Books about hauntings
It isn't always easy to classify a ghost story, especially with someone like David Almond, for instance, who writes on many levels. That's really why I use the word 'hauntings' - in case it is possible to be haunted without a ghost.
If you like a straightforward ghost story, there are plenty of good ones to choose from. Not all ghost stories are scary. If you are a younger reader you might like to meet the Children of Green Knowe. They're really fun. Or if you like tingles up your spine, try something else.
Contagion by Teri Terry
Missing person hunt bumps into much bigger, sinister, deadly epidemic, end-of-the-world scenario. Seriously disturbing.
The Dead of Winter by Chris Priestley
Haunted house. Or is it Michael himself who is being haunted?
Uncle Montague's Tales of Terror by Chris Priestley
Short stories of terror collected within a long story of terror. And quite surprisingly horrid.
The Screaming Staircase by Jonathan Stroud
Lockwood & Co prove themselves to be the best psychic investigations agency in London...eventually, maybe.
Gone by Michael Grant
A world with no adults...just children, some with superpowers. How long will they last?
Milrose Munce and the Den of Professional Help by Douglas Anthony Cooper
Kids who converse with ghosts on a regular basis need Professional Help, right? But will Milrose Munce survive to tell the tale?
Midwinter Lucie by Alan Porter
Martin Lewis, next in line of a long line of Martin Lewis's, who have all perished in the bell tower of the church at Midwinter Lucie. Can our Martin find out why...and prevent his own death?
Fearless by Tim Lott
Locked away for no reason. Stripped of name, shaved of hair, dressed in grey. Little Fearless fights against the injustice for herself and all the other girls who aren't so brave.
The Death Collector by Justin Richards
Frankenstein-flavour murder mystery in Victorian smog-bound London, with a touch of the mad scientist thrown in.
Worm in the Blood by Thomas Bloor
A transformation tale of separation, isolation and despair. Bit more than your average teenage angst.
The Spook's Apprentice by Joseph Delaney
To be an apprenticespook Thomas Ward has to leave his old life behind him. And he has to sharpen up his wits too. But he's already well-equipped, being the seventh son of a seventh son...
Darkhenge by Catherine Fisher
There's no love lost between Rob and his sister. But Rob finds, rather to his surprise, that he'll go to a lot of trouble to get her back. Magic and mystery.
Scabbit Isle by Tom Pow
Sam thinks he's helping the strange young girl, but he's helping himself too.
Apocalypse by Tim Bowler
Shipwrecked and alone amongst savages, Kit learns that the opposite of despair is hope.
Other Echoes by Adele Geras
Flora, living in Borneo, finds there is more to life than being frightened of spiders and snakes . . . and some things you just needn't fear at all.
Lirael by Garth Nix
'Does the walker choose the path, or the path the walker?' Lirael's destiny is not what she wanted, or expected.
The Soul Thieves by Catherine Fisher
The final conflict between the sorceress Gudrun and her son Kari. Can he develop his skills and match her power and still stay off the road to evil?
The Empty Hand by Catherine Fisher
Gudrun has left the Jarlshold and returned to the land of the Snow-Walkers in the far north, beyond all natural knowledge. But she cannot leave Kari alone. She sends a rune-beast to fetch him, and doesn't care how many of the Jarl's people perish in the encounter.
The Snow-Walker's Son by Catherine Fisher
A Viking mix of magic and superstition, courage and loyalty. A battle between Gudrun the sorceress, and Kari, the son who she disowned. Can Kari's powers possibly match those of his mother? And does he have to follow her evil path?
Coraline by Neil Gaiman
Gothic horror fantasy. Coraline's got a job on, saving her parents, and herself, from the witch.
The Other Wind by Ursula Le Guin
The dead are seeking to free themselves and invade Earthsea.
The Devil's Toenail by Sally Prue
It's that old conundrum - if the devil himself were to pop up and offer you a bit of help with your earthly problems, would you really want it?
The Dungeon by Lynne Reid Banks
'I am with you 'til you die'. Peony, the wretched slave girl, etches it into the dungeon wall, and finally, into McLennan's heart.
Count Karlstein by Philip Pullman
You would know better, wouldn't you, than to strike a bargain with Zamiel, the Demon Huntsman?
Sabriel by Garth Nix
Sabriel must cross into Death to find her father. She can do it with the protection of Charter Magic and the tools of the necromancer, but it is dangerous . . .
Dead Gorgeous by Malorie Blackman
The only person who takes any interest in Nova is the dishy Liam. Unfortunately, he's a ghost . . .
Firewing by Kenneth Oppel
Adventures in the Underworld. Superhero bats, unlikely hero bats, deadly enemy bats. Fluffy beasties, human emotions.
Starseeker by Tim Bowler
Luke is in trouble. His father's dead, his mother would like to remarry, and he's in with the wrong sort at school. And that's just what's going on outside his head. Inside, there's a lot to master before his musical genius can really take off. Brilliant book!
Mondays Are Red by Nicola Morgan
Luke, weak and confused by his recent illness, is almost consumed by his own determination to survive and recover.
The Haunting of Alaizabel Cray by Chris Wooding
Wych-hunter Thaniel Fox is not sure what to make of the beautiful Alaizabel Cray when he finds her lost among the ghouls and ghasts of the Old Quarter.
Cold Tom by Sally Prue
He thinks he's an elf, but the Tribe don't want him. He's a liability. His fangs haven't grown. His voice is ugly. He's losing his sharp eyesight and hearing. Where can he go where he will be safe, and where does he belong?
In the Middle of the Night by Robert Cormier
Denny lives with guilt. But it isn't his own guilt, it's his father's. Every year the phone calls come, seeking to remind Denny's father of the tragedy which triggered the calls. This year, Denny wants it to be different . . .
When Marnie Was There by Joan G Robinson
Is Marnie an imaginary friend? Or is she real? Perhaps it doesn't really matter. Anna and Marnie share a wonderful friendship, but when Marnie has to leave, Anna finds she is better able to make new friends . . .
The Killer's Cousin by Nancy Werlin
David's a killer, by accident. He's nervous now. Nervous of ghosts, nervous of his strange cousin and the limits that she might push him to. But most of all, he's nervous of himself. A terrifying read.
Harpies by David Belbin
On holiday on a Greek island, Cassie becomes pre-occupied by the mythical harpies. Have they really come back to seduce the boys away, including her own brother, or is she just feeling left out of the action? And where is Ben anyway?
The Girl Who Knew by Sandra Glover
Injured in a hit-and-run accident, Kits learns more about her best friend than she ever knew before. She learns that her friend is in danger, and she knows that she is the only one who can help.
Caught on a Train by Carlo Gebler
A harmless competition to tell the best tale. But nobody would want to judge this competition with the vindictive Mr Cink determined to win at any cost.
The Ghost Behind the Wall by Melvin Burgess
David roots around in the old service shafts of the flats where he lives, and disturbs something that would have been much better left alone.
Coram Boy by Jamila Gavin
You need a lot of luck to survive the accident of birth in the eighteenth century, especially if you are born into poverty, or illegitimate, or if your path crosses that of Otis Gardiner, Coram man, trader in babies, blackmail and despair . . .
The Beguilers by Kate Thompson
Rilka sets out on a quest to catch a beguiler and to understand its nature. And in doing so she learns a lot about her own nature too.
Secret Heart by David Almond
When the last tiger left the circus his spirit stayed behind. Now, on the last day, when the very canvas of the tent is thin and frayed and starting to tear, who is strong and brave enough to lead the tiger back to the forest?
Milo's Wolves by Jenny Nimmo
Laura doesn't believe that Gwendal is her long-lost brother. But what else could he be? He seems to have enemies, but he seems to have powerful friends too . . .
The Dogs by Mark Morris
What could be worse than losing your dogs somewhere out on the moor? Finding them again nine years later . . .
The Leap by Jonathan Stroud
Charlie has lost her best friend Max. He drowned at the mill pond. Or was he bewitched? And can she really fetch him back?
Jack Holborn by Leon Garfield
Jack Holborn stows away aboard the Charming Molly and falls into the hands of a pirate crew.
Clockwork or All Wound Up by Philip Pullman
Do you think you can sell your soul to the Devil, and get away with it?
The Eclipse of the Century by Jan Mark
Keith dreams about a strange place, Quantoum. But when he seeks out the place and visits, his dream becomes a nightmare.
Bird Boy by Alison Prince
Is the house haunted? Or is Conan himself haunted? Should he try to discover what happened in this house, in his own family all those years ago?
Why the Whales Came by Michael Morpurgo
Not so much why the whales came as what happened when they did come. Old Birdman of Bryher turns out to be not so much a mad old coot, but a stalwart of the community.
Skellig by David Almond
What is this thing in the garage? It's the weirdest angel I've ever come across. But can it work miracles?
Moondial by Helen Cresswell
Minty finds that the sundial in the grounds of the old house holds the key to time travel, but can she do any good deeds while she's hovering about in time and space?
Kit's Wilderness by David Almond
Haunting, introspective book about a local community's roots and the effect of past events on the present inhabitants. Do they all see ghosts or are they just in tune with each other?
Heaven Eyes by David Almond
'Damaged' children escaping from the council home are cast ashore after a rough raft ride onto the oozing mud of The Middens. But who on earth is that living in the abandoned warehouse, and do they really dig up a saint out of the mud?
The Candle House by Pauline Fisk
Bit of a cavort around a sparsely occupied valley whipping the locals up into a frenzy about a newly planned theme park and getting the local landowner (d. 1593) to help.