|Posted on January 17, 2020 at 8:25 PM|
Ghost Stories. Chances are we’ve all heard some over a campfire, or have read them at some point. Ghost stories are meant to scare us, to give us chills and to make us look over our shoulders. Some stories are urban legends, told for years and passed down without any true knowledge of whether or not it’s true. Other stories are the ones that will be listed here, the best of the best. These are some of the best ghost story books of all time and how they have shaped not only the ghost story genre but also transcend the paranormal genre as well.
In no particular order but descriptions only on the first six:
The Shining by Stephen King: The tale of Jack Torrance who takes his wife Wendy and son Danny up to the mountains of Colorado so he can take care of the Overlook Hotel during the winter months. Jack soon begins hearing and seeing spirits and they tell him his son has a special gift.
Many would suggest The Shining isn’t truly a ghost story but I say it is but not in the traditional
sense. It does have a lot that goes on and the ghosts take a while to appear but the fact tat they are there, exist and are centered to the plot of the book means that it’s definitely a ghost story, and one of the best at that.
The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson: Four people stay at a house, all their for different reasons. They stay within the house to see that it is haunted and if the ghosts are welcome to their visitors but underneath the surface as the house livens up, it makes it’s presence known.
A great ghost story that takes on the ole group of people adventuring into a haunted place in hopes of finding something. It’s told in such a way that you get a good sense of what each character feels and experiences and some more than others. This is first novel that started the ole group ghost adventure story.
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens: Ebenezer Scrooge is a cold, vile and beyond bitter old man who doesn’t believe in Christmas and doesn’t really care for people or appreciate life as most do. His recently deceased partner Jacob Marley visits him and tells him three ghosts will visit him to try and get him to change his ways.
A beloved fun and famous Christmas tale but also a brilliant and eerie ghost story. It’s been told in remakes so many times over the years but usually in most cases keeps the same version and overall ghost story presence.
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving:
Ichabod Crane is a whimpy school teacher who is gullible and bullied by local Brom Bones. As he walks homes through the woods everyday he soon begins to hear things, ghosts perhaps? Even more so he begins seeing things and one thing in particular, a horseman, a headless horseman.
While Crane himself gets scared of locals telling him ghost stories the story’s main focus of ghosts is on the headless horsemen, who may or may not be a ghost at all but either someone in town playing a trick on Crane or simply a figure of his imagination.
The Turn of the Screw by Henry James: A young woman gets a job taking care of two children who are strange, silent and shy. The woman begins to hear things in the house and sees phantoms but while she is starting to get scared and feel the terror the kids aren’t scared in the slightest which could be the scariest thing of all..
Another classic story that has been told many different times although there are different variations on how it’s told. A chilling yet enthralling ghost story nonetheless, The Turn of the Screw is a ghost story that slowly develops and only gets more creepy the more into it you get.
Ligeia by Edgar Allan Poe: The story of a man whose wife, Ligeia dies and he finds another woman to marry and she too dies. The man stays with his dead wife only to see her rise from the dead but now as his beloved first wife Ligeia.
Considered one of the best short stories of all time, it was one of Edgar Allan Poe’s most famous works. It’s a ghost story in the sense of it’s deep interpretations and hidden inner meanings which means while it doesn’t seem to be a straight up ghost story on the outside it can be considered one as such from it’s inner meanings.
Ghost Story by Peter Straub
The Woman in Black by Susan Hill
The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
Dark Matter by Michelle Pavor