By: Katelyn Norris

It’s October! It’s time to cozy up in your favorite sweater and fluffy blanket to enjoy all autumn has in store for you. Since many of us are overwhelmed with school, it’s nice to kick back and take time for ourselves. One way to do that is to immerse yourself in some great fall reads. Not all of these books take place during the fall nor do they have a spook factor. However, some of these books happen to feel like autumn – from comforting and warm to stoic and grotesque. All these books are some of my fall favorites and the few that I hope to conquer this spooky season.

There’s Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins

It’s a teen slasher in a Young Adult novel, what more could you want. It’s a cheesy horror for those wanting to step into the genre. The students of Osbourne High School are being killed one by one in a series of gruesome murders and the protagonist has to confront her own dark secret. “There’s Someone Inside Your House” is a quick read you’re guaranteed to not put down. Perkins steps out of her YA romance bubble to craft some great scenes of terror and suspense, all within 287 pages.

Radio Silence by Alice Oseman

“Radio Silence” is about a high school senior who meets the creator of her favorite podcast and a wonderful journey begins. This a novel for those who are uncertain of where they are going in life and who they would like to be. Utterly heartbreaking and beautifully delightful this books understands what it is like to be caught up in academia as an identity but never having a personality of our own. Every scene feels like a warm hug on a cool night, just what you need for an autumnal read.

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

The first book in a fantasy duology filled with a dark atmosphere and morally gray characters. Leigh Bardugo crafts a entrancing narrative that includes an entourage of fun characters that all have their moments to shine. Not strictly a fall novel, but it feels cold and calculated with a warmth at its center due to its tangible character. The characters drive the plot forward and add heart to a foreboding narrative.

Pet Sematary by Stephen King

No spooky season is complete without reading a classic Stephen King book, arguably the modern king of horror. “Pet Sematary” is one of King’s best works which has a heartbreaking beginning and an even more devasting finale. If you haven’t seen the two film adaptations of the novel, I highly suggest picking up one of his most underrated works first. And if you have seen the films, this is the perfect chance to get a taste of King’s works in its best form.

Full Dark, No Stars by Stephen King

Another of King’s work, “Full Dark, No Stars” is a short story collection. The collection features four new stories three of which have already become feature films. However, like most of King’s books, the fiction on the page is far more delightful than on the screen. The short stories in this collection are perfect for readers that want that horror feel without having to read a whole novel. A personal favorite from the collection is “1922”, which has been made into a Netflix film. However, I suggest you read all four of the stories as they range from the bizarre to the sinister.

The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel

A perfect fall thriller, this is a mashup of family drama and a disappearance mystery. The novel is told in multiple POVs one in the past and the other in the present. The story follows a young girl going to live with her grandparents and cousin following her mother’s death. While the present day storyline follows the protagonist as she is brought back to them following the disappearance of her cousin. “The Roanoke Girls” will shock you at every twist and turn, you will not want to put this book down anytime soon.

The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson

A classic ghost story that has inspire countless other authors in the pursuit of a beautiful yet menacing tale. This novel was the inspiration behind the Netflix series of the same name. However, there are many difference between the show and book, although the atmosphere throughout remains the same. The novel follows four people arriving at Hill House to gather evidence of its haunting, all the while the malevolent house has a plan for them all. No one can build tension like Jackson and that makes it one of the best hauntings literature has to offer.

Nancy Drew Mysteries by Caroline Keene

Nancy Drew mystery novels feel same the way old Hollywood detective movies do. They are slick and smooth but full of fun and intrigue. Most of the original Nancy Drew novels fall under 150 pages and make a perfect book to cozy up with for a weekend this autumn. A few personal favorites are “Password to Larkspur Lane” and “The Mystery of Lilac Inn”, which I found myself engrossed in from the very first page. Each story wraps up its mystery in a nice bow while still making it have consequences for its characters.

My Fall TBR

This autumn I wanted to read a few books that fit with the feeling of autumn. I encourage you to check out these titles as well as they come highly recommended from my favorite booktubers and friends.

Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo

A dark academia novel that entwines fantasy elements into a story of murder, secret societies and magic. The Harvard setting of the novel only sets the atmosphere with a heightened sense of tension and mystery. I’m excited to read something a little a darker than I am used to from one of my new favorite authors.          

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

 An urban fantasy that involves magic and a group of mysterious boys. I don’t know much about this first book in a series. But I want to go into a new fantasy world completely blind as to be surprised by what happens. However, I am told it is a perfect series to devour in the fall, so I am ready to jump in.

Wilder Girls by Rory Power

This novel is a conspiracy body horror novel that takes place at a girl’s school on an island in Maine. That is all I needed to pick up the book. I have already started the novel and it does not disappoint. The atmosphere is tense, and the main characters feel tangible. The grotesque body horror that is described in the first few chapters was enough to make me squeamish, but the looming uncertainty that is beginning to unravel has me holding on to every word.

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