Supernatural Stacks: Horrors and Haunts of HPU Library Collections

With Halloween just around the corner, it is the perfect time to curl up in a comfortable chair with a cup of coffee and a scary story. Smith Library and the Martha Luck Comer Learning Commons have a wide variety of books for just such an occasion. Whether you are looking for Stephen King’s latest chill-inspiring novel or just looking to catch up on The Walking Dead graphic novels, HPU librarians are ready to assist you. HPU Libraries holds a wide variety of print books and eBooks that are just waiting to make you shiver.


From King to Koontz: Contemporary and Popular Horror at HPU Libraries

HPU Libraries offer enough contemporary and popular horror titles to make your head spin (but not quite like in The Exorcist!) HPU Libraries are home to the novels of many prolific horror writers such as Stephen King, Anne Rice, and Dean Koontz.

Whether horror is a staple of your leisurely reading or not, the name Stephen King is immediately recognizable. Many of King’s novels are well-known classics, many of which have transitioned from print to the big screen; “IT” (2017) is the most recent title to receive the Hollywood treatment. Many of King’s novels are held by HPU Libraries, including Carrie, Salem’s Lot, The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon, and The Shining, just to name a few.

Not a fan of Stephen King? Not a problem! Readers will also be able to find such novels as Mr. Murder by Dean Koontz, Books of Blood Volume 2 by Clive Barker, The Vampire Armand by Anne Rice, and The Call of Cthulhu by H.P. Lovecraft located in the library as well. Additional titles that can be accessed as e-Books include classics like Dracula by Bram Stoker, and Frankenstein by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley. Finally, if you are looking for some truth behind the horror, Dracula; a biography of Vlad the Impaler, 1431-1476 delivers a historic look at the brutal, yet iconic figure we refer to today as Dracula.


Legends and Ghost Stories

Are you interested in continental or local histories, legends, and folklore? HPU Libraries can help you out there as well.  Our collections include traditional, well-known legends and folk tales such as The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving. In the eerily quiet town of Sleepy Hollow, a pedagogue (schoolmaster) by the name of Ichabod Crane learns the hard way that legends and ghost stories are not always “just a story.” This chilling tale has had several film adaptions and is a Halloween classic.


Readers who are interested in North Carolina history and legends may find Mountain Ghost Stories and Curious Tales of Western North Carolina both captivating and terrifying. This collection of legends and ghost stories includes The Wicked Witch of Nantahala which recounts the legend of Spearfinger, a sorceress who has a taste for liver, as well as The Murdered Hermit, a story about a reclusive hermit whose unpleasant demeanor costs him more than what he bargained for.

Additional collections of North Carolina legends and ghost stories include Haunted Uwharries: Ghost Stories, Witch Tales and Other Strange Happenings from North America’s Oldest Mountains; Pirates, ghosts, and coastal lore : the best of Judge Whedbee; and Tar Heel Ghosts.

These selections are only a small offering of the spine-tingling tales in the collections of HPU Libraries. Ready to jump in? Come talk to a librarian today, and remember…it’s only a story.

-Blog post by Bryan Nicholls, ILL Assistant and Evening Library Supervisor