Cat Sandler is the teen librarian at Homewood Public Library. She likes long walks in graveyards and reading books that strike fear into the hearts of man. She is currently re-reading Dracula for the fifth time. Here, she offers her five best “spooky” book reads for the fall.
By Bram Stoker | Horror
What can I say about Dracula that’ll do it justice? This classic horror novel by Bram Stoker is so vastly different from the common understanding, and it is so much better than you’d think. Movie renditions leave out the absolute best of this novel. For example, did you know that Count Dracula runs around his house behind our hero Jonathan Harker’s back doing all the chores to pretend he has servants in the castle? Also, there is a cowboy, a psychiatrist, a monster hunter and a man who eats bugs in this novel? Give it a try.
Curse of Strahd
Multiple Authors | Horror
Now that I’ve got you interested in the “OG vampire,” why not have your own adventure to take him down. Curse of Strahd is a Dungeons and Dragons module set in the land of Barovia, where vampires, werewolves, ghosts and hags call home sweet home. If you have ever read a horror novel and thought to yourself, “I would have figured out how to get out of this situation,” or “I could have beat the monster,” then it’s time to pony up because here’s your chance.
And I Darken
Kiersten White | Thriller/Action and Adventure
One of the most interesting parts about Dracula is that the count is based on a real person. Our famous Vlad is derived from Vlad Tepes, Voivode of Wallachia, and national hero of Romania. And I Darken is the first book in a trilogy by Kiersten White that follows an alternate history where Vlad is born Lada. This female version of Vlad is also taken by the Ottoman empire, learns to fight and definitely learns to kill. If you want a series about a vicious, powerful girl finding her way to her throne, this series is a great choice.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Multiple Authors | Thriller/Suspense
After the vampires come the slayers. Buffy The Vampire Slayer: Chosen Ones is an anthology of slayers throughout history fighting their own versions of vamps. This version of the Buffy-verse is interesting because it gives a glimpse into what vampires can look like in different cultures. In this collection, you get a Native American slayer protecting her people from vampires and colonizers, a hunter in the Philippines hunting the Mambabarang and a story about the Sisters of Angelus. This comic is a good intro for readers new to the Buffy series and also a nice bite for old fans who are hungry for new stories.
Kohta Hirano | Horror/Action and Adventure
It feels right to end with a full circle back to a classic vampire story. Hellsing is a well-beloved manga series by Kohta Hirano that follows the Royal Order of Protestant Knights as they stave off the destruction of society from the creatures of the night. This action-packed series is one of the greats of manga, with the protagonist Alucard, the turn-coat hunter who is a vampire himself carrying the weight of this horror manga. If you enjoy the Ca