The Time Machine by H.G. Wells is one of my all time favourite books. It is classic sci-fi with more than a hit of horror. The Time Machine is a short book, more of a novella, so I’m recommending it as a perfect Halloween read. It will just last you a day or two, no longer than up to Bonfire Night so perfect to get you in the Halloween mood without dragging it out long after the day has passed.
Dystopian futures are all the rage in literature, particularly YA fiction and The Time Machine is an extreme vision of the future of the earth. The Time Traveller is a scientist, who, over the course of an evening, stuns his dinner guests with the fantastical tale of the future that he has visited. The human race is split into two distinct breeds – the placid Eloi and the fearsome Morlocks – both suffering a dreadful fate. The Time Traveller risks his life greatly but still goes further, and then further still into the future, eventually witnessing the death of Earth.
Even though this is a classic sci-fi, the Morlocks are monstrous enough to warrant a Halloween outing. In my opinion, it is a book that everyone should read at some point, especially if you’re interested in how dystopian stories reflect on contemporary fears. However, if that isn’t enough to convince you, how about these alternatives:
- Robert Louis Stevenson: The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde – Still short enough to be enjoyed over a few evenings, still ticking the classic box.
- Susan Hill: The Woman in Black – Seriously creepy, a classic ghost story.
- Stephen King: Carrie – Quick, before the new film comes out! Honestly worth reading.
- R.L. Stine: Goosebumps series / OR various authors Point Horror series for a nostalgia hit. I just found a bunch of Point Horrors in my attic and immediately re-read The Diary by Sinclair Smith. Ah childhood memories!
You shouldn’t have any trouble tracking these books, or ones by the same authors/in the same series, down in good charity shops.
What is top of your Halloween reading list?