83 books like Real Ghosts, Restless Spirits, and Haunted Places

By Brad Steiger,

Here are 83 books that Real Ghosts, Restless Spirits, and Haunted Places fans have personally recommended if you like Real Ghosts, Restless Spirits, and Haunted Places. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Spirits of the Cage: True Accounts of Living in a Haunted Medieval Prison

Sylvia Shults Author Of Days of the Dead: A Year of True Ghost Stories

From my list on for paranormal enthusiasts.

Who am I?

I've been a paranormal investigator (a paranormal reporter, actually) for over a decade. One of the very best parts of my job is that I get to gorge myself on books of true accounts of the paranormal. It's exciting to see what else is out there, and what other people have experienced – both historically, and personally. I'm so grateful for the chance to add to this body of work; there are many renowned investigators and writers out there, and I'm thrilled to be counted among them. And someday, someone will read about my experiences and be terrified and intrigued and inspired by them.

Sylvia's book list on for paranormal enthusiasts

Sylvia Shults Why did Sylvia love this book?

I will read absolutely anything that Richard Estep writes. He has written books about the Villisca Ax Murders, Malvern Manor, and other crazy-haunted places. This one, about a site in his native England, is utterly terrifying. Estep writes with a very straightforward, matter-of-fact style (his writing reminds me much of my own style), and the evidence he presents for this haunted site is deeply chilling -- especially since his team is one of the groups that has investigated the Cage. 

By Vanessa Mitchell, Richard Estep,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Spirits of the Cage as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When single mother Vanessa Mitchell moved into a historic cottage in Essex, she had no idea that a paranormal nightmare was about to unfold. The cottage, known as the Cage, used to imprison those accused of witchcraft back in the 1500s. From her first day living there, Vanessa saw apparitions walk through her room, heard ghostly growls, and was even slapped and pushed by invisible hands. Unable to handle the dark phenomena after three years, Vanessa moved out and paranormal investigator Richard Estep moved in. Spirits of the Cage chronicles the years that Vanessa and Richard spent in the Cage,…


Book cover of One August Morning

Sylvia Shults Author Of Days of the Dead: A Year of True Ghost Stories

From my list on for paranormal enthusiasts.

Who am I?

I've been a paranormal investigator (a paranormal reporter, actually) for over a decade. One of the very best parts of my job is that I get to gorge myself on books of true accounts of the paranormal. It's exciting to see what else is out there, and what other people have experienced – both historically, and personally. I'm so grateful for the chance to add to this body of work; there are many renowned investigators and writers out there, and I'm thrilled to be counted among them. And someday, someone will read about my experiences and be terrified and intrigued and inspired by them.

Sylvia's book list on for paranormal enthusiasts

Sylvia Shults Why did Sylvia love this book?

There have been loads of books written about Lizzie Borden, but very few that I have enjoyed as much as this one. It's brilliantly well-written and extremely accurate. Taylor does a thorough job of explaining the history and circumstances that led to the murders of Andrew and Abby Borden. Plus, he puts forth a theory on who the killer was, a theory that a), I had not heard before, and b), makes a whole lot of sense. When I do presentations on the Borden murders, this is the book I always recommend people read for a detailed look at the crime. 

By Troy Taylor,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked One August Morning as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

ONE AUGUST MORNING THE TRUE STORY OF LIZZIE BORDEN BY TROY TAYLOR LIZZIE BORDEN TOOK AN AXE... OR DID SHE? Lizzie Borden is a name that has lived in infamy. As everyone knows, she's the young woman who "took an axe and gave her mother 40 whacks" and then "gave her father 41." Everyone seems to know the rhyme, but most people don't know the truth behind the grim story of one of America's most famous unsolved murders. In this new entry in the "Dead Men Do Tell Tales" series, author Troy Taylor delves into the true story of the…


Book cover of Your Neighborhood Gives Me the Creeps: True Tales of an Accidental Ghost Hunter

Sylvia Shults Author Of Days of the Dead: A Year of True Ghost Stories

From my list on for paranormal enthusiasts.

Who am I?

I've been a paranormal investigator (a paranormal reporter, actually) for over a decade. One of the very best parts of my job is that I get to gorge myself on books of true accounts of the paranormal. It's exciting to see what else is out there, and what other people have experienced – both historically, and personally. I'm so grateful for the chance to add to this body of work; there are many renowned investigators and writers out there, and I'm thrilled to be counted among them. And someday, someone will read about my experiences and be terrified and intrigued and inspired by them.

Sylvia's book list on for paranormal enthusiasts

Sylvia Shults Why did Sylvia love this book?

Adam Selzer writes as if you're listening to him tell ghost stories over a beer and a plate of nachos in a dark Chicago bar, with a summer night's breeze blowing in off Lake Michigan. Selzer is hands-down the expert on Chicago history, and he's no slouch at the paranormal aspect of the city's background either -- he's a tour guide for one of the Chicago ghost tour companies. He has a snarky, irreverent style that makes any of his books a sheer pleasure to read. In addition to his historical and paranormal nonfiction, he also writes YA fiction. 

By Adam Selzer,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Your Neighborhood Gives Me the Creeps as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Getting pushed down the stairs by unseen hands? An old spirit hag sitting on your chest, holding you down? Strange glowing ectoplasm escaping from a grave? Don't believe everything you hear ...then again, some things can't just be brushed off. Come aboard the ghost bus and get a glimpse of Chicago's ghostly goings-on. With a healthy dose of skepticism, professional ghostbuster Adam Selzer takes you on a tour of his famously spooky town and the realm of the weird. Tag along with your tour guide Selzer, bus driver and improve comic Hector, psychic detective Ken, and prolific author Troy Taylor…


Book cover of Ghosts of the Northeast

Sylvia Shults Author Of Days of the Dead: A Year of True Ghost Stories

From my list on for paranormal enthusiasts.

Who am I?

I've been a paranormal investigator (a paranormal reporter, actually) for over a decade. One of the very best parts of my job is that I get to gorge myself on books of true accounts of the paranormal. It's exciting to see what else is out there, and what other people have experienced – both historically, and personally. I'm so grateful for the chance to add to this body of work; there are many renowned investigators and writers out there, and I'm thrilled to be counted among them. And someday, someone will read about my experiences and be terrified and intrigued and inspired by them.

Sylvia's book list on for paranormal enthusiasts

Sylvia Shults Why did Sylvia love this book?

Pitkin writes in a very accessible style. What drew me into this book, in particular, is that he starts the book off with a personal experience. He writes of the incident that turned him from a skeptic into a believer in the paranormal. Intriguing stuff, to be sure ... but this revelation also changed his attitude towards teaching, making him more tolerant of other cultures, and more open to sharing different worldviews with his students. Whereas prior to this experience, he had been dismissive of what he saw as "primitive" beliefs (regarding African belief in witchcraft and the afterlife), he was now more willing to explore alternative belief systems with his students.

By David J. Pitkin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Ghosts of the Northeast as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Book by Pitkin, David J.


Book cover of Black Water Sister

Gita Ralleigh Author Of Siren

From my list on myths beyond the Greco-Roman Canon.

Who am I?

I'm a poet and fiction writer who enjoys popular feminist retellings of Greco-Roman mythology. But I want to draw attention to the rich and powerful myths beyond that canon, myths used by contemporary writers to make sense of our world, our brief mortal lives, and what lies beyond. Scholar Karen Armstrong writes in A Short History of Myth, "Myth is about the unknown; it is about that for which we initially have no words. Myth therefore looks into the heart of a great silence." My poetry book A Terrible Thing reinterprets goddess myths and Siren does the same with myths of hybrid women, half-fish and half-bird and more.

Gita's book list on myths beyond the Greco-Roman Canon

Gita Ralleigh Why did Gita love this book?

I adored Cho’s Black Water Sister for the wit, verve, and humour with which its protagonist, Jess, newly returned to Penang from the USA, faces down being possessed by the spirit of her dead grandma, a former medium. Jess, despite her Harvard degree, hasn’t found a job and is unable to tell her conservative family about her Singapore-based girlfriend. How Jess manages to negotiate the contradictory demands of pushy aunties, powerful businessmen, and a furious goddess known as the Black Water Sister, whose temple is threatened by property developers, makes an immersive and absorbing tale.

By Zen Cho,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Black Water Sister as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'A sharp and bittersweet story of past and future, ghosts and gods and family, that kept me turning pages into the dark hours of the night' - Naomi Novik, author of Uprooted

This mischievous Malaysian-set novel is an adventure featuring family, ghosts and local gods - from Hugo Award winning novelist Zen Cho.

Her grandmother may be dead, but she's not done with life . . . yet.

As Jessamyn packs for Malaysia, it's not a good time to start hearing a bossy voice in her head. Broke, jobless and just graduated, she's abandoning America to return 'home'. But she…


Book cover of When Ghosts Speak: Understanding the World of Earthbound Spirits

T.M. Simmons Author Of Southern Charms

From my list on magical realms and spiritual enlightenment.

Who am I?

I started writing way back in grade school, and I love to read. My first book came out in 1990, after much work and many classes. It was one of the proudest days of my life. To date, I've published over forty books, both fiction and non-fiction. I worked hard on my writing and, later, also on developing my psychic gifts to help lost, lonely souls. Both are the result of lots of studying and development, but both of which give me immense satisfaction. Along with years of writing experience, I have over thirty years of paranormal investigative experience.

T.M.'s book list on magical realms and spiritual enlightenment

T.M. Simmons Why did T.M. love this book?

I, like thousands of others, watched some of the paranormal shows on TV.

Since I was learning a lot myself, I could dismiss the ones just in it for the shock effects and ratings. I did enjoy Ghost Whisperer, partly because at about the same time I discovered the show, I discovered Winkowski's book. She was the medium upon whom the show was based and she actually consulted for the show.

Her story truly intrigued me, partly because I learned we could actually help lonesome and troubled ghosts cross into the light. I feel it's the most important gift I have these days. So very many souls wander lonely and confused. Helping them cross over is a very satisfying experience.

By Mary Ann Winkowski,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked When Ghosts Speak as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In the bestselling tradition of Rosemary Altea and John Edwards comes the memoir of Mary Ann Winkowski, the real life "Ghost Whisperer" and consultant on the Top 30 CBS show "Ghost Whisperer" starring Jennifer Love Hewitt.

Lights flicker on and off for no good reason. You feel drained and inexplicably irritable. Your four-year-old is scared to enter her bedroom.

Tell these things to Mary Ann Winkowski, and she'll tell you that you have a ghost.

A happily married, devout Catholic, suburban mother and full-time paranormal investigator, Mary Ann Winkowski has been able to see earthbound spirits, spirits that are trapped…


Book cover of Darkhouse

Alice J. Black Author Of The Leak of Madness

From my list on horror with the most intriguing protagonists.

Who am I?

I have a passion for supernatural horror, one that I’ve discovered over years of reading various horror novels, tropes, and themes. I found that the supernatural, the idea that something unbelievable or impossible, is haunting a person, is one that draws me in time and time again. Reading these sorts of books, embroiling myself in the world of ghosts and demons, is what drove me to want to create those worlds myself, surrounding myself in lore, mythology, and ghosts of my own... 

Alice's book list on horror with the most intriguing protagonists

Alice J. Black Why did Alice love this book?

Darkhouse is the first in the Experiment in Terror novels by Karina Halle. I absolutely fell in love with her writing style, the way that she builds the world of Dex and Perry, their complicated acquaintance, and the lighthouse in which they find themselves drawn back to. Complete with anti-hero and strong heroine, as soon as I read this first book, I devoured the series. Without saying too much to spoil the series, I have to say that this ghost story was one that has gotten under my skin and one that I know I’ll go back to in the future.

By Karina Halle,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Darkhouse as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Book one in a slow-burn psychologically thrilling romance series, from a New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal best-selling author

Perry Palomino seems like your average twenty-something girl on the surface. She's had bad luck dating, her job sucks, and she's disillusioned by her place in life, not sure exactly what she wants or where she's even going.

She also sees ghosts, which makes things extra complicated, especially when she'd do anything to be normal.

But normal people don't go exploring an abandoned and supposedly haunted lighthouse on the Oregon coast, where she ends up getting the attention…


Book cover of Haunted Virginia: Ghosts and Strange Phenomena of the Old Dominion

Pamela K. Kinney Author Of Haunted Virginia: Legends, Myths, and True Tales

From my list on paranormal to scare up myths and legends.

Who am I?

Long before I began writing my first fictional story and way before I researched for my first nonfiction paranormal book, I gave up ignoring the voices in my head and began writing horror, fantasy, and six nonfiction books on the paranormal in Virginia. Besides learning a new piece of history or legend I never knew before, the research for my nonfiction books and articles inspired me to incorporate it into my horror or fantasy fiction. I enjoy writing fiction, but I believe I learn as much as my readers when I write nonfiction. 

Pamela's book list on paranormal to scare up myths and legends

Pamela K. Kinney Why did Pamela love this book?

Before other authors (including me) published books on Virginia’s ghosts and legends, it was L. B. Taylor who’d written many spooky tales that haunted the Old Dominion in a long span of books, including this one. Not just Virginians, but as someone who moved here in 1985, I learned about the state’s many ghosts, monsters, and legends that taught me a new view of the state. No one needs to live in Virginia to enjoy reading this book.

By Jr. Taylor, L. B.,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Haunted Virginia as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Old Dominion has been one of the nation's most embattled states. Serving as center stage for both the American Revolution and the Civil War, it is also one of the most haunted. In addition to the sagas of the tragic spirits from these wars, this volume includes stories on the female stranger of Gadsby's Tavern in Alexandria, the mysterious stone showers in Newport, the ghost hound of the Blue Ridge, Mad Lucy of Williamsburg, and the spirits of native sons Thomas Jefferson, Robert E. Lee, and Edgar Allan Poe.


Book cover of Haunted Lansing

Amberrose Hammond Author Of Mysterious Michigan: The Lonely Ghost of Minnie Quay, the Marvelous Manifestations of Farmer Riley, the Devil in Detroit & More

From my list on the strange, unusual, and paranormal from Michigan.

Who am I?

I got my start in paranormal investigation when it was a popular fad around 2000 and joined a ghost-hunting group. I became obsessed with the history behind hauntings and why ghost stories and legends persist over time. This love of the ghostly combined with my love of books and literature led me down the path of writing. I enjoy sharing strange and spooky history because it puts people in touch with their state's history in a fun and interesting way. So many people think history is boring facts and dates, but share a ghost story or a true crime mystery, and you have people’s attention. When that story happened close to home? Even better!

Amberrose's book list on the strange, unusual, and paranormal from Michigan

Amberrose Hammond Why did Amberrose love this book?

A haunted capital building, spooky cemeteries, the infamous Legend of Seven Gables Road, true crime, and more are all featured in this excellent book on ghosts and haunted places around our state capital and surrounding cities and towns. Carpenter has a very entertaining style of writing that makes this book hard to put down.   

By Jenn Carpenter, Erica Cooper (photographer),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Haunted Lansing as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A tour guide for Demented Mitten Tours shares chilling supernatural tales from the history of Michigan’s capital.
 
Hastily dubbed the new capital in 1847, Lansing overcame derision and setbacks to become a booming metropolis. Yet its rich history hides chilling legends…
 
Bertie Clippinger plays tricks on the unwary at the Capitol Building, where the teen accidentally fell to his death when a game went horribly wrong. One of Lansing's founding families keeps a spectral vigil over its homestead, the Turner Dodge House. Malevolent spirits stalk the derelict Michigan School for the Blind. A witch's vengeful curse follows those who trespass…


Book cover of Half World

Opal Edgar Author Of Voice from the Dead: A Young Adult Portal Fantasy in the Afterlife

From my list on young adult set in the afterlife.

Who am I?

I grew up with the cartoon Beetlejuice, fascinated by the composed Lydia running around a bright and insane afterlife. Any cheerfully gothic story I would latch on with glee. Perhaps this is why fantasy has always been my favourite genre, and why I cannot help but mix dark and light, and why my first novel naturally took place in the afterlife. I wrote my first book for my brother, because he was as interested as me in all the weird in the world, but unlike me, he had dyslexia and hated reading. He received the story in instalments and to my amazement and pride, he just gobbled them up. 

Opal's book list on young adult set in the afterlife

Opal Edgar Why did Opal love this book?

This novel is a wonderful East meets West tumble into the afterlife that will leave an impression on you long after you close the book. The main character is nothing like the usual hero, but an overweight 10-year-old, taciturn, lonely, but most of all, fiercely determined to save her mother. 

We follow Melanie into a creepy and harsh underworld heavily influenced by Buddhist beliefs and discover the terrible truth about monsters and how they are created. This book is like a Japanese Alice in Wonderland where no punches are held back, celebrating courage, family, and tenacity.  

By Hiromi Goto,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Half World as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 12, 13, 14, and 15.

What is this book about?

Melanie Tamaki is human?but her parents aren?t. They are from Half World, a Limbo between our world and the afterlife, and her father is still there. When her mother disappears, Melanie must follow her to Half World?and neither of them may return alive. Imagine Coraline as filmed by the Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki (Howl?s Moving Castle), or Neil Gaiman collaborating with Charles de Lint. Half World is vivid, visceral, unforgettable, a combination of prose and images that will haunt you.


5 book lists we think you will like!

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