It’s the time of year where readers start asking for creepy and the supernatural, and teens flock to stories of gothic horror and murder mysteries. There’s no shortage of young adult fiction in these genres and there’s even quite the list of Poe-inspired works. This is a list to satisfy those with an appetite for the macabre or mysterious!
Edgar Allan Poe is often beloved by middle school students. As far as assigned reading in school goes, short stories like “The Tell-tale Heart” or poems like “The Raven” or “Annabel Lee” were some of my personal favorites that even my less bookish classmates enjoyed. These YA novels were inspired by the works of Poe.
YA Novels Inspired by the Works of Poe
- The Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin
A steampunk retelling of The Masque of the Red Death.
- The Fall by Bethany Griffin
A new novel is that reimagines The Fall of the House of Usher.
- Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsay
A paranormal gothic novel based on the poem Annabel Lee.
- Of Monsters and Madness by Jessica Verday
A romantic retelling of Annabel Lee with a touch of horror.
- Nevermore by Kelly Creagh
A paranormal romance that reimagines the fates Poe’s characters in a modern day high school setting.
2014 Edgar Award Nominees
The Edgar Awards, given each year by the Mystery Writers of America, honors a selection of the best young adult mysteries of the year. As the award is named for Poe, these novels are sure to appeal to readers who want a good mystery full of thrills and chills.
- Far Far Away by Tom McNeal
This story of a boy who hears the voices of ghosts is a little bit spooky and a little bit funny.
- Ketchup Clouds by Annabel Pitcher
A girl has a dark secret she can only confess to a man on death row, so she writes him letters.
- Criminal by Terra Elan McVoy
A troubled girl who will do anything for love realizes her actions have consequences.
- All the Truth That’s In Me by Julie Berry
After being missing for two years, a girl returns to her Puritanical village and struggles to reveal the sinister truth in this mystery about finding your voice.
- How to Lead a Life of Crime by Kirsten Miller
Students at this school for criminal struggle for power as they discover their true selves.
- Servants of the Storm by Delilah S. Dawson
A girl’s best friend dies in a hurricane that sweeps through their town…or does she? A psychological thriller sure to creep readers out.
- Of Metal and Wishes by Sarah Fine
This retelling of The Phantom of the Opera with ghosts and slaughterhouses is a tense, atmospheric read.
- Creed by Trisha Leaver and Lindsay Currie
When these teenagers are caught in a storm after their car breaks down, they seek shelter in a nearby town and get more than they bargained for in another creepy mystery.
- Mary: The Summoning by Hilary Monahan
Horror fans will delight in this creepy read. Anyone who was scared by the Bloody Mary legend should read with the lights on!
- Sweet Unrest by Lisa Maxwell
This murder mystery about dark dreams features a New Orleans setting and a hint of romance.
- Amity by Micol Ostow
This horror novel is inspired by the legend of a famous haunted house.
- Fiendish by Brenna Yovanoff
Creepy hexes compliment Yovanoff’s trademark atmospheric prose.
- The Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters
A hypnotist opens a headstrong girl’s eyes to the world in historical novel.
- Beware the Wild by Natalie Parker
When the swamp at the edge of town swallows her brother, a girl fights to save him. The vivid setting will entice readers looking for a different kind of paranormal with a hint of romance and a lot of mystery.
- Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by April Genevieve Tucholke
This novel blends contemporary romance and traditional gothic horror in a seaside setting.
Whether readers are looking for suspenseful murder mysteries, paranormal romance, ghost stories, traditional horror, there’s a creepy tale on this list to satisfy any fan of Edgar Allan Poe.
— Molly Wetta, currently reading The Darkest Path of the Forest by Holly Black
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