• Megan Wolf

Recommended Reading: Spooky Books for Kids


It may not be spooky season quite yet but that doesn’t mean people don’t like a good scare, and what could be better at giving your spine a chill than a good horror/ghost storybook? Horror/ghost storybooks have been particularly popular among kids and tweens recently as we have seen an increase in them being requested. It can be a little challenging to determine which scary books are appropriate for each child, so I have offered a few suggestions below with the suggested age range for each, but discretion is advised when determining if the book is an appropriate level of scary for your child.

House with a lighted upstairs window in a dark forest with empty train tracks headed toward the house

The books listed below are intended for kids from 8 to 14 years old.

Cover of The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier

The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier

Kicking off our list is a classic scary tale of a spooky old house with creepy people living there, a particularly creepy night gardener, and a curse thrown in for good measure. The book focuses on abandoned Irish siblings, Molly and Kip, as they head to said creepy old house to find work. There is plenty of supernatural elements thrown in to give Molly and Kip a run for their money, including a tree the house is built around that can grant any wish…for the small price of a piece of your soul. Molly and Kip have their work cut out for them as they try to work against everything the house has in store. This book is geared toward kids10-14 years old.


The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

Nobody Owens, also known as Bod, is a boy living among ghosts…literally. He lives in a graveyard and is being raised by ghosts. Naturally, this means Bod is neck-deep in the supernatural world while also finding his place in the living world. The supernatural world isn’t the only one that holds dangers for Bod, however; the man that killed his family is still at large in the living world. This, along with other adventures in the book, makes for a thrilling tale. It is also available as a graphic novel. This book is aimed at kids 8-11 years old.

Cover of Bloom by Kenneth Oppel

Bloom by Kenneth Oppel

Plants have come to attack in this next book on the list where a plant species has invaded Earth and infests, well, everything. They take up fields, houses, roads, anything they can get their leaves on. To top it all off, they also release toxic pollen and produce pods that swallow up animals and humans. There doesn’t seem to be a way to stop it, that is until it’s discovered three kids are immune to the plant's toxicity and must find a way to beat them before more plants infest the Earth. This book is the first one in a trilogy, followed by Hatch and Thrive. This book is aimed at kids 10 and up.


Jason Strange’s Series

The last entry on our list isn’t going to focus on a specific book, but rather a series an author has written. Jason Strange has written several scary books including Faceless Friend and Zombie Winter, along with about 10 other books. The books involve anything supernatural including ghosts, zombies, werewolves, Mothman, and several other supernatural forces. This provides a variety of options for kids to choose from. A few of the books are available in the catalog, but others can be requested through Interlibrary Loan on the Caldwell Public Library website. The books are aimed at kids 8-11 years old.

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