2018 is going to be a banner year for Stephen King fans, and not just because the king of horror has a brand new novel coming out! We’ve rounded up the most terrifying horror, suspense, and dark fantasy novels coming out this year. Take a look at our list of books like Stephen King 2018 below, complete with publishers’ descriptions!
The Woman in the Window by A. J. Finn
For readers of Gillian Flynn and Tana French comes one of the decade’s most anticipated debuts, to be published in 36 languages around the world and already in development as a major film from Fox: a twisty, powerful Hitchcockian thriller about an agoraphobic woman who believes she witnessed a crime in a neighboring house.
It isn’t paranoia if it’s really happening…
Anna Fox lives alone — a recluse in her New York City home, unable to venture outside. She spends her day drinking wine (maybe too much), watching old movies, recalling happier times… and spying on her neighbors.
Then the Russells move into the house across the way: a father, a mother, their teenage son. The perfect family. But when Anna, gazing out her window one night, sees something she shouldn’t, her world begins to crumble — and its shocking secrets are laid bare.
What is real? What is imagined? Who is in danger? Who is in control? In this diabolically gripping thriller, no one — and nothing — is what it seems.
Twisty and powerful, ingenious and moving, The Woman in the Window is a smart, sophisticated novel of psychological suspense that recalls the best of Hitchcock.
The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor
A riveting and relentlessly compelling psychological suspense debut that weaves a mystery about a childhood game gone dangerously awry, and will keep readers guessing right up to the shocking ending.
In 1986, Eddie and his friends are just kids on the verge of adolescence. They spend their days biking around their sleepy English village and looking for any taste of excitement they can get. The chalk men are their secret code: little chalk stick figures they leave for one another as messages only they can understand. But then a mysterious chalk man leads them right to a dismembered body, and nothing is ever the same.
In 2016, Eddie is fully grown, and thinks he’s put his past behind him. But then he gets a letter in the mail, containing a single chalk stick figure. When it turns out that his friends got the same message, they think it could be a prank… until one of them turns up dead.
That’s when Eddie realizes that saving himself means finally figuring out what really happened all those years ago.
Expertly alternating between flashbacks and the present day, The Chalk Man is the very best kind of suspense novel, one where every character is wonderfully fleshed out and compelling, where every mystery has a satisfying payoff, and where the twists will shock even the savviest reader.
Release date: January 9
The Storm King by Brendan Duffy
Haunted by dark secrets and an unsolved mystery, a young doctor returns to his isolated Adirondacks hometown in a tense, gripping novel in the vein of Michael Koryta and Harlan Coben.
Burying the past only gives it strength — and fury.
Nate McHale has assembled the kind of life most people would envy. After a tumultuous youth marked by his inexplicable survival of a devastating tragedy, Nate left his Adirondack hometown of Greystone Lake and never looked back. Fourteen years later, he’s become a respected New York City surgeon, devoted husband, and loving father.
Then a body is discovered deep in the forests that surround Greystone Lake.
This disturbing news finally draws Nate home. While navigating a tense landscape of secrets and suspicion, resentments and guilt, Nate reconnects with estranged friends and old enemies, and encounters strangers who seem to know impossible things about him. Haunting every moment is the Lake’s sinister history and the memory of wild, beautiful Lucy Bennett, with whom Nate is forever linked by shattering loss and youthful passion.
As a massive hurricane bears down on the Northeast, the air becomes electric, the clouds grow dark, and escalating acts of violence echo events from Nate’s own past. Without a doubt, a reckoning is coming — one that will lay bare the lies that lifelong friends have told themselves and unleash a vengeance that may consume them all.
Release date: February 6
The Clarity by Keith Thomas
For fans of Black Mirror and True Detective, a visceral high‑concept thriller about a psychologist who must protect the life of an 11-year-old girl whose ability to remember past lives makes them both targets of a merciless killer.
Dr. Matilda Deacon is a psychologist researching how memories are made and stored when she meets a strange 11-year-old girl named Ashanique. Ashanique claims to harbor the memories of the last soldier killed in World War I and Matilda is at first very interested but skeptical. However, when Ashanique starts talking about being chased by the Night Doctors — a term also used by an unstable patient who was later found dead — Matilda can’t deny that the girl might be telling the truth.
Matilda learns that Ashanique and her mother have been on the run their whole lives from a monstrous assassin named Rade. Rade is after a secret contained solely in memories and has left a bloody trail throughout the world in search of it. Matilda soon realizes Ashanique is in unimaginable danger and that her unique ability comes with a deadly price.
Fast-paced, suspenseful, and a chilling blend of science and danger, The Clarity is a compelling take on the possibilities of reincarnation and life after death.
Release date: February 20
The Listener by Robert McCammon
1934. Businesses went under by the hundreds, debt and foreclosures boomed, and breadlines grew in many American cities.
In the midst of this misery, some folks explored unscrupulous ways to make money. Angel-faced John Partlow and carnival huckster Ginger LaFrance are among the worst of this lot. Joining together they leave their small time confidence scams behind to attempt an elaborate kidnapping-for-ransom scheme in New Orleans.
In a different part of town, Curtis Mayhew, a young black man who works as a redcap for the Union Railroad Station, has a reputation for mending quarrels and misunderstandings among his friends. What those friends don’t know is that Curtis has a special talent for listening… and he can sometimes hear things that aren’t spoken aloud.
One day, Curtis Mayhew’s special talent allows him to overhear a child’s cry for help (THIS MAN IN THE CAR HE’S GOT A GUN), which draws him into the dangerous world of Partlow and LaFrance.
This gritty depression-era crime thriller is a complex tale enriched by powerfully observed social commentary and hints of the supernatural, and it represents Robert McCammon writing at the very top of his game.
Release date: February 27
Zero Day by Ezekiel Boone
In the thrilling, nerve-wracking finale of Ezekiel Boone’s “hair-raising” (Parade) Hatching series, the United States goes to war against the queen spiders that threaten to overtake the human race forever.
The world is on the brink of apocalypse. Zero Day has come.
The only thing more terrifying than millions of spiders is the realization that those spiders work as one. But among the government, there is dissent: do we try to kill all of the spiders, or do we gamble on Professor Guyer’s theory that we need to kill only the queens?
For President Stephanie Pilgrim, it’s an easy answer. She’s gone as far as she can — more than two dozen American cities hit with tactical nukes, the country torn asunder — and the only answer is to believe in Professor Guyer. Unfortunately, Ben Broussard and the military men who follow him don’t agree, and Pilgrim, Guyer, and the loyal members of the government have to flee, leaving the question: what’s more dangerous, the spiders or ourselves?
Release date: February 27
The Hunger by Alma Katsu
The Hunger is a tense and gripping reimagining of one of America’s most fascinating historical moments: the Donner Party with a supernatural twist.
Evil is invisible, and it is everywhere.
That is the only way to explain the series of misfortunes that have plagued the wagon train known as the Donner Party. Depleted rations, bitter quarrels, and the mysterious death of a little boy have driven the isolated travelers to the brink of madness. Though they dream of what awaits them in the West, long-buried secrets begin to emerge, and dissent among them escalates to the point of murder and chaos. They cannot seem to escape tragedy… or the feelings that someone — or something — is stalking them. Whether it’s a curse from the beautiful Tamsen Donner (who some think might be a witch), their ill-advised choice of route through uncharted terrain, or just plain bad luck, the 90 men, women, and children of the Donner Party are heading into one of one of the deadliest and most disastrous Western adventures in American history.
As members of the group begin to disappear, the survivors start to wonder if there really is something disturbing, and hungry, waiting for them in the mountains… and whether the evil that has unfolded around them may have in fact been growing within them all along.
Effortlessly combining the supernatural and the historical, The Hunger is an eerie, thrilling look at the volatility of human nature, pushed to its breaking point.
Release date: March 6
The Hollow Tree by James Brogden
After losing her hand in a tragic accident, Rachel is plagued by vivid nightmares of a hollow tree, and a hand reaching from it, begging her for help. Terrified that she is going mad, Rachel experiences phantom sensations of leaves, trees, and finally a hand that grasps hers and pulls a young woman into Rachel’s world. She has no idea of who she is, but Rachel can’t help but think of the local legend of Oak Mary, the corpse of a woman found hidden in a hollow tree, and who was never identified. Three myths have grown up around the body; was she a spy, a prostitute or a murdered gypsy? Rachel is desperate to learn the truth, but darker forces are at work. For a rule has been broken, and Mary is in a world where she doesn’t belong…
Release date: March 13
Glimpse by Jonathan Maberry
A chilling thriller that explores what happens when reality and nightmares converge, and how far one will go to protect the innocent when their own brain is a threat.
Rain Thomas is a mess. Seven years an addict and three difficult years clean. Racked by guilt for the baby she gave up for adoption when she was sixteen. Still grieving for the boy’s father who died in Iraq. Alone, discarded by her family, with only the damaged members of her narcotics anonymous meetings as friends. Them, and the voices in her head. One morning, on the way to a much-needed job interview, she borrows reading glasses to review her resume. There is a small crack in one lens and through that damaged slice of glass she sees a young boy go running down the aisle of the subway train. Is he screaming with laughter or just screaming? When she tries to find the boy, he’s gone and no one has seen him.
The day spins out of control. Rain loses whole chunks of time. The voices she hears are telling her horrible things. And Doctor Nine, a spectral boogey man conjured in drug induced hallucinogens is now hunting her in the real world. Doctor Nine is also chasing that boy. A boy who looks so much like Rain’s dead boyfriend. Unsure whether she is insane or if the world itself is broken, Rain begins a mother’s quest for her lost child through a world where reality and nightmare are in a head-on collision. How far will one person go to save someone they love?
Release date: March 27
Unbury Carol by Josh Malerman
The Bram Stoker Award–nominated author of Bird Box returns with a haunting tale of love, redemption, and murder.
Carol Evers is a woman with a dark secret. She has died many times… but her many deaths are not final: They are comas, a waking slumber indistinguishable from death, each lasting days.
Only two people know of Carol’s eerie condition. One is her husband, Dwight, who married Carol for her fortune, and — when she lapses into another coma — plots to seize it by proclaiming her dead and quickly burying her… alive. The other is her lost love, the infamous outlaw James Moxie. When word of Carol’s dreadful fate reaches him, Moxie rides the Trail again to save his beloved from an early, unnatural grave.
And all the while, awake and aware, Carol fights to free herself from the crippling darkness that binds her — summoning her own fierce will to survive. As the players in this drama of life and death fight to decide her fate, Carol must in the end battle to save herself.
The haunting story of a woman literally bringing herself back from the dead, Unbury Carol is a twisted take on the Sleeping Beauty fairy tale that will stay with you long after you’ve turned the final page.
Release date: April 10
Obscura by Joe Hart
She’s felt it before… the fear of losing control. And it’s happening again.
In the near future, an aggressive and terrifying new form of dementia is affecting victims of all ages. The cause is unknown, and the symptoms are disturbing. Dr. Gillian Ryan is on the cutting edge of research and desperately determined to find a cure. She’s already lost her husband to the disease, and now her young daughter is slowly succumbing as well. After losing her funding, she is given the unique opportunity to expand her research. She will travel with a NASA team to a space station where the crew has been stricken with symptoms of a similar inexplicable psychosis — memory loss, trances, and violent, uncontrollable impulses.
Crippled by a secret addiction and suffering from creeping paranoia, Gillian finds her journey becoming a nightmare as unexplainable and violent events plague the mission. With her grip weakening on reality, she starts to doubt her own innocence. And she’s beginning to question so much more — like the true nature of the mission, the motivations of the crew, and every deadly new secret space has to offer.
Merging thrilling science-fiction adventure with mind-bending psychological suspense, Wall Street Journal bestselling author Joe Hart explores both the vast mysteries of outer space and the even darker unknown that lies within ourselves.
Release date: May 8
The Crooked Staircase by Dean Koontz
Jane Hawk—who dazzled readers in The Silent Corner and The Whispering Room — faces the fight of her life, against the threat of a lifetime in this electrifying new thriller by #1 New York Times bestselling suspense master Dean Koontz.
“I could be dead tomorrow. Or something worse than dead.”
Jane Hawk knows she may be living on borrowed time. But as long as she’s breathing, she’ll never cease her one-woman war against the terrifying conspiracy that threatens the freedom — and free will — of millions. Battling the strange epidemic of murder-suicides that claimed Jane’s husband, and is escalating across the country, has made the rogue FBI agent a wanted fugitive, relentlessly hunted not only by the government but by the secret cabal behind the plot. Deploying every resource their malign nexus of power and technology commands, Jane’s enemies are determined to see her dead… or make her wish she was.
Jane’s ruthless pursuers can’t stop her from drawing a bead on her prey: a cunning man with connections in high places, a twisted soul of unspeakable depths with an army of professional killers on call. Propelled by her righteous fury and implacable insistence on justice, Jane will make her way from southern California to the snow-swept slopes of Lake Tahoe to confront head-on the lethal forces arrayed against her. But nothing can prepare her for the chilling truth that awaits when she descends the crooked staircase to the dark and dreadful place where her long nightmare was born.
Release date: May 8
The Outsider by Stephen King
An unspeakable crime. A confounding investigation. At a time when the King brand has never been stronger, he has delivered one of his most unsettling and compulsively readable stories.
An 11-year-old boy’s violated corpse is found in a town park. Eyewitnesses and fingerprints point unmistakably to one of Flint City’s most popular citizens. He is Terry Maitland, Little League coach, English teacher, husband, and father of two girls. Detective Ralph Anderson, whose son Maitland once coached, orders a quick and very public arrest. Maitland has an alibi, but Anderson and the district attorney soon add DNA evidence to go with the fingerprints and witnesses. Their case seems ironclad.
As the investigation expands and horrifying answers begin to emerge, King’s propulsive story kicks into high gear, generating strong tension and almost unbearable suspense. Terry Maitland seems like a nice guy, but is he wearing another face? When the answer comes, it will shock you as only Stephen King can.
Release date: May 22
The Woman in the Woods by John Connolly
From internationally bestselling author and “creative genius who has few equals in either horror fiction or the mystery genre” (New York Journal of Books) comes a gripping thriller starring Private Investigator Charlie Parker. When the body of a woman — who apparently died in childbirth — is discovered, Parker is hired to track down both her identity and her missing child.
In the beautiful Maine woods, a partly preserved body is discovered. Investigators realize that the dead young woman gave birth shortly before her death. But there is no sign of a baby.
Private detective Charlie Parker is hired by a lawyer to shadow the police investigation and find the infant but Parker is not the only searcher. Someone else is following the trail left by the woman, someone with an interest in much more than a missing child… someone prepared to leave bodies in his wake.
And in a house by the woods, a toy telephone begins to ring and a young boy is about to receive a call from a dead woman.
Release date: June 12
The Cabin at the End of the World by Paul Tremblay
The Bram Stoker Award-winning author of A Head Full of Ghosts adds an inventive twist to the home invasion horror story in a heart-palpitating novel of psychological suspense that recalls Stephen King’s Misery, Ruth Ware’s In a Dark, Dark Wood, and Jack Ketchum’s cult hit The Girl Next Door.
Seven-year-old Wen and her parents, Eric and Andrew, are vacationing at a remote cabin on a quiet New Hampshire lake. Their closest neighbors are more than two miles in either direction along a rutted dirt road.
One afternoon, as Wen catches grasshoppers in the front yard, a stranger unexpectedly appears in the driveway. Leonard is the largest man Wen has ever seen but he is young, friendly, and he wins her over almost instantly. Leonard and Wen talk and play until Leonard abruptly apologizes and tells Wen, “None of what’s going to happen is your fault”. Three more strangers then arrive at the cabin carrying unidentifiable, menacing objects. As Wen sprints inside to warn her parents, Leonard calls out: “Your dads won’t want to let us in, Wen. But they have to. We need your help to save the world.”
Thus begins an unbearably tense, gripping tale of paranoia, sacrifice, apocalypse, and survival that escalates to a shattering conclusion, one in which the fate of a loving family and quite possibly all of humanity are entwined. The Cabin at the End of the World is a masterpiece of terror and suspense from the fantastically fertile imagination of Paul Tremblay.
Release date: June 26
Halcyon by Rio Youers
Halcyon is the answer for all Americans who want to escape, but paradise isn’t what it seems. A beautiful island in the middle of Lake Ontario — a self-sustaining community made up of people who want to live without fear, crime, or greed. Halcyon is run by Valerie Kemp, aka Mother Moon, benevolent and altruistic on the outside, but hiding an unimaginable darkness inside. She has dedicated her life to the pursuit of Glam Moon, a place of eternal beauty and healing. And she believes the pathway there can only be found at the end of pleasure.
On the heels of tragedy, Martin Lovegrove moves his family to Halcyon. A couple of months, he tells himself, to retreat from the chaos and grind. He soon begins to suspect there is something beneath Halcyon’s perfect veneer and sets out to discover the truth — however terrible it might be — behind the island and its mysterious founder, Mother Moon.
Release date: July 10
Bad Man by Dathan Auerbach
Reddit horror sensation Dathan Auerbach delivers a devilishly dark novel about a young boy who goes missing, and the brother who won’t stop looking for him.
Eric disappeared when he was three years old. Ben looked away for only a second at the grocery store, but that was all it took. His brother was gone. Vanished right into the sticky air of the Florida Panhandle.
They say you’ve got only a couple days to find a missing person. Forty-eight hours to conduct searches, knock on doors, and talk to witnesses. Two days to tear the world apart if there’s any chance of putting yours back together. That’s your window.
That window closed five years ago, leaving Ben’s life in ruins. He still looks for his brother. Still searches, while his stepmother sits and waits and whispers for Eric, refusing to leave the house that Ben’s father can no longer afford. Now twenty and desperate for work, Ben takes a night stock job at the only place that will have him: the store that blinked Eric out of existence.
Ben can feel that there’s something wrong there. With the people. With his boss. With the graffitied baler that shudders and moans and beckons. There’s something wrong with the air itself. He knows he’s in the right place now. That the store has much to tell him. So he keeps searching. Keeps looking for his baby brother, while missing the most important message of all.
That he should have stopped looking.
Release date: August 7
The Agony House by Cherie Priest
Denise Farber has just moved back to New Orleans with her mom and step-dad. They left years ago after Hurricane Katrina and are back now, wagering the last of their family’s money on fixing up an old, run-down house and converting it to a bed and breakfast. When the unexplained noises start, that seems a little weird. Same too for the fact that nothing seems to work around the house…even when it should. But when floors start collapsing suddenly and deadly objects fall everywhere–and voices start speaking to Denise–she knows that something more sinister lies hidden.Could the answers lie in an old comic book that Denise finds in the abandoned attic…the lost last work of a famous artist who apparently lived here? Denise isn’t going anywhere, so she must unravel the mystery, on the pages and off them, if she and her family are to survive…
Release date: September 25
Which of these books do you plan on reading? Share in the comments!