The most recommended books on demonic possession

Who picked these books? Meet our 14 experts.

14 authors created a book list connected to demonic possession, and here are their favorite demonic possession books.
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Book cover of The Demonologist: The Extraordinary Career of Ed and Lorraine Warren

Nick Roberts Author Of The Exorcist's House

From my list on to prepare you for demonic possession.

Who am I?

No movie has traumatized me more than The Exorcist. I saw it at a sleepover when I was twelve years old, and I’ve never forgotten Regan McNeil’s disfigured face and demonic voice. It’s hard to say how many nightmares that possessed little girl has generated. I read the novel a few years later and was equally shocked. Creating art that can affect someone in such a formative way has been my goal ever since. I often set my stories in my native state of West Virginia, which because of its scenic beauty, is commonly referred to as “Almost Heaven.” I feel that it’s my job to balance that out. 

Nick's book list on to prepare you for demonic possession

Nick Roberts Why did Nick love this book?

Whether you believe in Ed and Lorraine Warren’s now legendary cases of paranormal investigation or not is irrelevant to enjoying this “non-fiction” book. The Warrens investigated many of the most famous hauntings from the 1950s to the 1990s—most notably, a murder/haunting in Amityville, NY, a possessed doll named, Annabelle, and a reported poltergeist in the town of Enfield in north London, England—all of which have been dramatized in popular horror movies, further expanding their legacy. The Warrens have their supporters and detractors like anyone claiming to have evidence of the paranormal. The abundance of evidence (“haunted” artifacts, such as dolls, mannequins, stuffed animals deemed responsible for paranormal activity) in the Warren’s cases, however, was stored in their own home which also operated as an occult museum. If you are suffering from the onset of demonic possession, it could be beneficial to chuck Grandma’s hand-me-down Raggedy Ann doll out the window. 

By Gerald Brittle,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

If you think ghosts are only responsible for hauntings, think again. This New York Times Best Seller reveals the grave religious process behind supernatural events and how it can happen to you. Used as a text in seminaries and classrooms, this is one book you can't put down. For over five decades Ed and Loraine Warren have been considered America's foremost experts on demonology and exorcism. With thousands of investigations to their credit, they reveal what actually breaks the peace in haunted houses. Chapters include Annabelle and The Enfield Poltergeist. Don't miss the the Warrens in the hit film 'The…

Book cover of Bad Girls Don't Die

A.A. Blair Author Of Mystic of the Midway

From my list on ghost stories with important messages from beyond.

Who am I?

I grew up in the 80s, the era of horror super-franchises. Most would be familiar with Friday the 13th, A Nightmare on Elm Street, and Halloween, but there were so many more. Oscar-winning films the decade prior like The Exorcist and Jaws ushered a new wave of new horror. Whether it was advancement in visual effects, or improvement in production, the genre was everywhere. And I couldn’t get enough. Those experiences have possessed my pen and continue to rule my reading choices. I hope you enjoy these recommendations as much as I did. There’s a lot we can learn about ourselves when we’re scared.  

A.A.'s book list on ghost stories with important messages from beyond

A.A. Blair Why did A.A. love this book?

Bullies beware! Bad Girls Don’t Die features a vengeful poltergeist that possesses the little sister of protagonist Alexis Warren.

Alexis is a lonely misfit teenager on the fringes of her high-school social scene. Her home life isn’t much better as her mother’s desire for corporate success leads to regular dinner table conflict. The sisters find comfort in each other, but that’s when Alexis notices a change in her sibling Kasey. Subtle at first, Kasey’s transformation into a malicious psychopath sends Alexis into an investigation that reveals a small-town secret of a fatal bullying incident. 

Bad Girl’s Don’t Die is a story of sisterly bonds, secret pasts, and the sacrifices that are sometimes made to protect loved ones.

By Katie Alender,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Bad Girls Don't Die as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 10, 11, 12, and 13.

What is this book about?

A page-turning, spine-chilling young adult murder mystery about surviving the ghosts around us.

Alexis thought she led a typically dysfunctional high school existence. Dysfunctional like her parents' marriage. Or her doll-crazy twelve-year-old sister, Kasey. Or even like her own anti-social, anti-cheerleader attitude.


When a family fight results in some tearful sisterly bonding, Alexis realizes that her life is creeping from dysfunction into danger. Kasey is acting stranger than ever: her blue eyes go green, sometimes she uses old-fashioned language, and she even loses track of chunks of time, claiming to know nothing about her strange behavior. Their old house is…

Book cover of Seraph of the End, Vol. 1: Vampire Reign

Emily Rooke Author Of The Dying Light

From my list on LGBTQ+ found family guaranteed to break your heart.

Who am I?

As a survivor of child sexual abuse, I endured many years with my voice stolen. Growing up, books offered a sanctuary from a world of cruelty and violence. Yet I never saw myself in fiction—not only as a young person battling to survive, but as a vulnerable teen questioning their sexuality. Now, I’m determined to support fellow survivors. 100% of the proceeds of my books are donated to charities supporting sexual abuse survivors, particularly victims of child trafficking. Living with CPTSD means I have a particular interest in trauma narratives, and an intense desire to do justice to abuse survivors in fiction. No one should feel alone or unseen.

Emily's book list on LGBTQ+ found family guaranteed to break your heart

Emily Rooke Why did Emily love this book?

Purists might raise their brows at seeing this series included, but I would argue this manga is so deeply queer-coded it could not be omitted. Following a horrific epidemic, vampires rise from the shadows to enslave the remains of humanity. Reckless and stubborn, Yuichiro has made a home with his fellow orphans, led by sensitive and intelligent Mikaela. When their daring escape from the vampires ends in disaster, Yuichiro's dream of ridding the world of vampires is kept alive at a devastating price. The dynamic between Yu and Mika is perfectly balanced, infused with yearning almosts and bittersweet if-onlys. At the heart of the series, you’ll find a fierce determination to protect one’s chosen family, and an unapologetic commitment to sacrifice everything – even humanity – for the sake of love. 

By Takaya Kagami, Yamato Yamamoto (illustrator), Daisuke Furuya (contributor)

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

After a catastrophic epidemic kills every adult on earth, vampires arise from the shadows to enslave the remaining human population. Yuichiro escapes from captivity and joins the Japanese Imperial Demon Army. But before he's allowed to fight vampires, he has to complete his first, terrifying mission - make new friends with his fellow aspiring monster slayers!

Yuichiro and his friends are kept as vampire fodder in a creepy institution masquerading as an orphanage. One day, Yuichiro's dreams of fighting back are realized when the orphans stage a daring escape. But things go horribly wrong, and his dream is kept alive…

Book cover of The Witchcraft Sourcebook

Jacopo della Quercia Author Of License to Quill: A Novel of Shakespeare & Marlowe

From my list on understanding the dark side of Shakespeare's world.

Who am I?

I prefer to write historical fiction because so many fascinating stories have already happened in the past, and these tales are filled with real-life characters with rich backstories and personalities. I try to find the best historical figures and scenarios I can through exhaustive research and then stitch them together into thrillers that mesh seamlessly with the history I researched. My books are written to educate and entertain, and nothing makes me prouder than when readers follow the breadcrumb trails I leave behind for further research. I hope you enjoy the hunt!

Jacopo's book list on understanding the dark side of Shakespeare's world

Jacopo della Quercia Why did Jacopo love this book?

Of all the books I consulted while writing my own, this is the one that surprised me the most and that I most frequently revisit. It is a collection of historical documents on witchcraft in the Western world from the Roman Empire to the eighteenth century, and I cannot recommend a better book on the subject. It's fascinating, painstakingly researched, instantly accessible to any reader, and either hilarious or horrifying, depending on how you pick your poison! There is a particularly interesting document that details how one sells their soul to the Devil which I was delighted to see referenced in Robert Egger's 2015 film The VVitch. He must have either read this book or consulted that same document during his research, which was clearly to his benefit.

By Brian P. Levack (editor),

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The Witchcraft Sourcebook, now in its second edition, is a fascinating collection of documents that illustrates the development of ideas about witchcraft from ancient times to the eighteenth century. Many of the sources come from the period between 1400 and 1750, when more than 100,000 people - most of them women - were prosecuted for witchcraft in Europe and colonial America. During these years the prominent stereotype of the witch as an evil magician and servant of Satan emerged. Catholics and Protestants alike feared that the Devil and his human confederates were destroying Christian society.

Including trial records, demonological treatises…

Book cover of The Exorcist

Matt Cardin Author Of What the Daemon Said: Essays on Horror Fiction, Film, and Philosophy

From my list on religion, horror, and the supernatural.

Who am I?

Religion and horror have long appeared to me like the double helix of some mysterious, transcendental strand of DNA. This relationship has been lived out in my own life. I am simultaneously an author of supernatural horror stories, a critic and scholar of the field, and a student of religion and philosophy with a master’s in religious studies, a Ph.D. in leadership studies, and a lifetime of involvement in various Christian churches. As both a writer and a human being, I hold a special focus on the mutual implications of religion, horror, and creativity, which all seem to arise from and lead back to the same ultimate mystery.

Matt's book list on religion, horror, and the supernatural

Matt Cardin Why did Matt love this book?

Blatty’s classic novel is recommendable as much for its cultural impact, which is of course inextricably bound up with its legendary film adaptation, as for its own content. With the story of young Regan, a 12-year-old girl in the modern technological world who becomes possessed by an ancient demon, Blatty, a committed Roman Catholic, deliberately set out to communicate a vivid sense of supernatural evil to a modern, skeptical, jaded audience. Many people don’t realize that The Exorcist is actually a Christian novel. As Blatty himself later put it, if he could get people to believe, even fictionally/emotionally, in demons, they would also know what it feels like to live in a universe where God and angels are real. The result, regardless of your religious beliefs, is unforgettable.

By William Peter Blatty,

Why should I read it?

9 authors picked The Exorcist as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Father Damien Karras: 'Where is Regan?'
Regan MacNeil: 'In here. With us.'

The terror begins unobtrusively. Noises in the attic. In the child's room, an odd smell, the displacement of furniture, an icy chill. At first, easy explanations are offered. Then frightening changes begin to appear in eleven-year-old Regan. Medical tests fail to shed any light on her symptoms, but it is as if a different personality has invaded her body.

Father Damien Karras, a Jesuit priest, is called in. Is it possible that a demonic presence has possessed the child? Exorcism seems to be the only answer...

First published…

Book cover of Small Town Monsters

Frank Morelli Author Of Breaking News

From Frank's 3 favorite reads in 2023.

Who am I?

Author Word wizard Reader Educator Life-long learner Caped crusader

Frank's 3 favorite reads in 2023

Frank Morelli Why did Frank love this book?

Diana Rodriguez Wallach displays a masterful grip on her third-person narrator, adeptly bouncing back and forth between the lives of her two main characters, Vera and Max, while slowly and deliciously revealing both their troubled pasts and their growing obsession with each other.

The closer they get to each other, the farther they find themselves thrust into a world from which they don’t belong, a world that is hopelessly marred by death, darkness, and the merciless clutches of evil.

This book is a headlong dive into the world of cults and the occult, armed with more terrifying twists and turns than a roller coaster ride through the actual Pet Cemetary.

By Diana Rodriguez Wallach,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Small Town Monsters 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?

The Conjuring meets The Vow! This is the terrifying story of a girl, a dark angel, and the cult hellbent on taking over her small, coastal town.

Vera Martinez wants nothing more than to escape Roaring Creek and her parents' reputation as demonologists. Not to mention she's the family outcast, lacking her parents' innate abilities, and is terrified of the occult things lurking in their basement.

Maxwell Oliver is supposed to be enjoying the summer before his senior year, spending his days thinking about parties and friends. Instead he's taking care of his little sister while his mom slowly becomes…

Book cover of Come Closer

Scott Alexander Hess Author Of A Season in Delhi

From Scott's 3 favorite reads in 2023.

Who am I?

Author Rule-breaker

Scott's 3 favorite reads in 2023

Scott Alexander Hess Why did Scott love this book?

This is the creepiest book I have read in years. It crawled under my skin and stayed there.

A brisk, fast-moving read about a normal young woman who is inhabited in both a subtle and sinister way by a demon. This is a true page-turner. I read it on a weekend, and it spooked me in a way a book has not done in a long time.

It also packs a sudden punch of sadness at the end—truly a scary, well-done novel. Read if you dare! 

By Sara Gran,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Come Closer as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'A dark, seductive cocktail of a thriller, with a splash of black humour and a twist of horror.' Francine Toon, author of Pine

There was no reason to assume anything out of the ordinary was going on.
Strange noises in the apartment.
Impulsive behaviour.
Intense dreams.
It wasn't like everything went wrong all at once.
There must be a reasonable explanation for all this.

'It will scare the pants off you. It is a perfect horror novel.' Paul Tremblay
'A short, sharp shocker . . . Relentlessly creepy.' Sunday Times
'Deeply scary.' The Times
'Terrifying.' Daily Mail…