Silver Lining: What to Read: Halloween Short Stories

September 26, 2016

What to Read: Halloween Short Stories

I'm the first to admit: I'm a wimp when it comes to scary things. Scary movies freak me out, I haven't read a single Stephen King book, and I've been to exactly one haunted house in my life (although I actually found the haunted house more tacky than terrifying). 

But scary short stories? Those I like. They're a great way to get you in the Halloween mood and you can read each in one sitting. They rate really low on the evil and overly graphic scale too. Here's a list of my favorite scary short stories that will get you in the Halloween mood!

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow (Graphic Novel)
Washington Irving
I haven't actually read the novel version of this story, but I read a shortened graphic novel. It was the perfect blend of scary and short, even though the illustrations were a little distracting in my opinion. I like the cartoon version of this one, too :) It's about a superstitious man who takes an ill-fated trip into the woods.

The Cask of Amontillado
Edgar Allen Poe
I remember reading this in middle school before Halloween. Edgar Allan Poe is the master of horror short stories, and this one was perfectly sinister. It's about a single-minded man with a terrible plan for revenge.

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark
Alvin Schwartz
This is a collection of very short scary stories. Some of these are scarier than others, but overall, this is a good collection of horror stories. The stories are appropriate for younger audiences, and the illustrations are creepy too.

The Tell-Tale Heart
Edgar Allen Poe
Another perfectly scary short story about a paranoid murderer trying to prove his innocence. They just don't make stories nowadays like they used to. This is one of the classics.

The Tailypo
Joanna Galdone
This is an illustrated children's book about an older man who lives alone and cuts off the tail of an animal to eat for dinner. But then the animal wants its tail back... This one is good for younger audiences, too.

The Raven
Edgar Allen Poe
The Raven is a short poem by the classic Poe. This is probably one of the most iconic Halloween stories of all time. It's not my personal favorite of his, but hey, you can't make a list of scary short stories without including The Raven.

The Ghost-Eye Tree 
Bill Martin Jr.
This book is beautifully written and illustrated. It's really not too scary, and actually has a good message to it, but it had to be included here because it gets the reader instantly in a spooky Halloween mood. It's about two young kids who have to pass by a haunted tree on a dark night. A great read-aloud to kids.

The Most Dangerous Game
Richard Connell
I read this short story in middle school first, and loved it. It's about a hunter who stumbles upon an island. On that island is a dangerous man who has a passion for hunting the most cunning game...

What are your favorite Halloween short stories?
Which ones am I missing?
And are there any other horror wimps out there, or is it just me? ;)

A previous version of this post was first seen on my blog two years ago here

Follow me on Goodreads for my most recent book reviews!

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Strong female leads
Great book club books
Stand-alone fantasy
Light-hearted clean romance books
Beautiful literary WWII masterpieces
Best books for the new parent

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Easy classic novels

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