Does anyone know any good horror/mystery novels in time for Fall?

Hi Everyone!

Does anyone know any recommended Horror or Mystery novels in time for fall and the spooky season? I know of a couple that were recommended that are more of a Goosebumps style. Personally, I like the creepy mystery type rather than anything too disturbing.

I heard that 悪夢のクロゼット was a good one and anything in that 悪夢~ series!

Looking forward to hearing what others think,



I read this in English but thought it was really good… it’s def. more a thriller mystery thingy rather than horror but it felt unsettling for sure.


Oh! I already read that one in university about 10 years about but also in English! It was really good - thanks for the recommendation though. Might be worth reading in Japanese as well.


Here’s another one I had read in English and I really liked it. No idea how it is in Japanese though, language wise. Mysterious and unsettling, if I remember correctly, although it’s been years. Along with Out, it was among my favourite translated Japanese crime books at the time.


I’ve actually had some books by 東野 圭吾 that I have yet to read but have had them for years. The one I have right now is

I hear they are a great author and have a couple books I got from book off.


東野圭吾 is a good mystery author but he’s not really a horror author, or even creepy. If you’re fine with plain old mystery though I have recommendations aplenty.


I def would take straight Mystery recs as well! The most detective mystery I read is コナン。

Though I think i gravitate more towards the creepy stuff that makes you feel chilled.

Otherwise, I also thought about joining that Mystery book club but I’m the type of person whose eyes are bigger than his stomach for books I want to start reading and can actually get through haha


Eyeballing your profile you seem mostly comfortable up to ~30? You might like 夜警 | L31 - mildly creepy ‘what is happening’ vibes, but nothing intense at all. 仮面病棟 | L34 might be a bit of a stretch for you vocab wise if you’ve never read anything medical before, but it’s definitely got some suspense going on. 心霊探偵八雲 1 赤い瞳は知っている | L28 is very lightly creepy - it’s about ghosts as you can see in the title. I suspect it’s aimed at younger audiences (high school?). スマホを落としただけなのに | L28 has some creepy moments but I recommend reading the content warning at the top of my review if anything bothers you. 幽霊 | L35 is a short story - really fun and lightly creepy, but it’s definitely up there in difficulty. Ditto for 人間椅子 | L36, which is by the same author.

The only true horror I ever read in Japanese I hated so nothing to recommend on that front. I mostly read straight up crime novels so very little for truly creepy unfortunately :sweat_smile:


Thanks for the recommendations! I think you’re right about my level currently - though I def had a broader vocabulary a couple of years back - since I stopped using Japanese regularly there are words I used to know that I have to take a second look at - especially the ones that I’m not familiar with in English either.

I’ll take a look at the ghost ones as those seem pretty interesting

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I’m also looking for recommendations if anyone has any good ones! My friend and I have a book club, and this October we’ll each be suggesting a spooky/thematic pick to vote on. I thought it’d be interesting if my pick I could read in Japanese if it were chosen, with my friends reading in English. A work with an unofficial translation works just as well as one with an official one!

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I haven’t read it but 姑獲鳥の夏 (English Goodreads page) caught my eye the other day. I think this is the Natively entry for it, seems to be a series? 姑獲鳥の夏 1 【電子百鬼夜行】 | L30??

As I haven’t read it or the other author’s works I can’t say how good it is, or if it’s hard or not, but the summary looks interesting.

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Ooh, that summary does look good. :eyes: Definitely going to add it to my list of considerations!

Might be a good candidate for the mystery club as well?

Edit: act fast now!


Wow, so I looked around and indeed, there’s no reasonably priced copies of this book to be found. Lowest I think I saw was $200? Contrast with ~$5 for the JP Kindle version :sweat_smile: Guess it’s out of print. I suppose I’ll keep my eyes peeled for this whenever I’m at used book stores. FWIW ThriftBooks shows they get copies in fairly often:

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Why not both? 厭魅の如き憑くもの (no learnnatively link, unfortunately) is a murder mystery horror book, although be warned that it’s fairly difficult (while the books are relatively recent, they’re set in the 50s and it seems like the author is intentionally trying to create the atmosphere of something actually written in that time by using extraordinarily few loanwords), it’s long, and the pacing is fairly lopsided (the first half of the book is basically set-up where “nothing” happens, and then corpses drop like confetti in the second half).

In terms of books recommended in this thread, I recommend against 姑獲鳥の夏, like 厭魅の如き憑くもの it is long and difficult but unlike 厭魅の如き憑くもの it is not really creepy and while the mystery is an extraordinarily unique scenario the solution is stupid and lame.

人間の椅子 is phenomenal.