Paranormal/supernatural recommendations

Mouse

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 2, 2006
Messages
10,657
Location
Devon
I'm putting this here instead of the book discussion area as it's to do with my WiP. (Hope that's ok, TJ!)

I'm not sure what genre my story is - not that I'm particularly bothered at the moment as I'm only seven chapters in, but I'd just like to see what else was out there to have a read of to see what other people are doing.

So, does anybody have any suggestions for a paranormal/supernatural fantasy book? Or TV show even? (I'm thinking Being Human like).

Book wise, I've read The Possessions of Doctor Forrest and this is sort of along the lines I'm thinking. Sort of.

When I do a search on Amazon for paranormal stories it brings up what looks like either porn or chick lit. And they've all got daft titles like 'Mated' or 'The Seduction of someone or another' (Ok, that one's not exact but you get the idea.)

Also, I guess it is a good idea to read what you're writing yourself? (Genre wise, I mean.) I did read a lot of YA stuff when I was writing YA stuff, but I still read that now so...
 

Glitch

#452
Supporter
Joined
Feb 12, 2007
Messages
1,800
I've read some books by Karen Chance which I would put in the supernatural category.

As for TV shows, Ghost Whisper and Haven spring to mind.
 

Warren_Paul

Banishment this world!
Joined
Jan 28, 2012
Messages
2,958
Location
Middle-Earth
The majority of paranormal books are romance novels, which makes it hard because you are not after seduction style books. as for TV shows, the best is Supernatural. There is also Lost Girl, but its acting is terrible. Also Sanctuary sort of like X-men meets urban fantasy.


Books, like I said, majority are paranormal romance. You have the major authors: Charlaine Harris, Stephenie Meyer (shudder) and Laurell Hamilton.

Laurell Hamilton's books start off really good but lose the plot a bit after Obsidian Butterfly. After that they become a bit pornographic, like your trying to avoid. But the first books are really good paranormal thrillers, murder cases, Anita Blake working with the police etc.

I liked Jennifer Ashley's Shifter's Unbound series, they are also romances, but based on a concept like the movie District 9 where shapeshifters are forced to live in controlled slums-like communities, separated from humans.

J.K Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood is very popular, its romance as well, but takes a darker side to it, more serious, also shows a lot more of the villains than other paranormal stories.
 

Mouse

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 2, 2006
Messages
10,657
Location
Devon
I've read some books by Karen Chance which I would put in the supernatural category.

As for TV shows, Ghost Whisper and Haven spring to mind.

Thanks, just looked up Karen Chance but it's not what I'm looking for.

Not heard of Haven. Will check it out!

edit: Thanks Warren. Just looked at some of those, they don't look right either! This is going to be difficult, I think. I don't want 'romance' really. Or anything too supernatural. Something with just a hint.

With the Possessions of Doctor Forrest, there are no vampires, zombies, werewolves, angels, ghosts etc. Just one sort of supernatural thing.

Sanctuary sounds good, thanks.
 

Glitch

#452
Supporter
Joined
Feb 12, 2007
Messages
1,800
It's funny, but I always felt frustrated the way the X-Files stopped short of actual supernatural/paranormal/aliens. When they finally started to actually show the supernatural I started to loose interest!

One of my stories starts out only hinting at the main characters supernatural abilities, even the character is unaware of why/how certain things happen around her. I'm debating whether I should give her control of these abilities or to keep them out of her conscious reach.

Now see what you made me do! I've posted several times to your thread. At this rate I might make 200 posts before the year is out; I was planning sometime in the next decade!! :rolleyes:
 

The Judge

Truth. Order. Moderation.
Staff member
Joined
Nov 10, 2008
Messages
13,924
Location
nearly the New Forest
I'm putting this here instead of the book discussion area as it's to do with my WiP. (Hope that's ok, TJ!)
Well, as it's you...

How about telling us a bit more about the WiP and how you see it going -- that way it keeps it firmly in GWD territory and gives us a better ides of what to recommend.

If you only want a hint of supernatural, I don't think the Dresden books are it -- Butcher has full blown vampires, wizards, werewolves, faery and practically everything else you can think of.
 

AnyaKimlin

Confuddled
Joined
Sep 21, 2011
Messages
6,099
Location
North Scotland
These day it is seen as very cliche but I adore Agatha Christie's Hound of Death (it wasn't cliche when she wrote it lol), it scared me something chronic as a child. It is a collection of short stories some are more paranormal/horror than others.
 

Mouse

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 2, 2006
Messages
10,657
Location
Devon
One of my stories starts out only hinting at the main characters supernatural abilities, even the character is unaware of why/how certain things happen around her. I'm debating whether I should give her control of these abilities or to keep them out of her conscious reach.

This is what I'm talking about! My story is this. :D


Well, as it's you...

How about telling us a bit more about the WiP and how you see it going -- that way it keeps it firmly in GWD territory and gives us a better ides of what to recommend.

If you only want a hint of supernatural, I don't think the Dresden books are it -- Butcher has full blown vampires, wizards, werewolves, faery and practically everything else you can think of.

Righty o.

Well... it's set in our world, in our time. One main character is a woman who can see dead people. So she's like a medium, I guess.

The other main character is a guy who's had an accident and now when he touches people he can feel what they're feeling - I'm thinking this'll develop from feelings into thoughts/memories maybe.

There is somebody murdering people who look like my guy. I'm thinking they're not murdering people themselves, exactly, maybe they're doing some sort of voodoo, or witchcraft, or demon summoning to do the murders.

That's it really. There aren't any vampires or werewolves or zombies, so everything has to be believable. Like, we all know there are people who say they see dead people or claim to be psychic.

These day it is seen as very cliche but I adore Agatha Christie's Hound of Death (it wasn't cliche when she wrote it lol), it scared me something chronic as a child. It is a collection of short stories some are more paranormal/horror than others.

Never thought of Agatha Christie. Ta!
 

Phyrebrat

www.beanwriting.com
Supporter
Joined
Feb 13, 2011
Messages
5,494
Location
In your bedroom wardrobe...
Successful supernatural writing to me requires that you get across the normality of life, to the reader. I find that when reading that if I become comfortable with the character’s/s’ ordinariness, the supernatural elements, even the smallest occurrences, have a higher dramatic impact.

Can I recommend Michael McDowell? In particular The Elementals, which I think is my favorite all-time read. It’s no Dickens or Hardy but it is wonderfully haunting. And I don’t mean that in the sense of scary (which at times it is) but in that it stays with you. I have read it over six times (no hardship – its only 2hundred something pages) and it is – for me – up there with Shirley Jackson, I should recommend it therefore to anyone, research or not. Part of the reason it works (apart from its originality) is the setting. So blissful and evocative, and marrying that with chilling supernatural energies is a great combo.

Also, speaking of Hardy, he wrote a nice short story, which is usually bundled in The Distracted Preacher called The Withered Arm.

As far as TV goes, I would recommend the recently finished (in the US) wonderful American Horror Story. This for me has rewritten the rulebook on supernatural anthology series’ with an over arcing mythology. It deals with supernature and ghosts in a fresh way, and nary a zombie <yawn> or vampire <rude snorty yawn> :D in sight.

I'm a huge Stephen King fan (not a la Annie Wilkes, though :eek:) but I’ve steered clear of him here simply because he’s so ubiquitous that I'm sure you have probably rinsed him out. Duma Key may be worth a read though. Great mix of the ordinary and supernatural.

Hope this helps and a warning; if you do pick up The Elementals be prepared to be inundated with “Did you like…’ questions from me ;)

pH
 

Mouse

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 2, 2006
Messages
10,657
Location
Devon
I think I will get The Elementals, thanks! It sounds good anyway and it's only a few quid on Amazon.

American Horror Story I'll check out too. Sounds interesting!

Thanks!
 

Warren_Paul

Banishment this world!
Joined
Jan 28, 2012
Messages
2,958
Location
Middle-Earth
Well... it's set in our world, in our time. One main character is a woman who can see dead people. So she's like a medium, I guess.

The other main character is a guy who's had an accident and now when he touches people he can feel what they're feeling - I'm thinking this'll develop from feelings into thoughts/memories maybe.

There is somebody murdering people who look like my guy. I'm thinking they're not murdering people themselves, exactly, maybe they're doing some sort of voodoo, or witchcraft, or demon summoning to do the murders.

That's it really. There aren't any vampires or werewolves or zombies, so everything has to be believable. Like, we all know there are people who say they see dead people or claim to be psychic.

Sorry Mouse, when you started talking Paranomal I instantly started thinking Urban fantasy. ;)

it brings a few ideas to mind.


Many of Steven Kings books could possibly be an option maybe but then, I'm sure you already thought of him.

Another TV show I thought of reading this is Medium.

As for books, a couple of suggestions:

Every Dead Thing, John Connolly's Charlie Parker series. Its murder thrillers with a paranormal twist, includes a physic giving clues and the villain has a supernatural side to him. as well as the protagonist eventually.


The Pendergast series by Douglas Preston/Lincoln Child might fit what your after. Its quite scientific based paranormal thrillers following an FBI character investigating murder cases with a supernatural twist. Kind of like X-Files. Relic is the first book.



EDIT: Thought of another series as I was editing ( sure I was :D )

Maybe the Repairman Jack series by F. Paul Wilson. Quite a bit lighter than Every Dead Thing, although I'm not sure if the author intended it that way. It keeps the supernatural toned down a bit, surprising you later. It reminded me of Supernatural in a way, a hunter keeping his occupation secret.
 
Last edited:

Mouse

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 2, 2006
Messages
10,657
Location
Devon
Thanks, Warren. I looked at Stephen King, but aren't his books really long?

I have a John Connolly book - The Black Angel. Which I would love to read, but we were moving house a while ago and all my books are now boxed up somewhere. :(

I had a shoofty on Amazon earlier and ended up buying Death of an Ordinary Man by Glen Duncan. (For 1p! Ok, £2.81 once you add p&p).

Anybody read any of his books? He has one called I, Lucifer too, which looks good.
 

Warren_Paul

Banishment this world!
Joined
Jan 28, 2012
Messages
2,958
Location
Middle-Earth
Yeah Steven King writes like 300k epics. They all tend to be over 1000 pages. I think his latest is about 1400 pages! :eek:

Don't know anything about Glen Duncan but was just thinking, there is always the Supernatural TV show tie-in novels. I've never been a big fan of books written as commercial "fan fiction" of TV shows, but they might be alright. I've never read them though.

But saying that, they might be heading a bit too much back into urban fantasy territory, but at least they are not romance or chick lit, and they don't butcher the lore like Twilight did. When it comes to Supernatural, everything is dark and gritty, great show, hopefully the books are just as good.

Just thought I would mention the books because when I read that critique you posted up, the characters instantly reminded me of Dean and Sam from Supernatural.
 

Hex

Write, monkey, write
Joined
Mar 3, 2011
Messages
6,247
Location
Edinburgh
I really enjoyed I, Lucifer, but I read it years ago and can't remember much about it...

How about some Wilkie Collins or something like The Hound of the Baskervilles?
 

Mouse

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 2, 2006
Messages
10,657
Location
Devon
Just thought I would mention the books because when I read that critique you posted up, the characters instantly reminded me of Dean and Sam from Supernatural.

Really? I've seen bits of Supernatural, but never a whole episode. I've got a friend who loves it so she's always on about it.

I really enjoyed I, Lucifer, but I read it years ago and can't remember much about it...

How about some Wilkie Collins or something like The Hound of the Baskervilles?

I was debating between I, Lucifer and the one I got. Hope I made the right choice!

Don't know Wilkie Collins. Will go look.
 

SolaceAlpha1

New Member
Joined
Jun 10, 2022
Messages
4
The majority of paranormal books are romance novels, which makes it hard because you are not after seduction style books. as for TV shows, the best is Supernatural. There is also Lost Girl, but its acting is terrible. Also Sanctuary sort of like X-men meets urban fantasy.


Books, like I said, majority are paranormal romance. You have the major authors: Charlaine Harris, Stephenie Meyer (shudder) and Laurell Hamilton.

Laurell Hamilton's books start off really good but lose the plot a bit after Obsidian Butterfly. After that they become a bit pornographic, like your trying to avoid. But the first books are really good paranormal thrillers, murder cases, Anita Blake working with the police etc.

I liked Jennifer Ashley's Shifter's Unbound series, they are also romances, but based on a concept like the movie District 9 where shapeshifters are forced to live in controlled slums-like communities, separated from humans.

J.K Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood is very popular, its romance as well, but takes a darker side to it, more serious, also shows a lot more of the villains than other paranormal stories.
They are mostly romance? Gosh i didnt know that... but then i decided im writing fantasy, perhaps dark fantasy and not supernatural/paranormal. Not because there is magic but because of the alt urban world.
If i up my writing skills (by actually writing) then one day, maybe i can try genres like sci fi military and paranormal/mystery so on.
Just fantasy at the moment. Urban fantasy, is that a genre?
Im not hung up on labelling it at the.moment, since im struggling to even write the draft fully. I iust need to get the outline down then blooming do it.
 

Similar threads


Top