thrill — but there’s nothing quite like diving into a new mystery that you haven’t read before and uncovering all of its twists and turns along the way.
So before you start decorating your house for Halloween and breaking out all the creepy arts and crafts, check out one of these spooky-good mystery novels first. You just might run across some classic mystery books you’ve never heard of, a new favorite series from a favorite author, or another story that you simply can’t put down until the very end.
Looking for a murder mystery? Or maybe a paranormal thriller? Or perhaps a tale of suspense and secrets that will have you on the edge of your seat? Authors like James Patterson, Sue Grafton, and Teresa Driscoll have you covered with some of the best books to read for Halloween. And when you’ve been sufficiently spooked out of your mind and find yourself scared to turn off the lights before bed, you can always put all your energy toward DIY Halloween decorations or tasty Halloween treats that will leave your family and friends in awe.
Now, are you ready to sit down next to the cozy fireplace, kick your feet up, and start reading some of the top mystery novels? We know we are! But no matter what novel you pick, we highly recommend that you lock all the doors and windows in your house before you start reading. After all, you wouldn’t want the wind blowing too hard upstairs right as you get to the part where the creeper is walking inside the protagonist’s home, would you? That might just be a little too spooky — even for us.
Scroll below to find the best Halloween books, and then click on the link below your favorite one to purchase it.
Jo Furniss, 'All The Little Children'
All the Little Children by Jo Furniss
When Marlene Greene takes her three kids into the woods for a camping trip, she thinks they're in for a relaxing weekend away from it all. But soon, things take a turn for the worse as it seems like civilization has started to fall apart back home. A lost little boy finds them, and it isn't long before even more kids wandering through the woods end up in Marlene's care. When the time comes, Marlene will have to decide whether she should try to protect all the kids in her care or abandon them in favor of protecting her own children.
Purchase the Book: All the Little Children ($10.99, Amazon)
Shirley Jackson, 'The Haunting Of Hill House'
The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
There's something creepy and strange going on at Hill House, and Dr. Montague, an occult scholar, is determined to find the answer behind this mystery. The doctor starts to look into the building's secrets with the help of a special trio: his assistant, Theodora; the heir of Hill House, Luke; and Eleanor, a girl who has experience with ghosts. But little does he know that the house is actually much more dangerous than he ever could've imagined.
Purchase the Book: The Haunting of Hill House ($10.87, Amazon)
Sue Grafton, 'Y is for Yesterday'
Y Is for Yesterday by Sue Grafton
The second to last in Sue Grafton's alphabet series sees the character Kinsey Millhone revisiting a disturbing 10-year-old crime in which four teenage boys sexually assaulted one of their fellow classmates. After serving his sentence for the crime, Fritz McCabe receives a mysterious tape in the mail: a copy of the attack, which the boys had filmed. When the sender demands a ransom, Fritz's parents ask Kinsey for her help. But as she keeps an eye on Fritz, she soon realizes that she's not the only one being haunted by the past.
Purchase the Book: Y Is for Yesterday ($12.78, Amazon)
Geoffrey Girard, 'Project Cain' & 'Cain's Blood'
The Project Cain Series by Geoffrey Girard
True-crime fans and serial killer aficionados will get swept into the thrill of the Project Cain series, in which America's worst killers have been cloned. When the clones escape, they must be tracked down before they can wreak havoc once more. Black Ops soldier Shawn Castillo is on the case, but it's not a job he can take on alone. Instead, he has to find a way to work with a 15-year-old coming to grips with the fact that he's no ordinary boy — he's the DNA duplicate of Jeffrey Dahmer. Read the story from Jeffrey's perspective in Project Cain, or Castillo's perspective in Cain's Blood.
Purchase Project Cain: Project Cain ($12.09, Amazon)
Purchase Cain's Blood: Cain's Blood ($14.80, Amazon)
Susan Hill, 'The Woman In Black'
The Woman in Black by Susan Hill
If you didn't get the chance to see the movie starring Daniel Radcliffe, you missed out on one great film. But the good news is that this classic ghost story reads just as well on paper. Things don't go according to plan when Arthur Kipps ventures to Crythin Gifford, a faraway town in the salt marshes, to settle the affairs of his client, the late Mrs. Alice Drablow. Before Arthur realizes what's happening, he starts to feel like he's being haunted at the estate.
Purchase the Book: The Woman in Black ($11.48, Amazon)
Teresa Driscoll, 'I Am Watching You'
I Am Watching You by Teresa Driscoll
Ella Longfield thinks nothing of hearing two young men flirting with teenagers on her train — until she finds out the men are recently released convicts. But at the last minute, she decides not to intervene. Soon after, Ella finds out that one of the girls went missing, and she realizes that she might know more than she orginally thought she did. Before long, she starts receiving threatening letters and fears for her own safety and life. Ella soon finds out that she isn't the only one keeping secrets.
Purchase the Book: I Am Watching You ($10.97, Amazon)
Emily Bleeker, 'Working Fire'
Working Fire by Emily Bleeker
Paramedic Ellie Brown returns to her hometown of Broadlands, Illinois, after her father has a stroke. Together, she and her sister begin to take care of their ailing dad. But when Ellie is sent on a call in her ambulance to her sister's house, a whole new family emergency suddenly presents itself. With her sister and brother-in-law shot, Ellie must try to uncover how they became victims, and if there's anything more to the home invasion that injured them. As her sister clings on in critical condition, Ellie finds out some dark revelations about her family's past.
Purchase the Book: Working Fire ($10.99, Amazon)
Taylor Adams, 'No Exit'
No Exit by Taylor Adams
College student Darby is trying to get home to tend to her sick mother when she finds herself stranded in the middle of an awful blizzard. Luckily, she's not alone when she takes shelter at a roadside rest stop in the middle of nowhere; four other people have also stopped there for the night. But when she discovers that one of her fellow travelers has a kidnapped young girl and she's trapped in their car, she has to find a way to help — without letting on that she knows the child is there.
Purchase the Book: No Exit ($26.99, Amazon)
J.D. Robb, 'Secrets In Death'
Secrets in Death: An Eve Dallas Novel by J.D. Robb
Professional gossip Larinda Mars made her money with secrets — both the ones she shared with the press and the ones she filed away to use as blackmail later. She focused on rich and prominent people, finding out what they wanted to keep private and using it against them. But when Larinda is murdered, Lt. Eve Dallas finds herself wading through all those sordid secrets to try to figure out who is responsible for the gossip queen's death... and she's uncovering a lot more than she bargained for.
Purchase the Book: Secrets in Death ($13.22, Amazon)
James Patterson, 'Private: #1 Suspect'
Private: #1 Suspect by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro
Former Marine Jack Morgan's investigation company, Private, is the world's best. But when Jack becomes the main suspect in the murder of his former lover, there is only so much he can do to get to the truth. While racing to beat the police to the answer, struggling under pressure from the mob, and handling a new batch of murders to investigate, Jack has his hands full. But things only get worse when his practice finds itself on the verge of losing one of their best investigators.
Purchase the Book: Private: #1 Suspect ($31, Amazon)
James Herbert, 'The Secret Of Crickley Hall'
The Secret of Crickley Hall by James Herbert
The Caleighs knew that Crickley Hall was haunted when they first moved into the creepy house, but they never could've imagined the toll it would take on their sense of safety. They had reasons to stay in the beginning, but they're starting to regret the decision they made. Before long, they realize that their own lives are at risk. When they can feel all the evil and horror start to creep in around them, they don't have many options left — but they must stay safe, and they must stay sane.
Purchase the Book: The Secret of Crickley Hall ($17.95, Amazon)