The Screaming Staircase
Why this book?
This is the first book in the 5-book Lockwood and Co. series and an introduction into a wholly original world. It takes ghost hunting in a new direction and is brilliantly written. I go back every few years and read the entire series over just to bathe in the glory of how perfect it is. The characters are multi-dimensional, they become your friends, you want to hang out with them and be a part of their spooky adventures. This series inspired me and influenced me in too many ways to count. The way Stroud plays with convention, turning a ghost story on its head, inspired me to push the envelope in my own work, moving beyond the expected. The result is some of my best work to date.