Nightbooks by J.A. WhiteWhat it's about: Alex is on his way to destroy his notebooks full of horror stories when he suddenly finds himself inside one: he's held captive by a fearsome witch who demands that he tell her a terrifying tale every night.
Reviewers say: "Readers who prefer their magic dark will be spellbound" (Booklist).
Try this next: For books with a similar feel but a more hair-raising edge, try Tom McNeal's Far Far Away or Adam Gidwitz's Grimm series.
School of the Dead by AviWhat it's about: After his Uncle Charlie's death, seventh-grader Tony is comforted by appearances from Charlie's ghost -- after all, the two of them shared an interest in the supernatural. Less comforting is Tony's new school, where students go missing, spirits haunt secret passageways, and no one is what they seem.
Is it for you? Pairing a suspenseful plot with otherworldly chills, School of the Dead is just creepy enough to satisfy fans of mystery and horror alike.
Olive and the Backstage Ghost by Michelle SchustermanStarring: Olive Priess, whose dreams of singing onstage are squelched by her overbearing mom.
What happens: Olive discovers Maudeville, an otherworldly old theater where she's given a chance to shine. Yet as Olive grows closer to her eccentric castmates and she learns about the theater's history, she begins to suspect that their opening night might be her last.
Who it's for: theater kids, as well as readers who like their mysteries well-paced and only slightly spooky.
Thornhill by Pam SmyWhat it is: an eerie, captivating blend of words and art that pulls you into the lives of two girls who lived decades apart.
What happens: In 1982, mute orphan Mary plans her revenge on the bullies at the Thornhill Institute for Children, while in 2017, lonely Ella sees a girl wandering the grounds of the abandoned Institute. Then Ella finds Mary's diaries, and their stories collide.
For fans of: the layered storytelling of Brian Selznick or Ransom Riggs.
Contact your librarian for more great books for ages 10-13!
Kokomo-Howard County Public Library
220 N. Union St.
Kokomo, Indiana 46901