Book Club Nominees

5 Throwback Horror Books to Celebrate Your Birthday

by @Ri3Ri3., curator of HOWLS Book Club nominees for November 2023’s “A Very Unhappy Birthday” category

Help me celebrate my birthday this month by reading a birthday themed book from my childhood!

Give Yourself Goosebumps #39: Scary Birthday to You! by R.L. Stine

Your birthday surprise is a weird entertainer who throws a “horror birthday.” If you choose to open your presents, you’re chased by crazed motorized toys, and if you choose to eat your cake, watch out — it’s crawling with bugs! (StoryGraph)


…because birthday.

StoryGraph | Goodreads

Goosebumps Hall of Horrors #6: The Birthday Party of No Return by R.L. Stine

Welcome to the Hall of Horrors, HorrorLand’s Hall of Fame for the truly terrifying.

Lee Hargrove only wants one thing-to win a scholarship to Summer Sports Camp. His school is holding a competition and the winner gets to attend the camp for free. Lee is one of the favorites to win along with his friend, Cory Lucky Duck Duckworth and another athletic classmate, Laura Grodin. Laura is good…for a girl, but how can anyone compete with Cory’s good luck streak? Lee has an idea and he’s about to give Cory an unforgettable birthday present that will really get the party started. 


…Because also birthday.

StoryGraph | Goodreads | Amazon

Mr. Midnight #5: Happy Birthday Horrors / Eaten by Hamburgers by James Lee

Turn off your lights, get ready for frights! When the clock strikes midnight and the moon’s full and bright, it’s time for dread and fear. For Mr Midnight is here. Double the danger and twice the terror! STORY #1: Peter’s birthday party was fun, until a terrifying present arrived! Soon, Peter, Jessica and Atul are in real danger. Will the HAPPY BIRTHDAY HORRORS ever stop? STORY #2: Benjamin Lai loves his food, but his food hates him and wants revenge! Can Isaac and Susie save him before he is EATEN BY HAMBURGERS? (StoryGraph)


BIRTHDAY!!! And also food.

StoryGraph | Goodreads | Amazon 

Spinechillers Mysteries #7: Birthday Cake and I Scream by Fred E. Katz

It’s MacKenzie’s twelfth birthday. He’d like a paintball party, but his mom books the party at Spookie the Clown’s Hall of Pizza. Unlimited play on the video games makes it pretty cool, until Spookie shows up with some games of his own. Soon, all the kids want to win is a chance to get out! (Goodreads)


Did you know I have a birthday?

StoryGraph | Goodreads | Amazon 

Goosebumps Slappy World #1: Slappy Birthday to You! by R.L. Stine

The evil dummy comes to life to tell his own twisted tales and scary stories!

It’s bad enough Ian Barker has to spend his twelfth birthday with his sister and their two annoying cousins. The four of them can’t ever hang out without getting into trouble. Vinnie and Jonny always want to play with Ian’s stuff. They take extra turns and break everything they touch. Even Ian’s new birthday presents are up for grabs. But when Ian gets a Slappy dummy from his dad, things go from bad to worse. When Slappy’s in charge, you don’t fight over him, he fights over you… (StoryGraph)


I don’t know anymore.

Bookshop* | StoryGraph | Goodreads | Amazon 

And The Winner Is…

Out of these five books, HOWLers voted to read Give Yourself Goosebumps #39: Scary Birthday to You! by R.L. Stine. Discussion starts on November 6, and you can chat with us about it by joining the Discord!

*The HOWLS affiliate storefront pays a 10% commission to HOWL Society and gives a matching 10% to independent bookstores

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