10 Best Paranormal Mystery Books That Avid Readers Will Love

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Within popular fiction, there are few genres as beloved and widely read as paranormal mystery books – a genre that creates both suspense, fear, mystery, and intrigue within all in one place, and keeps us hiding beneath our covers until the very end. 

But what exactly are the best books within the paranormal mystery genre, and what makes them so special? 

What Is The Paranormal Mystery Genre? 

Within contemporary fiction, the paranormal mystery genre is characterized by mystery and suspense that is often framed within the supernatural.

While this can often relate to ghosts and demonic entities, it can also just be the illusion of the paranormal, or indeed, a metaphorical spirituality that can hang over the characters within the novel. 

As human beings, our lives are often governed by the prospect of our ultimate end, and what might come afterwards, and this is why these books remain so popular for so many people.

Within this genre, the idea of the supernatural can also be used as a means of haunting the characters – both physically and metaphorically – and highlighting their own flaws and shortcomings. 

Why Is It So Popular? 

The genre is popular for many reasons – many of which relate to our innate curiosity as humans. 

As mentioned above, it piques our interest in the supernatural, but it also teases a side of ourselves that wants to believe in ghosts and the prospect of the paranormal. 

The 10 Best Paranormal Mystery Books

Now that we know a little more about the paranormal mystery genre, it is now time for us to take a closer look at some of the best books on the market, and what makes them so special. 

So, without further ado, let’s get started!

The Pale Blue Eye – Louis Bayard

The Pale Blue Eye: A Novel

The first book on our list is The Pale Blue Eye by Louis Bayard. Now a Netflix movie under the same name, The Pale Blue Eye takes us on a cold, eerie journey to West Point, New York, where alcoholic, mysterious detective Augustus Landor finds himself embroiled in a puzzling murder at a military academy.

Finding himself teamed with a young, enthusiastic cadet named Edgar Allen Poe (yes, that one), the pair find themselves in a web of lies, murder, betrayal, and ghosts – many of which seem attached to the two troubled protagonists themselves. 

But as the investigation furthers, and the levels of deceit, torment, and betrayal at the school quickly become apparent, not even the expertise of the stoic Landor can make sense of the horrors that await them. 

The Haunting Of Hill House – Shirley Jackson

The Haunting of Hill House: A Novel

Next on our list, we have a horror classic by author Shirley Jackson.

Having become a celebrated horror series in recent times, The Haunting Of Hill House focuses on the titular house, and the impact it has on four individuals looking to investigate the supernatural: Dr John Montague (paranormal investigator), Eleanor Vance (a shy young carer), Theodora (an artist), and Luke Sanderson, the heir to the house, and the host of the evening. 

As the foursome gather in the house, and prepare to investigate what it has to offer, a series of strange, supernatural events begin to torment the characters, particularly Eleanore – whose own mind begins to unravel under the weight of the torment and horror she experiences. 

The Woman In Black – Susan Hill

The Woman in Black: A Ghost Story

Now a popular horror film starring Daniel Radcliffe, The Woman In Black is also a chilling novel written by author Susan Hill. 

Focusing on a small rural English village at the turn of the 20th century, The Woman In Black sees the village’s residents paralyzed with fear by a recurring vengeful spirit hell bent on claiming their children. 

When troubled young lawyer Arthur Kipps arrives from London to settle the affairs of the late Alice Drablow, he dismisses the rumors at first – that is until he arrives at the isolated Eel Marsh House, which has seen more than its fair share of heartache and horror. 

Shutter Island – Dennis Lehane

Shutter Island: A Novel

Taking a slightly different view on the paranormal, Shutter Island sees troubled US marshal Teddy Daniels arrive at the titular Boston asylum to investigate the disappearance of patient Rachel Solando – a woman who was incarcerated for drowning three children. 

However, as Teddy spends more time on the haunting island, the walls between fiction and reality begin to break down, and the troubled marshal finds himself haunted by the ghosts of his own past, and the shadows that lurk unseen in his own mind. 

As his own past deeds begin to come to light, and Teddy begins to question the reasons for him being there, the true nature of things becomes apparent – as does the hold that the island seems to have over him. 

The Shining – Stephen King

The Shining

A famous novel by Stephen King that was turned into an even more famous film starring Jack Nicholson, The Shining is perhaps the epitome of the contemporary paranormal mystery. 

Following their arrival at the remote Overlook Hotel in rural Colorado – where they have been tasked with acting as the winter caretakers during the off season – struggling writer Jack Torrance and his family find themselves haunted by the nefarious hotel. 

As the walls of reality start breaking down, and the pressure starts to get to the ever worsening Jack, it is only the telepathic powers of his young son Danny that can stand any chance of saving him and his mother. 

The Haunting Of Brynn Wilder – Wendy Webb

The Haunting of Brynn Wilder: A Novel

Next on our list, we have The Haunting Of Brynn Wilder by Wendy Webb. 

Following a devastating loss, the titular Brynn Wilder travels to the remote town of Wharton, Lake Superior to refresh and recharge. 

However, after settling into a quaint boarding house, and ingratiating herself with the strange but friendly guests, Brynn finds herself beset on all sides by mystery and madness, as the lines between fiction and reality become blurred, and the ghosts of the old boarding house begin to remind her that the past never stays buried for long. 

Don’t Look Back – Ben Cheetham

Don't Look Back: A haunting mystery perfect for the long, dark nights (Fenton House)

A newly written book, but one that fits perfectly on this list, Don’t Look Back introduces us to troubled couple Adam and Ella – who, after the devastating loss of their young son, find themselves fighting to keep their marriage together. 

However, after stumbling upon an opportunity to live in a remote mansion on the Cornish Lizard Peninsula, the couple find themselves at the center of their own ghost story, as the deceased former residents of the remote house begin to make themselves known. 

The Whisper Man – Alex North

The Whisper Man: A Novel

Focusing on Tom Kennedy, who takes his son for a fresh start in the town of Featherbank following the death of his wife, The Whisper Man sees the troubled father and son at the center of their own paranormal mystery, when a long dead serial killer that once stalked the town appears to strike once more. 

As the victims start to increase, and the investigation begins to reach boiling point, Tom must do everything he can to hang onto the only family he has left. 

Twelve Nights At Rotter House – J.W.Ocker

Twelve Nights at Rotter House

Taking inspiration from classics of the horror genre, Twelve Nights At Rotter House sees travel writer Felix Allsey arrive at the foreboding Rotterdam Mansion – a mansion renowned for its supernatural occurrences. 

Agreeing to spend twelve nights in the infamous house, and refusing to leave for any reason, Felix soon finds that not all ghost stories are make-believe, as the angry and tormented spirits in the house begin to unravel the very logic and skepticism that Felix has relied on for so long. 

The End House – Michael Robertson Jr. 

The End House

Last on our list, but by no means least, we have The End House, written by Michael Robertson Jr. 

Focusing on troubled writer Declan Schneider, who moves into the titular house, The End House sees the writer beset on all sides by horrifying supernatural experiences, terrifying memories that don’t always feel like his own, and the unraveling of his own tormented mind. 

As Declan questions who he is, and why the house holds such power over him, the true mystery begins to reveal itself. 

Final Thoughts

And there we have it, everything you need to know about the paranormal mystery genre, and the 10 best books on the market. 

It is certainly true that, as readers, we have long been fascinated by the idea of the paranormal – leaning on our own curiosity surrounding the afterlife, and the experiences that we can often feel through life. However, as this article shows, some paranormal mystery books are better than others!

So if you are looking for the best paranormal mystery books, then be sure to give some of these recommendations a try. Something tells me you won’t be disappointed!

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