Halloween Takeover: Elodie Harper

Elodie Harper chooses her top five books for Halloween

Posted on October 23, 2018 in Author Recommendations
Tags: halloween

In the lead up to Halloween, we asked some of our favourite authors to recommend the most frightening and unnerving books they’ve read. Take a look and tell us if you’ve dared to read any of these spooky tales.


Elodie Harper

Elodie Harper is a journalist and prize winning short story writer. Her story ‘Wild Swimming‘ won the Guardian-Hodder The Bazaar of Bad Dreams story competition as judged by Stephen King. She is currently a reporter and presenter at ITV News Anglia, and before that worked as a producer for Channel 4 News. Her latest book, The Death Knock, is out now in hardback and eBook.



Dark Matter by Michelle Paver

This is the ‘scariest’ book on my list. It’s a mesmerising novel set on a 1930s Arctic Expedition, in which one member of the team, Jack Miller, ends up alone at a deserted outpost.  What happens after that is utterly terrifying.  I still can’t read the word ‘Gruhuken’ without shuddering….





The Collected Ghost Stories by M.R. James

The Victorian master of the genre is perfect Halloween reading.  Eerie landscapes, ancient artefacts and lonely scholars haunt these deliciously creepy tales.  Look out for ‘The Mezzotint.’






The Victorian Chaise-Longue by Marghanita Laski

My all time favourite work of horror.  A woman recovering from childbirth decides to rest on an antique chaise-longue bought by her loving husband.  Waking from a doze, she finds herself trapped in the body and alternative reality of the antique’s previous owner, 90 years before.  This extraordinary story will haunt you long after the final page.




Eight Ghosts

An anthology published by English Heritage last year, has some fabulous tales.  Sarah Perry’s ‘They Flee from Me that Sometime did me Seek’ and Kamila Shamsie’s ‘Forboding’ were especially chilling.  Both had endings that felt genuinely shocking.






The Corset by Laura Purcell

A wonderfully atmospheric book, in which the thrill of the supernatural is woven together with the real life horrors women faced in the Victorian Era.  You won’t be able to put this one down.






See more Halloween recommendations from Sarah Hilary, Phoebe Locke, Douglas Lindsay, Anna Mazzola, David Mark, Allen Eskens, Charlotte Duckworth, Jo Spain and Jenny Blackhurst.

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