My Top 10 Must Read Books
10. The Undead Series by Mary Janice Davidson
The Undead Series is a paranormal romance book series. Betsy Taylor turns 30 and tragiclly gets killed by an SUV. She wakes up at the funeral home. After several attempts to kill herself, she comes to the realization that she is a vampire. The vampire community is convinced she’s their prophesied Queen. But she’s not having any of it! She is so out of her element… but her would be consort, Eric Sinclair, is ever present (and ever so annoying). If only he wasn’t so tall, dark, gorgeous and… undead.
9. The Dark Series by Christine Feehan
Welcome to the home of the Carpathians.
Their stories allow us to explore everything from shapeshifting, to wild, exotic and dangerous animals, to the nature of true love (and passion). The extraordinary nature of these stories make it a pleasure to visit their world again and again. What can I say? The Carpathians fire the imagination! I hope you enjoy the Dark Series!
8. The Vampire Saga by Shannon Drake
The Vampire Saga also known as, “The Alliance Vampires series” is of the romance, mystery and horror genre. Each book is a stand alone and the theme of each novel in the series talks about different characters having romantic encounters, finding love, and one of the two characters is a vampire, while the other one is not.
A haunting vampire saga takes readers into a realm where dreams turn into nightmares. . .and pleasure beckons from beyond.
7. Books of Blood by Clive Barker
“Everybody is a book of blood; whenever we are opened, we are read.”
Books of Blood are a series of horror fiction collections written by the, extremely talented, British author Clive Barker. There are six books in total, each simply subtitled Volume 1 through Volume 6, each volume containing four or five stories. Books of Blood was hailed by Stephen King as “I have seen the future of horror and its name is Clive Barker“. The book won both the British and World Fantasy Awards.
The tales take place in contemporary settings, featuring everyday people who become embroiled in terrifying or mysterious events. These tales are not afraid of visceral horror as blood splashes freely across the pages:
“The Book of Blood” A psychic researcher employs a quack medium to investigate a haunted house. The imposter medium fakes visions, pretending to hear names and stories told to him from beyond. The ghosts and spirits want a voice and decide to make the imposter a true messenger. The ghosts begin carving names and “minute words” into his flesh. The “Book of Blood” was born
“The Midnight Meat Train,” a grisly subway tale that surprises you with one twist after another.
“The Yattering and Jack,” about a hilarious demon who possesses a Christmas turkey.
“Pig Blood Blues” A possessed giant sow… what more can I say?
“Sex, Death and Starshine” Take a seat and enjoy the show. Welcome to the Theatre of the Dead.
“In the Hills, the Cities,” an unusual example of an original horror premise
“Dread” A morbid fascination with dread, harsh experiments, what could possibly go wrong?
“Hell’s Event” Every one-hundred years, during an annual London marathon, Satan sends one of his representatives to compete against (unsuspecting) human runners. If Satan’s minion wins, he gets to rule the Earth.
“The Skins of the Fathers” Creatures mated with a woman and now wish to reclaim the child she bore.
“New Murders in the Rue Morgue” A notorious eccentric, raises a serial killer primate as a strange experiment. Based on the Edgar Allan Poe story “The Murders in the Rue Morgue”.
“Son of Celluloid” A cancerous tumor gains sentience from the strong emotions of the cinema’s audiences and torments the few people that remain after one show.
“Rawhead Rex” The ancient monster Rawhead, a nine-foot tall malevolent humanoid, is accidentally awakened from his underground imprisonment. Well, that can’t be good.
“Confessions of a (Pornographer’s) Shroud” Ronnie is a rule-abiding Catholic falsely implicated by the mafia to be the leader of a pornography ring. Ronnie is brutally tortured and murdered, after which he manifests as a ghost. Animating the shroud covering his body in the morgue, he takes revenge on the rest of his enemies.
“Scape-Goats” A yacht is stranded on the beach of a deserted island where converging undersea currents bring all the bodies of sailors drowned at sea, unfortunately for the stranded crew, the bodies aren’t as dead as they should be.
“Human Remains” A haunting tale of a doppelgänger taking over the human.
“The Inhuman Condition” A young man, a vagrant, a strange knotted piece of string, puzzles, demons. When will people learn to leave things alone!
“The Body Politic” In a bizarre version of a revolution, all our hands have their own consciousness and personalities… And they are not happy.
“Revelations” Thirty years ago a married couple, Buck and Sadie, stayed at a motel. Sadie murdered Buck and was put to death for the murder. Fast forward to the present. Virginia and her husband, a preacher named John Gyer are staying at the same hotel. Let the nightmare begin.
“Down, Satan!” This the tale of a wealthy middle-aged businessman who becomes depressed when he believes God has deserted him and he comes up with a plan to build a Hell on Earth to summon Satan. What could possibly go wrong?
“The Age of Desire” A private laboratory runs experiments. One of those experiments goes terribly wrong and escapes.(Science will be the death of us all because scientists just can’t leave well enough alone. They always have to experiment.)
“The Forbidden” An urban legend, called the Candyman, has been summoned forth. Murder and mayhem ensue. How do you kill something that is already dead?
This story was adapted and made into the successful film series… Candyman.
“The Madonna” A swimming pool glows with a strange light and appears to be inhabited by some misshapen life-form.
“Babel’s Children” A young woman happens across a secluded compound where a group of elderly scientists and scholars use their great minds to determine the outcome of major world events.
“In the Flesh” A mysterious young man intentionally committed a crime so he could be sent to a particular prison. It isn’t long before Billy vanishes from his cell.
“The Life of Death” A woman becomes fascinated by a church that is being demolished. She encounters a cheerfully morbid man, with skeletal features, who shares her fascination. The demolition soon reveals a tomb of plague victims. She decides to break in at night to view the bodies. (Again, what could possibly go wrong?)
“How Spoilers Bleed” European mercenaries have bought land in the jungles of South America. This land is inhabited by a tribe of natives and they refuse to leave. The elder of the tribe puts a curse on these men and there is no way of having it removed.
“Twilight at the Towers” A British spy stationed in Berlin meets with a KGB counterpart. After their meeting, the KGB operative disappears. As the British spy investigates the disappearance, he witnesses a vicious mauling. He soon discovers that he and the KGB operative are both werewolves.
“The Last Illusion” The story begins when an illusionist is killed backstage by one of his own tricks. Before his death, he gives his wife Dorothea a letter stating she must cremate his body immediately before enemies take action. The illusionist had made a deal with demons in order to possess actual magical power.
This story was the debut of Harry D’Amour, who would appear in other Clive Barker writings and eventually encounter Barker’s popular creation Pinhead. This short story was later adapted, by Barker himself, into the film “Lord of Illusions”.
“On Jerusalem Street” “On Jerusalem Street” is a sequel to “The Book of Blood”, creating a framing story. Wyburd is hired to obtain the stories of McNeal, the Book of Blood, for a collector. He captures and skins Simon McNeal. Later, the skin bleeds and won’t stop, finally drowning Wyburd. He ends up on the highways of the dead, where he tells his own story. This story, along with the prologue from Volume One, was adapted and directed twice. First for the film Book of Blood by John Harrison and then for the 2020 Brannon Braga film Books of Blood.
Some of the tales are more successful than others, but all are filled with beautiful imagery of pure evil and utter destruction. In all honesty, NO horror library or collector is complete without them!
6. Necroscope Series by Brian Lumley
DEAD MEN TELL NO TALES…
Well, unless you are Harry Keogh. Man o’ man, what they are telling him is absolutely horrifying!!
In the Balkan mountains of Rumania, a terrible evil is growing. Long buried in hallowed ground, bound by earth and silver, the master vampire schemes and plots. Trapped in limbo, neither dead nor alive, Thibor Ferenczy hungers for freedom and revenge. (It is never good when an ancient and pissed off vampire is starting to stir and the first thing on their mind is revenge.)
The vampire’s human tool is Boris Dragosani, part of a super-secret Soviet spy agency. (Try saying that five times fast) Dragosani is an avid pupil, most eager to delve into the depthless evil of the vampire’s mind. Ferenczy teaches Dragosani the dangerous skills of the necromancer. This dangerous (and kinda’ cool) skill gives him the ability to rip secrets from the mind and bodies of the dead. (Still cool and yet creepy at the same time)
Dragosani isn’t really working to free Ferenczy’s, he is just using him to gain some skills and knowledge. Dradosani wants world domination and he plans to rule the world with the knowledge that he will raped from the dead. (A clear and present evil bastard.)
His only opponent? The one and only Harry Koegh, champion of both the living and the dead.
The dead will do anything to protect Harry, even rise from up their graves! (Your interest is seriously peaked, isn’t it? Admit it foolish mortal!)
Enjoy this intense series and remember… watch out for the Wamphyri!
5. Vampire Chronicles by Anne Rice
Anne Rice’s vampires are different in several ways from classic vampires like Dracula. Rice’s creatures are not affected by the usual weapons against classic vampires: garlic, crosses, and they cannot be killed with wooden stakes. Yep, you read that right. So pay attention to the new vampire handbook if you wish to remain one of the living.
They do need blood, but in some cases not every night. Human blood is preferred, obviously, as it is more nutritious, but animal blood will also suffice. They do not age physically (gray hair, wrinkles and such), instead they becoming more “statuesque”, develop very smooth, alabaster white skin. In all but a few cases, vampires younger than a thousand years old can be killed by exposure to sunlight or fire. Death by sunlight = Vampire under 1,000 years old.
Contrary to belief, they do not possess “vampiric” magical powers. For example, They can not change into bats. Some of the stronger, older, ones do have the power to fly. Unfortunately, most of them have the power to read the minds of humans and weaker vampires.
They do have, however, some cool physical abilities. They can move faster than human eyes, possess exceptional in-human strength and have extremely keen senses. Very old vampires, ones who have been made or strengthened by feeding on blood close to the vein of the vampiric mother may have additional gifts. The ability to move matter with their mind and the ability to set things on fire by the sheer force of their will. The are very artistic… singing, painting acting. They also have an uncanny preternatural “understanding” of any type of problem, puzzle or machine. (How cool is that. Who wouldn’t want that power? Am I right?) They also have this uncanny and (honestly kind of creepy) ability to mimic anything to near perfection… movement, playing musical instruments, dancing, and the list can go on and on. (Mimes from the dark side!)
On the downside, at least in my opinion, they are excessively emotional and sensitive. They are prone to intense suffering and aesthetic passions. Yep, that’s a downer for sure. They are quite attractive, beautiful and very and sensual. Since vampires tend to make fledglings from humans, they have learned to love. Make no mistake, learning to love doesn’t mean you couldn’t be vampire food! If you were thinking this, then all I got to say to that is… Stupid Human!
There are also a few physical changes: Luminous eyes, pale and reflective skin, fingernails like glass and if you cut their hair it will grow back while they are sleeping. (I would love to have that ability!) Sadly, since they lose all of their natural bodily fluids, they are unable to have children through normal means. If they want children, then they must turn a child. (That would just be cruel, but has been known to happen.) But most just think of those they turn, no matter the age, as their child of the night mwahahaha.
A simply mesmerizing series. Start with the first book and cry like a baby when you reach the end of the last book.
4. In Death Series by JD Robb
J.D. Robb’s popular futuristic In Death series features police lieutenant Eve Dallas and her tycoon husband, Roarke. The series is set in mid-21st century New York City and, occasionally, off-Earth. The books are primarily police procedurals with a focus on the romantic relationship between Eve and her husband. The first book in the series, Naked in Death, was published in 1995 and the series now includes over 50 titles with no end in sight. Like most mystery series, the In Death books do not have to be read in order, but character relationships do develop over the course of the entire series.
With that being said… Read them in order! The characters deserve no less! It will totally be worth it the read!!
3. The Merry Gentry series by Laurell K Hamilton
The Merry Gentry (Meredith) series is comprised of 10 novels, so far, with no end in sight.
Enter a thrilling, sensual world as threatening as it is beautiful, replete with the consuming passions of immortal beings once worshiped as gods or demons. Full of earthly pleasures and dazzling magic, A Kiss of Shadows will hold you under its hypnotic spell.
Meredith Gentry, princess of the high court of Faerie, is posing as a human in Los Angeles, working as a P.I. specializing in supernatural crime. But now the queen’s assassin has been dispatched to fetch her back–whether she likes it or not. Suddenly Meredith finds herself a pawn in her dreaded aunt’s plans. The job that awaits her: enjoy the constant company of the most beautiful immortal men in the world. The reward: the crown–and the opportunity to continue to live. The penalty for failure: death.
Fantasy spliced with horror… a perfect complimentary pairing!
2. The Dark Hunter Series by Sherrilyn Kenyon
“We are Darkness. We are Shadow.
We are the Rulers of the Night.
We, alone, stand between mankind and those who would see mankind destroyed. We are the Guardians.
The Soulless Keepers.
Our souls were cast out so that we would not forewarn the Daimons we pursue. By the time they see us coming, it’s too late.
The Daimons and Apollites know us. They fear us. We are death to all those who prey upon the humans.
Neither Human, nor Apollite, we exist beyond the realm of the Living, beyond the realm of the Dead.
We are the Dark-Hunters.
And we are eternal.”
~ The Dark Hunter Creed
Romance, Immortals, edge of your seat turmoil…. everything an addictive series should be!
1. Anita Blake Series by Laurell K Hamilton
Overview of the Anita Blake Vampire Hunter Series:
Vampires, werewolves, zombies, shapeshifters, magic, it all exist. They own their own businesses, have love lives, homes, families.
Anita Blake is an Animator and Vampire Slayer well, more accurately, a monster slayer. Sometimes the monsters are human, most of the time not. Anita, herself, hasn’t decided which category she fits in… human or not.
Anita works for Animators, Inc. She routinely raises zombies for a living. She also works as a consultant for the Regional Preternatural Investigation Team (RPIT), a division of the St. Louis Police force that deals with supernatural crimes.
Anita’s boss at Animator’s Inc, Bert Vaughn, will whore out his employees for all kinds of things; if the price is right. However, there are some things that even Bert is not willing to do. Unfortunately for Anita, some folks don’t take NO for an answer.
Have no fear though, Anita is one hell of a tough lady. She can handle a gun with the best of them and can hold her own in hand to hand. Of course, to those still living under a rock, some things even a weapon can’t help her with. Like her love life, which is way too complicated even for her, she is being wooed by the Master of the City (who is a vampire by the way), and a Alpha werewolf. Lucky lady or cursed?
Follow along with Anita as she solves mysteries wrapped tight with all the scary things in this world. If you enjoy a good romantic and scary mystery, a tough kickass female lead character with an attitude to envy, blended with sexy and deadly creatures both friend and foe, Then Anita Blake is definitely your guilty pleasure! (HA, ha… see what I just did there? Oh yeah, I just said that and I don’t feel bad about it either.)