In many ways, there is no medium that can deliver horror quite like a book can. Why? Because in a horror film or game, the vision of horror is designed for you. Yet in our heads when we read horror fiction, often what we imagine is way worse than what is imagined for us. Horror books leave that fear up to us. They may lead us in a direction with a visual description of a scene, but in everyone’s minds who read the book, I can promise you the scene has key differences. In other words, when it comes to reading horror, we are the director. The script may already be there for us, but we are the ones who bring it to life. The other beautiful thing about horror fiction is just how subjective it is. For example, you may think clowns are cute, but I think they are boorish demons summoned up from the very pits of Hell. For that reason alone, I may imagine some clown-like features when I imagine something creepy. It is subtle and subconscious, but it is just one of the ways our minds further amp up the scares when we read horror fiction. We personalize it. Having said all that, some books are just scary as fuck. These are the five books that had me making sure the door was locked and there was nothing hiding under my bed.