Edgar Allan Poe is well known for exploring motifs of unrequited love, haunted spaces, and the uncanny through works like “Annabel Lee,” “The Murders in the Rue Morgue,” and “The Masque of the Red Death.” Fans of his work—or anyone interested in these themes—should check out these crime fiction novels that will surely have you second-guessing the creaks in your home.
In this slow-burn mystery, Noemí Taboada heads to High Place, a distant house in the Mexican countryside, after receiving a frantic letter from her newlywed cousin begging for someone to save her from a mysterious doom. This unlikely hero—a glamorous socialite wearing —doesn’t know much about the region. But she’s determined, tough, and finds an ally: the family’s youngest son, who seems to want to help her, but is also hiding the family’s dark past. As Noemí digs deeper into the house’s secrets, she unearths stories of violence and madness.
Following a man who believes he’s doing studies on people, there’s more to this book than meets the eye. We take a deep dive into the manipulative mind of a serial stalker who targets women across London, and through his perspective, get into the lives of his unsuspecting victims. Things escalate when he settles on Frances, a bright, young professional whose career is about to take off. Read Me shows us the ways we observe, judge, and influence people, and asks questions about power and complicity.
by Matt Query
by Harrison Query
Former Marine Harry and his wife, Sasha, just bought the house of their dreams, leaving behind the corporate life for forty acres of meadow, aspen trees, and pine forest in Teton Valley. Their nearest neighbors, Dan and Lucy Steiner, welcome them with a warning about malevolent spirits in the valley. Harry and Sasha brush the warning off, but when spring arrives, so does the first manifestation of this evil. Their beliefs are challenged as the spirit grows stronger, more sinister, and more dangerous as each season passes.
Samanta Schweblin; Megan McDowell (Translator)
In this nightmare of a ghost story set in the real world, Amanda is on the verge of dying in a rural hospital clinic. A boy named David is sitting next to her. She’s not his mother, and he is not her child. Together they are in conversation to figure out how Amanda got there, weaving a haunting story about broken souls, toxins, and the power of family.
Jonathan Lethem (Afterword by); Thomas Ott (Illustrator); Shirley Jackson
Merricat and her family live at Blackwood House, the scene of multiple tea poisonings. They rarely get visitors and they want to keep it that way, believing the world to be full of terrible people. Merricat has developed an idiosyncratic system of rules and protective magic to guard her and her family against the distrust and hostility of neighboring villagers. But when cousin Charles arrives, with his eye on the Blackwood fortune, he disrupts the sisters’ careful habits and the family dynamic, making Merricat adopt desperate methods to rid their house of this stranger. The results unearth a terrible secret that brings the villagers to converge upon the house.
What to Read Next
Emily Hoang is a writer and editor who is obsessed with haunted houses, ghosts, and dreams. More info can be found on her website.