• We have updated the guidelines regarding posting political content: please see the stickied thread on Website Issues.

The Scariest Paranormal Or Ghost Book You've Read?

A

Anonymous

Guest
What is the scariest ghost or paranormal book you have read ?

The following are recommended:

THE AWFUL THING IN THE ATTIC by Brad Stieger
THE HAUNTED (made into 1992 American t.v. movie)
GRAVE SEND
THE TERROR THAT COMES IN THE NIGHT (although heavy going)
GHOST by Hanz Holzer (is this the biggest ghost book ever ?)
 
Stephen King's "IT" scared me when I was younger (about 26!!)
The older classics of the genre don't so much instill fear, as a niggling discomfort! Enjoy Lovecraft though....
It helps immensely if you read on your own, in an empty house, with a storm raging outside!
 
I think 'IT' works well if you first read it as a teenager.
Also found THE SHINING very scary, but most King books are entertaining rather than genuinenly scary.
A good modern read is HOUSE of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski.
A sort of literay Blair Witch with a bit of Borges thrown in./
 
My all time favorite story from my childhood, was Edward Bulwer-Lytton's "The Haunted and the Haunters", I read it when I was eight years old and it scared the bee-jaysis out of me.

As for Mr. King, I loved "The Shining" "Salem's Lot" and quite a few of his short stories.

The only book that I ever actually flew out of my hands in horror, was Peter Straub's "Ghost Story". The scene in which Gregory Bates flips on the light switch at the bottom of the stairs and says "Hello, boys!" to Peter Barnes and his pal, freaked me, as I had been picturing the scene quite vividly, and it was almost as if I had actually seen it happen. Sudden, unexpected violence.

"The Haunting of Hill House" by Shirley Jackson probably needs no mention, as I am sure it will be named in this thread multiple times.

In 1979 or so, I read Jay Anson's "The Amityville Horror" and while it has since been debunked, at the time it got to me so intensely frightened, that for weeks I was sure there was a face watching me from the window of an empty house next door.
I did so love the quote that I read, I believe, in FT, that was attributed to him about his not being held to the same standards as a journalist, as he was a writer. The ultimate cop out!

There was also a trashy pulp horror book called "The Keepsake" about a stone from Ireland that would come to life in the darkness and kill anyone it could find, trashy, but effective! It was written in the style of an American movie, so I'm amazed it was never made into one.
 
yeah, I forget about 'Ghost Story' It takes a while to get going but its well worth it.
Anyone else agree with me that James Herbert is a talentless hack who just fits a ropey plot around regular gore fests?
 
Er...I did actually mean factual book, hence my list of books and the fact that this is a paranormal website!
 
I'm sorry NEIL but FT threads are like children.
You expect them to follow your path but they always end up doing their own thing and bringing shame on the family :)
 
this is not a flame.. this is not a flame... this is not a f

NEIL said:
What is the scariest ghost or paranormal book you have read ?

The following are recommended:

THE AWFUL THING IN THE ATTIC by Brad Stieger
THE HAUNTED (made into 1992 American t.v. movie)
GRAVE SEND
THE TERROR THAT COMES IN THE NIGHT (although heavy going)
GHOST by Hanz Holzer (is this the biggest ghost book ever ?)

You should have mentioned "factual" as your list in no way suggests it. ANYTHING written by Holzer is fiction as far as I'm concerned. Maybe you have a different book by Holzer though, as the giant one I have is titled "Ghosts" not "Ghost"

Stieger? Give me a break! I'll have to see what you opine as to the status of John Keel in that posted poll before I go ANY further!:hmph:
 
Ooops!

Sorry Neil, wrong end of the stick, mate!

I recall the part-work 'The Unexplained' coming out in the early '80's, and the photographs of the bodies that had spontaineously combusted really scared me. I could hardly look at them and would miss out these chapters when leafing through....

(....the first issue came with a floppy 7-inch single. On this was a supposed recording of voices from beyond the grave. We listened to this one night at a friends house when his parents had gone out. Terrifying! We ran from the room and daredn't come back in to turn the bloody thing off! "...Zentoooor,Zentooor!" it moaned, or something similar. What a load of wusses eh?!!:D
 
Oh yes, I'd forgotten about that EVP flexidisc. I never got to hear it myself, despite having a full set of The Unexplained. I've had a look on the web but I can't find much mention of it. If anyone has it, I'd very much like to hear it.
 
THE DEMONOLOGIST by Ed & Lorraine Warren.

I read this as a teenager. It left me in a cold terror of the devil that took a long time to go away. I saw them on a show a few years later and they seemed like such a campy, frumpy old couple that the book went down on the old scare-o-meter. But I'd still like to sue them for mental anguish or something, the bastards :hmph:

Thank god I don't believe in the devil anymore. But I'll tell ya, this thing here-----> :spinning kind of gives me the creeps :D
 
Re: this is not a flame.. this is not a flame... this is not

wulfloki said:
ANYTHING written by Holzer is fiction as far as I'm concerned. Maybe you have a different book by Holzer though, as the giant one I have is titled "Ghosts" not "Ghost"

Yes, Holzer's a weird bird. What I got most from reading "Ghosts" was a flavor of his personality: possibly gay, fastidious, gourmand, hopelessly dated...I loved the fact that all the ghost stories star him!

Of course, that stuff about the Texas poltergeist at the very end of the book was totally unnerving. Also, the ghost of the man on fire that ran in front of the astonished motorists and into the woods. Now that's a good time.
 
David Raven said:
I recall the part-work 'The Unexplained' coming out in the early '80's, and the photographs of the bodies that had spontaineously combusted really scared me. I could hardly look at them and would miss out these chapters when leafing through....
Yeah I remember those pictures. There was a real spooky one of just a women's leg and shoe lying in a mound of ashes.
Did anyone rate old sex tourist Arthur C. Clarke's tv-tie in books on the Unexplained. I always remember a good picture of what appeared to be a hooded figure standing in front of an altar
 
chatsubo said:
Yeah I remember those pictures. There was a real spooky one of just a women's leg and shoe lying in a mound of ashes.

That's the one that did it for me mate!

Haunted my memories for years to come! I can see it 20/20 even now!!
I think the reason these pictures affected me so much, was because they were so stark. Like a crime-scene 'photo.They depicted images of realism I would only expect pathologists or 'scene-of crime' investigators to have access to...

...un-nerving stuff...:eek:
 
"From the Corner of His Eye" by Dean Koontz, read it, fantastic, pretty weird.

James Herbert manages pretty well to scare the cack out of me, "Haunted", "The Dark" and "The Fog" are excellent, "The Others" is just plain freaky the first time you read it.

To the person who said Herbert is a talentless hack, everyone's entitled to their own opinion, I think his only problem is that he cannot end his books properly, digging his characters into a corner and having to find a way out again, "The Others" and "Haunted" seem to be the only exceptions to this.
 
Scary Reads

This was in another of the threads (can't remember which one!)

Here's my nominations:

"Poltergeist!" - Colin Wilson - especially the Black Monk of Pontefract account - seriously disconcerting!

"Strange Creatures from Time & Space" - John Keel - well creepy

"Communion" - Whitley Strieber - whether cobblers or not, still brown trousers material as far as I'm concerned...

A short but deeply worrying passage is in the thread "Dogheaded Men" in "It Happened to Me!" - check out the link about the Hexham Heads. Found it yesterday, re-read it, slept very badly...

As for the Arthur C Clarke series, they used to amuse me: you'd have sketchy accounts of weirdness, one or two interesting gems (like the hooded ghost photo Chatsubo mentioned) and then Clarke himself would appear for two minutes at the end and explain that he didn't believe in it. If they wanted an elderly bloke from Somerset that didn't believe in things they could have asked my Uncle Jack - much cheaper to go to Weston Super Mare than Sri Lanka...
 
Scary Stories

Have to agree with Stu on Communion, After I read that about 4-5 years ago I slept with the light on for about six weeks. Not that that would stop the little Grey bastards!!!

Check out Majestic by Strieber aswell. Because all in all sleep is really overrated and you dont actually need it. Sitting up in the middle of the night wondering at exactly what point the parallasys will take over and your little buddys are going to show is is much better for you.....

Hmmmm.

And Salems Lot by King. Especially the bit in the mortuary

'Danny.....Danny'

Cool. But scary.
 
chatsubo said:
Did anyone rate old sex tourist Arthur C. Clarke's tv-tie in books on the Unexplained. I always remember a good picture of what appeared to be a hooded figure standing in front of an altar

Yeah but what about the Mother-in-Law in the back seat of the car.... Yugghgyughhyughyugghyughhyughghyufghhyugfhhhyuh....

Actually, I always found paranormal books quite comforting; someone explaining it all. Though that's always made those kind of photoes more of a shock when you turn the page. Films, telly, fiction,Creepy, insidious ideas, the dark, have all scared me. I'm sure a lot of people would say I haven't read the right books. The curious part hopes they are right. The other part is apprehensive just typing this here on my own,and wishes my back had less space behind it. Seen a couple of books here that I'd like to try, curious to see more. Anyone care to oblige......
 
Re: Scary Stories

roachford said:
Have to agree with Stu on Communion, After I read that about 4-5 years ago I slept with the light on for about six weeks. Not that that would stop the little Grey bastards!!!

I bought Communion to read on the plane when I was crossing the Atlantic alone when I was 14. Possibly the worst idea I ever had (I think one of the abductions takes place on a plane or train, or something).

Also, the bit in The Shining where the topiary animals come to life gave me the creeps. I always get a bit freaked out by accounts of inanimate objects moving, especially if they do it silently. Shudder.
 
David Raven said:
Ooops!

Sorry Neil, wrong end of the stick, mate!

I recall the part-work 'The Unexplained' coming out in the early '80's, and the photographs of the bodies that had spontaineously combusted really scared me. I could hardly look at them and would miss out these chapters when leafing through....

(....the first issue came with a floppy 7-inch single. On this was a supposed recording of voices from beyond the grave. We listened to this one night at a friends house when his parents had gone out. Terrifying! We ran from the room and daredn't come back in to turn the bloody thing off! "...Zentoooor,Zentooor!" it moaned, or something similar. What a load of wusses eh?!!:D

I was a young gal when they came out, frankly they scared the s**t out of me. I suffered from a few sleepless nights after reading them. Mind you I still can't look at a picture of a SHC victim.

I enjoy reading "Walking Haunted London", very tongue in cheek. I like authours that don't take themselves too seriously. Changing the subject, if you want unnecessary blood and gore try reading something by Shaun Hutson.
 
The most spooky book ive read lately was 'House of Leaves' by? The composition of which was very interesting,kind of a split narrative/plot.Each page is split top and bottom,one story on one and one on the other.The story i read involved a photographer who finds out that he lives in a bizzare house that 'grows 'extra rooms and dimensions......it really affected me and put me on edge the entire time i was reading it....anyone else read it??? I can heavily recommend it. I too remember the ACC book with the glass skull on it .In fact I have a very bizzare story to tell invoving that very book...I was at college and lived in house with 3 other girls.We all got on really well and were all in to FT topics and the supernatural.Anyways,I had brought some of my supernatural books from home but was missing my ACC book,the one with the glass skull. I was writing my weekly letter back home to my folks,and I mentioned to my mom that I was missing the book.She said she would sort it out as my brother was coming down to see me the following week. I posted the letter in town and decided to ring my boyfriend on the way back to the house.Guess what I found in the phone box on the shelf??? The very ACC book that I had just written home about.I looked on the front page and saw it belonged to Cerridwen Bowley(I was at college in Wales) as my name is Kerri and my maiden name was Bailey I was shaking like a leaf by the time I arrived back at the house!!! Any explanations anyone??!!:eek!!!!: :confused:
 
I have those arthur C clarke TV books, they are OK... i recently cut out that picture of the burnt leg for a collage
 
On a purely fictional note (that's right folks, none of what I say is real!) I read a short story many years ago which haunts me to this day. Sadly, I have no idea of the author. It was called 'The Midnight Train' or something to that effect. It was about a man remembering how, as a child, he read a terrifying short story called 'The Midnight Train'...do you see?

Anyway, it all ends badly in a kind of maddened Moebius strip narrative. But it remains a remarkably unpleasant reading experience, unique in that I'm not sure I'd read it again if given the chance!

And, as I've said before, 'Oh Whistle and I'll come to you, my lad' is the finest ghost story ever written.
 
Originally posted by Wooftered


Yeah but what about the Mother-in-Law in the back seat of the car.... Yugghgyughhyughyugghyughhyughghyufghhyugfhhhyuh....
]


:eek!!!!: I remember it all too well... Had a look for it for a while and found it on one of the http://www.deathndementia.com links!!!

On the subject of creepy stuff on TV - I was terrified of the beginning of 'Armchair Thriller' as a kid ( when the shadow sits in the chair)
 
I used to have a massive book{well actually it was my dads} and it was a book containing every issue of an old paranomal magazince called the unexplained.
I found the book quite scary and showed pictures of what aliens would of looked like.
I enjoyed reading it{i was about 6 or 7 at the time}but every page i turned was nerve-racking
 
The Unexplained from Orbis - a part-work in 157 weekly
instalments - is one of those undead publications which
keeps being churned by publishers under different titles.

Some of the articles were very good and the authors seemed
to have done their research well. Others were fairly dismal.
A laudatory article on Doris Stokes was linked to a promotional
offer on her paperback of piffle. There was also a lot of
stroking of Geller.

Even so, I am hoping that Oxfam will eventually cough up the
issues I need to complete my set. ;)
 
when i was in cornwall i bought a load of them :D. I like em.
 
James Whitehead said:
The Unexplained from Orbis - a part-work in 157 weekly
instalments - is one of those undead publications which
keeps being churned by publishers under different titles.

Some of the articles were very good and the authors seemed
to have done their research well. Others were fairly dismal.
A laudatory article on Doris Stokes was linked to a promotional
offer on her paperback of piffle. There was also a lot of
stroking of Geller.

Even so, I am hoping that Oxfam will eventually cough up the
issues I need to complete my set. ;)

yes,i liked the most weirdist places in earth photograph,mostly every month.
I used to be creeped out y an old mag called the X factor,they used to give away videos which to be frank i have never watched yet.
 
Back
Top