And now for something completely different! I’m a huge horror buff and for Halloween, I’ll be publishing a few lists of great horror stories, novels and what not.
This list is 10 obscure horror novels. Obscure is a relative term since most of these would be known to horror fans. In fact, many of you may have seen either the Swedish or American movie versions of ‘Let The Right One In’.
But if you’re not one to read a scary novel now and again, these are some good ones a bit off the King/Koontz beaten path.
The House Next Door by Anne Rivers Siddon
A classic modern haunted house story. The House Next Door plunks you in Atlanta suburbia and imagines an innocuous neighborhood home turn inside out.
This is a house as a metastasizing psychic cancer, spreading, reaching out and consuming the people in and around it.
Carrion Comfort by Dan Simmons
Three simple words: Nazi Psychic Vampires. *Boom* Done.’Carrion Comfort’ actually eschews more overt horror for an overarching sense of conspiratorial dread. Ever wanted your Nosferatu and Illuminati mashed up like a Reese’s Peanut Butter cup? This one spans 50 years from Nazi Germany to the present in doing so.
Concrete Island by J.G. Ballard
An architect driving home has a blow out, careening over the roadside barrier. Despite civilization whipping by around him, he is trapped, isolated and too injured to reach safety. And since it is 1971, no cell phone.A modern Robinson Crusoe as an nerve-shattering allegory of modern isolation.
Off Season by Jack Ketchum
Inspired by the legend of the Sawney Beane clan, Off Season is a peak of over the top splatter horror. Set in modern Maine, a horrific assault by a band of cannibals rips away any veneer of civilization.
The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks
A little exerpt:
“Two years after I killed Blyth I murdered my young brother Paul, for quite different and more fundamental reasons than I’d disposed of Blyth, and then a year after that I did for my young cousin Esmerelda, more or less on a whim.
That’s my score to date. Three. I haven’t killed anybody for years, and don’t intend to ever again.
It was just a stage I was going through.”
The Drive-In by Joe R. Lansdale
‘Friday night at the Orbit Drive-in: a circus of noise, sex, teenage hormones, B-movie blood, and popcorn. On a cool, crisp summer night, with the Texas stars shining down like rattlesnake eyes, movie-goers for the All-Night Horror Show are trapped in the drive-in by a demonic-looking comet. Then the fun begins.
Let the Right One In by John Ajvide Lindqvist
Set in 1983, Let The Right One In is the horrific tale of Oskar and Eli. A new girl has moved in next door—a girl who has never seen a Rubik’s cube before, but who can solve it at once. They become friends. Then something more. But there is something wrong with her, something odd…
All Heads Turn When the Hunt Goes By by John Farris
There is a curse that grips the Baldwins from generation to generation, from horror to bloody horror, and that climaxes in a spine-chilling nightmare of black occultism and blood vengeance. A tale spanning multiple continents, families and generations over the sins of slavery.
Burnt Offerings by Robert Marasco
The Rolfes — Ben, wife Marian, son David, and Aunt Elizabeth — are a pleasant family from New York seeking to escape from the doldrums of a summer in their Queens apartment. They find a beautiful old country mansion on Long Island — restful, secluded, with pool and private beach — perfect, for the right people. But during that long summer the house becomes a swirling nightmare.
Falling Angel by William Hjortsberg
A novel of murder, mystery, and the occult, Falling Angel pits a private eye against the most fearsome adversary a detective ever faced. A routine missing-persons case soon turns into a swampy nightmare of voodoo and black magic.