Halloween is only days away, and while your younger kiddos get the joy of trick or treating, picking the perfect costume, (and then changing their mind the night before) watching It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown! and generally getting excited for all things that (gently) go bump in the night- older kids often get left out of the equation. Too old for trick or treating, too old to dress up, and too old to get a kick out of you telling them their spaghetti dinner is brains, they’re left to find their own creepy crawly entertainment on All Hallow’s Eve. In lieu of them tee peeing your crotchety neighbors house or watching a horror movie that will scar them for life, encourage them to make some easy Halloween treats, cozy up under the covers, and read one of these unbelievable stories that are guaranteed to make them sleep with the lights on.
We’ve rounded up a collection of stories perfect for your older kids that are actually scary; just be prepared to find them in your bed once they’ve finished reading. Plus, all these books can be accessed for free through the Libby App. From dolls coming alive to a boy imprisoned by a witch to a school trip gone horribly wrong, these books will give you goosebumps and make you extra jumpy; just make sure you don’t read these while you’re home alone. You’ll be faced with the terrible dilemma of reading in silence so you can hear the footsteps coming for you, or turning up the tv so you don’t hear anything at all. Put your older kids on doorbell duty and watch as they jump out of their skin every time the doorbell rings. Trick or treat…
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From the brilliant mind of J.A. White comes the story of a boy imprisoned by a witch who must tell her a new scary story each night to stay alive. But what happens when he runs out of pages?
Nightbooks, $5.61 at Amazon
Slasher Girls & Monster Boys
This incredible collection of terrifying tales and psychological thrillers hand chosen by April Genevieve Tucholke will make the hair on the back of your neck stand up- in the best way, of course. With over 14 different authors, there’s something for everyone in this collection.
Slasher Girls and Monster Boys, $8.66 at Amazon
The Ghost Road
Ghosts, a family curse, buried secrets, and two girls who have to figure it all out. What really happened to their moms? Are they twins? Does one of them have the power to see the Ghost Road? Be prepared to be captivated until the very last sentence.
The Ghost Road, $9.99 at Amazon
Out To Get You
A stray kitten turns into a threatening follower. The street sign down the block starts taunting you. Even your own shadow is out to get you! Spooky things love hiding in plain sight. 13 tales of weirdness and woe is the aptly named collection by debut author Josh Allen that will give you spine tingling chills.
Out to Get You, $16.99 at Amazon
The Spookiest Campfire Stories
Nothing goes better with gooey s’mores and a glowing campfire than a ghost story. Vampires, werewolves, witches, Bloody Mary, the Wendigo, and other frightening specters populate the pages of this compelling collection of S.E. Schlosser’s best ghost stories and her favorite horror classics from Edgar Allen Poe, Charles Dickens and more.
The Spookiest Campfire Stories, $10 at Amazon
The Dollhouse Murders
This classic by Betty Ren Wright is the unbelievable tale of dolls that come to life. Dolls can’t move by themselves, right? But what if every night when you go into the attic, it is filled with an eerie light and the dolls have moved again! Are the dolls trying to tell you something?
The Dollhouse Murders, $6.81 at Amazon
The Thing at the Foot of the Bed and Other Scary Tales
An enjoyable creepy collection of tales by Marie Leach; there’s the one about the fellow who saw two eyes staring at him from the foot of the bed, and the one about the family that ran away from their malevolent household spirit only to find that it had come with them.
The Thing at the Foot of the Bed, $7.99 at Amazon
This amazing adventure is a high-stakes middle grade mystery series about Harper Raine, the new seventh grader in town who must face down the dangerous ghosts haunting her younger brother.
Spirit Hunters, $6.99 at Amazon
A school trip that is eerily familiar and goes horribly wrong, you’ll be on the edge of your seat from start to nerve wracking finish.
Small Spaces, $8.39 at Amazon
Desmond Cole Ghost Patrol Campfire Stories
Camping with Desmond Cole is a lot of fun, until he starts telling ghost stories around the campfire. Most kids tell creepy stories that are totally fake, but Desmond tells totally true stories that will give you goosebumps. So, settle in while Desmond, Andres, and their ghost-friend, Zax, take turns trying to tell the scariest story of all.
Desmond Cole Ghost Patrol Campfire Stories, $5.99 at Amazon
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark
A timeless collection of chillingly scary tales and legends, in which folklorist Alvin Schwartz offers up some of the most alarming tales of horror, dark revenge, and supernatural events of all time.
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, $6.98 at Amazon
In Coraline’s family’s new flat are twenty-one windows and fourteen doors. Thirteen of the doors open and close. The fourteenth is locked, and on the other side is only a brick wall, until the day Coraline unlocks the door to find a passage to another flat in another house just like her own. Only it’s different…
Coraline, $6.99 on Amazon
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