Classic Horror on My October Reading List!

We have officially begun my favorite part of the year! CELEBRATE!!!

pumpkin head

October – early January is my ABSOLUTE favorite time of the year. The weather is cooler, there are loads of holidays to celebrate in that time, and it all starts now. October is the perfect way to kick off my favorite time of the year because it’s a month dedicated to all things horror, spooky, fall and pumpkin-y. I get so excited whenever this time of year rolls around.

You can never have enough dancing pumpkin head gifs, can you?
You can never have enough dancing pumpkin head gifs, can you?

This year, to get me into the Halloween spirit I’m going to be reading classic horror novels all month long. While I love a good horror read, there are some staples to the genre that I’ve just never experience. I’m hoping to remedy that this month. While there are some new horror releases I’m looking to read (namely this one), I really want to give a lot of love to classic horror this month. Here are the stories on my list:

HP Lovecraft stories: Call of Cthulu and The Case of Charles Dexter Ward


Cthulu is everywhere in geek culture these days, and I’m ashamed to say that I’ve never read a thing about him. Not only have I never read anything on Cthulu, but I’ve never read Lovecraft period. I definitely plan to remedy that this October.

Dracula by Bram Stoker


How have I gotten this far in life without reading Dracula? I have no idea. I’ve seen ALL the movies on vampires and several Dracula film adaptations, but I’ve never actually read the book. I’m righting that wrong this October, kids.

Turn of the Screw by Henry James

turn of the screw

While I’ve read most of this one, I’ve never truly finished it. Plus, I started reading this one during my time as a nanny, so I don’t feel like I was ever able to read it very carefully since any reading time was often interrupted by kiddos needing me for something. However, it’s probably good that I wasn’t reading it super intensely, as the book is about a governess (which is essentially an old-timey nanny) who is dealing with ghosts at her job.

Edgar Allen Poe Stories: The Pit and the Pendulum and The Telltale Heart

poe quote

I love Poe, and I’ve never read Pit and the Pendulum before, so I’d love to add a new Poe story to my life. I’ve most definitely read Telltale Heart before, but I just love it so much that I have to read it again. I might also re-read his poem “The Raven”. It isn’t particularly “horror”, more gothic and…generally unsettling, but I love it so much.

What are you reading this October? What are some of your favorite horror classics? Let me know in the comments!

14 thoughts on “Classic Horror on My October Reading List!

  1. As much as I love horror fiction, and vampires specifically, I just. can’t. seem. to. finish. Dracula. Believe me. I’ve tried. On multiple occasions. Frankenstein on the other hand…

    1. I’ve heard mixed opinions on Dracula, so I’m interested to see what my reading experience is. I’ve read Frankenstein twice, both times for school. I liked it, but it wasn’t my favorite. I’m thinking I should just read it again. I tend to like books more reading them post-school than I did when I was a student.

      1. I think what I like best about Frankenstein is the context behind it. Also, the fact that I think Frankenstein is based on Shelley and it’s not a flattering portrayal.

      2. For sure. I think I’ll be able to appreciate the context more reading it on my own time rather than trying to fit it in with reading and homework from zillions of other classes.

  2. I’ve never read Lovecraft either. . .but I do have a collection of his stories. Usually, every October, I try to read one classic horror novel. I’ve done Frankenstein, Jekyll and Hyde, Dracula, and Frankenstein again (I usually just reread Frankenstein). Maybe this year will be the year of Cthulhu.

    1. I have a collection of his stuff, too! Ha! And I STILL haven’t read it. Oh well! And Jekyll and Hyde is a good one, so is Frankenstein. We’ll see what I think about Dracula! I’m excited!

  3. This is such a great list!! I’m reading The Night Circus with Novel Tea Book Club – it’s perfectly spooky for the season!

  4. Some great reading choices you have in the run up to Halloween! I’ve been just finished reading Clive Barkers Books of Blood, enjoyed those. With Halloween on the way I like to read something spooky. Sure I will read some HP Lovecraft as well, always enjoy revisiting those stories. Sure you will enjoy them, very gothic and spooky. You’ve never read Dracula!!! Well, that’s a fave of mine too, great book, will be interesting to hear what you think of it. Haven’t made up my mind what I will be reading this month, in the moon to read The Woman in Black maybe. Well, enjoy your spooky Halloween / Fall reading 🙂

  5. I’ve yet to read Dracula either, despite loving horror and vampires specifically. It’s been on my list for ages, my mum owns it so I could easily borrow it, and I’ve just never gotten around to it! In fact, there is a lot of classic horror I should read, or give a re-read. Great list!

    1. Thanks! There are so many good books out there, its so easy to miss out on a few–especially classics. My TBR list is just so unweildly with tons of new and old books that I want to read! 🙂

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