Top Ten Spooky (But Not Too Spooky) Young Adult Books

Hey all! Top Ten Tuesday is a book blog meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl! Today’s topic is Halloween Freebie! So in honor of halloween I wanted to share some of my favorite spooky creepy books! But obviously not too creepy because I’m a huge wimp so like no horror or anything. not much scariness because I’m a scary cat. just a bit spooky, for a little halloweeny shiver.

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1. House of Salt and Sorrows


This is about the spookiest I can take lmao. There’s definitely a bit of a light gothic horror vibe going. I mean, cursed mansion, daughters dying and disappearing, twisted enchantments…

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2. The Wicked Deep

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This is the perfect atmospheric book to read this time of year and honestly it blew me away. This small town is so creepy with kids being possessed and dying every summer and yeah.

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3. Songs From The Deep

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Another deliciously spooky book! There’s a big murder mystery and sirens luring people to their death so yeah.

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4. Sea Witch


Villain stories are always a bit creepy right? And this one definitely has the distinct vibe that something isn’t right, something isn’t what it seems. I mean, a dead girl back to life?

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5. The Hazel Wood

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This book definitely is a bit spooky with these creepy fairytales that nobody can find coming to life? Yes.

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6. Fairest


This novella from the Lunar Chronicles is so good because Levana is so bad. There’s definitely the sense of unnerve the whole time, how can she be doing these awful things??

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7. The Coldest Girl In Coldtown


Gah I love Holly Black so much and this book was low-key super creepy I mean vampires done right. I mean killing people which is very not glamorous but society fetishizes and idealizes it and yeah there’s definitely something that feels off there.

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8. Forest of a Thousand Lanterns


Another phenomenal villain backstory! You can’t tell the story of the evil queen, complete with murder and heart eating, without getting the shivers, right?

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9. Bad Girls Don’t Die


I read this like 10 years ago lmao and idk if anyone else has read it but it left such an impression on me it was creeeeepy. The closest to horror I get? I mean, creepy dolls, vengeful spirits, haunted houses, people getting possessed and called insane?

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10. Wendy Darling


Okay hear me out you wouldn’t think a Peter Pan retelling would be creepy but!! Think about it what part of stealing kids from their beds in the middle of the night isn’t creepy? taking them to be killed by grown men pirates? Starting to lose their memories of the real world and forget who they are and maybe just trapping them in Neverland forever? tbh this series is criminally underrated

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Honestly, beyond the ten on this list, I thought up of so many paranormal books that are deliciously spooky but not too spooky that I read in, like, the years 2012-2015 and I low-key miss the paranormal stuff now? I mean, I was obsessed with it now that I think about it I was reading all this creepy stuff and now I’m so boring reading these sanitized romcoms.

All I have to say is can we bring back the creepy urban fantasy paranormal romance with vampires and ghosts and curses and demons that were all having their golden age in 2014 but this time with diverse characters?? please?

(yes I’m planning on reading Cemetery Boys I have it on hold at the library)

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Let’s Chat

What are some of your favorite spooky books? Do you like any of these? Do you like scary books or are you a huge wimp like me? I’d love to chat in the comments below



50 thoughts on “Top Ten Spooky (But Not Too Spooky) Young Adult Books

  1. What a great list! She said, whilst pretending she knew all of the books. No, I’m afraid I don’t know most of the books on the list but The Hazelwood (I really gotta read the sequel) and The coldest Girl in Coldtown. That one I really liked.
    Oh, and Fairest! I’ve never read that one and I loved the series. Maybe I gotta try that one next!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I just read The Companion by Katie Alender. It was pretty good! I want to check out her other books. Maybe I’ll start with Bad Girls Don’t Die. Happy reading!

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  3. i’ve actually read some of these, surprisingly. i’m a huge scaredy-cat too so i avoid spooky books. omggg i’m reading cemetery boys right now and i’m loving it. i will protect yadriel and julian with my life.

    i liked house of salt and sorrows, but it freaked me out a lot. i mean, how can you be mentally stable when your sisters are dying all around you?? anyways, i loved this list! ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great list! I’m definitely all for the little bit of a spooky shiver but not a full-blown scary panic 😂 I had House of Salt and Sorrows on my list today as well! It ended up being a lot spookier than I expected but it was great. Can’t wait to read some of these others too 🙂

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  5. I have The Coldest Girl in Coldtown on my October TBR for years but I just keep forgetting about it! I love love LOVE Forest of A Thousand Lanterns, it’s one of the best villain origin I’ve read. Like you sympathize with Xifeng, but also recoiled and feared her. It’s just fantastic.

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  6. I’m a huge wimp too, so this list is perfect for me! 😀 I’m liking the watery theme with several of these. And I definitely found The Hazel Wood delightfully creepy too. Ahh that description of Wendy Darling DEFINITELY makes the Peter Pan story sound 500% creepier 😳

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  7. OMG – Katie Alender takes me WAY back. I remember reading Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer in high school and being 100% OBSESSED. I’m actually bummed it’s out of print because I’d borrowed it from the library and would love to re-read it now. I remember it being super creepy and there was even a scene set in the Paris Catacombs.

    And I’m so happy to see that House of Salt and Sorrows made it to your top spot. It’s definitely one of the creepiest books I’ve ever read! The whole pregnancy scene was so disturbing – I think I’m scared for life!

    Happy Halloween! 💙

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  8. Welp so sorry, I have been so very behind on blog posts so am late today. But I love ya and had to catch up on the queen!! And yes it is past Halloween, I’m very thankful for the recs bc I’m an absolute scaredy-cat. Seriously LOVE this list so much and have been so keen on HoSas, and also Forest of A Thousand Lanterns. I’ve also had The Hazel Wood has been on my shelf for far too long *nervous sweats* Loved this list Kay <3<3

    Liked by 1 person

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