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I love horror films. Not only are they creepy and fun, but they teach you some great lessons about life. Don’t split up. Don’t read the ancient texts out loud. And my personal favorite: don’t tell the mad scientist, grave-robber or cannibal that he’s crazy or that you’re going to report him to the police (especially not if the two of you are alone together in some secluded location).

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, I have a few horror survival guides to send your way. While many of these situations won’t apply to you currently, it never hurts to be prepared.*

How To Survive a Horror Movie is my favorite on this list. Seth Grahame-Smith is hilarious, and somehow perfectly balances the seriousness of horror with a lighter-hearted tone. Learn all the important things NOT to do (Don’t split up, don’t summon a demon with a oujia board, etc.). Also learn how to tell what kind of horror film you’re trapped in, and how to defeat any threat, from killer dolls to alien invasions. Good luck, my friends!

If you’re looking for something a little less harrowing, but still scary good fun, then try checking out the series of horror survival books by Moira Butterfield. When You’re in Love With a Vampire has all the information you need if you’ve decided to date or marry one of the undead. From learning vampire jokes to sleeping in a coffin, this is a cute little book (adorably illustrated!) for you to sink your newfound fangs into.

Maybe the shambling, rotten undead is more your thing. When There’s a Zombie in your Kitchen is a helpful and handy guide. Whether you’re an armchair zombie enthusiast or actively stockpiling canned food and weapons for the upcoming apocalypse, you should definitely give this a read. Learn helpful tips for dealing with a barista who wants your brains almost as much as you want your morning coffee, as well as what to tell your friends if you’re bitten and starting to turn.

We’ll wrap this list up with When All Your Friends are Aliens. Aliens have landed, but are they friendly…or not? What kind of alien threat are you dealing with? (A robot, for example, must be dealt with rather differently than a Grey). Can you date an alien? How do you determine an alien’s gender without being rude? And perhaps most importantly, if your alien partner’s parents invite you to their home planet for dinner, how do you make sure that you’re not the main course? As with the other books in the series, this volume is accompanied by adorable drawings from Pedro Demetriou, making it cute, helpful, and something you should never leave the planet without!

*Please note: Erin and the rest of the staff at WPPL are not responsible if you follow these guide books and are still injured, killed, kidnapped by a mad scientists, eaten by aliens, turned into a vampire, etc.


I'm the Reader's Advisory Librarian at WPPL. My interests include old horror films, classic novels, manga and anime, paper-crafting, and plants. If you like my suggestions, you can request personalized recommendations from me on My Librarian page.