Do you love tales of things that go bump in the night? Do you celebrate Halloween all year long? Do you lean in to hear ghost stories and own your own EMF detector? Did you sneak Stephen King books under your covers when you were probably way too young and it may have damaged you a little but in a really good way? Are you currently getting threating letters from your HOA because they don’t agree that your 12-foot-skeleton counts as “year-round seasonal decor”? Do you listen to true crime podcasts for relaxation and have comfort horror movies the same way that other people watch comfort Hallmark movies? Are you thrilled to be living in this golden age of new-wave horror currently being devoured?
If the answer to any of the above is “yes” then you are hereby invited for membership in our newest book club, Nightmares from Nowhere.
As a member you will get a newly released, chilling hardcover horror mailed right to your door (or you can pick it up from Nowhere Bookshop if you’re local), weird emails from me, no reading deadlines or need to leave the house or talk to people, recommendations for other great books and invites to online art happy hours and other perks.
If you like ghosts, curses, smart supernatural tales, psychological thrillers, and uncanny stories to make you learn, think and wonder, then this is your book club. I’ve already picked a few for the year and they are both horror-tinged but also delve into important topics of race, beauty standards, misogyny, power, class and fear…because there is nothing scarier than the monsters we deal with in real life.
Our first book will come to you in February and will be The Spite House by Johnny Compton, which I loved and is getting amazing reviews already. A terrifying Gothic thriller about grief, death and trauma and the depths of a father’s love. Like The Babadook meets A Head Full of Ghosts, set in Texas Hill Country.
“The Spite House is an aching, heartbroken meditation on what haunts us and the sins we inherit from those who came before us.”
—Cassandra Khaw, author of Nothing But Blackened Teeth
And I plan on doing a zoom with Johnny in February so that all the Nightmares from Nowhere members can listen in live as we talk all things spooky.
Intrigued? Click here to become a member and come join us as we hide under the blankets with a flashlight and scare the hell out of each other.
PS. If horror is not your style, check out our other book clubs:
Fantastic Strangelings Book Club – Strange and lovely books for weirdos.
The Happy Endings Book Club – All things romance, y’all.
The Little Bitty Book Club – A gorgeous picture book a month for the sweet littles in your life
PPS. For all those who do love horror…what is your favorite horror tale?
37 thoughts on “Calling all horror aficionados. Let’s get creepy.”
Read comments below or add one.
I’m not the biggest horror / thriller fan. Horror for me would be having to watch and Air Supply concert. That being said I would recommend people checking out the work of Canada’s Gary Karibyan. His books are available at most online retailers.
YES!!! I’ve been reluctant to join the Strangelings book club because half the books just aren’t even close to something I would read. But this is one I can’t miss joining!!’ THANK YOU!!! 🏻
I am so joining when my finances get better. I use to walk around with books like Helter Skelter and Exorcist in 5th grade. My Mom would just shrug and say I am just glad she is reading.
So hooked on Stephen Graham Jones’ work, especially his Indian Lake/Lake Witch series (Bk 1: My Heart is a Chainsaw; Bk 2 due out this Feb.: Don’t Fear the Reaper).
(I got an advance copy of Don’t Fear the Reaper and it was very good. ~ Jenny)
So hooked on Stephen Graham Jones’ work, especially the Indian Lake/Lake Witch series (Bk. 1: My Heart is a Chainsaw; Bk 2 due out this Feb.: Don’t Fear the Reaper).
Can I switch my enrollment? This is much more my taste
(Of course! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. ~ Jenny)
The Shining, Cujo, Carrie – can’t beat early Stephen King when it comes to horror, IMO.
Salem’s Lot. 🙂
While I am very much NOT a horror aficionado, I just wrote my very first screenplay in the psychological thriller genre and had to do a pretty deep technical dive in to the style. It’s bizarre how the bump-shock moments in these films map out almost exactly the way the big laughs do in comedies. It’s like the parallel between fight scenes in a Jackie Chan films and the dance scenes in Fred Astaire projects.
Regardless of my lack of interest, the idea that you have genre-specific book clubs strikes me as fantastic. The world needs more engaged readers and writers if we’re to stand any chance of seeing humanity’s capacity for adaptation and evolution outpace our capacity for self-destruction.
From over here on the sidelines, I watch you build an enormous and glowing community and cheer you on. Occasionally offering odd hermeneutic explorations of your endeavors.
Favorite horror books are Summer of Night (Dan Simmons), Kill Creek (Scott Thomas), Hex (Thomas Olde Heuvelt), The House Next Door (Anne Rivers Simmons), Come Closer (Sarah Gran), The Book of Lost Things (John Connolly), The Bone Key (Sarah Monette), When No One is Watching (Alyssa Cole). Among so many others.
I was so excited to see this! So far I’ve really enjoyed your book choices that I see for Strangelings. Horror is a favorite genre. https://possumscatsthingsgnawingatme.wordpress.com/2023/01/07/homer-tiresias-the-blind-poet-prophet-of-flatfoot-road-5/
When you go for classically creepy options, consider Shirley Jackson’s “The Haunting of Hill House,” R.L. Stine’s “Superstition” (adult book, not great, but worth a read), same with Scott Smith’s “The Ruins,” or “The House Next Door” by Anne Rivers Siddons. And there’s always Anne Rice’s “Interview with a Vampire.” Check out Tabitha King’s “Candles Burning” and possibly the Pendergast series by Preston/Child (more of a horror/thriller combo). “All That Lives” by Melissa Sanders-Sell was clearly the influence for “American Haunting” but completely uncredited.
My favorite horror book is Stephen King’s The Stand, followed by Salem’s Lot. Third place is his son Joe Hill’s Heart-Shaped Box!
The Shining. And short story 1409. Stephen King just knows creepy.
I’m a huge SK fan and even went to Maine to vacation to stand in front of his house like the creeper I am.
Best SK is a hauntingly beautiful ghost story called Bag of Bones. Overlooked by many in favor of the flashier ones like IT and The Stand, IMO.
And hi to my bloggess penpals!!
Highly recommend “My Heart is a Chains” a 2021 horror novel by Stephen Graham Jones.
Can you join if you live in Canada?
Ok, as to the gigantic skeleton, there is a holiday of some sort almost every day of the year so get creative. For President’s Day, get or make a gigantic top hat a la Abe Lincoln (an appropriately styled beard would be epic). For Easter, flip him around and put a cotton tail on that bony booty and top him off with bunny ears. For July 4th, Uncle Sam; for Valentines, have him holding a giant heart shaped candy box, etc. etc. How can they complain?
The Supernatural Enhancements by Edgar Cantero. Loved it so much after reading it on my kindle that I bought a physical copy!
My favourite short horror story is The Husband Stitch by Carmen Maria Machado, and my favourite horror novel is The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson.
The Unsuitable by Molly Pohlig. Dark, psychological, Victorian. SO good.
This makes me super excited! I LOVE all things spooky and thrilling. You had me at Nightmare.
Oooooooh, this book club is definitely for me! I love horror, sci-fi, and fantasy. (Or as my mom puts it “weird books.”) Just not sure if I can afford it right now. Hopefully I get that pay raise I oh so deserve so I can.
It by Stephen King is probably my favorite, with The Stand a close second. I’ve read both several times. I’m just a huge King fan in general, ever since I read Carrie when I was 13. And now I’m also a big fan of his son, Joe Hill, too. NOS4A2, Heart Shaped Box, and Full Throttle are sooooo good!
Favourite horror tale: The Graveyard Rats by Henry Kuttner. NOT the Cabinet of Curiosities version – but the written short story.
oh man, any chance you’ll be giving away a few memberships? I had to cancel my Fantastic Strangeling bookclub membership last year because I am going through a divorce. Which I am still going through and is expensive as the custody is a bit contentious.
Duma Key, by Stephen King.
And when I was 4, I wanted to watch Stephen King’s It in the worst way when it premiered on TV. My mom said no, but I changed the channel after Rocky and Bullwinkle ended and got all the way through the opening titles before she caught on and made me go to bed.
Big Stephen King fan here – Duma Key is one of my favorites that doesn’t get enough attention! (Wonderful narration by John Slattery takes it to the next level!). Tommyknockers is another one that lingers on your mind long after you’ve turned the last page!
Heart Shaped Box by Joe Hill is another favorite – I couldn’t turn off the lights, but also found myself crying at parts. So good.
I love horror and paranormal and started reading Stephen King books when I was nine. I’d be interested in a group but only if we can get electronic books as I need space for my EMPdetector and other add sorted totskes
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My favorite horror stories are Higurashi no Naku Koro Ni (also known as “When the Cicadas Cry) and Umineko no Naku Koro ni (Also known as “When the Seagulls Cry”) … Umineko was also heavily inspired by Agatha Christie’s “And Then There Were None”!
Oooh, I have so many favorites, it’s hard to choose! In addition to loving horror movies, I’ve really been digging into horror books more the last couple of years (I was a HUGE Goosebumps fan as a kid, but haven’t read too much horror beyond Stephen King in adulthood until the last few years). Obviously, Stephen King has to be mentioned because you can’t talk about horror without him, but I have also really loved books that cross over between horror and thriller, horror and fantasy, and horror and retold fairy tales. Christina Henry is great–she tells very dark versions of familiar tales (her Alice series is great). I also really enjoy Grady Hendrix’s books–they typically make me laugh while also being creepy. Riley Sager’s books are ones I usually read right away too–I like some more than others but overall they’re a lot of fun. I’ve read a couple by Kelly deVos that I’ve really liked too! I’d like to get into some more ghost stories and I love gothic horror, so hoping to get some more of those on my TBR for this year. 🙂
You mentioned expanding the book clubs in an earlier post…I would absolutely LOVE a memoir-specific one (eg Bossypants, Melissa Febos, Augusten Burroughs, you!). “Education nonfiction” (?) in general would also be fun (eg Wordslut, From Here to Eternity, Inside of a Dog, This is Your Mind on Plants). Or what about essay collections, fiction and non (eg Sum: 40 Tales of the Afterlife, Samantha Irby, Book of Delights, Machine of Death)?
Finally—and this really is so specific, but I think would be super cool—books that include multiple timelines/life paths/versions (eg Replay, Oona Out of Order, Midnight Library, Should We Stay or Should We Go).
Thanks for all you do 💜
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Without a doubt. Weaveworld. By Clive Barker.
I don’t think I can name a “favorite” but there are ones the affected me. Gerald’s Game by Stephen King, stuck with me for weeks after reading it and The Exorcist. I’ve never read a book that truly has me scared to step off my bed and fully close my closet door.
OK I think that diehard serious horror fans will totally mock me but my favorite almost-horror style is subtkt-building-creepy, deliciously Gothic stuff and I love love love lips touch three times by Laini Taylor; and for something very different and cool creepy (and illustrated) in the kids section mouse, bird, snake, wolf