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Super Scary Books and Films

Sometimes we just want to be terrified out of our wits.

What’s the scariest book you ever read? Which movie kept you up all night? Check out our favorite horrifying tales, and share your own!

 

Alien
DVD [1979]

A mindless, savage, and merciless alien infiltrates the crew of an intergalactic freighter… and spawns 3 sequels, a prequel, and even a few crossover films. Remember, in space no one can hear you scream, but in your apartment building, someone probably can.

 

 

The Haunting of Hill House
by Shirley Jackson

Dr. Montague is an occult scholar looking for solid evidence of a “haunting” at Hill House, along with his assistant Theodora. They are joined by Eleanor, a friendless, fragile young woman well acquainted with poltergeists, and Luke, the future heir. Their visit seems to be merely a spooky encounter with inexplicable phenomena, but Hill House is gathering its powers – and soon it will choose one of them to make its own. Even the description is scary!

 

The Haunting

DVD [1963]

Film adaptation of The Haunting of Hill House.  We recommend watching the final 10 minutes with the lights on.

 

 

Ghosts of Alexandria
by Michael Lee Pope

Learn local lore while also being scared out of your (historically accurate) britches: The ghost of a Revolutionary War spy that fosters a centuries-old grudge against the British, two young lovers parted by fire but reunited in death, Union and Confederate soldiers who still battle at the Hotel Monaco, and more.

 

 

Invasion of the Body Snatchers
DVD [1956]

Think you know your friends? Townspeople in Santa Mira are suddenly acting in strange ways, and evidence points to an invasion of extraterrestrial origins. With only a few other believers, Dr. Miles Bennell tries to warn the larger world while evading capture by those he once trusted. Based on the book by Jack Finney.

 

 

Tales of H.P. Lovecraft

Selected by Joyce Carol Oats

Lovecraft combined Poe’s supernaturalism with 1920s science fiction to create some seriously creepy stories, including The Call of Cthulhu and The Rats in the Walls.

 

 

World War Z
by Max Brooks

Whether or not the film adaptation ever gets to theatres, the Oral Histories of the Zombie War will have you thinking and rethinking your zombie-uprising contingency plans.

 

 

 

It
by Stephen King

King’s shortest title, but biggest book, with the highest number of scares per chapter. Seven teenagers fight off an evil child killer, and years later are drawn back to face the same nightmare force. Read this one with the lights on.

 

 

 

The End: 50 Apocolyptic Visions from Pop Culture that You Should Know About – Before it’s Too Late
by Laura Barcella

As proof that even non-fiction can scare you silly, this book explains the origins of 50 iconic apocalypse scenarios, why they matter, and when it’s time to abandon life at street level and dive into the closest bomb shelter.

 

 

The Exorcist
DVD [1973]

To simply say this is a film about a young girl who “becomes possessed by the devil and causes several violent deaths before she can be cured” is to underplay how incredibly terrifying this film is. Watch this at mid-day, with all the blinds open and the lights on. And then be prepared to never, ever sleep again.

 

 

 

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