I don’t know about you, but the holidays always mean traveling of some sort. For me, it means braving the hectic airport and flying home for a week or two to open presents and eat way too much food. For others, it means road tripping across the state to meet family or hopping on a cruise to avoid them and the whole festive season. Trains, boat rides, it’s all fair game. Traveling is a fact of life for a lot of us this season.
We spend so much time traveling in our lives. Just think about how much time you spend commuting or running errands day-to-day. The U.S. Department of Transportation reported on average, Americans spend “just under an hour” driving every day! Add in traveling and moving and the occasional road trip for a change of scenery and the hours add up.
And horror is about nothing if not creepy things finding us in our everyday life. To add insult to scary injury, traveling often traps you in a confined space. The cabin of an airplane, the body of a boat, things with little to no way out until you get wherever you’re going. So, to add some thrill to your next morning commute or flight home, check out these eight traveling horror novels.
The Light at the End by John Skipp & Craig Spector
Ten people have been killed on the New York subway by the “Subway Psycho” with seemingly no rhyme or reason, leaving the city in a panic. But those who encounter the killer know the truth: he’s not as human as everyone thinks he is. A group of strangers must come together, fueled by rage and fear, to take care of the monster on their tracks before he takes them all down too.
The Hunger by Alma Katsu
When The Donnor Party heads out on their journey, they’re expecting some hardship after setting out late in the season. But after misfortune after misfortune reduce their food supply and kill one of the children, their goal to the West is less and less certain. As other members of the party disappear, those left behind divide loyalties and point fingers all in the hopes they’ll make it out of their journey alive.
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Adrift by K.R. Griffiths
Suffering from agoraphobia and PTSD after an attack two years ago, Dan and his new wife, Elaine, decide to celebrate their commitment aboard the cruise ship Oceanus. Soon after boarding, though, Dan thinks he sees a body being thrown overboard. Trapped on board in the middle of the ocean with monstruous stowaways lurking in the night, Dan must figure out if what he saw was real and what it meant before it ruins his honeymoon.
Lost Souls by Poppy Z. Brite
Fifteen years ago, vampires Zillah, Molochai, and Twin wander into New Orleans for a little drink and left a young pregnant girl in their wake. Now, Nothing is a teenager who feels like he doesn’t belong with his normal family, in his normal life. He sets out on a road trip to find where he truly belongs, his path intersecting with the members of a rock band, Lost Souls. Their three journeys converge in one bloody, angsty mess.
The Deep by Alma Katsu
After surviving the sinking of the Titanic, Annie is plagued by ghosts. When another survivor reaches out to her with a job on board the Britannic, the Titanic’s sister ship turned hospital shop during WW1, she agrees. But when she sees a familiar face, one that should have gone down with the ship years ago, she’s convinced the haunting thoughts that have followed her were justified. Something’s on board this ship, too, and now she’s stuck at sea.
Road of Bones by Christopher Golden
When documentarian Teig learns about the 1200 miles of road with bodies of prisoners buried beneath the surface called the Kolyma Highway, his interest is captured. Hiring a guide and gathering his crew, they set out to see the freezing, isolated area and the way of life there. Arriving to a single 9 year old girl living in the village wasn’t exactly what he expected to find. As they flee the long, deadly road, though, the journey is long and the ghosts are on their wheels.
The Three by Sarah Lotz
Across continents, four planes crash at the same time. Strangely, three of the unexplained crashes were survived by one child, the victims dubbed “The Three.” When a cult leader declares the kids as bringers of the apocalypse, panic rises across the world and the kids are hidden away. But when their behavior gets stranger, their guardians wonder if it’s trauma from the crash or if they really are bringing on something earth-ending in their wake.
Flowers for the Sea by Zin E. Rocklyn
When flooding destroys her kingdom, Iraxi and the other survivors take refuge on an ark upon the water. Life is difficult on board with minimal resources and beasts in the water just waiting for their chance to attack. Pregnant with a child she’s not so sure is human anymore, Iraxi is trapped with no way out in more ways than one. And Iraxi needs something to do with all of her anger for the way everything has turned out.