23 Books Like Goosebumps For Adults We All Need To Read

books like goosebumps

This post is all about 23 books like goosebumps for adults that all of us 90’s kids need to read.

books like goosebumps for adults


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Hello, to all my fellow Stein kids! Welcome to my little cozy corner of the web, Booked and Bewitched, where we chat about all things horror and mystery-related!

This week we are talking about all things Goosebumps for adults.

I am proud to admit that I own a decent Goosebumps collection as a grown woman, along with all the original episodes on DVD and accessories for all occasions. Needless to say, R.L. Stein left a huge impression on my youth and made me an avid reader and horror fan. So it is with much love that I share some more grown-up works that bring those same vibes.

So without further ado, let’s get into these books like goosebumps for adults!  And if you need more horror-themed entertainment choices. Go check out-

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Goosebumps For Adults

1. Welcome To Horrorland For Adults

books like goosebumps for adults

So The Island by Natasha Preston is a must-read if Welcome To Horrorland was a Goosebumps favorite of yours. The Island gives us a grown-up modern-day twist though with influencers, YouTubers, and ultra-wealthy. It’s the ultimate private island amusement park getaway. At least until you try to leave.


by Natasha Preston (Author)

Jagged Island: a private amusement park for the very rich—or the very influential. Liam, James, Will, Ava, Harper, and Paisley—social media influencers with millions of followers—have been invited for an exclusive weekend before the park opens. They’ll make posts and videos for their channels and report every second of their VIP treatment.

2. The Girl Who Cried Monster For Adults

Books for Fans of Goosebumps

So I haven’t gotten to read Dark Harvest by Norman Partridge yet. But the book jacket reminded me of the Girl Who Cried Monster so I had to include it on my list. Secret monsters and things not being what they seem, all ring like a Goosebump book for adults to me.


by Norman Partridge (Author)

Pete McCormick knows that killing the October Boy is his one chance to escape a dead-end future in this one-horse town. He’s willing to risk everything, including his life, to be a winner for once. But before the night is over, Pete will look into the saw-toothed face of horror―and discover the terrifying true secret of the October Boy.

3. You Choose The Scare For Adults

spooky books like Goosebumps

Before you jump into Nightshift by Victoria Hancox, put on your horror smarts hat. While not the only horror game book on this list, it is first as it was the first I came across in my adulthood that instantly took me back to Reader Beware, You Choose The Scare.


by Victoria Hancox (Author)

In this adventure, you are not a hero. You’re just a hospital worker who’s plunged into an interactive battle against demons, witches, and time itself. You’re caught in the middle of a nightmare but will you be able to use your wits and survive?

4. House Of Shivers For Adults

horror gamebook

Okay if House Of Shivers is one of your favorite Goosebumps books, you need to read The House On Sentient Hill by Graham Plowman. This horror gamebook brings not only creepy houses and cosmic monsters but it throws in a ten-year-old murder.


by Graham Plowman (Author), and Matthew Dewhurst (Illustrator)

1926, New England. An intriguing find in the archives of the Misktatonic Library leads you to an old house on a hill, and the mystery of a 10-year-old murder case. Yet, some mysteries are as old as time and space, and mankind’s place in the universe is not as assured as we are led to believe…

5. Escape From Horror House For Adults

horror library

So not only does The Little Strangers by Sarah Waters end up on several books like Goosebumps for adults lists, but it’s also got a rave review from Stephen King on the cover. If you loved Escape From Horror House as a kid, you have to give this one a read.


by Sarah Waters (Author)

Home to the Ayres family for over two centuries, the Georgian house, once impressive and handsome, is now in decline, its masonry crumbling, its gardens choked with weeds, the clock in its stable yard permanently fixed at twenty-to-nine. Its owners—mother, son, and daughter—are struggling to keep pace with a changing society, as well as with conflicts of their own. But are the Ayreses haunted by something more sinister than a dying way of life? 

6. Stay Out Of The Basement For Adults

Is there an adult version of Goosebumps

Okay, I couldn’t have been the only kid who read Stay Out Of The Basement and shook their head at the blatant rule-breaking of the kids. Anyway, The Alchemist Folly by Victoria Hancox immediately made me think of the siblings all growing up and still getting into trouble once again.


by Victoria Hancox (Author)

Trapped with freaks of nature and man-made monsters, you need to stay alive long enough to thwart the twisted dreams of the Professor. After all, this job isn’t about saving the world; it’s about controlling it. In this quagmire of deceit and subterfuge, you are not a hero. You’re just a self-centered scientist who’s bitten off more than they can chew!

7. Welcome To Dead House For Adults

books like goosebumps for adults

So The Reddening by Adam Nevill is a mixed bag of reviews and to each their own. Based on cultish behavior, I feel it’s a great adult version similar to Welcome To Dead House. Cults, human sacrifice, and town secrets, all sound like a good read to me.


by Adam Nevill (Author)

Lifestyle journalist Katrine escaped past traumas by moving to a coast renowned for seaside holidays and natural beauty. But when a vast hoard of human remains and prehistoric artifacts is discovered in nearby Brickburgh, a hideous shadow engulfs her life.

8. Vampire Breath For Adults

What was the other book series similar to Goosebumps

So be warned, Alice in Deadland is an eight-part book series, by the lovely Mainak Dhar. While I don’t think there is an R.L. Stine work that rings true of Alice in Wonderland, Vampire Breath brings us pretty close in this version. Biters, I mean come on, what else could they be?


by Mainak Dhar (Author)

Civilization as we know it ended more than fifteen years ago, leaving as its legacy barren wastelands called the Deadland and a new terror for the humans who survived- hordes of undead Biters.

9. The Headless Ghost For Adults


So I’m not going to lie, the cover art on The Starling House by Alix Harrow caught me first. Then the bookjacket did a lovely job of reminding me of The Headless Ghost by R.L. Stein in the Goosebump series and now it’s on my October TBR that just keeps growing.


by Alix E. Harrow (Author)

Opal has been obsessed with The Underland since she was a child. When she gets the chance to step inside Starling House―and make some extra cash for her brother’s escape fund―she can’t resist.

10. Under The Magicians Spell For Adults

spine shivers books

While Under The Magician Spell wasn’t a huge fave of mine, I know tons of people who loved it. So then I came across The Dead Take The A Train, and it instantly made me think of Goosebumps. Full of magic, monsters, and cosmic horror it is a great read.


by Richard Kadrey (Author), Cassandra Khaw (Author)

Julie is a coked-up, burnt-out thirty-year-old whose only retirement plan is dying early. She’s been trying to establish herself in the NYC magic scene, and she’ll work the most gruesome gigs, exorcize the nastiest demons, and make deals with the cruelest gods to claw her way to the top. But nothing can prepare her for the toughest job yet: when her best friend, Sarah, shows up at her door in need of help. Keeping Sarah safe becomes a top priority.

11. It Came From The Internet For Adults

spooky books

 Have you figured out that Victoria Hancox is one of my favorite adult goosebump-style writers? Game Over took me straight back to It Came From Internet by R.L. Stein, and the sounds of dial-up echoed around my brain.


by Victoria Hancox (Author)

For a long time, The Cluster has been toying with us. Experimenting and probing our weaknesses — all to discover the best way to control us. We were pawns in a game; something to be manipulated for their interest and amusement.
But this isn’t a game anymore…

12. Bride Of The Living Dummy For Adults

book like goosebumps for adults

So I’m sure it’s no surprise I am the Black Sheep of my family. So when I came across this by Rachel Harrison it made me laugh and I had to read it. Needless to say, Bride of the Living Dummy is sort of similar to this, but honestly, it stands all on its own too.


by Rachel Harrison (Author)

Nobody has a “normal” family, but Vesper Wright’s is truly…something else. Vesper left home at eighteen and never looked back—mostly because she was told that leaving the staunchly religious community she grew up in meant she couldn’t return. But then an envelope arrives on her doorstep. 

13. The Ghost Next Door For Adults

books like goosebumps for adults

As most of us old dinosaurs know, the first Jack Black Goosebumps film was kinda based on The Ghost Next Door. So when I stumbled upon The September House by Carissa Orlando I knew I had to read it as it reminded me of The Ghost Next Door, except now the kids are the adults and haunted houses, meh whatever.


by Carissa Orlando (Author

When Margaret and her husband Hal bought the large Victorian house on Hawthorn Street—for sale at a surprisingly reasonable price—they couldn’t believe they finally had a home of their own. Then they discovered the hauntings. Every September, the walls drip blood. The ghosts of former inhabitants appear, and all of them are terrified of something that lurks in the basement. Most people would flee. 

14. The Werewolf Of Fever Swamp For Adults

novels like goosebumps for adults

Growing up Werewolf Of Fever Swamp always tore me up a little as a dog lover. So when I came across Our Own Unique Affliction by Scott Moses I felt that same emotional rollercoaster pull from my youth. If you like your horror to rip your heart out and shove it in your face, this is a good one.


by Scott J. Moses (Author), DarkLit Press (Author)

Our Own Unique Affliction is the story of Alice Ann, a dejected immortal who longs for her life in the sun. Navigating guilt, loss, family, meaning, murder, and all that comes with the curse of living forever. An existential bleak, quiet until it’s not, hallucination on duality, rife with fangs, empathy, blood, and grief.

15. Ghost Beach For Adults

novel like goosebumps

If you loved Ghost Beach by R.L. Stein as a child, you have to give Andrew Van Wey a look. The Light Of Dead Stars pulls you in right from the beginning and keeps you glued to the very end. It was a great monster mashup that is worth a chance.


by Andrew Van Wey (Author)

When tragedy shatters thirteen-year-old Zelda Ruiz’s adolescence, she retreats with her uncle Mark to the bucolic town of Greywood Bay. It’s a chance to heal, a chance to build a new life together.

But nothing can prepare them for the malignant terror that has long coveted these lands.

16. Careful What You Wish For- For Grownups 

welcome to dead house

Do you ever notice that the theme of magic wishes gone wrong that seems to encompass 90s children’s media? Maybe it’s just me, anyhoo, Carnivale of Curiosities by Amiee Gibbs instantly reminded me of Careful What You Wish For, all grown up.


by Amiee Gibbs (Author)

For a select few, however, the real show begins behind the curtain. Rumors abound that the show’s proprietor, Aurelius Ashe, is more than an average magician. It’s said that for the right price, he can make any wish come true. No one knows the truth of this claim better than Lucien the Lucifer, the Carnivale’s star attraction.

17. Attack of the Graveyard Ghouls For Adults 

books like goosebumps for adults

I love a good haunted house horror story, movie, video game, etc. Naturally, this started in my youth, so if you too loved Attack of the Graveyard Ghouls, you must read this. Home Before Dark, I mean come on, might as well call it when the street lights come on! How many of us knew this was our curfew time? Riley Sager hit us all in the feels with the title.


by Riley Sager (Author)

Twenty-five years ago, Maggie Holt and her parents moved into Baneberry Hall, a rambling Victorian estate in the Vermont woods. Three weeks later they fled in the dead of night, an ordeal her father recounted in a memoir called House of Horrors. His story of supernatural happenings and malevolent spirits became a worldwide phenomenon, rivaling The Amityville Horror in popularity—and skepticism.

18. Deep Trouble For Adults

books like goosebumps for adults

Between my mother and R.L. Steins Deep Trouble, I refuse to dip a toe into the ocean. Mira Grant takes that a step further in Into The Drowning Deep. Yup, no thank you, I have a healthy respect for Mother Nature and her monsters, thank you very much.


by Mira Grant (Author)

Seven years ago the Atargatis set off on a voyage to the Mariana Trench to film a mockumentary bringing to life ancient sea creatures of legend. It was lost at sea with all hands. Some have called it a hoax; others have called it a tragedy.

19. Say Cheese And Die For Adults

books like goosebumps for adults

If you tell me Darcy Coates wasn’t a Goosebumps kid growing up, I won’t believe you. Ghost Camera, Say Cheese, and Die, I see what’s going on here. Either way, I can’t wait to read this when it releases and further add to my phobia of selfies and having my picture taken.


by Darcy Coates (Author)

When Jenine finds an abandoned Polaroid camera, she takes a photo just for fun. But there’s something wrong with the image: a ghostly figure stands in the background, watching her.

20. Judy And The Beast For YA and Adults

books like goosebumps for adults

So What Big Teeth by Rose Szabo first caught my attention because of the cover art, hands down it’s stunning. But as I read it, I was impressed with both the various situations our MC finds herself in, and also the growth she goes through. If you love a good monster Goosebumps read, give this one a go.


by Rose Szabo (Author)

Eleanor Zarrin has been estranged from her wild family for years. When she flees boarding school after a horrifying incident, she goes to the only place she thinks is safe: the home she left behind. But when she gets there, she struggles to fit in with her monstrous relatives, who prowl the woods around the family estate and read fortunes in the guts of birds.

21. Escape From The Carnival Of Horror For Adults

books like goosebumps for adults

First off- these are tricky to get through alive, Mark Tullius took notes from R.L Stein and morphed them into the adult version of terror and fun. Try Not To Die At Ghostland is a great read, that will have you trying to think three steps ahead only to get yourself killed and have to go back and try again.



by Duncan Ralston (Author), Mark Tullius (Author)

Fight to survive, find your friends, and figure out your powers because these ghosts are confused. They’re angry. And they’re out for blood.

Good luck getting out of Ghostland. Every choice you make today is a life-and-death decision. Not just for you but everyone you meet.

22. The Haunter For Adults

book series like goosebumps

I’m sure it’s pure accident that both White Smoke by Tiffany Jackson and The Haunter take place in haunted homes on Maple Street. I placed it on my TBR list when I read that R.L. Stein had given it a rave review. A must-read for all the ghost lovers out there.


by Tiffany D Jackson (Author)

The renovated picture-perfect home on Maple Street, sitting between dilapidated houses, surrounded by wary neighbors has its . . . secrets. That’s only half the problem: household items vanish, doors open on their own, lights turn off, shadows walk past rooms, voices can be heard in the walls, and there’s a foul smell seeping through the vents only Mari seems to notice. Worse: Piper keeps talking about a friend who wants Mari gone.

23. The Scarecrow Walks At Midnight For Adults

books like goosebumps for adults

So Try Not To Die At Grandma’s House was the very first of Mark Tullius’ works that I read, and I died almost immediately. Fail as a horror fan. But I had a blast reading it, and going back over and over again trying to not die. If you loved Choose Your Scare as a kid, you have to read these.


by Mark Tullius (Author)

Your life hangs in the balance with each decision, and the monsters know every closet, hidden door, and shadowy nook of the house. If you die, you take little Sam down into the grave beside you. Can you discover a way out of this innocent-looking hell hole before you get ripped to shreds?

This post was all about 23 books like Goosebumps for adults that all 90’s kids need to read ASAP. Now go on, go read something that brings back all those childhood memories.

books like goosebumps for adults

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90s Kid Turned Goblin, Wife, Writer, Blogger & Mom

If you’re new here, Hi! My name is NG Terrors and you’ve wandered into my strange little goblin mode space. Here I chat about horror, gothic, generally strange, and mystery stuff I love, like, or loathe. So if that sounds like you, look around and stay for a bit. Pop an anxiety pill, yell at the kids and or animals to settle down, and relax with the rest of us neurodivergent people for a while. Oh and if you’re here just to be a negative Nancy please go away, we don’t have time for that round here.

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