Holiday Gift Guide 2022: Horror for the Holidays
The holidays are the best time to read horror, in our opinion. Whether you’re looking for fiction or nonfiction, we have your one-stop-shop for horror fans below.
by Clay McLeod Chapman
“A Gothic-punk graveyard tale about what haunts history and what haunts the human soul. An addicting read that draws you into its descent from the first page.”—Chuck Wendig, New York Times best-selling author of The Book of Accidents
One of Vulture‘s Best Horror Novels of 2022 (So Far), this terrifying supernatural page-turner will make you think twice about opening doors to the unknown.
Erin hasn’t been able to set a single boundary with her charismatic but reckless college ex-boyfriend, Silas. When he asks her to bail him out of rehab—again—she knows she needs to cut him off. But days after he gets out, Silas turns up dead of an overdose in their hometown of Richmond, Virginia, and Erin’s world falls apart.
Then a friend tells her about Ghost, a new drug that allows users to see the dead. Wanna get haunted? he asks. Grieving and desperate for closure with Silas, Erin agrees to a pill-popping “séance.” But the drug has unfathomable side effects—and once you take it, you can never go back.
The United States of Cryptids
by J. W. Ocker
Meet the monsters in our midst, from bigfoot to Mothman and beyond!
Welcome to the United States of Cryptids, where mysterious monsters lurk in the dark forests, deep lakes, and sticky swamps of all fifty states. From the infamous Jersey Devil to the obscure Snallygaster, travel writer and chronicler of the strange J. W. Ocker uncovers the bizarre stories of these creatures and investigates the ways in which communities embrace and celebrate their local cryptids. Readers will learn about:
• Batsquatch of Washington, a winged bigfoot that is said to have emerged from the eruption of Mount Saint Helens
• Nain Rouge of Michigan, a fierce red goblin that has been spotted before every major city disaster in Detroit
• Flatwoods Monster of West Virginia, a robotic extraterrestrial that crash-landed in rural Appalachia
• Lizard Man of South Carolina, a reptilian mutant that attacked a teenager in the summer of 1988
• Glocester Ghoul of Rhode Island, a fire-breathing dragon that guards a hoard of pirate treasure
• And many more!
Whether you believe in bigfoot or not, this fully illustrated compendium is a fun, frightening, fascinating tour through American folklore and history, exploring the stories we tell about monsters and what those stories say about us.
Toil and Trouble
by Lisa Kröger and Melanie R. Anderson
A celebration of magical women and nonbinary people in American history, from Salem to WitchTok.
Meet the mystical women and nonbinary people from US history who found strength through the supernatural—and those who are still forging the way today. From the celebrity spirit mediums of the nineteenth century to contemporary activist witches hexing the patriarchy, these icons have long used magic and mysticism to seize the power they’re so often denied.
Organized around different approaches women in particular have taken to the occult over the decades—using the supernatural for political gain, seeking fame and fortune as spiritual practitioners, embracing their witchy identities, and more—this book shines a light on underappreciated magical pioneers, including:
✦ Dion Fortune, who tried to marshal a magical army against Adolf Hitler
✦ Bri Luna, the Hoodwitch, social media star and serious magical practitioner
✦ Joan Quigley, personal psychic to Nancy Reagan
✦ Marie Laveau, voodoo queen of New Orleans
✦ Elvira, queer goth sex symbol who defied the Satanic Panic
✦ And many more!
by Andrew Shaffer
The Office meets Stephen King, dressed up in holiday tinsel, in this fun, festive, and frightening horror-comedy set during the horror publishing boom of the ’80s, by New York Times best-selling satirist Andrew Shaffer.
Out of work for months, Lussi Meyer is desperate to work anywhere in publishing. Prestigious Blackwood-Patterson isn’t the perfect fit, but a bizarre set of circumstances leads to her hire and a firm mandate: Lussi must find the next horror superstar to compete with Stephen King, Anne Rice, and Peter Straub. It’s the ’80s, after all, and horror is the hottest genre.
But as soon as she arrives, Lussi finds herself the target of her co-workers’ mean-spirited pranks. The hazing reaches its peak during the company’s annual Secret Santa gift exchange, when Lussi receives a demonic-looking object that she recognizes but doesn’t understand. Suddenly, her coworkers begin falling victim to a series of horrific accidents akin to a George Romero movie, and Lussi suspects that her gift is involved. With the help of her former author, the flamboyant Fabien Nightingale, Lussi must track down her anonymous Secret Santa and figure out the true meaning of the cursed object in her possession before it destroys the company—and her soul.
My Best Friend’s Exorcism
by Grady Hendrix
Now a major motion picture.
From the New York Times best-selling author of The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires, this unholy hybrid of Beaches and The Exorcist blends teen angst and unspeakable horrors into a pulse-pounding supernatural thriller.
The year is 1988. High school sophomores Abby and Gretchen have been best friends since fourth grade. But after an evening of skinny-dipping goes disastrously wrong, Gretchen begins to act…different. She’s moody. She’s irritable. And bizarre incidents keep happening whenever she’s nearby. Abby’s investigation leads her to some startling discoveries—and by the time their story reaches its terrifying conclusion, the fate of Abby and Gretchen will be determined by a single question: Is their friendship powerful enough to beat the devil?