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Book Recs Based on Your Favorite Canceled Horror Shows

You know that feeling when you find the perfect horror show? It's unique. It's weird. It's creepy as hell. Then you are probably also familiar with the dissapointment when that same perfect series is canceled after just one season. This list is here to celebrate the brief glory of these superb shows and offer up similar books that might scratch the same ghostly itch for you.

Now, we are well-aware that more than one of these shows are adaptations. We assume if you love the show, then you already know about the book on which it is based. So for the purpose of this list, we are suggesting other titles not directly related to the source material.

The Midnight Club (Netflix, 2022)

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The Pallbearers Club by Paul Tremblay (William Morrow, 2022)

From the publisher:

"What if the coolest girl you’ve ever met decided to be your friend?

Art Barbara was so not cool. He was a seventeen-year-old high school loner in the late 1980s who listened to hair metal, had to wear a monstrous back-brace at night for his scoliosis, and started an extracurricular club for volunteer pallbearers at poorly attended funerals. But his new friend thought the Pallbearers Club was cool. And she brought along her Polaroid camera to take pictures of the corpses.

Okay, that part was a little weird.

So was her obsessive knowledge of a notorious bit of New England folklore that involved digging up the dead. And there were other strange things – terrifying things – that happened when she was around, usually at night. But she was his friend, so it was okay, right?

Decades later, Art tries to make sense of it all by writing The Pallbearers Club: A Memoir. But somehow this friend got her hands on the manuscript and, well, she has some issues with it. And now she’s making cuts.

Seamlessly blurring the lines between fiction and memory, the supernatural and the mundane, The Pallbearers Club is an immersive, suspenseful portrait of an unusual and disconcerting relationship."

Archive 81 (Netflix, 2022)

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Last Days by Adam Nevill (St. Masrtin's Griffin, 2012)

From the publisher:

"The Temple of the Last Days. The brutal cult with a history of murder, sex and occult dealings destroyed itself during one night of ritualistic violence decades ago. Or so they thought . . .

Kyle Freeman is an indie film-maker with no money and few options, so when he lands a commission to make a documentary about The Temple of the Last Days he jumps at the chance. Little does he know that his investigation into the cult's bloody history will lead him into the darkest places he's ever been.

As they travel from the London and France to Arizona tracing the path of the cult, uncanny events, out-of-body experiences, ghastly artefacts and visits by the merciless 'old friends' plague Kyle and his one-man crew. They soon discover the power of the cult's terrible legacy, and that it may be too late for them to escape . . ."

Lovecraft Country (HBO, 2020)

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Ring Shout by P. Djèlí Clark (Tor, 2020)

From the publisher:

"In 1915, The Birth of a Nation cast a spell across America, swelling the Klan's ranks and drinking deep from the darkest thoughts of white folk. All across the nation they ride, spreading fear and violence among the vulnerable. They plan to bring Hell to Earth. But even Ku Kluxes can die.

Standing in their way is Maryse Boudreaux and her fellow resistance fighters, a foul-mouthed sharpshooter and a Harlem Hellfighter. Armed with blade, bullet, and bomb, they hunt their hunters and send the Klan's demons straight to Hell. But something awful's brewing in Macon, and the war on Hell is about to heat up.

Can Maryse stop the Klan before it ends the world?"

Marianne (Netflix, 2019)

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Hex by Thomas Olde Heuvelt (Tor, 2016)

From the publisher:

"Whoever is born here, is doomed to stay ’til death. Whoever settles, never leaves.

Welcome to Black Spring, the seemingly picturesque Hudson Valley town haunted by the Black Rock Witch, a seventeenth century woman whose eyes and mouth are sewn shut. Muzzled, she walks the streets and enters homes at will. She stands next to children’s beds for nights on end. Everybody knows that her eyes may never be opened or the consequences will be too terrible to bear.

The elders of Black Spring have virtually quarantined the town by using high-tech surveillance to prevent their curse from spreading. Frustrated with being kept in lockdown, the town’s teenagers decide to break their strict regulations and go viral with the haunting. But, in so doing, they send the town spiraling into dark, medieval practices of the distant past."

The Passage (Fox, 2019)

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The Girl with All the Gifts by M.R. Carey (Orbit, 2014)

From the publisher:

"Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class. When they come for her, Sergeant Parks keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don't like her. She jokes that she won't bite. But they don't laugh.

Melanie is a very special girl."

Crazyhead (Channel 4/Netflix, 2016)

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My Best Friend's Exorcism by Grady Hendrix (Quirk Books, 2017)

From the publisher:

"The year is 1988. High school sophomores Abby and Gretchen have been best friends since fourth grade. But after an evening of skinny-dipping goes disastrously wrong, Gretchen begins to act…different. She’s moody. She’s irritable. And bizarre incidents keep happening whenever she’s nearby. Abby’s investigation leads her to some startling discoveries—and by the time their story reaches its terrifying conclusion, the fate of Abby and Gretchen will be determined by a single question: Is their friendship powerful enough to beat the devil?"

[Image Credit: Archive 81 screenshot used under fair use]

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