October is the month to read all things scary and all things that goes bump in the night, but scary books must have one main thing, a scary setting, without the ominous feeling that the backdrop offers, the story tend to fall flat.
Here are 5 of my top favorite creepy settings. Great topic Sam! I will also include some great book recommendations that feature the particular setting
The woods/forest can either be an enchanting scenery or and ominous location, but for sure nothing is scarier than the woods/forest at night. The unexplored usually will give you the goosebumps and the chill down your spine Especially if someone or something is lurking behind its shadows.
In a Dark Dark Wood by Ruth Ware and Through the Woods by Emily Carroll are great examples of the dark and creepy woods and things that hide within its surroundings.
My Review of Through the Woods
Yes, some historical events are not a laughing matter and should be handled with care, but there are some authors that use historical events to create an environment that will give you nightmares. While being respectful of the injured, they are still able to create a world that is only seen in your nightmares.
In the Shadow of Blackbirds by Cat Winters and Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscolca are two very recent reads for me, but they are perfect examples of authors using historical events to their advantage. While one takes Worlds War I and the Spanish Inlfuenza into a paranormal twist, the latter give the infamous Jack the Ripper a new face.
My Review on In the Shadow of Blackbirds
I have a thing about asylums. I know mental health should be taken seriously, but those few years that asylums were open and experimenting on people is just a setting that needs to be used by authors.
The Asylum Trilogy by Madeleine Laroux is one of the few books that I’ve read that is set in an asylum. Yes, I wasn’t a fan of either the first or third book, but the chills that the second book gave me was almost worth the read. Plus the pictures will send you over the edge. Dennis Lehane’s Shutter Island is a much better read that will leave you in shock by the end of the book, the movie was also pretty good.
My Review on Asylum.
Space and the Moon is also another one of those setting that is creepy because its the unknown. Very few has been out there and the majority of space has not yet been explored by humans. So of course we are not 100% sure that we are alone in this vast galaxy, definitely a very good setting for creepy books.
Most books I have read set on the moon is Science Fiction or Fantasy, but 172 Hours on the Moon is a book that everyone should read. Although I’m not a fan of the characters, the environment that Johan Harstad created is – everything. It’s been two years since I read this book, but it still gives me the creeps when I think about it.
My Review on 172 Hours on the Moon
‘One dark, Rainy night..’ Yes, it’s cliche, but rain and the dark is very effective in creating a creepy setting and it’s even more powerful when this ‘dark and rainy night’ is happening in a deserted island. Like I keep saying all throughout this post, its really more of the unknown that gives you the chills, and making the environment stormy is even more of a hazard to the protagonist(s).
Ten by Gretchen McNeil is not one of my favorite books, but the use of the creepy setting is definitely a plus on this book. Not so much deserted, but rather isolated, ten teens are stranded on the island with an impending storm, and a killer amidst them. This book definitely gave me some spine chilling moments. The Breakdown by B.A. Paris is also another great example of taking the environment and giving it a creepy twist. Although this book is not set in a deserted island, the main chill factor is the weather and a forest (which is my first point ^^). A recent read for me, its thrilling and will psychologically mess you up as you read it.
So that’s it for me this week on my Top 5! Hope you guys enjoyed it and comment down below on some of your favorite creepy settings. Also, give me recommendations for more scary/thriller books. Although I’m a scaredy cat, I enjoy getting zero sleep as I lay in my bed having an internal battle with my imagination!