It’s officially the spooky season! Well, here in Florida, it still feels like summer, but I love this time of yearr. Give me a big cup of pumpkin spice tea, some cozy reads, and a lot of scented candles. And what better way to enjoy the season by reading some spooky books! I know not everyone is into the horror-centric world of the spooky season, but there’s so many ways to celebrate without scaring the pants off yourself. I’m sharing five books that give you those perfect spooky vibes without having to keep the lights on at night. Here’s five not-so-spooky books perfect for the Halloween season!
If witches are what you crave, then I highly suggest The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches. It’s the story of a lonely witch named Mika who is a part of a coven of witches in England that only meet once every three months. In order to feel a little bit of belonging, she’s created a persona on Instagram where she’s…a witch who shares her potions with the world. And when someone messages her asking if she can help show three young witches how to use their magic, she’s skeptical at first but does it anyway. What she finds is a funny little house filled with found family and a place where she can belong.
If you’re into zombies, then this one is for you. While this isn’t at the Walking Dead level of zombies (and they have a different name in the book), it’s about a marshal named Hart who works to protect the small town from zombie attacks and the undertaker, Mercy, who makes sure that those who have passed are properly buried. And guess what? They hate each other. Yep, if Hart could work with any other undertaker, he would, but in this weird world that they live in, he’s got to do business with Mercy every once in a while. And if you couldn’t love it anymore, it’s also a little bit of a You’ve Got Mail retelling where they write anonymous letters to each other. The book is charming, adventurous, and filled with zombie hoards. Definitely perfect if you want to read something with a little magic, but a lot of heart.
If you’re into ghosts, then this one is for you. This is the first Good Morning America Book Club pick that I really liked and if you’re not a fan of romances, then this might be perfect. It’s about a young woman named Florence who is a ghost writer for one of the most popular romance writers in the world. However, she hasn’t written a single thing in almost a year after experiencing the worst break up in her life (and possibly not believing in love anymore). Her new editor, Benji, isn’t giving her any wiggle room and Florence needs to finish the book in a day otherwise she may lose the job that’s paying her bills. Suddenly, she gets an unexpected call from her family back home only to find out her father has passed away. Struck by the news, she immediately returns home only to remember why she left in the first place: she’s able to see ghosts and helped solve a huge missing person’s case back when she was a kid. Since then, the town has considered her a little batty and Florence has never wanted to return to that town. But while she’s there, she’s met with a new ghostly friend; her new editor Benji. As she navigates through the loss of her father and figuring out what she’s going to do next, she’s visited by her dead editor who helps her in more ways than one. Truly a surprising and engrossing story. I really loved this one and if you’re a lover of ghostly romances, then definitely check it out!
If you’re into gothic retellings with a more modern twist, then you should check out Reluctant Immortals. The story follows Lucy and Bertha. You may know these names as the significant lovers of two very famous literary men: Dracula and Mr. Rochester from Jane Eyre. In this story, Lucy and Bertha have shed the nasty worlds that they’ve been imprisoned and find themselves immortals living in Los Angeles in the 1970s. Lucy is the main protagonist as she carries jars of Dracula’s ashes across the city and Bertha tries to avoid the voices of Mr. Rochester following her around. But when the boys find a way to ensnare groups of young people in the California desert (think of Charles Manson and the cults of the time period), it’s up to Lucy and Bertha to set aside their feelings and help the innocent. With a few special appearances from other characters and an adventure through the California coastline, this book is perfect if you want something a bit more spooky that won’t be too heart-clenching.
If you’re not looking for any kind of magical creatures and just want something more fun, then you’ll really like this trio of YA romances all set during the same day with three different characters and all the romantic tropes. It follows Onny, Ash, and True: three best friends who have been waiting for the perfect night (the night of the town’s Halloween ball) to try a potion Onny brewed with the help from her Filipino grandmother. Of course, it’s a love potion that helps the person who drinks it to see their feelings for them. Each story follows one of the friends through a funny set of experiences with their OTP. You get a full range of the different romantic tropes and the stories are so perfect for the Halloween season. Nothing spooky about this one, but you will find yourself feeling a lot for these characters as they all fall in love.