Hot hot horror

By Collection Management Librarian Dontaná

We know Halloween is 115 days away—but there is just something extra scary about taking in horror stories in the bright sunshine. (Midsommar, anyone?) We’ve gathered six horror and thriller novels that will make you glad that nights are very short this time of year.

Summer screams: 6 books you’ll want to read in broad daylight

Maeve Fly by CJ Leede

Why you should try it: The shock value of the cover is enough for us, but the villain origin story covered in blood and gore might be what does it for you.

Description: When her best friend’s brother—Gideon Green—moves to town, awakening something dangerous inside her, Maeve, ditching her discontented act, tries on a new persona—one that’s bolder, bloodier, and inspired by the pages of American Psycho.

Mother Knows Best edited by Lindy Ryan

Why you should try it: "Intimate and visceral" (Publisher's Weekly), this anthology takes aim at all aspects of the mother-child relationship, from the oppressive to the vengeful. Prepare to be deeply disturbed.

Description: From mama trauma to smother mother, this all-new women in horror anthology features stories about the scariest monster of them all—our mothers. The anthology features new and exclusive short stories and poems inspired by bad mothers from some of today’s fiercest women in horror.

Brat by Gabriel Smith

Why you should try it: This one is a bit weird, a little funny, and a lot gothic. It is all about tone, setting, and pacing in this debut novel. Oh, and his skin peels off.

Description: Mourning the death of his father, Gabriel moves into his parents' house to clear it out but is instead taken on a surreal and mysterious journey where he finds unfinished manuscripts that change and a video hinting at long-buried secrets.

Cuckoo by Gretchen Felker-Martin

Why you should try it: Action-packed, rage-filled, and visceral, Felker-Martin returns with this tale of a horrible summer camp that gets exponentially worse. If you loved Camp Damascus, this should be your next book.

Description: In 1995, seven queer teens abandoned at a desert conversion camp face an ancient evil that haunts them for years, forcing them to reunite to stop it before it consumes the world.

Myrrh by Polly Hall

Why you should try it: Filled with obsession, doubt, and self-delusion, this psychological horror novel is not an easy read.

Description: Myrrh, who has a goblin inside her, a voice that tells her all the things she’s done wrong, desperately searches for her birth parents on the south coast of England, while Cayenne, when her husband pushes her further out of his life, makes a decision that sends her into a terrible spiral.

Deserter by Junji Ito

Why you should try it: Ito is a manga horror superstar, so it is only right to introduce potential new fans to the early work of this excellent mangaka.

Description: A vengeful family hides an army deserter for 8 years after the end of World War II, cocooning him in a false reality where the war never ended. A pair of girls look alike, but they aren’t twins. And a boy’s nightmare threatens to spill out into the real world… This hauntingly strange story collection showcases a dozen of Ito’s earliest works from when he burst onto the horror scene, sowing fresh seeds of terror.


About Dontaná

Dontaná is a Collection Management Librarian who was born with an unending reading list. She is almost always reading two books simultaneously and is easily distracted by cool covers.