Story Time for The Dead Grownups

by: Adam Davis, director of System Services for the Palm Beach County Library System

Horror Films are not just for All Hallow’s Eve. A healthy interest in the unknown and the undead never hurt anyone, so sit back, but don’t relax, and enjoy these thirteen horror flicks based on books that are equally as scary!


“1408” based on the short story in Stephen King’s collection, “Blood and Smoke” – There’s one element of horror that I can’t deal with: being trapped. For that reason, I can’t watch this film. Take my word for it, though, and pick this up today! “Renowned horror novelist Mike Enslin only believes what he can see with his own two eyes. After a string of bestsellers discrediting paranormal events in the most infamous haunted houses and graveyards around the world, he scoffs at the concept of an afterlife. Enslin’s phantom-free run of long and lonely nights is about to change forever when he checks into suite 1408 of the notorious Dolphin Hotel for his latest project. Defying the warnings of the hotel manager, the author is the first person in years to stay in the reputedly haunted room. Now Enslin must go from skeptic to true believer, all while trying to survive the night.” ®Bowker


“The Amityville Horror” based on the book by Jay Anson – Be prepared… this is not fiction! “The Long Island colonial house on the river’s edge seemed perfect, but their new house soon becomes a hellish nightmare.” ®Bowker


“Battle Royale” based on the book by Koushun Takami – This film was first described to me as the original and creepier version of “Hunger Games”. “In the near future, the Japanese government creates an annual battle royale in which a group of ninth-graders are sent to a remote, deserted island and given three days to kill each other until only one remains.” ®Bowker


“Children of Men” based on the book by P.D. James –  London, 2027. Humanity has become infertile and no child has been born for 18 years. Science is at loss to explain the reason. Immigration is a crime and refugees are caged like animals. African and East European societies have collapsed and their dwindling populations are migrating toward England and other wealthy nations, torn apart by nuclear fallout, rampant terrorism and political rebellion. In this climate of nationalistic violence, a London peace activist turned bureaucrat Theo Faron, joins forces with Julian, his revolutionary ex-wife, in order to save mankind by protecting a woman who has mysteriously become pregnant. These three set out on a desperate struggle to deliver the world’s only pregnant woman to the Human Project with hope that they can discover the cure for global infertility. As they carefully navigate between the battling forces of military police and a pro-immigration insurgency this small group must endure a death-defying ordeal of urban warfare.” ®Bowker


“Dark Water” based on the book by Koji Suzuki –  Dahlia has started a new life. She is recently separated from her husband, has a new job and a new apartment, she’s determined to put her estranged relationship behind her and devote herself to raising her daughter, Ceci. Then when her strained separation turns into a bitter custody battle, her situation takes a turn for the worse. Her new apartment seems to have a life of its own. Mysterious noises, persistent leaks of dark water, and strange happenings cause her imagination to run wild. This all leads Dahlia on a puzzling and mystifying pursuit to find out who is behind the endless mind games.” ®Bowker


“Hellraiser” based on the books by Clive Barker –  Pinhead is not just scary on the screen. The multitudes of graphic novels that feature this hell-bent creature will also keep you up at night. “The hideous zombie Pinhead, terrifies his brother and his estranged wife now inhabiting his former home. When a drop of blood partially resurrects him, all hell breaks loose as Pinhead forces his sister-in-law, formerly his lover, to kill and kill again so he can become whole.” ®Bowker  (One of my favorite trick-or-treaters of all time was a little girls dressed as Pinhead. Very cool, but quite disturbing at the same time!)


“It” based on the book by Stephen King –  Of course, you already know about Pennywise, but did you know that the book is better than both of the movies?


“Let the Right One In” based on the book by John Ajvide Lindqvist – There are two versions of this movie one made in Sweden and the other in the United States. Both are deliciously creepy. A young boy who is constantly being bullied at school makes friends with the new girl in the neighborhood. When strange disappearances and murders start happening in the town, all signs point to the new girl and her father, who only come out at night. ®Bowker


“Pride and Prejudice and Zombies” based on the books by Steve Hockensmith – In addition to the original book, there are sequels, a graphic novel, music accompaniment to enjoy! “Jane Austen’s classic tale of the tangled relationships between lovers from different social classes in nineteenth century England is faced with a new challenge, an army of undead zombies.” ®Bowker


“Ruins” based on the novel by Scott Smith –  “Jeff and Amy are an American couples who goes to Mexico for a vacation. They find themselves in the most brutal struggle when, on an archaeological dig into the jungle, they are ambushed by hostile Mayans and forced to the top of an ancient temple. There, a monstrous and diabolically clever entity awaits them among the ruins.” ®Bowker


“Salem’s Lot” based on the book by Stephen King – “The town knew darkness…and the awful, heavy silence of terrifying images grotesquely dancing in and out of the shadows…and stark white faces, huge empty eyes and long gnarled hands that reached out with lustful insistence…and the paralyzing fear of a diabolical corruption and a hideous peril more dreadful than death.” ®Bowker


The Woman in Black” based on the book by Susan Hill –  If you’ve seen and read this novel, reserve your copy of the film’s sequel! A young lawyer is ordered to travel to a remote village and sort out a recently deceased client’s papers. While he works alone in the client’s isolated house, he discovers the vengeful ghost of a scorned woman who is terrorizing the locals. This leads him on a desperate race against time when he discovers her true intent.” ®Bowker


“World War Z” based on the book by Max Brooks –
“Gary Lane travels the globe in an effort to eliminate the zombie pandemic that is endangering the existence of humanity.” ®Bowker




The Palm Beach County Library System has dozens of electronic books, printed books – both novels & non-fiction, audiobooks, and DVDs or Blu-ray discs to help you understand how spooky the world really is! Travel to your closest branch or find them on the web! As always, we’d like to thank Adam Davis, director of system services for the Palm Beach County Library System, for all his help in putting together this list.



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