13 Books to Read After STRANGER THINGS

Finished it yet? Then read these…


Stranger Things appeared seemingly out of nowhere when released by Netflix on July 15 and has quickly become a pop phenomenon. If you’re hankering for some more small-town oddness, arcane creatures, ’80s bicycle riding or D&D chic, author Samuel Sattin (Legend, The Silent End, League of Somebodies) is here with a list of 13 books to sate your appetite.


Paper Girls, by Brian K. Vaughan and Cliff Chiang (Image Comics). Small town? Check. Obdurate teenagers on bicycles? Check. Mutants, monsters, time/dimension traveling? Check, check and check. Paper Girls plays with nostalgia while subverting it simultaneously. With four girls as main characters instead of the usual group of boys, Vaughan and Chiang embrace the wonder of the ’80s while introducing the perils of the future.

Paper Girls

Harrow County, by Cullen Bunn and Tyler Crook (Dark Horse Comics). Harrow County isn’t the ET/Stephen King mash-up that Stranger Things is, but its tale of a small town with a history of witchery is creepy to the max. Bolstered by Crook’s amazing art, Bunn’s story continues to draw out the mystery of a town filled with dark secrets sure to scratch your supernatural itch.


Disappearance at Devil’s Rock, Paul Tremblay (William Morrow). The disappearance of a small-town teen starts a journey that veers toward deception, darkness and unreliable narrators. Bram Stoker Award-winner Paul Tremblay’s new novel keeps the eeriness meter at full tilt, while we continue to uncover the secrets of Devil’s Rock.

Black Hole, by Charles Burns (Fantagraphics). Scary, surreal, visceral and beautiful, Black Hole practically takes place in the Upside Down. With amazing characters, creepy visuals and a mutation-inducing STD, this small-town horror never lets you get comfy, and keeps you guessing until the end (and beyond).

Black Hole

The Wrenchies, by Farel Dalrymple (First Second). Kids vs. monsters is the name of the game in Dalrymple’s masterful book. Set in a distant future ruled by demonic beasts called Shadowsmen, only a gang of rough-and-tumble kids known as the Wrenchies can discover (and destroy) the source of their power.

The Wrenchies

Sorry Please Thank You: Stories, by Charles Yu (Vintage). If Stranger Things hearkens back to the decade where science/gadgetry collided with pop-culture arcana, Charles Yu’s collection of stories, riffing on D&D, science fiction and satire, will pique your interest (and make you laugh).

The Creepy Casefiles of Margo Maloo, by Drew Weing. This amazing webcomic (soon to be released in print by First Second) follows the story of an excitable boy named Charles who just moved to monster-infested Echo City. Thankfully, he meets the amazing Monster Mediator Margo Maloo, whom the monsters themselves fear. Stranger Things fans, or perhaps the kids of Stranger Things fans, will surely enjoy this creepy slice of fun.


Magic for Beginners, by Kelly Link (Random House). Link’s stories are like puzzles. Nothing is ever as it seems as she leads you into worlds that are somewhat like our own, but with rules bent almost to the point of breaking. Populated by ghouls and zombies and seers of all kinds, lovers of Stranger Things will be enthralled by Link’s mysteries.


Anya’s Ghost, by Vera Brosgol (Square Fish). Anya’s Ghost is a deceivingly scary yarn. What seems to be at first a story about a small-town girl befriending a kindly ghost that’s been trapped in a well, becomes a frightful tale about friendship and identity. Like Stranger Things, it has a lot of heart, and doesn’t let your expectations off the hook.


North American Lake Monsters: Stories, by Nathan Ballingrud (Small Beer Press). This collection of scary, sometimes gory, always eye-opening stories revolves around regular people, their problems and their fears, as they’re faced with horrors beyond their wildest imagination.

Beasts of Burden, by Evan Dorkin and Jill Thompson (Dark Horse). Though the characters in Beasts of Burden are small-town animals, not small-town humans, the horrors they face are just as sinister. This team of dogs and cats stare down the worst of what the occult has to offer, all to protect the unsuspecting humans who live among them.

Beasts of Burden

Costume Quest: Invasion of the Candy Snatchers, Zac Gorman (First Second). This fun-filled romp by artist/writer Zac Gorman is an enjoyable accompaniment to Stranger Things. With its ’80s overture and Halloween-flavored spookiness, you won’t be disappointed.

Costume Quest

The Drifting Classroom, Kazuo Umezo (Shogakukan/Viz Media). This classic series about a group of school kids (and their school itself) being transported into a horrifying, dystopian future, is nothing if not a mind-bending adventure into the bizarre. Though a little more Lord of the Flies than Goonies, fans of Stranger Things should find more than enough beastly goodness to sink their teeth into.

The Drifting Classroom

Samuel Sattin’s most recent novel The Silent End (Ragnarok) has been described as a cross between Stand By Me, The Goonies and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It’s horror and high school in the misty Pacific Northwest, as three teenagers find themselves pitted against an unearthly menace trying to take over their town.

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Author: Dan Greenfield

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