I'm not a big fan of the horror genre. Too much of it is inclined toward trying to creep the reader out through gore; and honestly, as an adult, how often do you read a scene that actually frightens? So when I recently found praise for Robert Aickman's short stories, I was skeptical. I purchased the ebook version of his Dark Entries collection at random (He has several anthologies available) and was both delighted and astonished by his stories. In this particular volume, the story Ringing the Changes is the closest any writer has come to ever actually frightening me. The mood is one of sheer suspense. Nor would I classify his work as straight horror. True, his stories involve ghosts and the supernatural, but Aickman never considered himself a "horror writer." Rather, he wrote strange, fantastic tales, unlike anything else. He died in 1981 and I'm really surprised I never ran into his work before now.
If you've come this far, and have been counting, you probably realize that I've only listed about 70 books. This leaves room for more reading. If you know of a book that you feel deserves to be on the list, please let me know. I'd love to read it and include it here.