Booktok + Halloween + Music = What More Could You Ask For?

words by Macie Kate

Ah, yes, it’s that time of year. The air is getting colder, the leaves are changing colors, the spooky decorations are coming out of storage, and you can hear All Too Well (10 Minute Version) (Taylor’s Version) playing faintly in the distance somewhere.

Autumn is here and that means it’s time to get the biggest, fluffiest blanket you can find, a pumpkin latte, a spooky book to read, and a good playlist to play in the background. Join me as I go through the best books to read during this time of year, and while you read this article (or any of these books) I’ve created a fall playlist for you…

all the fall feels playlist

WARNING: It is recommended that you are at least 18 years old before reading any of these books as most are classified as horror/thriller and discuss very serious topics.

Five of my best spooky book recommendations:

  1. Verity by Colleen Hoover
Goodreads Rating: 4.42/5

This is definitely one of the most discussed books on #booktok. Lowen Ashleigh is a struggling writer but happens to get a big break when she is hired (for a pretty penny!) to finish a very popular series of books by a very famous writer, Verity, who is injured and unable to finish the series herself. Lowen ends up moving into Verity and Jeremy Crawford’s (Verity’s husband) house to immerse herself in Verity’s office and read her research and notes so she has a better feel for the book she now has the responsibility to write. While looking through the office, Lowen finds a manuscript that seems a lot like an auto-biography Verity wrote – and wanted to keep hidden. Throughout Lowen’s time at the house, she has her suspicions as to whether or not Verity is truly injured, or just faking it. But, the real question is: are you team manuscript or team letter?

2. The Final Girl Support Group by Gary Hendrix

Goodreads Rating: 3.57/5

Even if you’ve never seen a horror movie before – I think we’re all pretty familiar with the concept. There’s always one person (usually a girl) that survives and defeats the killer and is usually covered in blood by the end… but then the credits roll and there are all these unanswered questions about what happens to the one girl that was left standing, right?

Grady Hendrix writes a thrilling novel that includes the final girls left standing at the end of various horror movies where they all attend a support group together until one day one of them disappears. This leads all the girls to go looking for the missing girl and all of their worst fears come to fruition when they realize someone has found out about their support group and they’re determined to take all of them down – one by one.

3. Survive the Night by Riley Sager

Goodreads Rating: 3.51/5

A college ride share board has brought Josh and Charlie together as they embark on a cross-country journey together. As they’re on this long car ride together, they swap stories and talk about their lives all while trying not to talk about the gruesome topic of the “Campus Killer,” who’s recently killed three college students on their campus. However, as they’re swapping stories and talking, Charlie notices that some of the details in Josh’s stories don’t line up, and she begins to suspect he might be the killer as more and more time passes. Will she be able to escape him while on this cross-country road trip? Or, will she end up another one of his victims?

4. Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane

Goodreads Rating: 4.10/5

In this mystery thriller a U.S. Marshal, Teddy Daniels, is sent to investigate the disappearance of a patient from Ashecliffe Hospital on Shutter Island. Although, the Marshal and his partner sent along with him wonder how the patient could’ve possibly escaped when they are on constant lockdown and under 24/7 surveillance. However, once a terrible hurricane strikes the island, there’s no way to leave and Teddy Daniels begins to unravel more and more about the experiments and treatments they use on the patients. This book will have you on the edge of your seat and has the biggest plot twist you’ll never expect. Once you read the book, you should definitely watch the movie adaptation starring Leonardo DiCaprio.

5. Love in the Time of Serial Killers by Alicia Thompson

Goodreads Rating: 3.52/5

Of course, I had to include a rom-com book (with a twist) in this list of book recommendations. This one centers on a true-crime-obsessed Ph.D. candidate, Phoebe Walsh, who suspects that her next-door neighbor may be a serial killer. However, all of her suspicions come crashing down when she finds out he may actually be a nice guy. Will she trust her gut or will she fall in love?

Fair warning if you read any of these books before bed – you may not be able to fall asleep! I wish you a happy fall, a happy spooky month, and happy reading!

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