Real-Life Scary Stories: 10+ Scary, Nonfiction Titles

28 Jun

Summer is here! And that means loads of time for kids to experience books in all their glory. This is also a great time to encourage kids to read the books they choose (without having to worry about school assignments) and to try out new genres that they might be interested in learning more about. This series will offer titles for toddlers to teens and include a variety of formats. Each week will focus on a different genre and will follow the same format:

    • Mondays – Titles for Ages 3-7
    • Tuesdays – Middle Grade Titles for Ages 8-12
    • Wednesdays – Young Adult Titles for Ages 13+
    • Thursdays – Nonfiction pairings
    • Friday – Recap of the Week

Sometimes it’s hard to pair nonfiction titles with a specific genre, so for scary/horror titles I went with your go-to haunted places, ghosts, but then also stretched out to deadliest animals and creepy bugs as well as a few true crime titles for an older audience.



An American Plague: The True and Terrifying Story of the Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1793 by Jim Murphy
The Yellow Fever epidemic of 1793 viciously swept through Philadelphia, the nation’s capital and largest city at the time as wealthy families escaped to the country side as more and more people died due to a disease people knew very little about. Pair this with Fever, 1793 by Laurie Halse Anderson for a fictional take on the same historic event.

America’s Most Haunted: True Scary Places by Allan Zullo
Learn about America’s most haunted places from small towns with mysterious lights to haunted plantations – learn a little geography and history with your scary.

Bubonic Panic: When Plague Invaded America by Gail Jarrow
In San Francisco in March of 1900, a man died from bubonic plague – a deadly disease that soon had people panicking, political leaders trying to hide it, public health officials fighting against it and scientists who uncovered it’s secrets.


Columbine by Dave Cullen
An in-depth look at the Columbine school shooting as two students opened fire killing 13 people and injuring over 20 more.

Deadliest Animals by Melissa Stewart
In this easy reader format, learn about 12 animals that you hope you never meet from a golf-ball sized octopus that has venom strong enough to kill 26 adults to the Sydney funnel spider.

The 57 Bus: A True Story of Two Teenagers and the Crime That Changed Their Lives by Dashka Slater
The true crime story of how eight minutes on a city bus changed the lives of two teenagers forever, after one commits a horrific crime.

Ghosts (Magic Tree House Fact & Fiction) by Mary Pope Osborne
Learn about the most famous ghosts, how ghosts are perceived in other cultures and what ghost hunters do in this Magic Tree Fact Tracker that pairs with A Good Night for Ghosts (#42).

My Friend Dahmer: A Graphic Novel by Derf Backderf
A close up look at serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer, as a teen, written in a graphic novel format by a high school classmate and friend.


Poison: Deadly Deeds, Perilous Professions, and Murderous Medicines by Sarah Albee
“art history, part chemistry, part whodunit, Poison: Deadly Deeds, Perilous Professions, and Murderous Medicines traces the role that poisons have played in history from antiquity to the present and shines a ghoulish light on the deadly intersection of human nature…and Mother Nature.” (Taken from Goodreads)

What Were the Salem Witch Trials? by Joan Holub
Part of the popular, “What Was…” series, this book takes a close look at the hysteria surrounding the Salem Witch Trials during the late 17th century.

Wicked Bugs: The Meanest, Deadliest, Grossest Bugs on Earth by Amy Stewart
“The middle-grade adaptation of Amy Stewart’s Wicked Bugs features profiles of the world’s scariest, deadliest, and grossest bugs, from the most painful hornet to flies that transmit deadly diseases to millipedes that stop traffic, to bookworms that devour libraries.” (Taken from Goodreads)



2 Responses to “Real-Life Scary Stories: 10+ Scary, Nonfiction Titles”


  1. Scary Booklist Recap | literacious - June 29, 2018

    […] Real-Life Scary Stories: 10+ Scary, Nonfiction Titles […]

  2. Genre Booklists for Summer 2018 | literacious - July 16, 2018

    […] Real-Life Scary Stories: 10+ Scary, Nonfiction Titles […]

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