Must Haves for Horror Fans – Part 1

OK horror hounds, it’s time for some basic training. I understand there are a lot of new recruits out there, and even some lifers, that need the foundation to become a true horror aficionado. Now, put your chainsaws and machetes down and listen up. I’m going to give you a list of books and authors you must know inside and out. Are you hearing me Private Pyle?

Decades later and I still obssess over Full Metal Jacket. I’m not going to say you look like 50 pounds of chewed bubble gum. I won’t raise my voice. I’m simply here to open your horror eyes a little wider. Shall we begin?

This is what you should read to see how a master works their trade. I’m only leaving out Stephen King because he’s soooo obvious.

Algernon Blackwood. Get your hands on everything he’s ever done. Read it at night and enjoy your nightmares.

M.R. James. I can’t count how many horror writers cite him as an inspiration.
Richard Matheson. He’s the author of I Am Legend, Hell House, the best Twilight Zone episodes and Kolchak, The Night Stalker. “Nuff said.

HellHouseMathesonCover-thumb-330x500-50213

The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson. Maybe the scareist haunted house novel ever written.

The Store by Bentley Little. So close to the truth that it’s terrifying.

The Girl Next Door by Jack Ketchum. Gut wrenching, brutal, incredibly sad and real. A master work. The Monster Men reviewed it on our podcast. You can check it out here.

The Magic Cottage by James Herbert. I’m always astounded by how many folks in America have never heard of Herbert. He’s only like the Stephen King of the UK. You can’t lose with any of his books, but I highly suggest you start with this one. He just passed away last month, so cherish each book as you tread down the path of discovery.

Curfew by Phil Rickman. Another UK import, Rickman’s books can be hard to find, but when you do, treasure them.

Curfew_07_11_2011_21_40_32

Richar Laymon. He was taken from us way too soon, but thankfully he was prolific. Almost every up and coming horror super star waxes poetic about his books. My favorites are Bite and One Rainy Night.

Ghoul by Brian Keene. Yes, Keene may be responsible for resurrecting the zombie genre, but Ghoul is still my favorite.

Oh no, I’m not stopping at 10. My list goes to 11.

Boy’s Life by Robert McCammon. Words can’t express how great this book is.

You have your list, now hit the bookshelves. Hard. Stay tuned for part 2 where I highlight movies.

And if there are any books/authors you feel should be on the list, speak now or forever hold your peace.

Dismissed!

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About Hunter Shea

Hunter Shea is the product of a misspent childhood watching scary movies, reading forbidden books and wishing Bigfoot would walk past his house. He doesn’t just write about the paranormal – he actively seeks out the things that scare the hell out of people and experiences them for himself. Hunter’s novels can even be found on display at the International Cryptozoology Museum. His video podcast, Monster Men, is one of the most watched horror podcasts in the world. You’ll also find him every week on the Final Guys podcast, available everywhere. He’s a bestselling author of over 25 books, all of them written with the express desire to quicken heartbeats and make spines tingle. Living with his wonderful family and two cats, he’s happy to be close enough to New York City to gobble down Gray’s Papaya hotdogs when the craving hits.

9 responses to “Must Haves for Horror Fans – Part 1”

  1. earthdancedaph (@earthdancedaph) says :

    Deep Sigh, Thank you, I am old school Horror and I really appreciate some good ole horror vitamin blood pumped into these old veins. *puts on reading glasses and evil grin…

  2. Hunter Shea says :

    You’re very welcome. Always happy to spread the terror.

  3. fuonlyknew says :

    You’ve mentioned some of my favorite horror writers!
    I’m always looking for something by them that I’ve not devoured yet. I prowl the local used book store with it’s huge horror section. I’ll be on the lookout for Curfew. Only one I haven’t read on this list.

  4. Jonathan Janz says :

    Fantastic list, Hunter. I haven’t read Rickman but really need to. I also haven’t read Boy’s Life, but I plan to this year. The rest of your list…aces.

  5. Craig Mewborn says :

    Nice list. I recommend “Boy’s Life” to everyone, not just horror fans. I love a good coming-of-age tale which is probably why I also loved “Ghoul”. Another one in the same vein would be “Summer of Night” by Dan Simmons, an awesome, scary book.

  6. Michelle Stockard Miller says :

    Another great list! Hell House is my favorite horror novel.

    Discovered Algernon Blackwood last fall. Ancient Sorceries was excellent.

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